From the initial meetup to the engagement ring to the wedding, the story of your romance is as unique as you are. That’s why you’ll want your engagement photos set in a stunning location to tell your story beautifully and memorably. From beachfront towns in California to the lighthouses in North Carolina, there are numerous breathtaking places across the country perfect for an engagement photo shoot. Book a stay at one of many incredible vacation rentals for your upcoming trip. Check out the most scenic cities and towns that will let your fairy tale story unfold naturally before the camera.

1. Bodie Island Lighthouse, Nagshead, North Carolina

Bodie Island Lighthouse
Source: Flickr/John Buie

Cape Hatteras National Seashore features many vantage points for stunning engagement photos, including Bodie Island Lighthouse. Whether you choose to stand on the boardwalk with the lighthouse in the distance, or to move in closer, there’s an aura of mystique framing your moment. While you’re visiting Nags Head, be sure to go see the famous wild ponies.

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2. Golden Gate Bridge, San Francisco, California

Golden Gate Bridge

Nothing is more breathtaking than a stunning sunset behind the Golden Gate Bridge as a backdrop for your engagement photos. Choose from many vantage points on both sides of the river, including the beautiful Crissy Field view when you get down close to the water. After your photo shoot, rent some bicycles and join a tour to ride across the bridge and back.

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3. Old Westbury Gardens, Long Island, New York

Old Westbury Gardens
Source: Facebook/Old Westbury Gardens

Capture this chapter of your journey amidst the full blossom of summer at Old Westbury Gardens. The 1906 mansion sits on the 200-acre property that features formal gardens, woodlands, lakes, ponds, and landscaped areas. You need to arrange for your photography permit several weeks in advance for sessions occurring January through mid-November. Consider a horseback riding tour to Montauk Point Lighthouse to view scenic landscapes and get a fantastic view of the ocean.

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4. Boston Common, Boston, Massachusetts

Boston Common
Source: Flickr/Kevin Burkett

The Boston Common bandstand makes a beautiful background for your engagement photos any time of year. Spring, summer, and autumn all surround the site with unique and spectacular colors; and, the white blanket of winter adds an ethereal magic all its own. Other locations in the park include weeping willows and crystal ponds. You need a photo permit for this site. Take in scenic Boston Harbor and join a walking tour to learn about this beautiful, historic town.

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5. Magnolia Plantation and Gardens, Charleston, South Carolina

Magnolia Plantation and Gardens
Source: Facebook/Magnolia Plantation and Gardens

Old southern charm sweeps you off your feet at Magnolia Plantation and Gardens, founded in 1676 on the banks of the Ashley River on the west side of Charleston. Romance blossoms among the ancient live oak trees, picturesque bridges, daffodils, azaleas, and trees laden with Spanish moss. Slip into the lush retreat of the gardens to fall in love again as you stroll along the pathways. When you visit downtown Charleston, take a horse and buggy tour of old Charleston, and then visit the Charleston City Market.

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6. Vizcaya Museum and Gardens, Miami, Florida

Vizcaya Museum and Gardens

You need a photography permit for your professional engagement photo shoot at Vizcaya Museum and Gardens. This stunning 1910s former residence stands on 43 acres, which includes gardens and waterfront. The weathered patina enhances the old-world charm of the stone gazebos and other features, making it a romantic location for your photos. Spice up your trip with a 90-minute dance cruise aboard the Island Queen. The event includes a cash bar that serves alcohol, soft drinks, and snacks.

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7. Castello di Amorosa, Calistoga, California

Castello di Amorosa
Source: Flickr/Roy Luck

Nothing is more romantic to a knight and his lady-love than a photo shoot in a medieval Tuscan castle; or, a winery designed to look like one. Castello di Amorosa features turrets, staircases, and a tasting room. Combine your engagement photo shoot with a food and wine pairing and a tour of the castle. Your Calistoga vacation rental keeps you close to several vineyards while giving you easy access to Calistoga Spa Hot Springs, for a romantic, relaxing spa experience for two.

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8. Biltmore Estate, Asheville, North Carolina

Biltmore Estate
Source: Flickr/Kolin Toney

Situated on 8,000 acres in the North Carolina mountains, the Biltmore Estate features a wide choice of backgrounds for your engagement photos. Many couples choose to get a least one shot in front of the mansion, but there are also ponds, rivers, gardens, and green fields. The patio at the back of the mansion overlooks breathtaking mountain vistas, especially in the fall when the colors are at their fullest. Your admission to the estate includes a tour, so feel free to take advantage of it after your photo session.

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9. Indiana Dunes State Park Beach, Chesterton, Indiana

Indiana Dunes State Park Beach

Dancing in the sand or splashing in the water, Indiana Dunes State Park Beach makes a perfect setting for your engagement photos. Boats, sea oats, drinks, stunning Lake Michigan, and romance all over the place make the day ideal. While you’re here, check out Chesterton’s European Market, which has lots of vendors and free parking. For some high-flying adventures, head over to Crown Point to go zip lining or hit the water park.

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10. Shoshone Point, East Rim Drive, Grand Canyon, Arizona

Shoshone Point
Source: Flickr/Grand Canyon National Park

Channel your inner wild hearts in the perfect engagement photo setting at Shoshone Point, where you find a mix of trees and that dramatic canyon view. This place spells magic at 8,000 feet and usually shows off insanely gorgeous sunsets. Dance near the edge for the drama, against the colors of the canyon. Shoshone Point Trail features just over two miles out-and-back walking good for any skill levels.

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11. Mabry Mill, Blue Ridge Parkway, Meadows of Dan, Virginia

Mabry Mill
Source: Flickr/Jimmy_Joe

The seasons create a wonderland around Mabry Mill for your engagement photos. Spring and summer highlight the verdant backdrop of the rustic mill, and autumn sets the leaves ablaze in golds and reds. You get the best photos in the afternoon, when the sun hits the mill from the pond-side. From May through October, volunteers demonstrate mountaineer skills and crafts, and the restaurant that serves country-style cuisine. The Blue Ridge Parkway runs from Virginia to Cherokee, North Carolina, featuring stunning mountain vistas all along the way.

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12. Hall of Moses, Hoh National Forest, Olympic National Park, Washington

Hall of Moses
Source: Flickr/Laser City

Celebrate your engagement in a place as magical as your love when you choose to stage your photo shoot in the Hall of Moses in Hoh National Forest. It lies along the Hoh River on the Olympic Peninsula, with an easily accessible trail of less than a mile. Summer brings the lush, green ferns and mosses to life. The peninsula consists largely of wilderness areas, ripe with opportunities for hiking, fishing, and kayaking. Check out shopping and dining opportunities in Forks, about an hour northwest of the forest.

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13. Top of the Rock, Rockefeller Center, New York City, New York

Top of the Rock
Source: Facebook/Rockefeller Center

Your Top of the Rock engagement photos, high above the hustle and bustle of the Big Apple, give you dreamy photos to cherish as you dance and share sweet kisses. Wrap up a perfect day with dinner and a show at the Diamond Horseshoe Club. The experience includes acrobats, musicians, actors. The Metropolitan Museum of Art and the Empire State Building make excellent stops for lovers who want to see the sights.

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