London is by far one of the coolest cities in the entire world. There are so many things to see and do and it’s also one of the most beautiful places to photograph! It should go without saying that London is very popular and visited by millions of people every year. As you’d suspect then some of the most instagrammable places in London get incredibly, incredibly crowded and that’s where this list comes in. While it features some of the regulars like Big Ben and London Eye, there’s also some hidden gems like Crossrail Place Roof Garden and the Queen’s House in Greenwich that are far less crowded but still make for beautiful pictures. So read on for all of my suggestions of the most instagrammable places in London and fear not they’re pretty much all completely free to visit!
Do note that the closest underground stations that I’ve labelled below are just the ones that are physically closest to the location. Depending on where you’re coming from (and the number of tube changes required) it may not make sense to arrive through that station. I’d recommend checking your journey with the TFL Journey Planner. I’ve also put together a map at the bottom of the post with the location of all of them to make planning your visit easier.
Shops, Streets & Neighborhoods
Location: Chalcot Square in North London
Closest Tube Station: Chalk Farm Underground Station (approximately 10 minute walk)
Hours: No hours as this is a neighborhood but pictures will turn out much better in the daylight. You’ll also look less creepy in the daytime since people actually live in these houses.
Chalcot Square can be found in the Primrose Hill neighborhood. It’s a row of stunning townhouses in all different pastel colours. It’s similar to what you’d find in Notting Hill but way less crowded which makes them ideal because you can take your time with your pictures and not be waiting in line for some of the popular doors/houses.
It should go without saying that the homes are private properties – please don’t stand on people’s staircases or stoops. Remain on the sidewalks!
Location: Many locations in London but particularly in Kensington, Chelsea and Notting Hill
Closest Tube Station: Depends which mew you’re looking for
Hours: No hours as these are in neighborhoods but pictures will turn out much better in the daylight. You’ll also look less creepy in the daytime since people actually live in these houses.
Mews are pretty little lanes that can be found just off of major streets all around London and are typically smaller rows of homes. They’re sometimes painted in bright colours or decorated nicely on the exterior which is what makes them so instagrammable. In the fall and spring they’re also sometimes covered in great foliage and beautiful spring flowers.
Like I said above, it should go without saying that the homes are private properties – please don’t stand on people’s staircases or stoops. Remain on the sidewalks or the actual public property. Lots of homeowners on some of the most popular mews have complained about disruptive instagrammers and you definitely don’t want to be one of those.
Pretty much anywhere in Notting Hill
Location: Notting Hill
Closest Tube Station: Ladbroke Grove Underground Station or Notting Hill Gate Underground Station depending on which part of the neighborhood you want to start in
Hours: No hours as this is a neighborhood but if you want to look around the shops etc. you’re best to come during business hours
While all of Notting Hill is pretty much absolutely stunning, I’d pay particular attention to store fronts like Biscuiteers, Portobello Print & Map Shop, Calluna and so many more. Portobello Road in general has so much to offer and you should definitely not miss strolling up and down it. Even better if the market is operating!
Make sure to go down the side streets which is where you’ll find the pretty pastel town homes that you’ll for sure have seen all over Instagram. Again, be respectful! These are people’s homes.
Location: Around the intersection of Warwick Avenue and Harrow Road
Closest Tube Station: Warwick Avenue Underground Station (right outside of it)
Hours: 24/7 (some of the boats have lights that make for excellent night photography)
Little Venice is still fairly undiscovered in London which makes it a great spot for Instagram pictures as you’re not competing with everybody else for them. There are a number of boats up and down the canal (many of them houseboats) so any spot will be great for your pictures!
Location: Shoreditch, neighborhood in east London
Closest Tube Station: Old Street Underground Station or Liverpool Underground Station (right outside of both stations)
Hours: 24/7 but nicer during the day for photography
Shoreditch is a very “hipster” area in East London. It used to be a working class area but is now considered a highly creative and popular area. There’s been lots of gentrification in the area and a huge influx of younger people so it should go without saying that the place is incredibly instagrammable.
You’ll find everything from beautifully decorated bars and restaurants to gorgeous store fronts to markets to street arts and so much more. It’s an area worth discovering and exploring as you’ll find many many different instagrammable spots in the neighborhood. Obviously the photography will most likely come out way better in the day time but there’s a lot to be said for a cool nighttime shot when everything is lit up as well.
Louis Vuitton Shop/New Bond Street
Location: 17-20 New Bond St, Mayfair, London W1S 2RB
Closest Tube Station: Piccadilly Circus (8 minute walk from the station
New Bond Street is one of the must walk streets in London. It’s got every kind of designer shop on it and tons of street decor hanging up and down the street. The store fronts are very decorated and the windows are super nice. It’s even prettier during Christmas time if you happen to be there then. One of the freshest additions to New Bond Street, that you may have seen blowing up on Instagram already, is the storefront for Louis Vuitton. It’s an explosion in colour and is drawing in many photographers already.
Oxford and Regent Street
Location: Oxford Street and Regent Street
Closest Tube Station: Oxford Circus Underground Station will take you right to the intersection of Oxford Street and Regent Street
Not to be outdone by New Bond Street, Oxford Street and Regent street are must do streets as well. They are also well known (and huge) shopping streets. They’ve both got massive, beautiful buildings that don’t look like they should be shopping stores but somehow are. Like New Bond Street, there’s decorations hanging along the street that make for excellent pictures.
God’s Own Junkyard
Location: Unit 12, Ravenswood Industrial Estate, Shernhall St, Walthamstow, London E17 9HQ
Closest Tube Station: Walthamstow Central Underground Station (approximately 14 minute walk from station) or Wood Street Overground Station (approximately 8 minute walk from station)
Hours: Friday – 11am to 9pm, Saturday – 11am to 9pm, Sunday – 11am to 6pm
God’s Own Junkyard is a bit of an outlier in comparison to a lot of the more central locations on this list (and most London sightseeing lists). It’s located in North East London but if you’re able to make the trek then all your Instagram wishes will be filled.
The store is tucked away in an industrial area but it’s impossible to miss. The entire space is covered in dozens and dozens of different sized, and colored, neon lights and signs. I was by myself when I visited so only grabbed a couple of selfies but I witnessed 3 different groups of people setting up entire Instagram shoots in the 30-45 minutes I was there.
Because it’s indoors the lighting situation doesn’t matter as much but make sure you’re used to shooting this type of lighting as you’ll most likely have to adjust the settings on your camera (or phone) slightly. If you’ve got a night mode on your phone that would be ideal in this setting!
Location: Neal’s Yard (closest intersection is Neal Street and Short’s Gardens)
Closest Tube Station: Covent Garden (approximately 3 minute walk from the station)
Cost: Free unless you plan on shopping
Hours: 24/7 – the stores have specific hours but the Instagram factor is the exterior which is always open
Neal’s Yard used to be a hidden gem but thanks to Instagram and lots of blogger guides it definitely isn’t hidden anymore but that doesn’t make it any less instagrammable and any less deserving of a visit. The big sell here is the colourful store fronts, the greenery and the colorful details that make for great pictures.
It should go without saying that this place gets extremely crowded. If you’re looking for empty pictures (which really are the best for Instagram) then you’re going to want to be here before 9 am (aka before the stores open). I’ve come during different times of the day and it’s a very, very big difference in crowds!
Peggy Porschen & the stores on Elizabeth Street
Location: Peggy Porschen can be found at 116 Ebury Street in Belgravia specifically at the intersection of Elizabeth and Ebury Street
Closest Tube Station: Sloane Square Station (8 minute walk)
If you’re looking at this list then odds are that you’re interested in the most instagrammable places in London and you’ve probably looked up London on instagram a couple of times. If that’s the case then there’s no way you could have missed Peggy Porschen bakery. It’s pink and flowery exterior is one of the most popular Instagram shots in London and it is usually pretty crowded.
A great way around that is to get to the bakery first thing in the morning but I would also recommend paying attention to the remainder of the stores on Elizabeth Street (which is advertised as the prettiest street in London). Other stunning store fronts include Dominique Ansel Bakery, Les Senteurs Perfumery, Moyses Stevens Flowery and so many more.
Leake Street Tunnel
Location: Leake Street (off of York Road)
Closest Tube Station: Waterloo Underground Station (right outside of the station)
Hours: No hours as it’s a public street but you’re going to get better pictures in the daylight (even though it’s a little dark in the tunnel even during the days)
You can find stunning street art pretty much all over London but there’s nothing quite like the Leake Street Tunnel. Similar to Hosier Lane in Melbourne or Graffiti Alley in Toronto, it’s a lane/alley dedicated entirely to street art. Leake Street Tunnel takes it a step further and even has pieces on the ceiling of the tunnel. Outside of the fact that this is completely free to visit and therefore one of the best ways to save money in London, the pieces also regularly change meaning that even if you’ve been before you’ll definitely be able to see something new on your next visit.
Crossrail Place Roof Garden
Location: Top of Canary Wharf Shopping Centre
Closest Tube Station: Canary Wharf Station
Hours: 6am to 9pm everyday (closes at sunset in the summer)
Canary Wharf is still a pretty new part of London and one that most tourists don’t venture out to which is a shame. Particularly if you’re a photographer. With the skyscrapers, waterfront and hidden gems like the Crossrail Place Roof Garden you’ll have so many great spots for photography.
Crossrail Place Roof Garden is quite empty during the workdays since people in the area are busy working so you can often times have the place to yourself and take all the pictures you want to take!
Location: 13 Bute St, South Kensington
Closest Tube Station: South Kensington Underground Station (2 minute walk from the station)
Cost: Free unless you plan on purchasing a dessert/drink
Hours: Monday – Thursday: 9am- 11pm, Friday – Saturday: 9am- 12am, Sunday: 9am- 11pm
I’m not a fan of restaurants on lists like these because I don’t think you need to pay for photo opportunities but I partook in an afternoon tea at the Knot and fell in love with the place. The desserts are so instagrammable and the place itself is beautifully decorated and makes for excellent pictures. Theoretically however you don’t actually have to eat anything at which point this place is technically still free!
Churchill Arms Pub
Location: 119 Kensington Church St, Kensington
Closest Tube Station: Notting Hill Gate Underground Station (4 minute walk from the station)
Hours: 24/7 since we’re shooting the exterior
Churchill Arms Pub is another place in London that can be found pretty much everywhere on Instagram. It’s a sight to see with the pub being almost completed covered in flowers! The beauty of this pub is really the exterior (hence it being free and pretty much 24/7) but you can obviously go support the pub itself by having a pint inside.
In general, any pub
Location: All over London
Closest Tube Station: Depends on the neighborhood and pub
Hours: 24/7 since we’re shooting the exterior
While the Churchill Arms Pub is an extraordinary looking pub (that’s completely decked out), a lot of pubs all over London look pretty amazing and therefore photograph pretty amazingly.
Odds are that some of them also won’t be as popular and may be a little easier to shoot.
Location: 20 Fenchurch St (“The Walkie Talkie” Building)
Closest Tube Station: Monument Underground Station (4 minute walk from the station)
Hours: Monday – Friday between 10am – 6pm and Weekends & Bank Holidays between 11am – 9pm
While the Sky Garden is completely free to visit you do need to book your visit online ahead of time. Fair warning, it gets booked up weeks in advance sometimes so if you want to visit this one you’ll need to plan ahead.
While the views from Sky Garden are pretty fantastic, even the location itself is beautiful. It’s all plants and glass and stairs and there are some super cool opportunities for pictures.
Location: Regent Park (Northern Portion). This is the exact location.
Closest Tube Station: Chalk Farm Underground Station (12 minutes walk from the station)
Hours: Primrose Hill doesn’t have a regular closing time but Regent Park and its facilities does
Primrose Hill is a great spot in Northern London that definitely does not get enough attention from visitors but plenty from locals. It’s located in the northern part of Regent Park and offers fantastic (and free) views of the London skyline. It’s quite popular with locals and was super busy on the occasions that I went there but the area is big and you should have no problem finding a spot for photographs.
Keep in mind that the hill is grassy so if it’s rained then you’ll most likely be dealing with some mud!
Tate Modern Observatory
Location: Blavatnik Building, Tate Modern, Bankside, London
Closest Tube Station: Southwark Underground Station (9 minutes walk from the station)
Hours: Sunday to Thursday between 10.00–17.30 and Friday to Saturday between 10.00–21.30
Tate Modern has an observatory on the top floor of the Blavatnik Building. It can be accessed with the elevator from floor 0. As a heads up, the Tate Modern elevators get really busy and you may have to wait for a couple of elevators to pass by.
The view is a great 360 degrees so you can walk around the whole observatory. You’ll get great views of St. Paul’s Cathedral and Millenium Bridge and of course of the Thames.
One Tree Hill Vista Point and the Royal Observatory View
Location: Lovers Walk, Greenwich Park
Closest Tube Station: North Greenwich Underground Station (approximately 40 minute walk however bus 129 or 188 from the station will get you to the park in approximately 18 minutes)
Hours: Opens at 6 am every day but closing times range from 6 pm to 9:30 pm depending on the time of year
Greenwich and Greenwich Park is further east than many visitors of London go sometimes but it’s most definitely worth a visit. The park is stunning and boasts two different viewing points for you to enjoy. One is located right next to the Royal Observatory. You won’t be able to miss it since there’s usually a pretty big crowd here. The second however, which can be found on Lovers Walk, is much quieter. They both offer spectacular views of the skyline and are must-dos on your hunt for the most instagrammable places in London.
Location: Great Russell St, Bloomsbury, London
Closest Tube Station: Tottenham Court Road Underground Station (5 minute walk) but other stations have similar distances
Hours: Saturdays-Thursdays between 9.00–17.30 and Fridays between 9.00–20.30 (Closed 1 January and 24–26 December) (please note the galleries don’t open until 10 am)
The British Museum is one of the most visited museums in London (and England I suspect). While the collection is great, that definitely isn’t why it’s recommended as one of the most instagrammable places in London. It’s on the list because of the Great Court which features a netted ceiling, a central architectural piece with two wrapping stair cases and a great large space. In other words, great for pictures.
I think it should go without saying that this part of the museum gets incredibly busy. I think if you’re aiming for empty pictures you’re going to want to there at 9 am when the Great Court opens since the galleries don’t open until 10 am.
Location: 30 St Mary Axe but you’re going to want to see it from further away
Closest Tube Station: Aldgate Underground Station (5 minute walk away)
Cost: Free since exterior view. If you want to go up and see the view you’d have to book a table at the restaurant/bar.
Hours: 24/7 but it looks much better during the day
There are a number of places to get great views of London and its skyline from and while you can certainly book a table at the restaurant/bar at the top of the Gherkin (and pay accordingly), I think the instagrammable portion of the Gherkin is actually its exterior appearance. I’d recommend getting to the area around the Gherkin and walking off into different directions to frame the tower accordingly.
Location: Tower Bridge Rd, London
Closest Tube Station: Tower Hill Underground Station (7 minute walk from the station)
Tower Bridge, the most famous bridge in London, is often confused with London Bridge since it’s the iconic bridge most people associate with the city and therefore typically refer to as London Bridge. It’s one of the most recognizable landmarks in the city and one that makes for some excellent photography.
You can walk the bridge itself and get some shots that way. You can take some pictures of it along the water and walkway next to the Tower of London. My personal recommendation for a shot is at the Girl with a Dolphin Fountain just past the bridge itself. It makes for such a great picture! While I didn’t make it to the other side, the view from City Hall of the bridge is also quite popular.
Location: 32 London Bridge St
Closest Tube Station: London Bridge Underground Station (2 minute walk from the station)
Cost: Free for the exterior, 25 pounds if you wish to go up to the viewing platform
Hours: 24/7 but you’ll get better pictures in the day time. If you’re interested in going up to the viewing platform the hours vary so take a look at their website
The Shard is another location in London where you can get some fantastic views of the city (at almost twice as high of a distance as the other viewpoints) but the building itself is a shiny glass structure that makes for an excellent central point in photos!
If you walk down from the Shard towards Borough Market you’ll get a great view of the building and a great shot.
Natural History Museum
Location: Cromwell Rd, South Kensington, London
Closest Tube Station: South Kensington Underground Station (4 minute walk from the station)
Hours: Open every day 10.00-17.50 with the last entry 17.30 (Closed 24-26 December)
Like the British Museum, the big instagrammable factor of the Natural History Museum is the Grand Entrance Hall (Hintze Hall) The large staircase with the giant skeleton hanging in the center is hard to beat. It makes for great photography whether you’re taking it from the bottom of the stairs or from the top. The galleries do offer some great photography as well but if you’re short on time then the money shot is definitely the Great Hall.
Location: Piccadilly Circus (closest intersection is Regent Street and Shaftesbury Street)
Closest Tube Station: Piccadilly Circus Station (right outside of the station)
Hours: 24/7 but best at night
Odds are that you’ll have seen or heard of Piccadilly Circus before your trip. It’s one of the most recognizable landmarks in London and understandably so it’s also once with huge crowds usually.
Piccadilly Circus is essentially a square with lots of lit up advertisement screens. Think Times Square in New York City for example but just not to that extent. Because the screens light up you’re definitely going to want to check this one out at night.
The best shot will feature a red double decker or some cabs which if you’re patient you’ll have no trouble getting!
Location: Palace of Westminster, Westminster
Closest Tube Station: Westminster Station (right outside of the station)
When I say Big Ben you obviously know I’m referring to the iconic clock tower that is part of the Palace of Westminster but technically that is incorrect. Big Ben is the clock itself while the tower itself used to be named Clock Tower but was renamed Elizabeth Tower in 2012 as a tribute to the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee.
The tower is undergoing significant renovations (and has been since 2017). It’s meant to be completed in 2021 which means part of Big Ben is covered in scaffolding but hey that’s technically a really unique shot since not everyone will be able to get that!
Location: The Queen’s Walk, Bishop’s, London
Closest Tube Station: Waterloo Underground Station (6 minute walk from the station)
Cost: Free unless you want to go up then tickets start at 27 pounds
Hours: 24/7. The London Eye lights up at night which makes for some pretty great photos! If you’re interested in riding the Eye you can find their hours here.
While the views from the London Eye are good, they’re not the best in the city so this is definitely one landmark where the exterior shot is the money shot. If you’re walking from Waterloo Underground Station you’ll get a pretty unique shot with the river on the back of the eye. Of course some of the more popular shots are from across the Thames with the London Eye as the center point.
Closest Tube Station: Green Park and St. James’s Underground Station are both an 8 minute walk away
Hours: 24/7 but you’ll get better pictures in the daytime despite the crowds
Buckingham Palace is pretty iconic. It’s the home of the British Royal Family and has been featured in so many different ways. The funny thing here is that you actually aren’t allowed to take pictures of the interior of Buckingham Palace so the instagrammable portion of it quite literally is the exterior!
There are so many things for you to pay attention to here that you could spend a couple of hours and not run out of things. The exterior of Buckingham Palace is very grand (and large!) so getting that wide shot (without people) can be fairly difficult. But if you try side angles you may get a shot you like. Other details include the gates, the large Queen Victoria Memorial Fountain and the guards. You can also get a great shot walking down the Mall (where Queen Elizabeth’s car typically comes driving to and from). The nearby St. James’s Park also offers a great shot from one of the bridges.
Location: Thames Embankment
Closest Tube Station: Blackfriar’s Underground Station (6 minute walk from the station)
Millennium Bridge, which is officially called London Millennium Footbridge, is mostly known for its twisting shape and for its part in the Harry Potter films but it makes for an excellent photography subject as well. Whether you’re taking pictures of it from on the bridge itself, from the start or end of it, from the shores below or from the Modern Tate Observatory you’re bound to get some great shots. It also lights up at night which is a unique perspective to shoot as well.
St. Paul’s Cathedral from One New Change
Location: 1 New Change
Closest Tube Station: St. Paul’s Underground Station (1 minute walk from the station)
Hours: Rooftop Terrace open from 6am-midnight daily
While St. Paul’s is a landmark that can be seen from many different perspectives the most instagrammable of these shots is definitely from One New Change which is a shopping center right next door to the Cathedral.
You’ve got two options for a great shot here. You have the option to head to the top of the shopping center (using one of the lifts) for a view of London and the top of the cathedral. You can also stay between the two glass buildings on the ground (right in front of the lifts) to get a very cool shot of the cathedral framed between the two glass buildings. You are able to get a similar shot in the elevator itself, which is made out of glass, but you obviously have less time to do so.
The Queen’s House, Greenwich
Location: National Maritime Museum Gardens, Romney Rd, Greenwich
Closest Tube Station: North Greenwich Underground Station (approximately 40 minute walk however bus 129 or 188 from the station will get you to the park in approximately 18 minutes)
Hours: Daily between 10am and 5pm
The Queen’s House in Greenwich is a hidden gem in London.
The attraction is free to enter which only increases its attractiveness.
While the art works and interior architecture is definitely stunning, the instagrammable factor here is the tulip staircase!
Make sure that you’re taking pictures at both the top and bottom of the stair case to capture the different perspectives.
Location: Gracechurch Street
Closest Tube Station: Monument Underground Station (5 minute walk from the station)
Cost: Free unless you plan on shopping
Leadenhall Market is a covered market with a number of stores and restaurants. It’s known for how pretty and extremely photogenic it is and it’s also known for featuring in the Harry Potter films!
Like a lot of places on this list, it gets extremely busy. I highly recommend going first thing in the morning to get an empty shot. I went around 9 am (prior to stores opening) and had a solid 15 minutes of playing around with my timer (sadly I was solo travelling so it was my only choice!) and got some great shots!
Columbia Road Flower Market
Location: Columbia Rd, Bethnal Green
Closest Tube Station: Bethnal Green Underground Station (17 minute walk from the station) or Shoreditch High Street Underground Station (16 minute walk from the station)
Cost: Free unless you plan on purchasing some flowers (which you should!)
Hours: Sundays from 8am until approximately 3pm
The Columbia Road Flower Market is probably the item on this list with the most restriction in terms of scheduling but if you can get here on a Sunday then you definitely won’t regret it.
Of note here is that while all the pictures and stands are absolutely beautiful (and therefore easily one of the most instagrammable places in London), not all vendors want their product being photographed. If a vendor has a sign indicating they won’t want their product photographed then please respect that.
Closest Tube Station:
Hours: 24/7 but the individual markets have specific hours
Location: Camden Market, Camden Town
Closest Tube Station: Camden Town Underground Station
Camden Market is an experience for all your senses. There is so much to look at and see that you could easily spend majority of one day here. This of course means that there is a ton of great photo opportunities as well!
Location: 8 Southwark Street
Closest Tube Station: London Bridge Underground Station (3 minute walk from the station)
Cost: Free (unless you’re purchasing food, which you should!)
Hours: The full market is on Wednesdays through Saturdays between 10 am and 5 pm (closing at 6pm on Fridays and opening at 8am on Saturdays). There’s a limited market on Mondays and Tuesdays between 10 am and 5 pm and the market is completely closed on Sundays.
Borough Market is a must do in London in general but especially for its aesthetics. The stands (and the food itself!) make for some great pictures. It’s pretty difficult to get empty shots here unless you’re doing exterior shots when the market is closed but you can still get some great close ups and some great food shots even when the market is at its busiest!
Map of the Most Instagrammable Places in London
You of course will need a map to know where everything is and to optimize your days and I’ve of course put that together for you below:
There you have it! My giant list of the most instagrammable places in London. How many have you photographed? Did I miss any great spots? Let me know in the comments and as always pin this post for your own upcoming trip.
I have lived in London for so long and still haven’t been to those cute cafes! Great post.
They are really cute!