According to my book on QFT in the section on QED a photon is represented as a pair of virtual particles pulled from the vacuum, ie a pair of eigenvectors labelled creator and destroyer.
An electromagnetic wave is described as a polarized field of virtual particles.
All EM fields can be described as quantum fluctuations how they are polarized and how they interact with other particles are not the same. A radio wave spreads out through space and is attenuated as it travels. A photon does not disperse its energy, it is localized. How that interaction occurs as it passes close by another object, does not necessarily indicate it travels as a wave distributed to infinity and back. It could just as easily be described by a pilot wave interacting with objects close to or in its path.
The double slit experiment can be explained via using pilot waves I will see if I can find a good link.
This fella gives an unbiased version of pilot wave theory with the pros and cons, cons mostly it is not relativistic YET