20 Locations For The Best London Instagram Shots

 

Other than Paris, we’d say that London is amongst the top destinations where photographing old historic buildings for your Instagram feed is cool and the “in-thing” to do. With social media, there are hardly any secret photography spots in London these days. One post can take a business from ordinary to “most instagrammable restaurant in London” in a matter of minutes.

To become one of the most instagrammable places in London, a building/a place/a restaurant/anything has to offer something. It offers a “wow!” factor, ignites a spark of wanderlust, a sprinkle of excitement – a desire for the viewer to travel to London to witness it for themselves.

We’ve compiled a list of key locations in London that are worth a visit but photogenic too. And if you happen to find a secret photography location along the way, we won’t blame you if you don’t share the geotag!

National Gallery in London | Best London Instagram Shots

WHERE TO TAKE THE BEST LONDON INSTAGRAM SHOTS

1. Piccadilly Circus

London’s miniature version of New York’s Time Square is a busy road junction and public space in the heart of London’s West End. The Shaftesbury Memorial Fountain is a popular meeting spot. To snap a picture of the neon advertising signs at Piccadilly Circus sans the crowds, go early in the morning. You will need to dodge the odd red double decker bus and black cab.

3. Notting Hill

You might not find your perfect love story in Notting Hill but you are guaranteed to find London’s famed antiques market. Open-air market stalls stretch the length of Portobello Road with vendors flouncing antiques, silverware, vintage cameras and books. If it’s the colourful bay windows you’re wanting to snap, walk a bit further up to Lancaster Road. Depending on when you visit, you will need to get creative with your angles. It’s a busy area so parked vehicular traffic, rubbish bins and pedestrians may be present.

4. Regent Street

One of the world’s most prestigious retail and lifestyle destinations featuring luxury hotels, prestigious flagship stores and elegant dining establishments. Regent Street is over 200 years old and thankfully, the City of London has kept the distinguished architecture intact. During the festive period, the Christmas Lights display is a must-see. As always, shoot early in the morning at this photo spot in Soho where the only company you’ll have are the street sweepers and party-goers wobbling home.

TIP: If you are searching for the most instagrammable shops in London, walk over to New Bond Street around Christmas time and look for the Cartier store.

5. Tate Britain

One of the best things about London is that the bulk of its museums and galleries are free. The national collection of British art, international modern and contemporary art at the Tate Britain features over 78,000 artworks so even if you’re a sceptic or not a fan, there’s still a chance that something may catch your eye. Art is in the eye of the beholder, after all.

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7. Houses of Parliament & Big Ben

A national symbol of London, Big Ben has stood tall in all its Gothic glory since 1859. The Elizabeth Tower (its formal name) stands at the north end of the Houses of Parliament and is currently undergoing conservation work until 2021. Between the two of us, we lived in London between August 2015 – February 2018 so were fortunate to witness the famous clock without the scaffolding. No doubt, many are looking forward to the day that the bells chime again.

8. The London Eye

Your instagram photoshoot in London must include one of the top tourist attractions – the London Eye. The famous cantilevered observation wheel is a hot photography subject. Favoured viewpoints are Westminster Bridge and Victoria Embankment. Once you’re finished snapping photos of the Eye, hop into one of the capsules and enjoy views of the City of London from above. Cross your fingers for a sunny day and if you look really hard, you might even spot the Queen having tea over at Buckingham Palace.

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9. Tower Bridge

Crossing the River Thames close to the Tower of London, Tower Bridge is one of our favourite monuments in London. Given its iconic symbol status, it is often mistaken for London Bridge (which is located approximately 0.5 miles upstream and not as pretty in our opinion!). After visiting the Tower of London, stay on the same side of the Thames and duck under the bridge to snap a shot of the Girl with a Dolphin Fountain.

10. Trafalgar Square

You can tick off another one of the Monopoly properties with a visit to Trafalgar Square. Nelson’s column, fountains and lions sit in the middle of the public square which is a site for community gatherings and political demonstrations. Since 1947, a Christmas tree has been donated by Norway each year and stands in Trafalgar Square for twelve days before and after Christmas.

11. Neal’s Yard

For a pop of colour on your feed and a dose of good feels, a photo opp in Neal’s Yard should be on your list of instagram spots in Covent Garden. One of our favourite spots to eat out in London, this technicolour pocket brings a splash of brightness to London’s monotonous grey skies. The cosy courtyard is quite compact so a wide angle lens may be best. Come in the mornings before the businesses open but not too early as you may need to navigate the shadows in the courtyard thrown by the buildings.

12. Sky Garden

Arguably, one of the best London instagram spots is London’s highest public garden offering 360° views of the city’s skyline. And the best thing is that it’s FREE! Located in the Walkie Talkie building (officially known as 20 Fenchurch Street), visitors have the opportunity to sit in the Sky Garden featuring drought-resistant plant species from the Mediterranean and South Africa. Up top, the amazing views are complemented by several restaurants and bars to ensure you don’t go hungry in the sky. Daily visitor limits apply so ensure to book in advance.

13. Iconic Telephone Boxes

A staple of London icons – the red telephone booth. You can’t find them when you’re looking for one but then when you do, it can often be rather crowded nearby. We found this photo spot in Soho. Mind your fingers and your whole body really, as those doors are quite heavy. Some telephone boxes let out some disgusting smells so make sure to disinfect your hands too after shooting.

14. Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew

Some thrive on the hustle and bustle or the concrete jungle and others prefer the peace and solitude which gardens bring. But it’s always a good idea to reconnect with nature, feel the grass between your toes and appreciate the smell of the flowers. With acres to explore at Kew Gardens, there is plenty of inspiration to be found outdoors.

15. St Paul’s Cathedral

The Grade I listed building has been touted as one of the world’s most beautiful buildings. The small garden behind the cathedral comes into full bloom during the warmer months. St Paul’s Cathedral has a colourful history having hosted a number of Royal Jubilees, survived a bomb attack during the Suffragettes’ fight to vote, welcomed Martin Luther King to address a congregation and bid a final farewell to Sir Winston Churchill. One of our favourite angles to shoot the iconic cathedral dome is at the entrance of One New Change which offers terrific symmetry. An uninterrupted view is best snapped atop Madison Rooftop Terrace One.

16. Holland Park Mews

One of the most famous and photographed #mewsoflondon , we do feel sorry for the residents of Holland Park Mews who now put up with hordes of visitors since their humble laneway became one of the most instagrammable places in London. The upside is that their property value has likely increased. This posh cobblestone laneway is located in West London. Don’t be a douche – be respectful when taking photos here.

17. Mayfield Lavender Farm

If you can’t make it to the Provence region in France, a suitable alternative is Mayfield Lavender Farm. Literally on the border of Greater London, visitors are welcome to frolic amongst rows of lavender from June to August. There is even a red telephone booth on-site for the ultimate Insta-shot. Picnics and drones are not permitted. Once you’ve nailed the shot of you skipping through fields of lavender, check out the on-site shop.

18. Leadenhall Market

Potterheads will undoubtedly make their way to the filming location of Diagon Alley. But you won’t find any witches or wizards here in the middle of the city’s financial district. Leadenhall Market is one of London’s oldest covered markets. The preserved cobbled lanes are flanked by beautiful Victorian buildings and an ornate roof structure painted green, maroon and gold. Capes and wands optional.

19. Any London Mews

For those wanting to know, a “mews” is a row or street of houses or flats that have been converted from stables or built to look like former stables. They are typically found in Great Britain. A property in a mews is prime real estate and even though the buildings are old, these London street photography locations are darn beautiful and bloody photogenic. 

Fortunately, there are a heap of them around London. Some are better known than others (again, thanks Instagram) so if you do stumble on a pretty one not yet gone viral on social media, consider keeping it a secret photography spot in London!

Our favourites include the following:

20. The Gallery, sketch London

Tickle me, pink. Wes Anderson would be so darn proud. It’s not difficult to see how this Mayfair establishment easily graces the list of “most instagrammable restaurants in London”. sketch is actually a hub of four separate restaurants but if you want to know what it’s like to sit inside a candy floss machine, you’re best to book a luxurious, velvet seat for your tooshie at the Gallery. That way, you can enjoy a delightful afternoon tea and have access to London’s most instagrammed toilets.

Have you found another spot to include on the list of most instagrammable places in London?

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