London, in an architectural sense, is one of the most beautiful, and iconic cities in the world. While it doesn’t have the skyline of New York City, or consistency in style of Paris, it is still a great place for a photographer or filmmaker who is interested in unique architectural styles. Perhaps what sets London’s architecture apart from the other major cities in the world is the is the sheer breadth of the different styles. You can find, and of course photograph, structures that were built in the medieval era, the contemporary era, and everything in between. Here are some of our picks for the most photogenic pieces of architecture in the Big Smoke.
The Tower of London
The Tower of London is one of the oldest, and most historically significant buildings in London. Built around 1066 after the Norman invasion, the tower and its surrounding ramparts are an imposing, but stunning example of medieval British architecture. The Tower of London’s architectural style is a relatively rare sight in London, and that, combined with its historical significance, make it a landmark worth photographing.
No list of important, and photogenic London architecture would be complete without the inclusion of Buckingham Palace. The Palace, which was originally a townhouse built in the mid 1700s, was expanded in the early 1800s by architect John Nash. His grand, and decadent neo-classical style made the structure immediately iconic. The Palace’s style remains a true sight to behold, and is certaintly a great destination if you want to photograph unique London architecture.
The Shard is one of the newer architectural standouts in London. Finished in 2012, the Shard stands as the tallest structure in the United Kingdom. Because of its height and its unique shape, the building is hard to miss. In fact, it is perhaps the most iconic building in the London skyline today.
Houses of Parliament
The Houses of Parliament, also known as the Palace of Westminster, sits iconically on the banks of the River Thames. It is easily one of the most photographed buildings in London, and for good reason. The mixture of gothic revival and neo-classical style makes the Houses of Parliament a sight to behold, especially on a day where the sun glints off the exterior.
The sprawling and massive Barbican Centre Is perhaps the most controversial building on this list. Built in the divisive brutalist style in the 1980s, the building was named London’s ugliest building in 2003, but also, in 2001, named a site of special architectural interest. Unlike the other buildings on this list, the Barbican’s brutalist architecture certainly values function over form. That is not to say, however, that the structure does not have its own strange beauty. As such, it is worth visiting to snap a few photos.