Chillon castle at Lake Geneva

Dark clouds above Château de Chillon and Lac Léman

Chillon castle at Lake Geneva
April 21, 2011 Johan Peijnenburg
In Photography
Dark clouds above the castle Château de Chillon and Lac Léman (Lake Geneva) in Montreux (Johan Peijnenburg)
24mm – f/10 – 1/250 – ISO200

I love castles, lakes, changing weather and twilight. Here’s a combination. This is a photograph of a castle called Château de Chillon, which is located at the borders of Lake Geneva (Lac Leman) near Montreux in Switzerland. The image was captured close to sunset.

Comments (184)

  1. Dave Pattinson 9 years ago

    Great shot, I like the overcast sky as it adds to the mood of the shot!!!

    • Author

      Thanks Dave! So just go shooting next time you have an overcast sky in Canada 🙂

  2. Author

    Wow, you are quick Marco!

  3. Daan Berg 9 years ago

    wow, mooi prentje zeg!!

  4. Paul Kamphuis 9 years ago

    heel erg fraai, Johan

  5. Richard McGibbon 9 years ago

    Fantastic Johan. Looks like a wonderful place

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

  7. Chillon is one of my favorite châteaus en Suisse-Romande – great shot!

  8. Awesome shot…. the sky looks beautiful. Keep ’em coming… 🙂

  9. Nice shot !

  10. I love this shot. The sky is so complex, yet the overall effect is peaceful. Beautiful!

  11. Wow! Very Harry Potter-ish. Care to share details? Lens, exposure.

    • Author

      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

  12. This is a very nice photo. Its calm and relaxing.

  13. Fabulous…

  14. Great capture, Johan! Excellent composition!

  15. Just beautiful!

  16. Fabulous looking sky. Great composition!!!

  17. Johan,perfect framing and light control..well done!

  18. Super vette foto! Super cool photo!

  19. Author

    Thanks again Francesco. Dank je wel Gerben!

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

  21. Wow Johan. Excellent cover!

  22. Great shot

  23. It’s very beautiful.

  24. Author

    Thanks all! @Bastien Vaucher: no special filter applied.

  25. 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 🙂

    • Author

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

      • 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” ! 🙂

        • Author

          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.

  26. awesome composition & perspective

  27. Sandy Riefberg 8 years ago

    WOW! Love it! <3

  28. wow

  29. Rod Clemen 8 years ago

    cool shot!

  30. Kenneth Straka 8 years ago

    Very beautiful!… love the castle

  31. Author

    Tnx Rod and Kenneth!

  32. Marc Duiker 8 years ago

    Mooi shot!

  33. Giuseppe Ridinò 8 years ago

    Well done!

  34. Author

    Thanks all!

  35. Steamy Raimon 8 years ago

    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.

  36. Danielle Lewis 8 years ago


  37. Joe Azure 8 years ago

    Man – another place I have to visit… 🙂

  38. Author

    Thanks Joe … if you’ve never been to Switzerland or the Alps you really should 🙂

  39. Jeff Skelton 8 years ago

    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 🙂

  40. Author

    The contrast is indeed surreal. Did you visit? The castle itself is in pretty good shape. Cheers

    • Jeff Skelton 8 years ago

      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 🙂

      • Author

        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.

  41. Toño Rabelo 8 years ago


  42. Rutger Blom 8 years ago

    Love this one. Great composition and light.

  43. Bruce Sogoloff 8 years ago

    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.

  44. Author

    Thanks Rutger! @Bruce: I somehow doubt you can’t find beautiful things over there as well 🙂

  45. thats a great looking location!

  46. Ronnie Singh 8 years ago

    Beautiful click

  47. Cynthia Chia 8 years ago


  48. Fraser Ross 8 years ago

    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).

  49. Author

    Thanks Ronnie, Cynthia and Fraser! @Fraser: very true!

  50. beautiful scene! awesome capture!

  51. Jennifer Bailey 8 years ago

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

  52. David Abrantes 8 years ago

    Wow Johan. Beautiful work.

  53. Frank Reyes 8 years ago

    Very good!

  54. Luke Griffin 8 years ago


  55. sarra Robinson 8 years ago

    I wouldn’t mind living there for a bit. 😀

  56. Charles Lupica 8 years ago

    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.

    • Author

      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 🙂

  57. Christoph Protz 8 years ago

    Nice shoot and weather mood impression

  58. piet Flour 8 years ago

    Gorgeous photography you present Regis … magnifique

  59. Nick Lewis 8 years ago

    Would love to visit this Chateau and the area

    • Author

      Well you’re no too far away Nick, so that should be possible 🙂

      • Nick Lewis 8 years ago

        Yes flights from London to Geneva are often cheap!

  60. Aad Vogel 8 years ago

    Mooie foto

  61. Brilliant photograph.perfect composition

  62. magnificent capture.. the exposure and tones are fantastic..

  63. Adam Kumiszcza 8 years ago

    It’s a nice shot. The weather and the look of the castle match 🙂

  64. Tristan Jud 8 years ago

    Beautiful castle. It’s been a favourite of mine for a very long time. I think i’m due back there to shoot it.

  65. beautiful

  66. Author

    Thanks Adam and Tristan!

  67. Athena Carey 8 years ago

    This is such a lovely photo Johan. I wish we had had clouds like that yesterday!

  68. Mike Elfner 8 years ago

    Wonderful! Too bad I could not be with you!

    • Author

      Did you miss the announcement or just couldn’t make it? I’m trying to find out what the best means for announcing a photo walk is. So input is very welcome!

      • Mike Elfner 8 years ago

        I got the announcement, but could not skip the work

  69. Ricardo Gracia 8 years ago

    Wow, great shot

  70. Main Uddin 8 years ago


  71. Arvid Bux 8 years ago


  72. Author

    Thanks Pedro, Main and Arvid Bux!

  73. Laurent Coppée 8 years ago

    Wow! I absolutely love the mood of this shot. That’s fantastic Johan!

  74. Rikard Lindby 8 years ago

    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.

  75. Darren White 8 years ago

    Really like the dark clouds here over the castle…..great image….

  76. Author

    Thanks Rikard and Darren

  77. Sumit Sen 8 years ago

    Comes across as a very dreamy and lonely image to me. It has mood which is so critical in defining an image. I love it.

    • Author

      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!

  78. Peter de Rooij 8 years ago

    Appropriately gloomy (this is the place famous for locking up people as described by Byron, right?)

  79. I can feel the dark age in the air, great.

  80. Peter Maris 8 years ago

    Nice one, like the dramatic sky behind the castle

  81. 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)

  82. Laura Johnson 8 years ago

    This has a beautiful mood to it!

  83. Neil Camara 8 years ago

    Outstanding my friend!!! 🙂

  84. Piet Flour 8 years ago

    superb mood and compo

  85. Simon Morris 8 years ago

    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! 🙂

    • Author

      Thanks Simon. I moved from NL to Ch 3 years ago and do not miss it yet. I love the Alps too much!

  86. Noah Urban 8 years ago

    Nice capture!

  87. Tara Holland 8 years ago


  88. Vikram Agrawal 8 years ago

    beautiful beautiful composition.

  89. beautiful Johan

  90. Don Spenner 8 years ago

    You imagery is superb and your country quite beautiful Johan!

    • Author

      Thanks Don. That’s a nice compliment. I guess I’ll have to stay and shoot more 🙂

      • Don Spenner 7 years ago

        I forgot to ask, is this your house, Johan ? (–:

        • Author

          I wish Don :)

          • Don Spenner 7 years ago

            One, day my friend, this is a beauty.

          • Author
            Johan Peijnenburg 7 years ago

            Yeah, I was lucky to be in the right place at the right time. I have been there another 20 times, but never with this atmosphere …

  91. rodri Marceli 8 years ago

    …A Dreams Place…(secret in my mind)…Thanks…

  92. Lance Rudge 8 years ago

    What a gorgeous landscape!

  93. Author

    Thanks rodri and Lance !

  94. Mindy Wang 8 years ago

    Thanks! Great photos!

  95. Neil Kremer 8 years ago


  96. Grüzie wohl, das sind tolle,
    phantaische Bilder ***
    Gruss in die Schweiz

  97. Eva Bertozzi 8 years ago

    Ja Montreux wird sich freuen über diese Bild.

  98. I like very much ! It’s your country ! 🙂

  99. Gabriel Quintero 7 years ago

    Pretty shot

  100. Didier schürch 7 years ago

    C’est le lac Léman, pas de Genève.

    • Author

      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 :)

      • Didier schürch 7 years ago

        C’est pas grave beaucoup de touriste pense que c’est le lac de Genève.

  101. Eva Gschmack 7 years ago

    Sehr schöne Aufnahme!

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

    • Author

      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 🙂 

  103. Claudia Veron 7 years ago


  104. Hartmut Gohdes 6 years ago

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

  105. David Hogan 6 years ago


  106. Joseph Trinh 6 years ago


  107. Author

    Many thanks for your comments Hartmut, David and Joseph! 🙂 Sorry I missed them earlier …

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