2021 in Photos: Wrapping Up the Year

As the year comes to a close, it’s time to take a look at some of the most memorable events and images of 2021. Events covered in this essay (the last of a three-part photo summary of the year) include the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan, COVID-19 vaccinations for children, an ongoing volcanic eruption on the Canary Islands, record flooding in the Pacific Northwest, a total eclipse seen in Antarctica, and much more. Be sure to see the first part, the second part, and our “Top 25 News Photos of 2021.”

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  • Dan Bartlett / Reuters

    Photos of the Week: Salmon Blessing, Masquerade Games, Polar Night

    A figure-skating championship in Finland, a rugby tournament in Afghanistan, the Magh Mela festival in India, a soldier’s funeral in Ukraine, an ice storm in Texas, and much more

  • Andy Buchanan / AFP / Getty

    The Up Helly Aa Viking Fire Festival

    Images of the annual fire festival held in the Shetland Islands from the past 20 years.

  • Tomohiro Ohsumi / Getty

    The Snow Monkeys of Nagano

    Images of Japanese macaques relaxing and staying warm in the waters of a mountain hot spring

  • Peter White / Getty

    Photos of the Week: Firefly Forest, Husky Club, Turnip Toss

    Frustration at the Australian Open, a light show in London, Republic Day parade rehearsals in India, snow cover in Yosemite Valley, anti-government protests in Peru, and much more