Photo: Instagram/@heyrozz

Local girl and seasoned traveller, Rosalyn “Rozz” Lee (@heyrozz), is best known for her work as a radio presenter and is also a familiar face on TV having hosted numerous movie and music junkets. However, these days the Singaporean prefers to spend her time travelling the world, and with summer holidays fast approaching, we asked Lee to share her top travel photography tips to help you capture all those #wanderlust moments, and her favourite travel destinations in case you’re still looking for places to go.

What are your top tips and tricks when it comes to travel photography and videography?
I use my iPhone XS a lot to shoot my travel vlogs and one of my biggest pet peeves is when strong winds screw up my audio. So I fashioned a wind gag out of an old sock, by cutting off the toe end of a sock and wearing it over the end where the microphones are. Reduces wind distortion and didn’t cost me anything.

When it comes to taking photos, mildly backlit shots are always better than overexposed hotspots. Don’t be too obsessed about getting all your subjects “bright” and visible when snapping the photo. You can brighten backlit shots in edit apps, but you can’t bring back image detail (or “darken”) overexposed shots. A lot of the more recent iPhones feature Smart HDR which leverages multiple technologies — like faster sensors, an enhanced ISP, and advanced algorithms along with the powerful A12 Bionic chip — to bring more highlight and shadow detail to your photos.

What is the one thing you never leave home without when travelling?
Passport aside, as long as I’ve packed my “tech bag” I’m good to go. My tech bag holds all my cables, spare batteries, chargers, power banks and SD cards. This one time I got stuck in Ukraine with only the clothes on my back. I was supposed to shoot my vlog on Chernobyl but all my camera equipment was in my luggage which got left at my departure airport. I didn’t even have my iPhone charger. I spent two painful days running around Ukraine trying to buy a charger but to no avail. Lucky for me, the hotel reception had a spare cable and I settled for buying a selfie stick and shot my first ever travel vlog on my iPhone 5s. From now on, my tech bag gets packed into my hand luggage.

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What are your top five favourite travel destinations? 
1. Iran sits on top of my list of favourite places. I travelled solo around the country for three weeks, but it still wasn’t enough time to explore this beautiful, pristine and terribly misunderstood country.

  1. 2. Cuba. I travelled solo across Cuba for two and a half weeks and was so drawn to the people. They were curious, inviting, protective (of me) at times, and big hearted.

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  1. 3. I really enjoyed my month long Trans-Siberian train journey which took me from Beijing to Mongolia, Siberia, the smaller Russian town of Listvyanka, and finally Moscow. I booked a second class sleeper cabin which has four beds. I never knew who my bunk mates were going to be, it was all luck of the draw, but thankfully I met some pretty cool people over the course of my journey.
  1. 4. I can’t forget my North Pole expedition. I spent a night at the Barneo Ice Camp, a temporary base camp located on a giant ice floe 89 degrees north. We were then taken via helicopter to the northernmost point possible where we started hiking, knee deep in snow, in search of 90 degrees north to pop up on our digital compasses. We found it 20mins later. It was the best feeling ever to have been literally at the top of the world, where every step you take is south.
  1. 5. Isle of Skye, Scotland. This island is otherworldly, dramatic, and breathtaking. I’m obsessed with being in nature, and there’s nothing more I love than hiking. Isle of Skye is all that and more. It has the most varied landscapes located on a small spit of land.

What is the best and worst thing about travelling?
Best thing about travelling is knowing that you have the freedom and privilege to explore foreign lands, the very freedom and privilege denied to so many people living in nations where the lack of diplomatic ties and trade embargoes also deny them the right to visas for travel. The worst part about travelling to foreign lands is this nagging suspicion that everyone’s out to rip you off because you’re a tourist!

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What are some travel apps and iPhone features you can’t live without when you travel? 
I honestly wouldn’t survive without my Notes! I jot down my thoughts as I travel, contacts of people I meet along the way, and have full travel itineraries recorded on it too. I use the Health app to chart the number of steps I take whenever I hike, which is a lot. I also use Apple Books to download all my travel reads, and Apple Wallet, which has all my cards (ideal for Apple Pay) and boarding passes stored on it. I need my Express VPN app to access social media in dark countries and I rely heavily on the PolarPro app to check on wind speed and geomagnetic storms before I fly my drone. Lastly, Flightradar24 lets you key in your flight details and check on your plane’s flight path in (almost) real time. It’s pretty cool.