Top 10 Best Spots For Your Destination Engagement Photos

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Hi, I’m Megan and your story matters to me. You deserve to break your wedding day from the traditional mold into something that is uniquely you.

I specialize in intimate mountain weddings and elopements and love working with people who are stoked to get married in nature surrounded by their closest family and friends. I am here for you and to organically tell your story. 

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Couple taking destination engagement photos in Colorado

If you are wanting to level up your engagement photos and do something unique and untraditional, I highly recommend taking destination engagement photos! Destination engagement photos offer an unforgettable experience for those of you looking to capture your love in breathtaking settings. These photoshoots go beyond the traditional backdrop, allowing you to showcase your love against stunning landscapes, iconic landmarks, or even in exotic destinations you’ve always dreamt of visiting!! Destination engagement photos provide a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to create lasting memories and stunning visuals that reflect both your love story and sense of adventure. Whether it’s a sandy beach, a desert canyon, or a serene mountain backdrop, destination engagement photos offer a magical way to celebrate love and create stunning imagery that will be cherished by you for years to come!

Below I have listed and gathered information about my all-time Top 10 Favorite Spots for your destination engagement photos. Check them out for yourself, there is sure to be a backdrop perfect for you and your partner’s photos!

1. Glacier National Park, Montana

Couple taking destination engagement photos in Glacier National Park

Why Glacier National Park?

Quite possibly my favorite spot on this list, Glacier National Park is a picture-perfect location for your engagement photos. Right in the heart of Montana, this breathtaking natural wonder consists of massive mountains, sparkling lakes, and green meadows that create THE BEST backdrop for capturing your love story. From the iconic Going-to-the-Sun Road to the stunning glaciers, every corner of this park offers a stunning view that will elevate your engagement photos to new heights. Additionally, the untouched beauty and raw wilderness of Glacier National Park provides a truly unique and romantic setting that will make your photoshoot an unforgettable experience. Whether you choose to have your pictures taken at sunrise, when golden hour paints the landscape, or during sunset, Glacier National Park promises to deliver stunning images that perfectly show off your love and the breathtaking beauty of nature.

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At Glacier National Park?

To capture your perfect engagement photos at Glacier National Park, there are a few key tips to keep in mind. There is no permit required to take photos in the area! First, plan your shoot during the golden hour. The best time is the hour after sunrise or before sunset. This will enhance the natural beauty of the park and create such a romantic atmosphere. Secondly, explore different locations within the park. Whether it’s the mountains, or Lake McDonald, each spot offers its own unique charm. Don’t be afraid to venture off the trails to discover hidden gems! Lastly, embrace the spirit of adventure that Glacier National Park brings out. Incorporate activities that reflect your personalities and the natural surroundings, such as a picnic setup or hiking gear. Let your love and the beauty of the park shine through in every frame, creating timeless memories that you’ll cherish forever.

2. Oregon Coast

Couple taking destination engagement photos on the Oregon Coast

Why The Oregon Coast?

The Oregon Coast is such a diverse atmosphere that can provide more than one photo opportunity as your background! With its dramatic cliffs, expansive sandy beaches, and stunning coastline, this destination is a photographer’s dream come true. From iconic landmarks like Cannon Beach to hidden gems like Samuel H. Boardman, every location along the coast offers its own unique charm and breathtaking scenery. The ever-changing weather and moody atmosphere add an element of romance to your photos, creating truly unforgettable images. Whether you’re walking hand in hand on the beach, exploring tide pools, or cuddling up under a cozy blanket, the Oregon Coast provides endless opportunities to capture intimate and authentic moments that reflect your love and the beauty of this coastal paradise.

How Do I Take Engagement Photos On The Oregon Coast?

The Oregon Coast can be an easy place to take photos! There is no permit requirement to have photos taken here, but you should choose the right locations! Explore different areas and find the perfect backdrop that goes with your styles and personalities. There are so many different beach and cliff settings in the area, so choose your favorite or do multiple locations! Additionally, prepare for the unpredictable weather. The coast can be windy and misty, so dress in layers and prepare for potential weather conflicts. Whether you’re walking hand in hand on the beach, or set up on a cliff overlooking the ocean, let the stunning surroundings enhance the authenticity and romance of your engagement photos on the Oregon Coast.

3. Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado

Couple taking destination engagement photos in Rocky Mountain National Park

Why Rocky Mountain National Park?

Taking engagement photos at Rocky Mountain National Park is a truly one-of-a-kind experience. Sitting in the heart of Colorado’s Rockies, this national park offers mountain panoramas, alpine lakes, and so many meadows! The park’s dramatic landscapes, including huge peaks like Longs Peak and the iconic Trail Ridge Road, provide stunning points that will add depth and beauty to your photos. Whether you’re posing in wildflowers, or standing beside a waterfall, every frame will display a sense of adventure and romance. The park’s diverse wildlife, such as elk and bighorn sheep, may even make a spontaneous appearance, adding an extra touch to your photos! From sunrise to sunset, the light and colors paint a perfect scene, capturing your love in this natural wonderland. Taking engagement photos at Rocky Mountain National Park ensures you’ll have memories that are as beautiful as the landscapes themselves.

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At Rocky Mountain National Park?

Taking engagement photos at Rocky Mountain National Park is a smooth process if you make a plan in advance! First, plan the timing of your shoot. This park can be busy on the weekends during the warmer months, so consider taking pics in the morning or during the week! Rocky Mountain National Park does require a permit to take photos. Sometimes these permits have to be purchased months in advance so prepare accordingly. I can always help with the permit process as well! Also, think about the weather conditions ahead of time. I’d recommend dressing for the mountainous environment and changing weather. Lastly, embrace the natural elements and incorporate them into your photos. Walk along a trail, stand on a rocky overlook, or share a romantic moment by a lake. Let the Rocky Mountain National Park serve as a backdrop to capture the love and excitement of your engagement photos!

4. Horseshoe Bend, Arizona

Couple taking destination engagement photos in Horseshoe Bend

Why Horseshoe Bend?

If you are interested in taking engagement photos at Horseshoe Bend, you’ll have an opportunity to capture truly unique moments. Located in Page, Arizona, Horseshoe Bend offers a view of the Colorado River as it winds through a dramatic rock formation in the shape of a horseshoe. Standing on the cliff with the canyon and river as the background makes such an insanely beautiful image. If you want something in the desert, but also incorporating more natural elements in photos, I highly recommend taking your engagement photos at Horseshoe Bend!

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At Horseshoe Bend?

Engagement photos at Horseshoe Bend are best when you go at Sunrise, or during the week! Since Horseshoe Bend is so ridiculously stunning, it makes a very popular tourist spot. Otherwise, taking photos here should be very simple. There is no permit required to take photos! However, prepare to hike 1.5 miles before reaching the scenic overlook. I would dress for the elements, or bring a change of clothes to slip into once you reach the scenery! The weather at Horseshoe Bend can be rather challenging. Pack plenty of water if you take photos in the summertime as there can be extreme temperatures. Being ready ahead of time can make your engagement photos get done smoothly, and leave you with the best experience possible!

5. Kauai, Hawaii

Couple taking destination engagement photos in Hawaii

Why Kauai, Hawaii?

If you are wanting engagement photos to be tropical with such a variety in landscape and settings I highly recommend Kauai, Hawaii! Kauai has lush landscapes, stunning cliffs with waterfalls, and vibrant tropical flowers. Kauai provides a setting that perfectly complements the joy and romance of your engagement, especially if you dream of beach photos with something a little different! The island’s diverse range of locations, from Waimea Canyon to Hanalei Bay, allows for a variety of backdrops that cater to different preferences and styles. Whether you desire a beachside shoot or an adventurous hike through tropical rainforests, Kauai has it all. The island’s natural beauty combined with its laid-back Hawaiian charm will add a touch of the tropics to your photos!

How Do I Take Engagement Photos in Kauai, Hawaii?

To capture the BEST engagement photos in Kauai, I recommend doing a bit of research before you go! Kauai does have a requirement to have a permit if you hire a professional photographer, so save the headache and get a permit ahead of time. Choose locations that absolutely scream the essence of Hawaii like one of the numerous beaches or take a hike and venture into the canyons. It’s all about personal preference and what is best for you as a couple! Consider the weather before going as there can be very rainy humid days or extreme heat. I would dress for the elements and something to accentuate the natural surroundings. Maybe wear something that would be great on a beach and could possibly get wet and sandy if needed. Kauai has so many opportunities for photos and can be the perfect place to show off your love!

6. Crested Butte, Colorado

Couple taking destination engagement photos in Crested Butte Colorado

Why Crested Butte?

If you are looking for an absolute fairytale location that looks like another country in the middle of the United States, I cannot recommend Crested Butte, Colorado enough. Crested Butte is known for its stunning natural beauty. It provides a backdrop of dramatic snow-capped mountains, and vibrant wildflowers EVERYWHERE. The charm of this small mountain town in Western Colorado adds a touch of romance and authenticity to your photos. Additionally, Crested Butte offers numerous opportunities for adventure, making your engagement shoot an exciting and memorable experience. Whether you choose to capture the aspen trees in fall or the vibrant wildflowers in bloom, Crested Butte is sure to provide a magical setting that beautifully showcases your love and creates unique engagement photos.

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At Crested Butte?

Taking engagement photos at Crested Butte couldn’t be easier. There is no permit required, and some of the best photo opportunities can be reached by walking straight from your car to the field. I recommend staying in Crested Butte to make the most out of the time you have there. The most difficult part of taking engagement photos at Crested Butte is choosing the best time to take photos with wildflowers. Between late June and early July is the best time to go, when the wildflowers are in full bloom. Every season is different though and there is no guarantee you will have blooming flowers when you are there! Timing your stay properly is absolutely worth it. There is no place on my list like Crested Butte and it is truly heaven on Earth. 

7. Lost Dutchman State Park, Arizona

Couple taking destination engagement photos at lost dutchman state park

Why Lost Dutchman State Park?

Lost Dutchman State Park located near Phoenix, Arizona is a desert paradise. I’d recommend taking photos here if you want massive saguaro cactus with the most unique cliffs and mountains in your pictures. You could show your adventurous side in photos by taking a trail and potentially discovering a hidden gem that’s special to you as a couple. The possibilities are endless in the desert and this could be the perfect place for your destination engagement photos!

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At Lost Dutchman State Park?

Taking engagement photos at Lost Dutchman State Park does require a photography permit in advance. Photographers (like myself) usually help with this process to make it simple and flawless. After getting a permit, you should look into the locations at the park and see what fits your vibe most. If you have the time, take photos at multiple locations to get the most out of your session. The cactus at Lost Dutchman State Park make for such a unique background it is hard to compete! Plan ahead if you go during the summer months as it can be extremely hot. Bring lots of water and wear lighter clothing to stay cool and comfortable!

8. Latourell Falls, Oregon

Why Latourell Falls?

A completely different and unique location I have on my list is Latourell Falls located near Portland, Oregon. Latourell Falls is a MASSIVE 250 foot waterfall surrounded by thick green forests that you can touch and pose near! This waterfall would be so special for those of you who want an adventure with something totally different for engagement photos. Latourell Falls is so big and beautiful it can be seen from almost any angle of your photos. The waterfall and short hike would be a perfect destination with insane natural beauty to add that perfect touch to your waterfall engagement photos.

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At Latourell Falls?

There is no permit required to take photos at Latourell Falls. First, I would recommend planning to wear an outfit that you don’t mind if it gets a little wet! There will be mist coming off of this waterfall so prepare your hair, makeup, and outfit to withstand the natural elements. There is a hike to the waterfall that is a little over a mile long, so wear hiking shoes and maybe bring something to change into once you get to the falls! This waterfall can be a little busy so time out a sunrise session, going in the colder months, or during the week! Taking engagement pictures in front of a waterfall is such a fun and adventurous experience and you will always be able to look back at your photos and reminisce on your day at Latourell Falls.

9. Estes Park, Colorado

Why Estes Park?

Taking engagement photos at Estes Park is an amazing choice. Estes Park is nestled in the majestic Rocky Mountains of Colorado. It offers a breathtaking backdrop of snow-capped peaks, crystal clear lakes, and green fields. The natural beauty of this mountain town provides a cozy setting that will elevate your engagement photos to new heights. Whether you prefer a dreamy lakeside scene, or a romantic mountain cabin, Estes Park offers a diverse range of stunning locations that will beautifully showcase your love and create timeless images for you and your partner forever!

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At Estes Park?

Similarly to any mountain region, plan ahead for the potential cold weather at Estes Park! The best time to take photos here is at sunset in the warmer months. There is plenty of room to spread out and have your own space, so it will be easy to take photos during the busy season. Maybe consider a weekday if you want optimal privacy and a more intimate session for your engagement photos. There is a permit requirement to take photos, so consult with your photographer ahead of time to make sure they are fully prepared. Otherwise, choose a spot in Estes Park that speaks to you as a couple most. Pose in front of a mountain, within aspen trees, or alongside a river if that is what you prefer. There is a different terrain in Estes Park for almost everyone!

10. Imperial Sand Dunes, California

Couple taking destination engagement photos at Imperial Sand Dunes

Why Imperial Sand Dunes?

Last but certainly not least on my list I have the Imperial Sand Dunes located near San Diego, California. The Imperial Sand Dunes are a HUGE recreational area that consists of…Sand Dunes! If you pose in this area your entire background will be made up of massive sand dunes as far as the eye can see. This is such a unique location for your engagement photos and is perfect for those of you maybe wanting something simple but show stopping. Also, there are the most incredible sunsets at the Imperial Sand Dunes, which are perfect for your engagement photos.

How Do I Take Engagement Photos At The Imperial Sand Dunes?

To first take your engagement photos at the Imperial Sand Dunes, I would recommend going during the cooler months. Spring and Fall would be the best! Being a desert, the most pleasant experience would be going during these times so you can stay cool, and so the sand doesn’t feel so hot! There is no permit needed to take photos at the Imperial Sand Dunes, but there is a permit required to enter the park. I would recommend parking your car and finding a spot close to it for convenience. Almost everywhere in this recreation area has the same background, so make it easy and park nearby! I would definitely plan to take sunset photos in the Imperial Sand Dunes. The sunsets are so stunning and will create the perfect scene with the sun going down behind a massive sand dune. 

Are You Ready To Take Destination Engagement Photos?

Choosing to take destination engagement photos offers a range of benefits that contribute to an extraordinary and unforgettable experience. By choosing a location beyond your everyday surroundings, you can get a sense of adventure, and romance into your photoshoot. Whether it’s a stunning beach, a charming mountain town, or a breathtaking waterfall, a destination backdrop provides a unique aesthetic that can take your images to new heights. I would absolutely recommend capturing your love in a remarkable setting through destination engagement photos and consider the joy and beauty that will be forever preserved! 

If you are ready to book your destination engagement photos at any of these spots or anywhere else contact me today for your free consult call. Let’s start putting together your magical day!

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