While there are dozens of locations to choose from for your engagement session, it's best to find ones that offer a variety of spots and backdrops to use for portraits and all within a close range to one another. Our couples often ask for suggestions when it comes to engagement session locations, so we wanted to offer some insight about our favorite places to determine which might be a great fit for you!
Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest
One of our all-time favorite locations for engagement sessions is the Bernheim Arboretum and Research Forest -- for many reasons. Not only does the Bernheim have over 15,000 acres of land, including a 600-acre arboretum, there is a lot of gorgeous natural light to match the endless amounts of space there.
It's also a fantastic choice for a spring or summer engagement session with a natural or organic vibe, since the endless varieties of flowers and shrubs offer beautiful backdrops for engagement photos.
There is a $5 per carload fee that Bernheim charges visitors. Sessions do not have to be scheduled with a Bernheim representative.
Historic Whitehall House and Gardens
For a more elegant engagement session, one of our top recommendations is the historic (and beautiful!) Whitehall Mansion and Estate Garden. The mansion itself is a classy two-story building with tall white pillars that give off a timeless vibe we just love. And when you combine the home with the arboretum and gardens, there are few places in all of Kentucky that match the romantic ambiance of this place. We have loads of unique floral and greenery backdrops to play with for engagement sessions here, and we simply can't rave about it enough!
Whitehall charges a $100 fee and requires that sessions be scheduled in advance.
Falls of the Ohio
Although this one isn't actually within the Kentucky state borders, the Falls of the Ohio State Park is so close to Louisville (right across the Ohio River on the Indiana riverside) and is an option we love to suggest to our couples! Most people come here to look at the fossil beds, but we come here for the walking trails and the riverside views, which are perfect settings for scenic and fun engagement sessions!
Falls of the Ohio charges no fees to use the ground at the time we're writing this article! However, if you're coming from Kentucky to the Falls, there is an avoidable toll bridge. Sessions do not have to be scheduled with a Falls representative.
Are you sensing a theme here? What can we say: we love gardens for engagement sessions!
Yew Dell Botanical Gardens is another top-choice engagement location in the Louisville area that we can't get enough of. Between the abundance of natural light, colorful plants, fountains, and brick pathways -- not to mention a simple yet stunning stone castle! -- there is a lot to love about this engagement session option.
Yew Dell does charge a $75 fee to host an engagement session. All session must be scheduled in advance.
Wallitsch Garden Center
For a great indoor option on a rainy day, we love using the Wallitsch Garden Center! The greenhouses on site have a nice balance of giving an outdoor feel and natural light, all while being "inside" so we won't have to worry about a gloomy day.
Wallitsch hosts our engagement sessions at their discretion and must be verified in advance.
If you're interested in finding a more epic and scenic location to make an adventure out of your engagement session, please message us. We have a few waterfall places that are perfect for engagement portraits, and would love to bring a couple adventurous souls to our secret spots!
Want to try another spot?
We like to pick locations that allow us to shoot in various lighting conditions. A location with high trees or buildings that also has areas that aren't surrounded allow us to shoot with plenty of good light, regardless of where the sun is. With that said, we're open to any sentimental, destination, or other types of locations you have in mind.
If you have a spot that you'd like to try out, let us know!
If you enjoyed reading about our favorite engagement session locations, head on over to read another great blog post, How to Prepare for Your Engagement Session!
Looking for an engagement photographer? Contact us!
We’re Jeff and Michele, a husband and wife wedding photographer team based in Louisville, Kentucky. Your engagement and wedding photography experience is our top priority — we want you to cherish it forever!
We’d love the opportunity to be your photographers. Reach out to us online or give us a call at (502) 551-5799. We look forward to hearing from you!