The Best All-round Camera Bag For Travel: Think Tank


Want to travel the world or just around town? This is a great camera bag for both and for me, the Think Tank Retrospective 6 is probably the best camera bag for travel I've ever owned. Here's why...

My Think Tank Retrospective 6 in Pinestone. Just love that worn look!

My Think Tank Retrospective 6 in Pinestone. Just love that worn look!

Let's go back in time. It was only a week to go before we set off on our journey around the world and it hit me that I was missing one really important piece of photography gear: a camera bag for traveling! Until then, I had been using a small and cheap shoulder bag to travel that would only fit my camera with a lens mounted because I don't like to carry around stuff that I don't need. But circumstances were going to be different because the plan was to travel for at least one year. I couldn't just take a camera and one lens. I needed the best travel camera bag that could fit two extra lenses, some batteries, external hard drives and if possible also a bottle of water and some snacks.

The Think Tank camera bag for travel

I had to act fast so I started browsing the world wide web and tried to find the best camera bag. I prefer a shoulder bag and one that's functional and easy to use but also one that looks nice.

Nice not only meaning good looking but also inconspicuous. I didn't want a camera bag that screams: “Big expensive camera in here!”, especially when traveling certain parts of the world. Most leather or slick black bags do just that so I was really looking for something different and then I discovered the Think Tank Retrospective 6.

I loved the look right away but would it be functional and easy to use? The best camera bag is one that has it all...

It’s the best all-round camera bag for me

Think Tank has several sizes and models and they're made from a sturdy cotton canvas material that doesn't make them look like a camera shoulder bag but just an ordinary messenger bag.

They're equipped with a rain cover even though the canvas can take some light rain and a ton of separation pieces to create spaces for every piece of photography gear you want to take on a short trip or when you're about to travel to another country. There are extra pockets and lots of storage space for a phone, passport, money, batteries, memory cards, … and it opens and closes fast with velcro strips.

These strips even have silencers in case you're shooting at an event. It just does what a good camera bag needs to do: It's easy to use and it looks nice. For me, definitely the best camera bag for travel.

What fits in the Think Tank retrospective 6?

My Pentax 645z and three lenses. Plenty of room left for external hard drives, batteries, viewfinder, flash...

My Pentax 645z and three lenses. Plenty of room left for external hard drives, batteries, viewfinder, flash...

When traveling, I use my camera bag in two different situations. First, when we go from place to place. In that case, I put a lot more in there then when I'd go out to shoot photos. This is what fits when filled to the top: my Pentax 645z + 55mm, a 35mm, a 75mm, two batteries, a few SD-cards, a battery charger, pouch with passport and money, an external hard drive and viewfinder for shooting video. By the way, you can learn more about my gear here.

Then, when I go out shooting, most of the stuff stays in the hotel room and instead I can take a bottle of water or some snacks. In 99% of the cases I just need my Pentax 645z + 55mm and one of the two extra lenses...

Sizes and colors


Think Tank Retrospective 5
Fits for example a Canon 5DMIV with 50mm f/1.8 mounted, 24-70mm f/2.8, iPad Mini
a Sony a7MII with 24–70mm f/4 mounted, 16-35mm f/4, 55mm f/1.8, iPad Mini

Think Tank Retrospective 6
Fits for example a Fujifilm X-Pro1 with 23mm f/1.4 mounted, X-T1 with 56mm f/1.2 attached, 18mm f/2, 14mm f/2.8, and an iPad Mini in the front pocket
a Canon 5D MIII with 50mm f/1.2 mounted, 16-35mm f/4, 85mm f/1.2, and an iPad Mini in the front pocket

Think Tank Retrospective 7
Fits for example a Nikon D810 w/ 24-70 f/2.8 mounted, 70-200 f/2.8 detached + SB-900 Speedlight
a DJI Mavic Pro drone, controller, batteries and accessories

Want to fit even more?

Want to fir more in your travel camera bag? Then make sure to check out the Retrospective 10, 20, 30 or 40 to fit two camera bodies...

Transparency alert! I didn't get paid by Think Tank for this article; I just love my bag. There are affiliate links in this article, though. This means that if you buy anything, we’ll earn a small commission at no extra cost to you. Your support is highly appreciated and keeps the site going!