Nanostructured hematite thin films prepared by dip coating technique were investigated for their photoelectrochemical activity for generation of hydrogen from water splitting. Structural, morphological and optical analyses of the doped/undoped films were performed by X-ray diffraction, high resolution field emission-scanning electron microscopy, UV–vis spectrophotometry and Raman spectroscopy. The photoelectrochemical measurements of the films showed enhanced photoresponse and cathodic shift of the onset potential upon Ti doping indicating improved transfer of photoholes at the semiconductor-electrolyte interface. Films doped with 1 at% Ti produced 0.72 mA/cm2 at 1.23 V vs RHE which is 2 times higher than current density for the pure film (0.30 mA/cm2, at 1.23 V vs RHE). Gas chromatography analysis of the films also showed enhanced hydrogen evolution at 1 at% Ti with respect to pure film.