From high above a Namibian desert, among the trees in Costa Rica and beside the Mississippi River in northern Minnesota, Star Tribune readers captured memorable images from their travels — and shared them with us for our weekly Viewfinders feature.

Early in December, members of the Travel team looked back over the year's collection to find our favorites. We marveled at the beauties and surprises the world serves up to those who are fortunate enough to encounter — and record — them. We felt grateful for readers who so generously shared their work with us, bringing us their vision of the world. And, naturally, we oohed and aahed. I hope you do, too, as you check out this stellar collection of reader photos.