We have all seen the good, the bad, and the cheesy when it comes to engagement and wedding photos. With so much riding on one set of pictures, it’s important that they feel perfect and unique to each couple. Philadelphia Weddings understands the importance of knowing the best locations in Philadelphia to take wedding photos.
Center City Philadelphia offers many classic photo-taking locations. Plus, the surrounding area also has some less common locations that could take your wedding day photos to the next level. Like everything, you can take these ideas and put your own twist on them as a couple. Enjoy our compilation of 18 iconic spots and offbeat ideas that will fit any couple’s personality.
“…Photography is an art. Seeing everything without being seen, being everywhere without being felt, creatively capturing all the memorable moments…that’s what makes wedding photography an art.” Phillip Gabriel -Wedding Photographer
Best Spots in the Philadelphia Area to Take Wedding and Engagement Photos
Located in Bucks County is Tyler State Park, another Pennsylvania beauty. The farm and woodland setting showcase 1,711 acres of trails and wildlife. You are sure to find the perfect staging for your wedding or engagement photos in this gorgeous state park.
Neshaminy creek trickles through the park offering amazing waterfront views to frame each shot. Tyler State Park shifts through each season with snow, wildflowers, and fall foliage. If you are looking for natural outdoor shots, Tyler State Park is an amazing option to look into for your engagement photo shoot.
For animal lovers, The Philadelphia Zoo’s 42-acre Victorian garden is home to more than 1,300 animals. Purchase a day ticket to walk around the zoo and find your favorite location to photograph. You can also book an event with the animals to get up close and personal with the trainers and wildlife. Many of the animals are rare and endangered, and you are sure to find a favorite amongst them all.
By connecting people with wildlife, the Philadelphia Zoo creates discovery and inspires action for animals and habitats. Cheetahs, hippos, giraffes, and much more make the Zoo Philadelphia’s leading attraction. Whether you and your fiance love animals or just want a unique set of photos, The Philadelphia Zoo is a great location to consider for your wedding or engagement day photos.
During the summer months, a part of Penn’s Landing is transformed into Spruce Street Harbor Park. This incredible garden park brings the Delaware River Waterfront an urban beach atmosphere. Walk amongst a boardwalk, fountains, hammocks, and misting areas. The centerpiece of the project is a series of floating barges complete with lily pad water gardens and nets that suspend visitors over the water.
With many beautiful pieces of scenery to inspire you, Spruce Street Water Park has a lot to offer. Grab some Philly eats from the pop-up restaurant and bar when you are finished shooting your photos or incorporate some local favorites into your photos for a fun twist! Named one of the best urban beaches in America, Spruce Street Harbor park could be the gorgeous photo location that sets your engagement apart.
With 160 acres of parkland to explore, Newlin Grist Mill hosts a world of opportunity for your engagement and wedding photos. As most parks are in the northeast, it is built on years of history and held many different uses over the years. Featuring a functioning water-powered grist mill and 8 miles of trails, this park is a gorgeous gem outside Philadelphia.
There are a variety of buildings throughout the park to photograph with, as well as a variety of native plant species and natural landmarks. Newlin Grist Mill is covered in mature greenery and dams provide water flow to accent your photos. Wrapped in natural beauty, Newlin Grist Mill is definitely a location to consider for your engagement photo session.
Your Favorite Restaurant
There are so many beautiful bars and restaurants in Philadelphia and the surrounding areas. Each poses a unique opportunity for your engagement and wedding photos. If you and your fiance are regulars at a local spot, you can capture the place where your love has grown over the years. You could even shoot at the spot you had your first date or your proposal!
This couple captured this intimate photo at one of their favorite cafes. Imagine the possibilities with all of your favorite eateries!
Although Winterthur lies in Delaware, it is only a short drive away from the Philly area. Winterthur is a museum & country estate that formerly housed Henry Francis du Pont, an avid antique collector. Du Pont designed Winterthur with 18th and 19th-century European country house influence. With a lovely change of scenery from the city, Winterthur is a phenomenal location for your wedding and engagement photos.
The house offers contrasting colors on the lush greenery that sits behind it. Inside the house, each historic room adds a classically beautiful style. Outdoor garden space gives you privacy and water elements to incorporate into your wedding day photos as well. Every corner of Winterthur gives you something new and interesting to add to your photo session.
Philadelphia’s fantastic outdoor spaces offer a great mix of urban skylines and natural backdrops to include in your engagement or wedding photos. Extending the Schuylkill River Trail, the Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk is a 2,000-foot-long pathway along the shoreline. It is built from Locust Street down another four blocks south to connect it to the South Street Bridge.
The riverside path is 15-feet wide and includes four scenic overlooks and waterfront views. Schuylkill Banks Boardwalk is great for outdoorsy & active couples or anyone who loves a great view of the Philadelphia Skyline. The east bank of the Schuylkill River offers a wide variety of shots for your photos, making it one of the best locations in Philadelphia to take wedding photos!
Not far from the city is Bowman’s Hill Wildflower Preserve, a museum, nature preserve, and botanical garden. There are 4.5 miles of walking trails to explore throughout the preserve. With the preserve’s dedication to spreading the appreciation of native species, this is a great option to bring the natural side of Pennsylvania into your engagement session.
Bowman’s Hill contains 700 of the 2,000 plants native to Pennsylvania. Enjoy views of tree-lined trails and a plethora of wildflowers to add a pop of color to each photo. Imagine how beautiful a crisp white gown would look against the vibrant shades of green of the preserve! Whether you are an avid bird watcher or just a plant lover, Bowman’s Hill Wildflower preserve is a great choice for your wedding and engagement photographs.
Located at the foot of City Hall, Dilworth Park is an iconic spot to take your Philadelphia wedding photos. The park has received quite a few renovations over the years, transforming the city park into a modern and welcoming outdoor space. City Hall is also a public transit hot spot, making it an easily accessible location to photograph.
Offering great shots of beautiful architecture and overlooked by William Penn, the center square is the perfect gathering place and Center City photo location. Dilworth park provides rotating backdrops for the seasons, an outdoor cafe, a computer-programmable fountain, and tree grove seating areas. The city park gives you many opportunities for a classic Philadelphia backdrop in your engagement or wedding photos. Dilworth Park is great for Philly lovers and city dwellers alike!
Just outside of Philly in the Kennett Square area lies Longwood Gardens. This spot offers a stunning mix of art and plants to inspire your wedding and engagement photoshoot. The land was home to the Lenni Lenape Tribes and Quaker Farmers and is now one of the leaders in public horticulture. Rooted in sustainability and showcasing over 1,077 acres of gardens and woodland, you will have many opportunities for the perfect shot in this stunning public garden.
Longwood Gardens offers a variety of events and attractions that rotate through holidays and seasons, such as themed fountain shows and landscape displays. With both indoor and outdoor exhibits of native and exotic plants, you have numerous opportunities for a diverse set of pictures throughout the conservatory. Immerse yourself in Longwood Gardens’ stunning displays to get the perfect engagement photos.
On a seemingly innocent street in Old City Philadelphia lies Elfreth’s alley. Holding years of history, this location is a unique location to capture your engagement and wedding shots. What originally started as a cart path to the ports in the 18th century is now a historic alley with colonial brick buildings and vibrant colors. Elfreth’s Alley is a national landmark and the oldest residential street in the United States. This historical street is a great option for history buffs and Philly locals.
With three hundred years of history and counting, why not add your wedding story to the archives on Elfreth’s Alley? And by placing you in the heart of Old City Philadelphia, you are also close to other great locations to shoot like the Delaware River Waterfront. Just ask your photographer if they don’t mind a little adventure to get a nice assortment of photos in town!
Nestled in Delaware County lies Ridley Creek State Park. Providing 2,606 acres of woodland and meadows, the park inspires beautiful outdoor wedding and engagement photo session! Only 16 miles away from Philly, this hidden gem has a variety of waterfalls, wildlife, and history to discover throughout the park. The park is open daily from sunrise to sunset offering a great escape and a natural touch for your photos.
There are plenty of areas to stage your shoot, and parks often have many surprises to offer you throughout your time there. Nature is wild & unpredictable, which can make for a great photograph! One favorite place to shoot is the Hunting Hill Mansion, a large English country manor dating back to the late 1700s. The stone architecture that is framed by luscious greenery is a beautiful option for your wedding and engagement photos.
An icon of Philly architecture, the Philadelphia Museum of Art hosts jaw-dropping visuals and a plethora of fine art. If you consider yourself a whimsical and creative couple, what better place to take your wedding or engagement photos. Tim Sudall, the Philadelphia Videographer behind Allure Films recommends shooting behind the art museum for some gorgeous shots!
Because the museum has so many spots to choose from for photos, you can get a variety of photos that inspire a lifetime of magic and creativity. So, whether you decide on Renaissance decor, Rodin’s bronze statue garden, or the Art Deco exterior, these photos will be sure to paint a picture of beauty. If your relationship is influenced by art, make it a part of your photographs and special day with wedding photos at the Philadelphia Museum of Art.
Valley Forge is a National Historical Park in Pennsylvania. Presenting 3,500 acres of monuments, woodlands, and meadows, this park is perfect for your ideal wedding and engagement photographs. The charm of history and nature is an amazing backdrop to set your photos apart and show your uniqueness as a couple.
The State Park is great in all seasons, but it truly shines in autumn. Because the leaves shift into gorgeous shades of crimson and gold, the park is a hot spot in the fall! The Knox Covered Bridge is a popular spot if you are looking to integrate some architecture into your photos. Or if you are looking for a beautiful view, Mount Joy offers stunning shots of the valley below. And with so much space, Valley Forge allows you to get creative with every shot!
Just around the corner from the Liberty Bell lies Washington Square, a section of Independence National Historical Park. Amongst the stone paths and greenery lies a memorial for the soldiers of the American Revolution, as well as Philadelphia’s own Moon tree. A sycamore seed that was taken to the moon and grown in the park adds a unique touch to your engagement and wedding photos.
Watch as the hustle and bustle of the city pauses for a moment with the peace brought by Washington Square. The park is a Philadelphia gem that showcases the beautiful city while shining a spotlight on you as a couple. For touches of history, nature, and city views, Washington Square is a great choice for your wedding and engagement photos in Philly.
Another hidden gem in Independence National Historical Park is the First Bank of Philadelphia. The bank is not only the first in Philly but the first in The United States, holding years of the country’s history within the walls of the bank. Although you cannot enter the inside of the building, the outside will give your wedding or engagement photos the feel of historic luxury and inspire stories of days when the bank was running.
The building is lined with tall columns on the front of the building and is surrounded by trees and city views. Being that it is so close by to the other attractions in Old City and Independence National Historical Park, The First Bank is a great option if you want a variety of historic shots for your engagement or wedding day photos.
Within East Fairmont Park lies a 4-acre Azalea Garden showcasing over 150 species of azaleas and rhododendrons. Flowers in shades of white, pink, and purples surround the park, making it a top contender for your Philly area wedding and engagement photoshoot. You will also find a pergola and terrace to explore as a background for your photos.
The fan-shaped park also offers a variety of lush greenery and other florals in a rainbow of colors to contrast your white gown. We would recommend shooting here in Spring or Summer to highlight all of the flowers as they bloom in season! For natural shots in the heart of the city, look no further than the Azalea Garden.
Franklin Square is one of the five original squares of Philadelphia. The square features a 100-year-old fountain as the centerpiece of the park. The park is easy to access with public transportation and is easily one of Philly’s hidden treasures. Franklin Square has a fun energy and is a spot where locals frequent to enjoy the city.
You never know what you may find in Franklin Square. Performances are often occurring, whether it be a light or a fountain show. Another great location for city lovers or Philly locals, Franklin Square highlights the history of Philly. This stunning park will showcase your love in your wedding or engagement photos.
Whether you are a city lover or a nature fiend, the Philadelphia area has a variety of spots to capture your wedding and engagement day photos. Need more inspiration? Check out the finest Philadelphia Wedding Photographers and let us know your thoughts in the comments below!