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Writer and photographer William Gray in Yosemite National Park, USA

About me

                  I've been obsessed 

                  with wildlife and

                  wild places for as long as I can remember. It's why I always wanted to study zoology at university. And it's what inspired my lifelong love of photography and writing. I feel incredibly fortunate to have had the opportunity to travel to some of the world's last remaining wildernesses. I hope that, in some small way, my words and pictures can increase awareness of the crucial importance of these special places – and I'm extremely grateful to you for taking the time to visit my website and find out about my work.

Journalist William Gray in Madagascar

For the last 30 years or so, I've travelled to many of the world's most beautiful and biodiverse wild places, photographing and writing about subjects ranging from Alaska, the Serengeti, Svalbard and the Coral Sea to Madagascar, the Himalayas and Galapagos Islands. There are plenty of places still on my wish list – Aldabra Atoll, Papua New Guinea and the sub-Antarctic island of South Georgia to name a few.

I've written and taken photographs for a wide range of newspapers and magazines, both in the UK where I'm based, as well as overseas. Titles include The Sunday TimesThe Times, Sunday TelegraphNational Geographic Traveler, Wanderlust, Travel Africa and Condé Nast Traveller. I'm also the author of several books on wildlife and travel. I've always been a firm believer that exciting travel doesn't automatically make exciting reading. Writing effective and inspiring travel copy is as much about delving into the realms of vocabulary and grammar as it is about exploring landscapes, wildlife and culture. I think you have to love the written word.


I've been lucky enough to win over 20 awards for journalism, including AITO Travel Writer of Year, BGTW Travel Photographer of the Year and Best Feature at the British Travel Press Awards. My first book, Coral Reefs & Islands – The Natural History of a Threatened Paradise – was commended in the 1993 Conservation Book Prize and described by Jonathan Porritt as "A truly impressive piece of work, as hard-hitting in its text as it is beautiful in its photographs."

Following the arrival of twins in 2000, I began specialising in family travel. The last two decades have been hard work – but great fun! Our family adventures, from sea kayaking in British Columbia to snorkelling on the Great Barrier Reef, were the inspiration behind a series of guidebooks for Footprint. The first of these, Travel with Kids, was voted Guidebook of the Year 2008 by the British Guild of Travel Writers. I've since written the worldwide guide, Wildlife Travel, which Wanderlust magazine described as "wider ranging than a blue whale and more densely packed than a butterfly migration – the definitive manual for wildlife-loving travellers". Family Wildlife Adventures is my latest book – published by Bradt in October 2021 – and I am currently working on two new titles for Bradt: Photographing Britain and Costa Rica Wildlife Travel Guide.

My wildlife, landscape and travel photographs are represented by AWL Images and I offer one-to-one and small-group photography workshops in the Cotswolds, Cornwall, Lake District, Iceland and Namibia. An experienced speaker, I was a presenter on the BBC Holiday programme and regularly give talks at Destinations and the Adventure Travel Show.

William Gray yanks us out of our living rooms and drops us in the middle of a tiger safari, presenting wonderfully rendered sensual details that root us in the scene making us accomplices in the effort to decipher the jungle’s clues




Awards for writing and photography are very subjective – one person's favourite feature or image can seem very mediocre to someone else. Having said that, it's always humbling and gratifying to be recognised for your work, and I'm delighted to have received the following.

AITO Travel Writer of the Year 

Winner 2002; Runner-up 1999, 2003

British Travel Press Awards

Best Feature Winner 2011

British Guild of Travel Writers Awards

Travel Writer of the Year: Runner-up 2009

Travel Photographer of the Year: Winner 2009, 2011

Best Overseas Feature: Winner 2001, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012​

Best UK Feature: Winner 2000, 2002, 2009​

Best Guidebook: Winner 2008

Best British Travel Writing of the 21st Century

One of 30 writers featured in this title, 2021

Outdoor Photographer of the Year

Shortlisted 2018

International Garden Photographer of the Year

Runner-up 2023 (Hidcote Garden Special Award)

BBC Wildlife Travel Writing Awards 

Runner-up 2002​

International Awards

Bahamas Tourist Board: Travel Writer of the Year 2003

Sabah Tourism Awards: Best Foreign Writer  2003

Sir Peter Kent Conservation Book Prize

Highly Commended 1993

Voted fourth in the Press Gazette’s Top 50 Travel Journalists

William Gray at Heron Island on the Great Barrier Reef

Why wildlife and family travel?

That’s a good question! Everyone needs a lucky break in this business and I had mine in the early 1990s following my zoology degree and a stint of volunteer work on the Great Barrier Reef. It led to my first book being commissioned. The research for Coral Reefs & Islands – The Natural History of a Threatened Paradise ignited my wanderlust, taking me from the South Pacific to Belize and the Maldives. I was thrilled when it was highly commended in the 1993 Conservation Book Prize. Still focussed on wildlife and responsible travel, I began widening the net, writing for newspapers and magazines and selling my photographs through picture libraries. One or two guidebook commissions came my way and I started giving photography talks on cruise ships and at travel shows. Then we had twins and family travel, well, just sort of happened! I began to break that cardinal rule of business: ‘Never work with children or animals’!

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