NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC RARELY SEEN: Photographs of the Extraordinary

Picture of Rarely Seen cover

“Since the invention of the camera, the photographer’s role has been to make the unknown known,” writes National Geographic photographer Stephen Alvarez in his foreword to a new book, NATIONAL GEOGRAPHIC RARELY SEEN: Photographs of the Extraordinary (National Geographic Books; ISBN: 9781-4262-1561-2; on sale Oct. 27, 2015; ; hardcover). For 127 years, National Geographic has published those discoveries and shared the places, moments and objects that astonish and inspire — revealing the exotic and shining a light on what would otherwise be hidden from view.

This dazzling photography collection is the perfect gift for aspiring armchair travelers and avid photographers alike. Inspiring and provoking, RARELY SEEN is 400 pages of once-in-a-lifetime moments, natural wonders and little-seen objects from the far reaches of the globe.

Organized around the themes of Phenomena, Life, Places, Objects and Moments, each photograph captures what very few get the chance to see for themselves — from 30,000-year-old cave art sealed from the public to animals that are among the last of their species on Earth to volcanic lightning, giant crystals that have grown to more than 50 tons and desert flowers that bloom just once a year.

In true National Geographic tradition, RARELY SEEN takes us to places that would be difficult to visit and spurs us to live life to its fullest. Filled with images from remote locations and locked rooms, this book allows us to witness what we didn’t know was there and to feel the excitement of discovering a hidden treasure. Both surprising and stunning, RARELY SEEN is the latest in a celebrated line of best-selling photography books from National Geographic.

About Stephen Alvarez

STEPHEN ALVAREZ, who has captured some of the most rarely seen objects on Earth, is a photojournalist who produces global stories about exploration, culture, religion and the aftermath of conflict. A National Geographic photographer since 1995, his award-winning pictures have been exhibited at Visa Pour I’Image International Photojournalism Festival in Perpignan, France.

About Susan Tyler Hitchcock

SUSAN TYLER HITCHCOCK is a senior editor in the Books Division of the National Geographic Society, where she acquires science, health and nature titles. She has written 16 books, from literary history to personal memoir. This is the third National Geographic photography collection to which she has contributed. She lives in Covesville, Virginia.

About National Geographic Books

National Geographic Books & Home Entertainment creates and distributes books, videos and other print and digital media that inform, engage and entertain diverse audiences about our world. Annually, the group publishes more than 150 new books for adults, families and kids and releases 250+ new DVDs and digital downloads of the Society’s films and TV shows, and these National Geographic titles are available in more than 35 local-language editions. While special photographic and film collections, travel books, nature shows, birding guides and atlases are a core focus of the Society’s products, books and videos dealing with subjects as diverse as animals, the human mind, history, world cultures and the cosmos are also produced. For more information, visit and