Top Locations for winter family photos
T’is the time of the year! It’s time to put your sunscreen and shorts away (unless you’re feeling brave), and prepare for the cold winds and winter chill. But it’s not all bad news – winter also comes with it’s own unique beauty. Whether it’s waking up to a stunning white snowfall, or visiting some hearty Christmas markets, winter is a great time for photo shoots.
Snow or no snow, this isn’t the time for you to give up on your hopes for a perfect family portrait. Whilst the sun might not be always out, you can still get some dreamy and/or captivating photos during the winter chill.
Here are some of the best locations for winter family photos in London.
The Hampstead Heath Pergola & Hill Gardens
Nestled inside Hampstead Heath, a large green space in the heart of North London, the Pergola has it’s own mystic ambience. This space exudes vibes of a magical fairy tale, and the serene atmosphere is especially notable during during cold winter mornings. If you’re lucky enough to see the Pergola covered in snow, it resembles something from a Harry Potter film.
This is definitely a good location for family photos. You and your kids will get to explore the magic of the Pergola gardens, and take some really wholesome pictures. There is a really nice symbiosis of nature and man-made architecture here, and I can honestly say I’ve fallen in love with the place.
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Do we need to say anymore? The name gives it away. Winter Wonderland is a fun and activity ridden event running from December to January. If you have kids, you probably don’t need to be informed of Winter Wonderland, but what makes it so great is that you and the kids can really interact with the environment around you. There are some really good opportunities here to take some candid, fun photographs of a time you’ll never forget.
Just like the merry go around in Winter Wonderland, this is one place you can go to over and over again and still create timeless memories.
For cold, winter nights, Southbank is a great location for family photos. With great views over the Thames, London city lights, and brutalist architecture (National Theatre), you won’t be left short for places to take pictures!
And don’t forget to visit the Southbank Centre’s Wintertime Festival! The have beautiful Christmas decorations and riverside bars, and also chalets selling goodies and crafts. This is a lovely, vibrant place to have your family pictures taken. Make sure to grab a thick winter coat, as this is best to explore during the night!
St Pauls Cathedral and surrounding areas
Not too far away from Southbank is St Pauls, which has a nice mix between classic architecture. We have the timeless, imposing St Pauls Cathedral alongside the blossoming city life in the surrounding areas. We particularly recommend Farringdon and The Barbican.
Your best time to capture glorious moments is during blankets of snow on the monolith that is St Pauls, providing a beautiful background for a perfect winter family photoshoot. So if you are lucky to get some snow this year, do not hesitate to go to St Pauls!
Photoshoot by Regents Canal
Stretching over 8.6 miles canal, you are absolutely spoiled for choice of photography locations on the Regents Canal. The canal links Paddington Basin to Limehouse Basin, passing through Camden Town, Kings Cross, and Victoria Park.
What we really like about the canal is that it has so much nature, without having to go too far from the city streets! There are also points where natural and the urban mix really beautifully. Quite frankly, this is a very aesthetically pleasing route to take photos on.
Here you would have a great opportunity to take candid photos of you and your family exploring your way down the canal. Think of it as an adventure!
Venture to Kings Cross
This leads us onto Kings Cross! Kings Cross is by far one of the most eclectic areas in London, with recent developments like Granary Square and Coal Drop Yard. I personally grew up here, and can say with all honestly that Kings Cross always puts on a beautiful spectacle during winter!
Don’t miss out on the IFO, a beautiful multi-coloured cage designed by Jacques Rival. The cage also features a swing, making it a fun place to take pictures.
You can then take a walk towards Coal Drop Yards, where you will see Kings Cross in all its glory. Home to a shopping complex opened in 2018, it’s a modern masterpiece. You can also explore the wonderful markets, and during the winter, the bright lights are particularly appealing. There are also regular pop up activities like crazy golf, as well as art shows. A really great place for a family photo shoot!
The London parks are a really beautiful place for family photo shoots. Grab a hot chocolate, because although you might not able to picnic, you sure can explore the greenery. I personally love nature in the winter, especially the cyclamens and pansies. These flowers may look dainty, but they are tough as hell! Not many of us could endure being outside during the cold London nights the way they do! Even still, we love taking pictures with these kind of flowers in the background.
Another thing about London parks is each park has it’s own personality. Whether it’s the Central glory of Regents and Hyde park, or you might want to go down a bit of East London and explore Victoria Park. Either way, there are numerous parks to explore, trees to climb and hills to walk up for great family photos.
Winter can be cold, but this provides a great opportunity to run around and keep you blood flowing and keep warm! A lot of the time when we do outdoor photoshoots in winter, our clients shake like a leaf! But thankfully you have space to get some excercise in the park.
Why not book a photoshoot with us?
Ice Skating at Somerset House
How about something different for a change? Going ice skating with the family was one of those things that excited me so much as a child. I would become hyper with excitement at the whole process; from putting on the skates, to making that first step on the ice.
Somerset House is located in a beautiful courtyard, not too far away from the London Eye – and is one of the most iconic scenes in London.
Let’s face it, what better place to ice skate, than near one of the most beautiful Gregorian architecture in London, built on the site of a Tudor palace belonging to the Duke of Somerset. You won’t be disappointed with the photos!
Don’t worry, you don’t have to be great (or even good) at iceskating to create some really nice pictures. Sometimes, there’s nothing funnier than finding yourself flat on your bum!
Want to capture some family joy? Book a family photoshoot in London today!
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Adam is the co-founder of WeShootYou photography. He is a reputable photographer that’s been featured on sites such as Medium, ZDNET and Business Insider. He specialises on crafting powerful and iconic images for family photography, dating photography and portrait photography.