Dazzling night skies: When the sun sets, global cities continue to shine

From London to Moscow, the world's biggest cities are full of bustling activity every day. But when the sun goes down, these metropolitan areas shine with a different light. Though the cherished longer days of summer are here, the contrast of artificial light against the darkness of night provides breathtaking scenes of urban landscapes across the globe.

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In the dark London night, the lights of Westminster Palace and Big Ben reflect on the River Thames 

In Paris, Notre Dame Cathedral's gargoyles stand guard as night falls over the City of Light. In the distance, the Eiffel Tower is illuminated 

Stretching out behind the fountain at Cibeles Plaza in Madrid is Gran Via, one of the Spanish capital's busiest and most recognizable streets, which recently celebrated its centennial 

The Brandenburg Gate, which is located in the centre of Berlin and was once part of the Berlin Wall, is crowned with a copper sculpture of Victoria, the goddess of victory 

The dome of Saint Peter's Basillica brightens up the night sky in Vatican City 

 Saint Basil's Cathedral
In Russia's capital, Saint Basil's Cathedral is stunning against the setting sun. The place of worship, built in 1561, has been part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site encompassing Moscow's Kremlin and Red Square since 1990 

Hong Kong's bay provides impressive panoramic views of the Chinese city's modern landscape 

Though its time as host to this year's Winter Olympics is now over, Vancouver's BC Place continues to shine 

In New York, a yellow taxi - a symbol of the City That Never Sleeps - crosses the Brooklyn Bridge, leaving Manhattan's famous skyline behind 

Impressive aerial views show off the beauty of Brazil's second largest city, Rio De Janeiro, which will host the 2016 Summer Olympics