Have you heard of Sightsmap? It’s a really cool site that uses “heatmap” technology to track where people all over the world are taking, uploading and sharing photos, with dark spots indicating little activity and lighter ones showing lots of photo-snapping and sharing activity. Although New York City comes in first place (unsurprising, right?) Europe seems to be the continent with the most papping going on overall in the world. Considering how much historic and iconic beauty there is to see there, this is also unsurprising. But which are the best of the best places to point your phones (or DSLR lenses) and take your travel photography to the next level? Here are my personal faves.
Hotel de Paris, Monte Carlo
Monte Carlo is famous for its casinos, boutiques, Grace Kelly, and has been featured in not one but two James Bond movies. It’s most photographed spot is the suitably extravagant Hotel de Paris, which looks absolutely exquisite in the day or night time. Even if you’re not lucky enough to be able to stay there (that includes me!) it’s grand exterior makes for an unmissable photo opp. #Opulence
Piazza della Repubblica, Florence
The Piazza again looks beautiful in both the day and night, but personally, I think it looks more magical after the sun goes down when the well-placed lighting really highlights the best features of the intricate architecture. There’s also a typically magnificent Italian fountain at its heart, similar to those in Rome. If you’re using a DSLR camera, set your shutter speed slow to capture the whizzing traffic circling it. #ItalianMajesty
Abbey Road, London
London is home to so many iconic photo spots it’s really hard to single out just one… but can you really beat the hallowed ground walked on by The Beatles? I think not. The Houses of Parliament, Tate Modern, Globe and Royal Albert Hall are great honourable mentions, but to me, London has too much rock ‘n’ roll history to ignore, and Abbey Road is the most evocative of that. #FabFour
St. Stephen’s Basilica, Budapest
Though it’s imposing white exterior is impressive, it’s the inside of the Basilica that’s really where you’ll get the best shots. Covered in rich reds, golds and greens, the lavishness and loving detail in every carved inch of this holy place is so breathtaking you might even forget to take any pictures at all! #SpiritualBeauty
Sagrada Familia, Barcelona
This wonderfully wacky basilica (not a cathedral) is so intricate and unique that construction on it started all the way back in 1882… and is still continuing! Conceived by the legendary Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi, it is considered more a piece of modern art than a building, making it one of the most photographed landmarks in the world. An especially good spot to photograph on the inside is the colorful roof of the nave, which is supposed to mimic a tree canopy. Stand in the dead center of the room and point your camera directly up at the ceiling. #BibliaSagrada
So, there you go! Grab your camera of choice, buy your tickets, get clued up on your ETIAS facts and start thinking of the perfect hashtags.