WINNING SNAP: This photo of curious humpback whales in Hervey Bay has taken out a national photography award.
WINNING SNAP: This photo of curious humpback whales in Hervey Bay has taken out a national photography award. Mark Seabury

Curious whales feature in award-winning snap

MARK Seabury has taken out the top prize in this year's Australian Travel Photography Awards with this photo, snapped in waters around Hervey Bay.

The competition had more than 5600 entries across 10 categories and Mr Seabury won the 'Aquatic' category for his shot of curious humpback whales, taken on-board Blue Dolphin Marine Tours in Hervey Bay.

The inaugural awards held in Sydney last week represent the important connection between travel, photography and our desire to capture experiences on camera.

Mr Seabury took home over $1000 in camera equipment prizes.

"Whale photography is my passion and obsession and I truly believe Hervey Bay is one of the best places in the world to have such interactive encounters with whales," he said.

"The bay is a perfect spot for them to relax, play and be inquisitive of their surroundings. It is not uncommon for the whales to spend up to an hour around the boats (called "mugging"), showing a genuine attempt to communicate and connect with the people on board.

"Being in a place where you can spend so much time up close to these incredible creatures and capture their behaviours is nothing short of magical."