These stunning images will allow you to take a walk on the wild side – even during lockdown.
They all made the top 50 in a contest called #Wild2020, run by photo app Agora, which asked photographers to capture nature at its most jaw-dropping.
More than 9,000 snaps from people across the globe were entered, with judges whittling them down to a shortlist of 50. Thereafter, the power was in Agora users’ hands to cast their votes and decide which photo struck them the most and therefore should win the competition.
Some of mesmerising scenes captured include a raging Icelandic volcano, nuzzling lions and a tiger on the prowl.
Octavi Royo, Agora’s CEO and co-founder, said: ‘Free of rules, free of systems, free of plans. Living the present with full attention. This is what we see in the best images of the year from #Wild2020 – life in its purest form.’
Scroll down to see MailOnline Travel’s pick of the most wonderful wild images. You’ll find the overall winner at the very bottom…
These nuzzling lions were captured in a photo called ‘A Family Moment’ by Italian photographer @freeilli in Namibia. She explained: ‘We were driving the car in a quiet area in Etosha Park when we saw this pride of about 40 lions walking at the edge of the salt pan. Weirdly enough, we were alone and we spent almost an hour observing them chilling, playing and crossing the road’
Italian photographer @heisen22 snapped these three cheeky monkeys enjoying a relaxing dip in a hot spring at Jigokudani Yaen Kōen in Nagano, Japan
Moroccan photographer@mohamedtazi captured this stunning image of a lion in the Serengeti National Park in Tanzania
Indian photographer @beyond_imagina snapped this sweet image in Jaipur, India. He simply called the photo Wildlife
This stunning image of a young humpback whale was taken by Japanese photographer @Reiko.takahashi in Vava’u, Tonga
These polar bears were snapped by Spanish photographer @dmartphoto in Kaktovik, Alaska. He explained: ‘This family was feeding on a dead whale and approached our car. I thought it was easy to take photos of bears from the security of a jeep. My face changed colour when I saw a polar bear sniffing my window. It was one of the most magical moments I have experienced in all my life’
This image, called The Predator and Prey, was snapped by Indian photographer @mits4772 in the Indian district of Seoni
Dutch photographer @marcelvanbalken captured this incredible image of a family of majestic elephants taking a walk. He said: ‘In the wild, joy is an emotion that elephants have no shame in showing. They express their happiness and joy when they are amongst their loved ones. I was surprised to see them walking towards me in a nice row of three’
Polish photographer @artur’s called this image he snapped in Kamchatka, Russia, Family Walk. The snapper said: ‘There was a feeling of danger and tension all around, but at the same time, we could feel the force and the majesty coming out of the family moving forward, the cubs feeling confident under the care of their mother’
Swiss photographer @rizzolophotography.ch captured this cute deer peeking out from the long grass in Schaffhausen, Switzerland. The photographer said: ‘I was observing this deer in the early morning, even before the first light came over the field. With my binoculars, I could only spot its ears. I tried to get closer, slowly crept to the edge of the field and focused on its ears. First try… the deer lifted its head. The second try was this shot, after that the deer ran away. A lucky shot after all!’
This dramatic eruption of Eyjafjallajökull in Iceland was captured by Belgian photographer @oliviervandeginste
This dramatic close-up of a zebra was captured by Italian photographer @marcotagliarino in Namibia. He explained: ‘My goal was to obtain a portrait composed exclusively of the animal’s fur texture, using its eye as the focal element. I wanted to create a moment of intimacy between the animal and the person who will look at the photograph. To do so, I got really close to the wild animal’
Photographer @simonpastor captured this incredible image of a whale with her offspring off the coast of Native Dog Beach in Australia. He explained: ‘I searched for a whale for about a month, travelling more than 2,000 kilometres (1,242 miles) on the south coast of Australia to get this shot. I’m a lucky man for having found a mother whale and her baby. She protects her baby from sharks and predators. There was such a beautiful bond between them’
British photographer @joncleave snapped this stunning image of a proud stag while in Scotland. He said: ‘Scotland has some of the most diverse wildlife in the UK. Seeing a wild stag up so close is magical, and capturing it on camera in the battering weathers even more so’
This mesmerising image was taken on Rajshahai University campus, Bangladesh. Local snapper @tamimmohamad said: ‘Both the bird and the sun were trying to overcome their loneliness together. Actually, at first, my subject was the setting sun, but suddenly the bird came by and became my subject. It was a beautiful coincidence’
American photographer @polzray took this snap – ‘Come Snuggle’ – in Antarctica. She said: ‘Just a cuddly Weddell seal in a sweet slumber. I laid on the ground in the snow for 30 minutes to get that one shot’
Spanish photographer @wmr.valdez took this snap of a battle-scarred lion in Kenya. He said: ‘You can see the scars from previous fights on his face. It was so impressive to be so close to such a majestic animal’
Snapper Wibowo Rahardjo, aka @cymot, was crowned with the #Wild2020 ‘Hero’ title and received a $1,000 cash prize after this picture he took in Jurug Park in Indonesia gathered the most votes on the Agora app. Describing the picture, he said: ‘Orangutans normally steer clear of water to protect themselves from predators such as crocodiles and snakes. You can tell that she’s being very wary of her surroundings. It was an extraordinary and unexpected moment’
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