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In pictures: Walking London’s South Bank at dusk

London's South Bank at dusk

After a quick trip to London yesterday (more on that to come next week), I took advantage of a free few hours and some beautiful clear skies to take a walk along the south bank of the Thames. Despite living in London for 10 years I only took a handful of photos of the city, so when now I visit I try to make up for it. One of my favourite walks in the capital, the route along the river from London Bridge to Waterloo takes you within sight of some of London’s most famous landmarks – like Tower Bridge, St Paul’s Cathedral, the Tate Modern, South Bank, the London Eye and the Houses of Parliament. The light faded as I walked, turning the sky from pale to navy blue, and the city’s lights came to life, illuminating streets and buildings. Commuters rushed by as I dawdled on the path, taking photos until my hands went numb in the cold.

Millennium Bridge, London's South Bank at dusk
St Paul's, London's South Bank at dusk
London's South Bank at dusk
Houses of Parliament, London's South Bank at dusk
Houses of Parliament, London's South Bank at dusk
Big Ben, London's South Bank at dusk
London Eye, London's South Bank at dusk

77 Comments Post a comment
  1. Sami #

    London is such a lovely place !

    January 22, 2014
    • It is a fantastic city – there’s always something new to see!

      January 23, 2014
  2. Beautiful shots. Those shades of blue are truly magical.

    January 22, 2014
    • Thanks, it’s a great time of day to be taking photographs, I must get out and do it more often.

      January 23, 2014
  3. nofrillswrapping #

    How I would have loved to take that walk with you! Such wonderful sights! I can imagine myself sitting on one of those benches, just drinking it all in. Thank you so much for sharing the pictures. It’s almost as good as being there myself!

    January 22, 2014
    • Thanks so much – it’s funny I must have done that walk so many times when I lived in London and not thought about it, but I notice and appreciate the city so much more now as a visitor.

      January 23, 2014
    • nofrillswrapping #

      That’s interesting. I guess it must be when you live there you’re so busy with the day-to-day things that you don’t really notice anything that isn’t directly related to what you need to do. As a visitor, that stress and drive isn’t part of your day, well, at least not so much. I have my list of places I want to see in person should I ever become a millionaire and now London is one of those places. If I went, I’d find that bench in your picture and sit on it. I’d think of you too and bless you for bringing it to my attention. (smiles)

      January 23, 2014
  4. Lovely photos. My daughter used to love in Borough so we were often on the Southbank. She is in Streatham Hill now, which is happily close to all the amazing Asian canteens in Tooting Bec but we don’t get into the city so often now.

    January 22, 2014
    • Borough’s a great part of London, I’d loved to have lived there. I know Streatham well though as I lived in Streatham Common for a few years, loved all the Asian food around there too!

      January 23, 2014
  5. Looks beautiful!

    January 22, 2014
    • Thanks, it’s a great walk to do at any time of day too!

      January 23, 2014
  6. How lovely to enjoy a virtual visit my old home town through your wonderful photos. Thank you.

    January 22, 2014
    • Glad to bring back some good memories for a fellow ex-London resident!

      January 23, 2014
  7. Nice pictures!

    January 22, 2014
  8. Lovely shots Lucy – the colours are so vibrant at dusk. Nice evening for a stroll too :)

    January 22, 2014
    • Thanks Suzanne, yes it was worth heading out in the cold in the end, glad I made the effort!

      January 23, 2014
  9. thetrustedtraveller #

    Lovely pics. A reminder of how much I love and miss London.

    January 22, 2014
    • Thanks, it’s so nice to go back since I’ve moved away, I’m sure I appreciate it much more as a tourist than I ever did as a resident!

      January 23, 2014
  10. Great photos, Lucy! I absolutely love London and your pictures capture some of the city’s great attractions in the most beautiful way.

    January 22, 2014
    • Thanks so much, I was really pleased with how they came out, London does look great in the dark!

      January 23, 2014
  11. You’ve captured such a gorgeous time of day in such a lovely, vibrant way!

    January 22, 2014
    • Thanks, I’d been meaning to try and get some night shots of London for ages and it was worth a lost pair of gloves and some minor frostbite!

      January 23, 2014
  12. The South Bank is one of my favourite places in London but I’m the same, I never take any photos! So thanks for sharing:)

    January 23, 2014
    • I probably have about 10 photos of London from the entire time I lived there, and about the same of Oxford and Cheltenham where I’ve lived since, funny isn’t it how we forget to photograph our own doorsteps!

      January 23, 2014
  13. Faraziyya #

    freaking awesome!
    the color of dusk, oh, i always love it!

    January 23, 2014
    • Such a great time of day isn’t it, I just love watching the skies change and get a deeper and darker blue.

      January 23, 2014
  14. Great photos, Lucy! That’s a beautiful place to be at (and after) sunset!

    January 23, 2014
    • Thanks Cassie, the one bonus of our short days at the moment is that it’s easy to get evening shots even on a day trip!

      January 23, 2014
  15. beautiful pictures!

    January 23, 2014
  16. These are just breathtaking. Most cities look better by night, IMO :)

    January 23, 2014
    • I agree, I love the lights and you don’t notice the scruffy edges in the dark!

      January 23, 2014
  17. Looks amazing! I especially love the first shot on the bridge.

    January 23, 2014
    • Thanks, I’d like to go back with my tripod next time and do some slow shutter speed shots on the bridge, have seen some great photos like that.

      January 23, 2014
  18. Stunning photos of the London skyline. I did that exact same walk last Friday when in London, but my iPhone camera just doesn’t cut it when it comes to night time photos. Thanks for posting and keep the amazing photos coming!

    January 23, 2014
    • Thanks – I use my iPhone camera a lot too but it doesn’t cope too well with the dark does it, lots of noise and blur. Definitely a time when lugging round my DSLR was worth it!

      January 23, 2014
  19. Gorgeous photos of London at my favourite time of day, blue hour. Nice quality given how low the light was. Lovely.

    January 23, 2014
    • Thanks Rachael, I’m pleased with how they turned out without a tripod, though did lean on a lot of convenient walls and railings to stop the hand shivering shakes!

      January 23, 2014
  20. Love the South Bank, Lucy- it’s so full of atmosphere and goings on! Great shot of the bridge :)

    January 23, 2014
    • Thanks Jo, I do love going down there when I get the chance, it’s easy to forget you’re in London when you just rush between places, then you get down there and are surrounded by these amazing landmarks.

      January 23, 2014
  21. I really love that shot of Millennium Bridge with St.Paul’s Cathedral at the background. I definitely missed it when I went to London more 6 years ago.

    January 23, 2014
    • Thanks, sounds like you must be due a return trip to London sometime soon then!

      January 23, 2014
  22. Love the shades of blue… beautiful pics of one of my favorite cities!

    January 23, 2014
    • Thanks, it’s definitely one of my favourite times of day to take photos, I love how the scene changes so quickly as the sun goes down.

      January 23, 2014
  23. The South Bank is my favourite part of London, especially at night with all the pretty lights. Gorgeous!

    January 23, 2014
    • Me too! You really feel like you are in the heart of the city, surrounded by all those amazing famous buildings and sights.

      January 25, 2014
  24. I adore London anytime of day, but at night really is spectacular. I’ve explore the South Bank a little, but really need to dig in deeper apparently.

    January 24, 2014
    • I love that there’s always something going on along South Bank – as well as the museums and galleries I saw book stalls and various street entertainers, but there’s a good weekend food market too.

      January 25, 2014
  25. Lovely photos, Lucy! You’ve captured such beautiful blues in all the photos. I’m itching to get to London – still can’t believe I have never been, but I have friends moving there in May so maybe this is the year. Your photos make me want to go now!

    January 24, 2014
    • London’s a great place to have friends moving – should mean you get to know one of the neighbourhoods (which are so different) and always helpful to have someone to stay with, especially in a pricey city like London!

      January 25, 2014
  26. FAb photos Lucy. We will be in London in May with a few hours to spare before we catch the Eurostar to Paris the next day. We recently discussed doing a Thames walk, so we may just follow in your footsteps. Like you, I haven’t taken many photos in London on previous visits but I will make sure I do this time. Your photos have inspired me.

    January 24, 2014
    • That’s great – it’s an easy walk and you can do it in a few hours, or take your time and stop off at a few of the places along the route. Hope you get some good weather for the photos!

      January 25, 2014
  27. It has been over 12 years since I visited London, you’ve made me reminisce in some amazing memories of London. I hope to be back there and I’m loving the picture. What a picturesque city it is!

    January 24, 2014
    • It’s so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle and forget how beautiful it is, so it was lovely to get some time to see it slowly!

      January 25, 2014
  28. Lucy…I truly miss this place…sometimes wonder why I made this decision to come back. Thanks for the beautiful photographs.

    January 24, 2014
    • Sometimes I do really miss living in London too, but I’m sure I appreciate it so much more as a visitor!

      January 25, 2014
    • I agree bcoz many time during revisits there are newer things to see and experience that one usually ignores when being there.

      January 25, 2014
  29. Some lovely shots Lucy! Rekindled my fond memories of London!

    January 24, 2014
    • Thanks so much – and glad to bring back some good memories!

      January 25, 2014
  30. Hi Lucy,

    I’ve just started following your blog as I moved to London about 6 months ago and am very excited to have found your blog for inspiration! You’ve taken some incredible photos here. I’m yet to do the full walk along to see all the sights above but it looks worth it now.

    Loved this! Thank you!

    January 24, 2014
    • That’s great! Hope you are enjoying being in London and get to do the South Bank walk soon. There’s so much to see and do in London you should be spoilt for choice!

      January 25, 2014
  31. Love these pics. Walking along the south bank of the Thames is one of my favorite things to do in London — over and over again. Especially beautiful at dusk — well-captured in your photos.

    January 24, 2014
    • Thanks, I haven’t done this walk for years, though used to do it a lot when I lived in London, but glad I made the effort (despite the freezing weather!).

      January 25, 2014
  32. Beautiful! London is beautiful any time of year. But I’m curious, how cold was it?

    January 29, 2014
    • Thanks Monica, yes it was definitely chilly! We haven’t had a real cold snap here in the UK yet this winter but it’s probably around 6 degree Celsius around sunset.

      January 30, 2014
  33. These are lovely photos – I like the blue hues. And they remind me of my own walk in London, more or less the same route. I can’t wait to be back!

    January 31, 2014
    • Thanks Pola, I love that time of night too, when the colours keep changing to different shades of blue!

      February 3, 2014
  34. OMG your pictures make me miss my trip to London sooo much!

    Also, change of topic: I just nominated you on my blog for the Versatile Blogger Award. One part of it is to let the bloggers know who you nominated and then have them make their own list of their chosen nominees. Thanks for having your wonderful blog and allowing people like me to read a little bit about you and your thoughts!
    You can see my list of nominations at http://managinglifeandself.wordpress.com/2014/02/07/versatile-blogger-award/.

    February 7, 2014
  35. Reblogged this on blog.

    February 8, 2014
  36. The South Bank is so beautiful. That used to be my run home from work. Now I run along the beaches of northern Sydney, so I can’t really complain. They’re both special in their own ways!

    February 13, 2014
    • Pretty as South Bank is, I think I’d still swap it for your new route, especially at the moment with all the wind and rain here!

      February 13, 2014
  37. Great photos – although it looks quite nippy! I’ve only visited once and was lucky to have beautiful weather.

    February 20, 2014
    • It was so cold! I managed to lose one glove somewhere along the route too which didn’t help. Summer is probably a better time to do it, though you there would be a lot more people around.

      February 20, 2014
  38. Walking – a great way to take in a city like London, right? You snapped some good shots :-).

    March 2, 2014
    • Thanks – yes it’s definitely the best way to see the city, you come across all sorts of things you’d never see otherwise!

      March 2, 2014

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