United Kingdom

Explore the best London photo spots

115 photo spots 2 events Public

Jon Reid


Introduction

As a travel photographer, I’m frequently asked what my favourite city is. Since making London my home, my answer has always been the same…London baby!



Cities usually fall into one of two categories. The first is a city full of iconic landmarks. These are the kind of cities that wow you on first site. Sydney, with her harbour, harbour bridge and opera house is one of these cities. The second category of cities leaves you feeling underwhelmed initially as there are no showstopper sites. This kind of city rewards curiosity and after exploring and finding your own treasures, you fall in love with this city. Seville is an example of the second category.

London is quite unique in that it fits into both categories. There are enough iconic, showstopper sites to keep tourists busy for their entire stay. This is what most tourists see and they leave London happy and impressed, but without having discovered her soul.

I love London because after 8 years of living here, I still discover new places every time I go exploring.

I had a friend who was a successful model. She told me that she left London because London was always after something new, edgy and interesting. London doesn’t do classic beauty. In a sense, this is reflected in the attractions of the city. Whilst there is no shortage of beautiful sites, London prioritises interesting over beauty.

In a beautiful city, like Paris, photographers would tend to come back from a trip with similar images. Because London is so diverse and interesting, comparing photographers’ images, you’d think they were taken in different cities.

This guide has been designed to explore both sides of the city. It includes information on most of the iconic sites – the classic London sites, as well as some suggestions to get you exploring. Areas like the East End, Shoreditch and the City of London are changing so quickly that by the time a guide is produced, it is already outdated. Luckily with SNAPP Guides we can keep up with these changes! These areas provide a jarring contrast to the west side of the city where very little has changed in the last 200 years.

115 photo spots


2 events


Picks

I love both aspects of London – the classical landmarks and the hidden gems.

A perfect day in London for me would start in morning light in front of Westminster Palace, a day exploring the maze of lanes in the City of London, taking in the views from St Paul’s Cathedral and evening light from the Millennium Bridge, taking in the modern skyline of the City of London and the Shard, contrasted against the classical structures like the bridges and the Tower of London.

Travelling

Visit London any time of year and you’ll have an incredible trip. Summer is peak season with longer days and festivals around the city, but expect crowds. Spring and autumn are cooler, but colours in the parks are superb. Winter can be cold but the quieter feel to the city can work to your advantage.

London is a fairly safe city for its size, but exercise common sense during your visit and as you photograph.
Pickpocketing does happen in London, so keep an eye on your camera gear and wallet, especially in crowded areas and on the Underground.
If I were visiting the city, I would take a train into the city from one of the airports and I’d spend the rest of the trip using public transport, mostly the underground system. Another good option is to cycle around the city – as long as you’re confident with city traffic. Driving a car through London is slow and expensive. You’ll spend more time searching for parking than you will actually taking photos. I encourage you to get to an area by public transport and then to explore on foot. London rewards the curious. Pop your head into open doors. Walk down dark passages. Chat to strangers. Discover London’s soul.

Links


Curated By

Jon Reid
When I discover a place for the first time, I get filled with a sense of curiosity. I explore, completely lost in awe. I feel like I’m seeing for the first time.
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Mathew Browne
PhotoHound CTO and passionate travel photographer. I love travelling the world with my wife and son.
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Jules Renahan
Love my family, my dog, travel, photography, PhotoHound, kickboxing, books & coffee - order of preference subject to change!
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