Finding the best photography backpack is very important to carry all your stuff, whether you're traveling light with minimal gear or carrying all your photography equipment with you.
The days of traveling or hiking with your camera around your neck are long gone. There are loads of other things such as extra lenses, tripods, flashes, chargers, cables and other accessories that you need to carry.
And, for all this, a standard backpack is not enough, you need a backpack specially designed for your camera. The right camera backpack can make moving your gear easy and convenient.
The choice of best camera backpack is a personal preference and will depend on the type of camera you have, the type of lenses you carry and other gear you want to carry with you.
There are camera backpacks designed for studio shoots with more partitions to carry extra lenses, lighting, and lesser padding, while a camera backpack for hiking would have to be waterproof, rugged, have extra room for your gear and other personal essentials and yet be lightweight.
Lowepro Photo Hatchback 16L Backpack
Thule Covert DSLR Rolltop Backpack
Peak Design Everyday Backpack
Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack
Vanguard Alta Sky Camera Backpack
Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack
Case Logic SLRC-206 Camera Backpack
PRVKE Travel and DSLR Camera Backpack
Chrome Niko Camera Backpack
Mountainsmith Tanuck 40
So, before you decide to buy a camera backpack, you should know what you’ll be using the backpack for and what you want from it. Do you want a backpack to also keep your laptop? Will you be traveling often and carrying it through airport security? The more you understand how you will be using your camera backpack, the easier it will become to choose one.
Before you actually go and buy a camera backpack for hiking or traveling, here are a few things you should look for.
Table of Contents
- Top 10 Best Camera Backpacks for Hiking & Travel
- Lowepro Photo Hatchback 16L Camera Backpack
- Thule Covert DSLR Rolltop Backpack
- Peak Design Everyday Backpack
- Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack
- Vanguard Alta Sky Camera Backpack
- Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack
- Case Logic SLRC-206 Camera and Laptop Backpack
- PRVKE Travel and DSLR Camera Backpack
- Chrome Niko Camera Backpack
- Mountainsmith Tanuck 40
- Factors to Consider When Choosing A Camera Backpack
Top 10 Best Camera Backpacks for Hiking & Travel
Lowepro Photo Hatchback 16L Camera Backpack
If you’re on the lookout for a camera backpack that can hold your small-sized DSLR camera along with one to two lenses and also some other essentials such as your tablet, lunch box, jacket, and spare batteries, then look no further. The Lowepro Hatchback Camera Backpack is an excellent and versatile DSLR camera backpack. The daypack-style backpack has many compartments that can accommodate all your stuff. It is very lightweight, breathable and durable.
The backpack has a lot of padding that keeps all your gear safe and the split padded straps are ergonomic and comfortable. The size of the backpack makes it perfect to carry around easily and perfectly fits into the overhead compartment in most airplanes and at the same time, it is quite spacious too.
The 16-liter Lowepro Hatchback Camera Backpack is a versatile bag that has multi-functional compartments that can accommodate your camera gear and all your other essentials including a small laptop or tablet. The backpack has a padded camera box that has a storm-flap closure and grab handles that offer storage for your entire camera kit. The camera box can be removed and you can convert the backpack into a daypack.
The hatchback and the body-side opening allow you to access your camera gear easily and safely. The backpack has a front pocket that is padded that allows you to access the dual compartment, which can fit your small laptop or tablet and other essentials.
The backpack has a padded back panel that is covered by a mesh that offers soft and breathable comfort all day long. The padded straps have many adjustment points at the shoulders, waist, and sternum that ensures easy and comfortable all-day carrying. The backpack has tall, stretchable mesh side pockets that let you store your water bottles or extra stuff conveniently.
The Lowepro Hatchback Camera Backpack has a spacious upper compartment that offers plenty of space for items such as jacket, lunch, sunglasses, etc. and it also has a zippered pocket with two mesh pockets and an in-built key fob. It has a patented, in-built all-weather AW cover that protects all your camera gear and other belongings from the elements.
The backpack can accommodate a DSLR camera with an 18 mm to 55 mm zoom, 1 to 2 extra lenses/flashes, or a CSC with attached lens, 2 to 3 extra lenses/flashes or a GoPro camera along with the accessories and also your water bottle, a tablet, and other essentials.
The 16L Lowepro Hatchback Camera Backpack is a sleek and modern camera bag that can also be converted into a daypack. The backpack is a very casual, yet highly functional, spacious and versatile carrying solution that can carry a decent amount of gear and is among the best camera backpacks to buy.
Thule Covert DSLR Rolltop Backpack
The Thule Covert Rolltop Backpack is an excellent photography backpack to carry all your camera gear and also your non-photographic stuff. The backpack has an understated and sleek design and is ideal for adventurers and outdoor photographers looking for a sturdy, durable and long-lasting backpack that can withstand the harsh elements. The backpack is quite spacious with many compartments that allows you to organize and carry your photography equipment and other stuff easily.
The Thule Covert Rolltop Backpack is a very versatile backpack. It features a padded removal SafeZone camera pod system that will keep all your expensive camera gear safe. The backpack has a divider system that is origami-inspired that folds around all your gear offering a customized fit and the highest level of protection.
The backpack can easily fit a DSLR camera with an ultra-wide-angle lens and also a drone along with accessories like two lenses/ flash and the drone accessories. The backpack is made of two-tone Oxford material that is water-resistant and durable. The backpack has a zip-out divider that separates the top and bottom compartments. It has side access that allows you to access your gear quickly and the backpack has a large roll top compartment to store all your essentials.
The Thule Covert Rolltop Backpack has dedicated compartments that can accommodate your 15-inch Mac Book Pro and an iPad or a 10-inch tablet. The backpack has front pockets and quick-stash storage to store all your stuff. The backpack is ergonomically designed and offers excellent cushioning, support and all-day carrying comfort. The sturdy handles and wheels facilitate easy transportation.
The Thule Covert Backpack is padded and keeps your expensive gear protected. The roll top section is spacious and allows you to carry all your other essentials. Overall, the Thule Backpack is a well-organized backpack, perfect for photographers on urban shooting assignments who want to carry their gear and also their laptop to edit and upload photos on the move.
Peak Design Everyday Backpack
Peak Design understands the importance of organization, space, and convenience, which is why it has created the best camera backpack, the Everyday Backpack, which you can carry with you on all your shoots. The Peak Design Everyday Backpack has several thoughtful features that are sure to make your daily life very convenient. The backpack’s generous 20-liter capacity makes it perfect to carry all your gear and essentials and its waterproof shell keeps all your belongings protected from the elements. The backpack is very versatile and you’re sure to find plenty of uses for the backpack, making it an essential accessory that will last you for many years.
The Peak Design Everyday Backpack is an excellent camera backpack with loads of useful features. It offers 20 liters of storage and can accommodate a full-frame DSLR camera along with three to four lenses. The backpack has a dedicated laptop/ tablet sleeve that can accommodate up to a 16-inch laptop. The flexi-fold dividers help to organize your gear and protect it.
The backpack has a dual side entry that allows you to access anything in the bag very easily and quickly. The backpack has outer and sub-divided inner pockets to carry your smaller stuff like pens, batteries, memory cards, filters, etc. The Everyday Backpack is made of 500D nylon canvas material that is durable and is weatherproof helping to keep your gear dry and protected.
The backpack has weatherproof zippers and patented MagLatch hardware that allows secure top access. It also has concealed external carry straps for your tripod, jacket or any other gear. You can easily carry the backpack on the airplane because its size is approved for carry-ons and it can be stowed away under your seat easily.
The backpack is equipped with a sturdy luggage strap located on the back panel and the axial strap attachment allows you to remove the backpack from one shoulder and swing it in front without having to remove it. With the Everyday Backpack, you can be sure that your travel is a complete breeze.
So, if you’re looking for a versatile, comfortable, spacious and customizable backpack, then the Peak Design Everyday Backpack an excellent photography backpack. The backpack is the perfect accessory for all your photography projects. The high-quality backpack lets you organize all your gear and protects your belongings from any type of bad weather making it the best waterproof camera backpack. This is one investment that can give you complete peace of mind.
Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack
The Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack is very versatile and can be used in 3 ways – as a regular backpack, as a sling bag or in the X position. The DSLR camera backpack can hold your camera along with all the gear, as well as your essentials. Designed in Italy, the backpack is rugged, yet aesthetic. The unique design of the backpack allows you to store all your gear comfortably and also access it easily and quickly. The Manfrotto Backpack is a great photography backpack that you can carry comfortably wherever you go.
The Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack is an ergonomically designed, compact backpack that is highly functional. It can hold a lot more than similarly designed backpacks on the market. The backpack can hold your Pro DSLR camera along with the lens, two extra lenses and a 100 mm macro. The backpack has dual zippers that open up to expose all the contents for easy access. The front lid has inner organizer pockets for smaller items such as cleaning cloths, business cards, pens, cable, LED lights, wallet, phone, etc.
The backpack has an extendable padded side pocket that offers additional space for your tripod. The upper part of the bag has a zippered floor, which can be unzipped and the dividers can be removed to convert the camera backpack into a regular backpack. The backpack has a dedicated compartment at the back that can store your 15-inch laptop. The backpack is equipped with the Manfrotto Protection System that offers protective cushioning and keeps all your delicate equipment safe.
The Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack is made of sturdy material that is functional, yet aesthetic. The bottom half of the backpack is made of high-density nylon fabric that is very durable and this is matched by a stylish, but durable top. The backpack has carbon detailing that ties in with the Italian heritage of the brand.
The Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack is ideal for passionate photographers who are looking for full features and can keep their gear safe and protected. The backpack can fit all your photography gear, as well as your essential items easily and it is compact enough to carry around comfortably. The hard-wearing and reliable fabrics, professional features, excellent construction quality, and elegant design make the Manfrotto Advanced Tri Backpack the best photography backpack.
Vanguard Alta Sky Camera Backpack
The Alta Sky 51D Camera Backpack from Vanguard is a dynamic backpack that offers an excellent combination of function and style. The backpack is designed primarily keeping functionality in mind and includes several innovative features and plenty of storage for all your gear. The Alta Sky 51D Camera Backpack is manufactured by Vanguard that has been creating the highest quality backpacks, tripods, and accessories for outdoor enthusiasts and photographers at a very affordable price.
The Vanguard Alta Sky Camera Backpack is loaded with user-friendly features. It has an innovative division and the larger compartment can be accessed from the back, side or top and the smaller compartment can be accessed via an opening at the front bottom. The multiple access points and dividers offer the flexibility to decide how much professional equipment and how much of your personal essentials you want to carry.
The backpack can accommodate one to two pro DSLR cameras with attached lenses, three to four extra lenses, a flash and camera accessories. Or, you can carry a CSC with an additional lens or a drone with all the required accessories. The backpack is very versatile and allows you to convert it into a hiking backpack or daypack.
The rear compartment can accommodate a laptop of up to 15 inches and the additional padded sleeve can also fit a tablet. The backpack has an organizer pocket or slip-in pockets for all your other essentials, a dedicated phone pocket with an extraction port for your headphones and two large side pockets where you can put your water bottles. The surface of the backpack also has several loops, straps and connection features that you can hang, sling or link anything to.
The Alta Sky Camera Backpack has a well-designed harness system, ergonomic back, adjustable shoulder straps, padded supporting waist belt, adjustable sternum strap and a breathable padded 3D back that allow you to carry the bag comfortably for long periods.
The Alta Sky Camera Backpack offers the ultimate versatility that a photographer needs from a camera bag backpack. The innovative design of the backpack allows a simple transition from “100% gear to 100% personal” and anything in between. The feature-packed backpack offers endless possibilities and the most flexible and versatile user experience, making it the best photography backpack.
Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack
If you’re always on the go and are looking for a camera backpack to hold all your gear, then you should definitely consider the Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack. The compact backpack has a unique thin vertical design; however, it can expand to hold all your photography equipment and other essentials. The well-designed, ergonomic backpack is very durable and is sure to last for a very long time.
Although the Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack has a compact and thin design, it is very flexible and can expand to fit 2 DSLR cameras and three lenses making it an excellent DSLR camera backpack. The best part is that the backpack does not look like a camera bag backpack but it can accommodate most of your gear easily.
The camera backpack has neoprene dividers that can keep all your fragile equipment separate so that they do not rub against each other. There is a separate padded compartment for the camera too. The backpack also has organizer pockets and inner mesh pockets to hold all your support gear and smaller items such as batteries, memory cards, cleaning cloths, etc.
The Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack has two tripod straps in the bottom front pocket to hold your tripod. The backpack is equipped with padded shoulder straps, removable waist belt, contoured harness and the sternum strap that offers additional balance. The back panel has a liner that is breathable and offers extra comfort. You can use the D-rings of the backpack to secure items that you need to access quickly. The backpack features sturdy YKK zippers that allow you to access your gear.
If you’re shooting outdoors, the backpack’s removable rain cover can be deployed quickly in case of rain or snow. If you want to edit your photos while you’re on a shoot, the backpack has space to put in a 10-inch tablet. Crafted from ballistic nylon material, the photography backpack is durable and long-lasting.
The Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack is a great camera backpack with a well-thought-out design and excellent ergonomics. The ability of the backpack to expand and contract to accommodate all your gear makes it very flexible and versatile. The backpack makes excellent use of space and can fit your gear, as well as the essentials you want to carry along. Overall, the Think Tank Streetwalker Backpack is an excellent photography backpack for a photographer on the move.
Case Logic SLRC-206 Camera and Laptop Backpack
If you’re looking for a tough camera backpack that can keep pace with your photography style, then the Case Logic Camera Backpack with its rugged design, professional quality interior and organization is a great choice. The DSLR camera backpack looks very slick and keeps all your expensive gear safe. The all-black Case Logic Camera Backpack with its orange accents looks very sleek and it has plenty of space to accommodate your DSLR camera, zoom lens, and other accessories.
The Case Logic Camera Backpack has loads of features that make it one of the best camera backpacks. The backpack is very roomy and can fit a DSLR camera with an attached lens, two-three extra lenses, accessories, and a laptop. The backpack features an EVA base that is water-resistant and lets the backpack stand upright on its own. The backpack’s hammock system allows you to suspend your DSLR offering excellent impact protection.
The backpack has memory foam on the interior of the lid that helps to protect the delicate screen of your equipment. The backpack has adjustable dividers that can be removed to create a customizable interior that allows you to store all your personal stuff. The backpack has a compartment that can accommodate a laptop of up to 16 inches.
There are four accessory pockets which allow you to store smaller items such as memory cards, cables, etc. and access them quickly. The backpack is equipped with a side hook and loop straps that can hold your tripod. The strap management system prevents the straps from hanging around messily. The back panel of the backpack is padded and has air mesh that offers breathability and comfort. The waterproofing and protective padding help to protect your camera, as well as your laptop.
The Case Logic Camera Backpack is a well designed and good DSLR camera backpack that stands apart from the other backpacks in the same category. The rugged backpack is durable and is suitable for adventurers who love the outdoors. Overall, the Case Logic Camera Backpack is a capable hiking camera backpack built for photographers looking for a capable, yet affordable photography backpack.
PRVKE Travel and DSLR Camera Backpack
The PRVKE Camera Backpack is a versatile travel, every day and camera backpack whose innovative and thoughtful design has won many awards. The bag is aesthetically designed and has very sleek looks. The excellent structure and high-quality materials of the backpack enable it to do a good job of protecting your gear. The backpack offers plenty of compartments and pockets to store all your stuff and points to mount your various photography accessories.
The sleek PRVKE Camera Backpack is a great travel and camera backpack. It offers different ways in which you can access your gear easily. It has a rolltop which is adjustable, a lay-flat clamshell opening and a side opening that allows you to access your camera quickly. And, if you need extra space, the rolltop can expand to give you 5 liters of extra space. The sturdy photography backpack has a sleeve to store your 15-inch MacBook Pro and a sleeve for your tablet. There is a fleece-lined pocket on the top for your glasses, phones and other valuables.
The backpack has a modular camera cube that offers storage for your DSLR and 8 lenses and you can remove the dividers and convert the backpack into a daypack. The backpack has a passport pocket that rests against your back and is ideal to keep your passport and other important papers and documents.
The PRVKE Camera Backpack is made of durable ballistic nylon and tarpaulin that is water-resistant. And, along with the rolltop and rainfly, the backpack keeps all your gear protected from the elements. The backpack is equipped with padded shoulder straps and a molded back panel, which makes it very easy to even carry heavy loads.
The removable, padded waist strap offers extra support. The backpack features a 4-point system with several attachment points and accessory straps to carry your jacket, tripod, yoga mat, etc. The water bottle pocket expands to hold your water bottle or tripod.
The PRVKE Camera Backpack is one of the best waterproof camera backpacks around. The backpack can adapt to any situation you throw at it, whether you’re carrying it to office, taking it on an outdoor shoot or going on a vacation with it. The excellent design, customizability, protectiveness, and versatility make the PRVKE Camera Backpack a great choice for photographers, commuters and travelers.
Chrome Niko Camera Backpack
The medium-sized Chrome Niko F-Stop is an excellent photography backpack with a focus on camera gear. The backpack is packed with great features for a photographer on the move. The camera backpack has solid craftsmanship and high-quality construction. The fully-featured Niko F-Stop Camera Backpack keeps you equipped for some shooting action around town or if you want to be ready to hit the road for many weeks.
The Niko F-Stop Camera Backpack has a minimalistic look and a low-profile silhouette. The rectangular shape offers plenty of storage space without being too bulky. Made of 1050D ballistic nylon material, the backpack is weather resistant and resistant to scratches, tears, and rips and is long-lasting.
The YKK zippers are weather-resistant and sturdy. The backpack is equipped with padded shoulder straps with breathable mesh and reflective strips that are a good safety feature when you’re moving around at night. There is also a sternum strap for additional support.
The back panel is padded and offers firm and comfortable support for your back. There are compression straps on the sides of the backpack that can hold your tripod and other accessories. The backpack has a top and side handles that allow you to carry it comfortably over short distances. There is a zippered pocket on the top that can hold your DSLR camera with a medium-sized lens and an extra lens. There is a mesh pocket in the interior flap that can hold your phone, flash drive, and other accessories.
The Niko F-Stop Camera Backpack has a padded laptop sleeve in the front that can fit a laptop of up to 13 inches. The main back panel can be accessed via the back panel. The main compartment has many dividers to keep your gear organized and protected. Overall, the Niko F-Stop Camera Backpack is an excellent camera bag backpack for photographers wanting to carry plenty of gear, as well as their essentials.
The Niko F-Stop Camera Backpack from Chrome blends function, style and durability very well. The camera backpack is decently sized and can hold your camera, lenses and other accessories comfortably. The backpack is a good option for both professional photographers or travelers who are on the lookout for a backpack to carry their gear along with all their travel essentials.
Mountainsmith Tanuck 40
If you’re looking for a good travel and hiking camera backpack, then you can’t go wrong with the Mountainsmith Tanuck 40. The stylish backpack is sturdy and rugged that combines functionality with aesthetics. The backpack is well made, spacious, practical and durable. Made with water-resistant material and several pockets, the Mountainsmith Tanuck 40 is the best camera backpack for hiking.
Designed in collaboration with Chris Burkard, the legendary photographer, the Mountainsmith Tanuck 40 is a very high-quality and versatile hiking camera backpack. With the nickname of T.A.N. (Tough As Nails), the backpack is tough and versatile.
The backpack has multiple compartments and pockets to store all your gear and travel essentials needed for your trip. The Tanuck 40 backpack is weather, water, and abrasion-resistant and it keeps all your gear protected from the elements. The bottom of the backpack is waterproof so you can set it down without the fear of your gear getting wet. When loaded, the backpack is stable and can stand upright.
The Mountainsmith Tanuck 40 is equipped with several useful features such as a compartmentalized camera pack that can be accessed easily from the front, waterproof pockets, removable padded straps, a laptop sleeve, and a rainfly. The top lid is removable and can be used as a chest mount.
The Tanuck 40 backpack is a durable and most universal photography backpack on the market. It is roomy and tough and is sure to serve you well wherever you go. While it is quite pricey, the backpack is weatherproof and offers ample storage making it a reliable and the best DSLR camera backpack for every adventure.
Factors to Consider When Choosing A Camera Backpack
When you’re shopping for a camera backpack, there are a few things that you must keep in mind. And, it may be a good idea to invest and buy different types of camera backpacks depending on your activity. When photographing around your city, you may not need lights, additional lenses, and extra accessories, as you may require when you’re going on an extended trip.
Here are a few things to consider before buying the best photography backpack.
The camera backpack you select should be spacious enough to accommodate your camera, charger, lenses, batteries and other accessories. The amount of gear that you want to carry will dictate the size of the camera backpack you require. Even the smallest camera backpack will need sufficient space to carry lenses, batteries, chargers and SD cards.
However, before you actually buy an expensive camera backpack, make a list of all the things you will need to carry with you and find a bag that can hold all your stuff comfortably without damaging your fragile, expensive equipment.
You must also take into consideration that in the future, your gear may grow. So, do not choose a camera backpack that can just fit what you have, it is a good idea to buy a backpack that has room for future additions too.
It is important to understand how much can the camera backpack can carry. You must determine what gear you will be taking along with you. If you are carrying a regular DSLR camera and a tripod, then the weight will not be much. However, if you have around 3 to 4 extra lenses, audio equipment, tripods, a portable sandbag, your laptop, and other accessories, the weight adds up.
When the amount of gear increases, the weight also increases and knowing how much weight the camera backpack will support is important.
Material and Durability
As a photographer, you will not always be shooting indoors. The weather conditions are always a consideration that you must keep in mind and ensuring that your photography equipment is dry and safe is extremely important. The idea is to choose a waterproof camera backpack made of strong, water-resistant material such as ballistic nylon that can protect your gear from harsh and inclement weather conditions.
Usually, photographers are always on the move and usually looking for the perfect picture is likely to involve a lot of traveling. And when you’re hiking, you may have to cross difficult terrain to get the perfect shot.
So, you should select a comfortable hiking camera backpack that is adjustable, easy to wear and carry for long periods. And, if you especially need your hands to be free to handle your camera and gear or you’re working in an area where you cannot put your bag down, then a camera backpack, belt pouch or sling will work best for you.
Ease of Use and Access
If you need to access your camera very quickly for a quick shot, then how quickly you can get it out of your backpack is very important. Several camera backpacks have side compartments that allow quick and easy access. A waist belt is also a good option as it allows you to have your hands free to point your camera and shoot exactly when you need to.
Most of the best camera backpacks offer customization, which allows you to transform them into the perfect space to carry all your stuff and also make them very comfortable to carry. Externally, the camera backpack should have padded straps, a padded back panel and secondary straps to distribute the weight uniformly and the backpack should follow the contour of your back naturally.
The internal compartments can be adjusted and rearranged to fit all your gear and essentials comfortably. Many camera backpacks have Velcro squares that are attached to the bag and can be resized to keep your equipment safe and protected at all times. Some camera backpacks allow you to remove the camera storage completely and use it in another bag or remove it to convert it into a daypack.
You can also buy dividers that can fit a variety of backpacks and that allow you to fit a variety of lenses needed for your shoot.
When buying the best camera backpack, you must consider the price. The price range of camera backpacks can range from below $50 to more than $200. This depends on the quality and build material of the backpack. While some camera backpacks may be waterproof, others may have insulation to absorb shock. Sometimes, you may be paying for the brand name and not the quality of the backpack.
The idea is to buy a high-quality camera backpack that can keep your expensive and delicate camera and photography equipment safe and secure and one that fits your requirements best.
Choosing the best camera backpack finally comes down to your personal preference. You must decide whether you want the backpack specifically for your camera and other accessories or you want to use it for your clothes occasionally. Also, you must decide on how you plan to use the camera backpack.
Do you want to use it in the city or for your hiking trips? Your activity will help you decide the camera backpack that will work best for you. Irrespective of the camera you have, ensure that you buy a high-quality camera backpack that offers the best protection and keeps your gear safe.