Dark clouds above Château de Chillon and Lac Léman

I love castles, lakes, changing weather and twilight. Here’s a lake landscape photograph that combines all of these elements. This photograph features Château de Chillon (or Chillon Castle in English). Château de Chillon is an island castle on the shores of Lac Léman (Lake Geneva) close to the town of Montreux in the Swiss Canton of Vaud. I captured this lake landscape close to sunset on a day with rather moody weather. I hope you like this one!

Dark clouds above Château de Chillon and Lac Léman

A lake landscape, featuring dark clouds above Château de Chillon and Lac Léman (Lake Geneva) near Montreux.

Cheers, Johan 🙂

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This photograph of Château de Chillon is part of our Lakes landscape photography theme. The theme showcases many more photographs of Lac Léman as well as of other lakes from around the world, including:

Alternatively, have a look at our Swiss Landscape Photography portfolio for more photographs captured in Switzerland.

184 thoughts on “Dark clouds above Château de Chillon and Lac Léman

  1. Hartmut Gohdes says:

    The castle looks like a toy castle… I like the composition of the picture very much. There are edges and curves in harmony.

  2. Claudia Veron says:


  3. Tannia Ortiz-Lopes says:

    Johan did you use the ACR technique? Or just the normal pic with the Adobe enhancement? It’s gorgeous. 

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      thank you Tannia!. Just a normal image with a few adjustments in Lightroom. When I shot this, I used a gradient filter to add some depth and drama to the sky. I think I also used a local adjustment brush to lighten up the castle just a touch. For the rest straightforward processing 🙂 

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      Merci Didier, effectivement c’est le lac Léman, mais pour une raison inconnue, en Anglais ils l’appelent Lake Geneva…..j’amais compris non plus, donc aujourd’hui je mets les deux :)

  4. Simon Morris says:

    Beautiful shot Johan – I really miss Europe at times, what with all it’s history and stunning architecture… don’t get me wrong, the South Island of NZ is stunning too, but I sometimes think my heart is still back in Europe – particularly France! 🙂

  5. Robin-Angelo Fuso says:

    I love the place where I live. This photo it’s one the best I’ve seen of “Château de Chillon”.
    (…sorry for my english)

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      Thank you very much. The castle is such a lovely subject in combination with the lake. I will go back regularly as I am anxious to shoot it with a nice sunset, lit at night, with a snow cover, etc, etc 🙂 Good that it is only half an hour away!

  6. Rikard Lindby says:

    Very nice photo. Perfect composition and interesting sky. Would love to see a photo containing low dense mist on the lake as well. Thanks for sharing.

  7. Charles Lupica says:

    great image. I’ve been there a couple of times but I’ve never been able to get a picture that I like. BTW: I live in Neuchatel; Switzerland (speak passable French) and recently published a photobook with alphil editions, “Grand angle sur la Collégiale de Neuchâtel” – shameless plug.

    • Johan Peijnenburg says:

      thanks and very nice to meet a fellow Swiss here … although I am actually Dutch! I was a bit lucky with this shot. The weather was a bit challenging 🙂 I don’t mind the plug. You should have included a link to it 🙂

  8. Jennifer Bailey says:

    Oooh Chateau de Chillon will remain one of my favourite places <3 I love how you can wander everywhere inside! 🙂

  9. Fraser Ross says:

    Nice composition. It is always more pleasing when the subject is placed on the right hand side (depending on your strong side of the brain).

  10. Bruce Sogoloff says:

    I am living in the wrong part of the world, I don’t have anything like this, its beautiful, but I can come up with something.

    • Jeff Skelton says:

      Yes, I’ve got quite a number of pictures from the castle. None as good as yours though. I’ll try to dig some out of the archives. My ancestry is Swiss (and I am, sort of…long story) so I like visiting Switzerland as often as I can 🙂

      • Johan Peijnenburg says:

        you should upload some. Would be interesting to see how you “attacked” it. I found it not the easiest object to photograph in a way that does the castle right. In the end I decided to move away from it and get more of the sky and lake in.

  11. Jeff Skelton says:

    I enjoyed wandering around this castle. The freeway on the hill up above it is a bit surreal when compared to the castle’s age and surrounding 🙂

  12. Steamy Raimon says:

    Wonderful photos. Yes, I was inside Château de Chillon on Lac Leman in Geneve (as our maps called the areas). One of the best civilized locations on the planet.

  13. Anne Co (Google+) says:

    So beautiful, I live next to Chillon and I never seen this castle like this, it seems we’re in a video game like The legend of Zelda 🙂

    • Johan Peijnenburg (Google+) says:

      Thanks Anne! Nice to meet you. I live just around the corner (Gruyère) and I love this castle 🙂

      • Anne Co (Google+) says:

        Oh great 🙂 So you speak French maybe ? Oh and for a lot of “Suisses Romands” it is “le lac Léman”, and not “le lac de Genève” ! 🙂

        • Johan Peijnenburg (Google+) says:

          I am learning French (slowly) 🙂 I am Dutch and moved to CH/Gruyère a couple of years ago (did I say slowly). “Lac Léman” is in the keywords for the image. I used the English name as I think it is more well-known.

  14. Bastien Vaucher (Google+) says:

    Great shot, very dramatic clouds. How did you get such a strong contrast? Are you using a special filter?

    • Johan Peijnenburg (Google+) says:

      Hi Gian,
      If you click on the image, you will be taken to the underlying post on my blog. You can see the details there. I used a D3x + 24mm f/1.4 for this shot.
      Cheers, Johan

  15. Pim Versteeg (Google+) says:

    What a fantastic shot, besides the overcast sky, I very much like the slightly upward angle. WHat lens did you use?

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