Photocatalytic activity of TiO2 and ZnO nanopowders is studied depending on the morphology, grain sizes and method of synthesizing. Photocatalysis of the prepared powders was evaluated by degradation of the methylene blue aqueous solution. Absorbance spectra (190-100 nm) were measured during exposure of the solution to UV light. The relationships between the photocatalytic activity and the particle size, crystal polymorph phases and grain morphology were analyzed. The photocatalytic activity of prepared TiO 2 nanopowders has been found to depend of the anatase-to-rutile phase ratio. Comparison is given for the photocatalytic activity of ZnO nanopowders prepared by sol-gel and solar physical vapour deposition (SPVD) methods.