Is this Venice or the River Thames in London?

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With a blazing sun sitting low in the sky, river traffic travelling towards the camera and distinctive silhouetted spires in the distance you could be forgiven this photograph was taken in Venice. Alas the location was a lot less romantic: I was stood on the back of a Thames Clipper catamaran travelling down the River Thames in London.

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The sun sets over the River Thames in London, or is it Venice?

On Friday, Mrs Adams took the afternoon off work so we could have lunch together. Having just invested in some new photographic equipment, including a 70mm-300mm telephoto lens, I couldn’t resist taking my camera with me, you know, just in case I had an opportunity to try out my new toy.

The opportunity came when we decided to take the Thames Clipper into the centre of the city so we could catch the train home. I fired off a number of images of the Tower of London, City Hall, Tower Bridge and so on as we passed them. As I’m inexperienced using lenses of this size, some images came out better than others but this was probably the best photograph I took.

With the birds in the sky, the boats on the right hand side and the sun low in the sky illuminating the River Thames, it does, I think, look very ‘London.’ Even so, it does, bizarrely, remind me of Venice. It’s been many  years since I visited Venice, but it does look a bit like it could have been taken from the lagoon on the edge of the city looking in. The one thing that ruins that illusion is the modern building to the left of the picture.

Does this image look like London to you? If you are familiar with Venice, do you think this looks a bit the famed city? Also, have you experience of using lenses of this size? if so, have you any hints and tips for doing so as it’s all new to me.



30 thoughts on “Is this Venice or the River Thames in London?”

    1. We did indeed Keri-Ann. I promise I only took photos while on the boat. the rest of the time the camera was put away in my bag.

  1. Hi John, not being familiar with London or Venice I would have no clue as to which City this really looks like, but as a guess, I would have said Venice over London… My main lens is an 18-300 and I find it a good all-rounder, perfect for when we are out on our walks. I’m hopeless at giving tips as half the time I don’t know what I’m doing myself, but I will say be sure to lock the lens when out walking as it can extend when you least expect it to and always take the lens cap off when taking a photo!… I hope you enjoyed your lunch and managed to give your wife your full attention!


    1. I managed to give her my full attention after taking these photographs, yes! Love your tip about the lens lock. That is a useful bit of advice.

    1. That’s one of the best things about the Thames Clipper service. I’m not sure if you can get a Bellini, Boris Johnson’s booze ban doesn’t apply so there’s a bar on board where you can get a drink!

    1. Well this is true Catherine. On this occasion, however, I left Mrs Adams in her seat and ran top the back of the boat top take photographs! Not that romantic!

  2. If you cropped out a bit more on the left then I’d definitely think it was another European city. I’d love to go to Venice one day though and now you’ve got me thinking!

    1. Hope you get to Venice one day. Maybe I should crop out some of the buildings to the left and see if I can convince someone it is Venice!

  3. Paul @ Topsy Turvy Tribe

    We lived in London for 10 years so the skyline is very familiar and unmistakable. There is definitely something about the light on the water though making it look different..

    1. Wow, I think you’re the only person who has said the recognised the skyline. I didn’t think it was a typical London shot.

    1. It’s not a classic London skyline is it so it could be any number of cities I suppose. Nonetheless, it did remind me of Venice.

    1. Just takes a little practice Ross. There’s still much I need to learn. Glad you liked the shot and hope you get a camera soon.

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