Picking a location for your engagement session can be VERY overwhelming but I promise you, together we can find the perfect spot for your photos! Whether it’s a park, beach, city or a location that’s special to just the two of you, the ideal location for who you are as a couple is out there. Here are my recommendations for the best locations for engagement photos.
Princeton University is a beautiful sprawling campus that’s open to the public. If you’re looking for a romantic and classic backdrop, this is an incredible option. Don’t worry about if you didn’t go to school here – NOTHING about this campus screams university. Instead, it’s full of stunning architecture, ivy-covered buildings, and grounds so large it feels like you have the whole university to yourself.
It does not get more romantic in New York City than Central Park! This location has it all – beautiful bridges, trees galore and perfect pathways in every nook. Whether it’s photos by Bethesda Fountain, Belvedere Castle, “The mall” or right outside the park on the cobblestone streets with taxis buzzing by and buildings towering beside you – Central Park is THE location if you’d like both city AND park photos in New York City!
The Green and Morristown
If you’re looking for a little bit of a city vibe and park in one but DON’T want to travel to the city, The Green in Morristown is a perfect option! Located right in the center of the city, The Green has lots of cute benches and trees to pose next to. Right down the street, you can stop for some photos outside the Vail Mansion which is pretty any time of year!
Grounds for Sculpture
Grounds for Sculpture is a large sculpture park and museum located in Hamilton. Besides having fascinating and interesting sculpture’s all around, it also has areas perfect for photos! Including a garden with large hedges, long paths lined with trees, and a bridge over a pond that looks like it’s right out of a Money painting. This is a beautiful location for unique, one-of-a-kind engagement photos! *permit required*
I have photographed countless engagement sessions in Hoboken, all over the city, and the mile-square actually has so much to offer, that we could split it into two locations – Downtown and Uptown! Downtown Hoboken is a popular pick because it offers some classic Hoboken history. Unbeatable views of the city, the Hoboken mural, Lackawanna train station, and the path along Frank Sinatra Drive are just some of the favorite spots for photos downtown. It can be a lot busier downtown than uptown, especially on the weekends, but I’ve photographed couples when festivals were going on and still managed to get great photos of just the two of you!
Uptown Hoboken offers a lot of what downtown offers – maybe just fewer people! There are some FANTASTIC views of the Empire State building uptown, lots of brownstones, brick buildings and colorful apartments on Washington Street that offer some amazing backdrops for photos. Elysian Park is close by if you wanted some greenery or Pier 13 if you wanted to stop, sip and eat with a few pops of color!
Your Favorite Restaurant
A very popular choice for engagement session locations is starting or ending your session at your favorite nearby bar or restaurant. So many couples have either met at a bar or have a restaurant or bar that means a lot to them that they’d love photos at. Whether it’s just posing outside or going in and ordering a drink to cheers to – this is a great choice that really highlights who you are as a couple!
Cross Estate Gardens
Cross Estate Gardens is a small but mighty photo spot! Don’t underestimate this small garden, located in Bedminster. It’s FULL of fantastic photo spots that make engagement sessions fly by! Covered pergolas, tall grass, a charming house, gardens full of butterflies, and loads of walkways are just SOME of the fun backdrops you’ll find here. This location is a great spot for ANY season too! *NO permit required*
Located in the middle of the New Jersey Botanical gardens, this is a beautiful location for photos. It’s a quiet location with several gardens, a large koi pond, tall iron gates, and the Castle at Skylands Manor that is like something out of a medieval romance novel. Everything is spread out so even if it’s a busy Saturday, you never feel like you’re in a crowded location. It really is like walking around a secret garden! *permit required*
Allaire State Park
This is one of the most popular picks for my couples – especially those couples that have NO clue where they want photos! That’s because this location is simple and beautiful. It’s a quiet village with old cobblestone buildings, a working chapel, and trees galore. There’s also an antique steam train, romantic bridges, and old barns with gigantic barn doors that make great backdrops. If you’re a couple looking for a rustic look for your engagement photos, this is a great location. This location is a favorite during the fall – the countless trees around the park provide stunning foliage. *NO permit required*
Sayen House & Gardens
Sayen Gardens has quickly become a favorite spot for engagement photos! Located in Hamilton, it has multiple gazebos and bridges that match any style. Little creeks, ponds, and even fountains are great for taking photos in front of. It’s filled with trees and TONS of flowers that change with each season. It’s quiet and never crowded, this is a great spot for photos!
Liberty State Park
With spectacular views of lower Manhattan and NO buildings to obstruct your view, this is a favorite! It’s a beautiful open space with an old train station so if you want a little bit of skyline and a little bit of classic, brick backdrop this has it all. It also has large green lawns lined with trees for pops of greenery – and if you go into the actual park, you can even get an incredible waterfront view of the Statue of Liberty.
This spot in Lavallette is a hidden gem. The Lavallette beach is a massive, sprawling beach and I swear the water is bluer there than anywhere else. BUT if you’re looking for something quieter smaller and more intimate, heading to the bay side of Lavallette is where it’s at. It’s a small beach surrounded by small grass where people park their canoes and kayaks at the end of the day and it’s THE place to be at sunset!
Spring Lake beach and Divine Park
I know I shouldn’t play favorites but this is my favorite spot for engagement photos! Spring Lake is a quiet beautiful beach town. WIth Divine Park in the middle of the town, stunning beach houses all over town, a busy main street filled with shops and restaurants, and of course, the beach with the softest sand that’s perfect for photos.