Lake District voted UK’s most scenic spot

Sunset in the Lake District, by Jeremy Walker

In the Autumn issue of Outdoor Photography (Newsroom OP196) we reported on recent research commissioned by Nikon to discover the UK’s top photography locations. More than 2,000 amateur and professional photographers named their favourite scenic spots, and Windermere in the Lake District came out on top, with 38% of the votes, closely followed by the Yorkshire Dales and Peak District national parks. Here are the results in full…. 

Top well-known scenic spots

  1. Windermere, Lake District (38%)
  2. Yorkshire Dales (34%)
  3. Peak District (33%)
  4. Snowdonia National Park (32%)
  5. Loch Ness, Scottish Highlands (30%)
  6. Stonehenge, Somerset (26%)
  7. White Cliffs of Dover, Kent (26%) 

The research also revealed the top ‘undiscovered’ British landscapes, with the Isle of Skye coming top of the list: 45% of those surveyed chose it as the location they would most like to photograph. Cornwall’s Lizard peninsula and Pistyll Rhaeadr waterfall were also popular, each receiving 32% of the vote.

Top lesser-known scenic spots

  1. Isle of Skye, Inner Hebrides (45%)
  2. Lizard peninsula, Cornwall (32%)
  3. Pistyll Rhaeadr waterfall, Powys (32%)
  4. Cheddar Gorge, Somerset (31%)
  5. Seilebost beach, Isle of Harris, Outer Hebrides (28%)
  6. Durdle Door, Dorset (26%)
  7. Malham Cove, North Yorkshire (23%) 

Inspired to capture some of Britain’s picturesque vistas? Landscape photographer and Nikon ambassador Jeremy Walker shares his essential tips:

1 Get the best light. The best light is usually at the beginning and end of the day, around sunrise and sunset. Avoid shooting in the middle of the day when the sun is too high and the light will be flat.

2 Use a tripod. It will slow you down and help you concentrate on composition. Be sure to use a cable release or remote shutter release to avoid getting camera shake on slower exposures.

3 Be patient. Great light and conditions don’t just happen the instant you turn up. Give yourself enough time and never give up and leave a location too early, all it takes is one beam of light through the clouds for that award-winning shot.

4 Experiment. There are no specific lenses for shooting landscapes, but a good mid-range zoom such as the Nikkor 24-70mm f/2.8 is a versatile lens. You can shoot very wide for the big view or zoom in to concentrate on just a section of the landscape. Be careful to avoid shooting every single landscape with a wideangle lens, though, as you will exaggerate the foreground and anything in the distance will become small and insignificant. Experimenting with short and long focal lengths is the key to getting good results.

5 Do not carry too much kit. Some locations may require effort to get to the best viewpoint. Think about what you need and pack accordingly. Carrying unnecessary kit will start to take the fun out of landscape photography.