England is filled with beautiful landscapes that are waiting to be photographed. From rugged coasts, to beautiful forests and picturesque lakes, there is plenty to be found. This page provides some details on many of the best places to photograph throughout England.
Use the interactive map below to see details of the locations covered on this page.
This page will continue to be updated in the future, so please feel free to share you own suggestions in the comments if you have other locations that you think should be included.
Best Photography Locations in England
The following locations are covered in this article (scroll down to see them all):
- Jurassic Coast
- The Lake District
- Peak District National Park
- Dartmoor National Park
- Wistman’s Wood
- Exmoor National Park
- New Forest National Park
- Yorkshire Dales National Park
- Broads National Park
- North York Moors National Park
- South Downs National Park
- Northumberland National Park
- Northumberland Coast
- Bamburgh Castle
- Lindisfarne Castle
- Cornish Coast
- Bedruthan Steps
- North Norfolk
- Isles of Scilly
- Badbury Hill
- Hartland Quay
- White Cliffs of Dover
- St. Michael’s Mount
- Scarborough Castle
- Newbiggin Crags
- Farne Islands
- New Brighton Lighthouse
The Jurassic Coast is an incredibly scene stretch along the English Channel on the southern coast of England, and is recognized as a World Heritage Site. It runs for about 96 miles (154 km) from East Devon to Dorset. The cliffs and countless arches, rock formations, pinnacles and rock stacks are perfect for photography.
The coast is still eroding, and in most places that natural erosion is allowed to continue without human intervention. Rockfalls and landslips do occur at times.
The South West Coast Path runs along the coast, and beyond the boundaries of the Jurassic Coast. There are a number of well-known spots and highlights including Durdle Door, Lulworth Cove, Gad Cliff, St. Alban’s Head, Old Harry Rocks, Isle of Portland, Chesil Beach, and Lyme Bay.
There are plenty of places to stay in this area, and access is fairly easy.
The Lake District
The Lake District (or Lakeland) is a region of northwest England that is a popular tourist destination, and with good reason. It is home to a beautiful landscape that features mountains, forests, and, of course, lakes. In fact, the highest mountains and deepest and longest lakes in England are in the Lake District.
Lake District National Park covers more than 2,000 square km (more than 1,400 square miles), which is the majority of the Lake District. It is also the most popular national park in the United Kingdom, and also the largest in England.
Some of the highlights of the park include Great Gable, Aira Force, Derwent Water, Haystacks, Striding Edge, Helvellyn, Blea Tarn, Friars Crag, Ullswater, Haweswater, Catbells, Ashness Bridge, Lake Windermere, and Skiddaw.
Peak District National Park
Peak District National Park was the first national park in the UK. It is located close to the cities of Manchester, Sheffield, and Derby, at the southern end of the Pennines (a range of mountains and hills). The landscape mostly consists of rounded hills and valleys rather than sharp or prominent peaks. Most of the population and farmland is found in the southern portion of the park.
There are a few main roads within the park, including A57 (Snake Road) between Manchester and Sheffield. Traffic and parking can be an issue during the busy summer months. Public transportation is available.
Dartmoor National Park
Dartmoor National Park is in southwest England, west of the Jurassic Coast. Dartmoor is known for its tors, which are hills with rock outcroppings. Over half of the land in this national park is privately owned, but public access is allowed on much of this land. Visitor’s centers are located in Princetown, Haytor, and Postbridge. Hiking is a popular activity here.
Wistman’s Wood National Natural Reserve is in Dartmoor and is an excellent place for photographing the forest. It is home to moss, lichens, and boulders that make it quite beautiful and picturesque.
Exmoor National Park
Exmoor National Park is in southwest England, north of Dartmoor National Park. The landscape is mostly open moorland, and there are several small villages in the area. It includes about 34 miles (55 km) of beautiful coastline and cliffs. The coast is very rugged with waterfalls and ravines.
Some points of interest include Valley of the Rocks, Great Hangman, Little Hangman, and Woody Bay. The South West Coast Path also runs through Exmoor. A39 and A396 are the main roads that provide access to the park.
New Forest National Park
New Forest National Park is in southern England, northeast of the Jurassic Coast. There are many villages and towns within and around the forest. It covers more than 200 square miles (more than 500 square km), and there is a lot of wildlife in the area.
There are plenty of trails to explore, and there are even open-top safari buses that will take you around the area. There are also plenty of places to stay.
Yorkshire Dales National Park
Yorkshire Dales National Park is located to the southeast of the Lake District. It covers more than 800 square miles (more than 2,000 square km). This is a popular park that attracts over 8 million visitors per year.
Some of the highlights of the park include the Ribblehead Viaduct, the Three Peaks, Janet’s Foss (waterfall), Bolton Castle, Cautley Spout (waterfall), Hardraw Force (waterfall), Kisdon Force (series of waterfalls), Swaledale, Gordale Scar, and Malham Cove.
Broads National Park
The Broads are a network of rivers and lakes within the counties of Norfolk and Suffolk in eastern England. There are seven navigable rivers and many lakes. This area is, naturally, popular for boating. It also features a beautiful landscape that is ideal for photography.
A47 is one of the main roads that runs through the area and provides access. The park is a great place to photograph wildlife, with many rare plants and animals.
North York Moors National Park
North York Moors National Park is east of Yorkshire Dales National Park. It covers more than 500 square miles (more than 1,400 square miles). The park includes moorland plateau, valleys, and woodlands. The east side of the park features impressive cliffs along the North Sea.
Popular walks in the area include the Cleveland Way, which surrounds the moors, and the Lyke Wake Walk, which leads across and over the moors. There are many small villages but few major settlements.
South Downs National Park
South Downs National Park is to the east of New Forest National Park. This is a new park that was officially formed in 2011. It covers more than 600 square miles (more than 1,600 square km), including the chalk hills on the English Channel. Beachy Head and the Seven Sisters are highlights here.
South Downs Way is a long trail (100 miles, 160 km) within the park. The Western Weald area of the park features densely wooded hills.
Northumberland National Park
Northumberland National Park is in far northern England, running along the Scottish border. This is one of the least-visited national parks, but it still has a lot to offer. The most noteworthy feature is Hadrian’s Wall (also called the Roman Wall). The wall stretches beyond the boundaries of the park, but one of the best preserved sections of the wall is in the southern area of the park.
The north area of the park features the Cheviot Hills, which are on the border of England and Scotland. The park also features moorland and forest. A68 is one of the main roads for accessing the park.
To the east of Northumberland National Park, the Northumberland Coast is designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB). This area covers 40 miles (about 65 km) of dramatic coastline. You’ll find beaches, dunes, cliffs, and plenty to photograph. A1 runs somewhat along the coast, and then there are smaller roads that lead all the way to the coast.
Bamburgh Castle is one of the features that lies on the Northumberland Coast. Located in the village of Bamburgh, it was built on a rock outcropping and is a great subject for photographs.
Lindisfarne Castle is on Holy Island, just a short distance north of Bamburgh. The island is accessible from the mainland at low tide.
Cornwall, in southwestern England features and impressive, rugged coast. The north coast on the Celtic Sea is generally more rugged than the southern coast on the English Channel, although there are plenty of photographic opportunities on both coasts.
Watergate Bay is a great location, as is the fishing harbour of Polperro.
The Bedruthan Steps is a stretch along the north Cornish coast that features some impressive rock formations. At low tide you can walk along the rocks, but be carefully because the tides can be quite harsh.
North Norfolk, on the east coast of England, features a nice coastline that is ideal for photography.
Isles of Scilly
The Isles of Scilly is a group of islands off the southwest coast of Cornwall. The southernmost point of England, St. Agnes, is a part of the Isles of Scilly. Designated as an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, this is a great place for photographers and tourists alike. The landscape here is much different than most of England, and the climate is generally warmer.
Badbury Hill in Faringdon is a great place to photograph Blue Bells. The wildflowers bloom each spring, usually late April to early May. Also of note, an Iron Age hill fort, Badbury Camp, is located at the summit of Badbury Hill. The are trails and other areas to explore here, and the Blue Bells are easy to find when they are in bloom.
Hartland Quay is located on the Atlantic coast of Devon, southwest of Exmoor National Park. This area is known for its beautiful rocky coast and very rough waters. The cliffs and rock layers are excellent for photography. If you visit at low tide you can walk out onto the rocks and beach.
White Cliffs of Dover
The White Cliffs of Dover are an iconic landmark of southeastern England. The chalk cliffs face the Strait of Dover and reach up to 350 feet (110 meters).
St. Michael’s Mount
St. Michael’s Mount in southwest England is a small tidal island that is accessible by a causeway at low tide. A picturesque castle and chapel sit on top. It is managed by the National Trust and is an excellent place to photograph, especially in high water.
Scarborough Castle is a medieval royal fortress overlooking the North Sea. It is located near North York Moors National Park. Now, what remains of the castle and the views are perfect for photography.
Newbiggin Crags features limestone formations with a great view. It is located next to Farleton Fell, just northeast of Burton-in-Kendal.
The Farne Islands are a group of 15-20 islands (depending on tides) off the coast of Northumberland. They are about 1.5 – 5 miles (2.5 – 7.5 km) off the coast of the mainland. The islands are managed by the National Trust with no permanent residents. The Farne Islands are popular for bird watching and scuba diving. There are many shipwrecks that make great dive sites. You can reach the islands by boat from Seahouses harbour.
Brighton is in southern England along the English Channel. It is located near South Downs National Park and is a nice place to photograph.
New Brighton Lighthouse
The New Brighton Lighthouse, also known as the Perch Rock Lighthouse, sits at the confluence of the River Mersey and Liverpool Bay. Although it is no longer in service, it is still a well-known landmark and a picturesque location.
For street photography and urban landscapes, London is an ideal location. There are many iconic buildings and structures that are worth photographing. If you’re heading to London, we recommend Jim Hamel’s book Photographing London: How to Find and Take Great Pictures.
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