2020 Get Into Your Sanctuary Photo Contest results

Below are the winners and entries for the Sanctuary Views category. Thank you to all those who participated! Click each photograph to see the full version.

Sanctuary Views

See the beauty of the National Marine Sanctuary System through visitors' eyes.

kelp forest
1st Place: Jon Anderson. Sunbeams penetrate the canopy of a kelp forest in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary as blue rockfish congregate beneath.
a rocky beach
2nd Place: Steve Zmak. The sun sets on another beautiful day at Limekiln State Park in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary.
View from a kayak under an arch
3rd place: Dustin Harris. Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary can change wildly from one day to the next. This photo embodies a sense of peace and calm alongside a sea arch that takes immense force to create.

All submitted photos

Gull flying over pier
Gull flying over the Capitola Pier Capitola, California. Photo: Christina Ford
Clouds rolling over ocean and cliffsides
Condor's view of a Sunset, Big Sur Coast in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Steve Zmak
Anemone on rocks
Anemones and invertebrate life paint a bustling rocky reef at Point Joe with strokes of vibrance in Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary Photo: Jon Anderson
Ocean cove from above
This is arguably the most photographed location along the Big Sur Coast, but the red Dudleya makes it unique with McWay Falls in the background. Photo: Chuck Graham
Wharf from afar
Capitola Beach and Wharf. Photo: Christina Ford
Starry sky over pier
Comet NEOWISE hangs among the stars over Prisoner’s Harbor, Santa Cruz Island. Photo: Dustin Harris
Surf coming in
Beach with other islands in view, Santa Cruz, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Jenna Biggs
Shoreline with cliffside mountains in the background
Erosion on the cliffside, Santa Cruz, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Jenna Biggs
Foggy cliffs on the ocean
Foggy cliffs, Santa Cruz, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Jenna Biggs
Rocky coastline
Rocky Coastline, Santa Cruz, Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Jenna Biggs
Fort Jefferson moat from above
Fort Jefferson moat from above, Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Jenna Biggs
Sunset with person in foreground taking a photo
At the end of a fun filled winter's day on Santa Cruz Island, we head home through Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, crossing the Santa Barbara Channel as the sun sets into the Pacific. Photo: Judy Willens
Sunset with mountains in the background
At the end of a fun filled winter's day on Santa Cruz Island, we head home through Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, crossing the Santa Barbara Channel as the sun sets into the Pacific. Photo: Judy Willens
Sunset over mountains
At the end of a fun filled winter's day on Santa Cruz Island, we head home through Channel Islands National Marine Sanctuary, crossing the Santa Barbara Channel as the sun sets into the Pacific. Photo: Judy Willen
Barracuda
Seascape at French Reef off Key Largo with Barracuda, Snappers, Grunts, and Yellow Goatfish. Photo: Daryl Duda
French angelfish
French Angelfish at the Tower at Elbow Reef off Key Largo. Photo: Daryl Duda
fish in front of a wreck
Doctorfish with Snappers and Grunts at Mike's Wreck at Elbow Reef off Key Largo. Photo: Daryl Duda
School of fish
Seascape at Elbow Reef off Key Largo with Snappers and Grunts. Photo: Daryl Duda
School of fish
Seascape at Molasses Reef off Key Largo with Gray Snappers and White, Bluestriped, and French Grunts. Photo: Daryl Duda
Boats onshore infront of the golden gate bridge
Fort Baker to the Golden Gate. Photo: Christina Ford
sunset over the ocean from a tree covered area.
Makena Bay sunset near Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Tom Ayers
Palm trees in front of a sunset on the ocean
Maluake Bay sunset near Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Tom Ayers
Palm tree on a shoreline
Puako Petroglyph Park near Hawaiian Islands Humpback Whale National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Tom Ayers
Stairs leading to water
Steps created for scuba divers, leading down to the sanctuary waters to begin a dive trip in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Kate Berg
Two dive flags in water
Dive flags in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary waters to protect divers from boats. Photo: Kate Berg
Stairs leading down to water
Steps created for scuba divers, leading down to the sanctuary waters to begin a dive trip in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Kate Berg
Wreck covered in mussels
The ghostly and beautiful Grecian Shipwreck (approximately 80' feet deep), almost exactly 114 years after it sunk in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Kate Berg
Red flowers in front of a beach
Mara Beach, Carmel-By-The-Sea near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Christina Ford
Person on a cliff overlooking ocean
Breathtaking California Coast near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Christina Ford
Sailboat surrounded by birds
Huge flock of Sooty Shearwaters visiting the Capitola wharf. Photo: Geoff Kershner
Pier surrounded by birds
Huge flock of Sooty Shearwaters visiting the Capitola wharf. Photo: Geoff Kershner
Seastar in a tidepool
Tide pools at Carmel Bay in the Monterey National Marine Sanctuary. We took a walk on the beach at Carmel and were fortunate that this Ochre Sea Star was hanging out in one of the tide pools. Photo: Douglas Croft
wreck
Shipwreck is the L.M. Mason at Presque Isle in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Marc Hoeksema
Footsteps in the sand
Marina Footprints near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Lisa Carpenter
sunset over the ocean
Marina Sunset near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Lisa Carpenter
Tidepool
Monterey coast tide pool. Photo: Dennis Segers
Light streaming through an arch on the beach
Pfiefer Beach near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Jerry Loomis
Water over rocks on ocean sunset
Point Lobos Sunset near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Dennis Segers
Sunset over ocean edge
Point Lobos Sunset near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Dennis Segers
Cliffside overlooking ocean
Poppy Strewn Cliffs over Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Christina Ford
Coastline
Seaside Beach on a Sunday Morning. This photo was taken in April 2020 while the coronavirus pandemic restrictions were in place and beach goers were keeping their distance. Photo: Christina Parsons
Tide pools infront of an orange sunset
Stewarts Cove near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Dennis Segers
Ocean water over rocky shore
Waters of Carmel Point near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Dennis Segers
waves crashing near rocky shore
Waves at Soberanes Point near Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Dennis Segers
Wreck from above
A wreck lays still. Photo: Kate Sutter
Colorful sunset on a beach
Low tide sunset at Third Beach/Hoh/Quileute Tribal Land. Photo: Justine Yglesias
colorful sunset on beach
Low tide sunset at Third Beach/Hoh/Quileute Tribal Land. Photo: Justine Yglesias
Silhouette of person on beach at sunset
"I'm Listening" Enjoying the Golden Hour at the end of a great backpacking day. Point Reyes National Seashore, California. Photo: Christina Ford
Baleen chunck on the beach
A hunk of baleen from a whale washed up on the beach at Scorpion Anchorage near sunset on Santa Cruz Island. Photo: Chuck Graham
Reef and corals
A variety of life bursts out on this tiny rock reef, with all different colors, textures, and biological purposes. Photo: Tiffany Duong
Ocean from an airplane
One of my favorite ways to take in the immense beauty of the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary is from the air. Here is an aerial view of the sanctuary surrounding the 7-mile bridge in Marathon, taken from a historic Ford Tri-Motor Airplane. Photo: Tiffany Duong
Photo mosaic of shipwreck
Shipwreck is the L.M. Mason at Presque Isle in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Marc Hoeksema
Wreck
Shipwreck is the L.M. Mason at Presque Isle in Thunder Bay National Marine Sanctuary. Photo: Marc Hoeksema
Rainbow over beach with person looking out
I shot this from Prisoners Harbor on Santa Cruz Island, the largest isle of the Channel Islands National Park. This image looks to the east toward, Chinese Harbor, Coche Point and Potato Harbor on the most biodiverse isle off California. Photo: Chuck Graham
Kayak on the shore
My kayak at East Point on Santa Rosa Island pointed toward the west end of neighboring Santa Cruz Island in the Channel Islands National Park. The Santa Cruz Passage, one of the most dangerous passages in the world is all that stood in the way of another channel crossing. I shot this near sunset, while reveling in another circumnavigation of the archipelago. Photo: Chuck Graham
Elephant seals in a narrow leading to the ocean
I shot these wallowing northern elephants at the bottom of a spring in Nidever Canyon on San Miguel Island, the most northwest isle in the Channel Islands National Park. Scenic Cuyler Harbor is in the background. Photo: Chuck Graham

Please note that we may use any of the photos we received for this contest on our website, on social media, and in other NOAA and National Marine Sanctuary Foundation publications. We will provide credit to photographers whenever we use any of the photos. Organizations other than NOAA and the National Marine Sanctuary Foundation may use photographs submitted in this contest to promote sustainable and responsible recreation in the National Marine Sanctuary System. These photos are not for sale and are not for commercial use unless prior permission is arranged.