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I'm Rachel, your Washington-based elopement photographer. I create affirming spaces for all couples, so that you can have the freedom to be exactly who you are on your elopement day.
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In less than an hour, you can be taking your Seattle engagement photos in the mountains, on the Sound, or downtown if you fancy a city backdrop.
I love variety.
There are many many more locations that I could add to this list–and probably will–but for variety’s sake, here are some of the top locations for Seattle engagement photos:
When I first found Rattlesnake Lake, I couldn’t believe it was so close to the city. A short drive up through the mountains and there you are: at this gorgeous mountain lake with a collection of tree stumps at the far end.
I can feel you raising your eyebrow at “tree stumps,” but trust me, it’s bananas.
And don’t get me started on Rattlesnake Ledge!
If you’re looking for an outdoorsy, mountainous, remote-but-not-difficult-to-get-to location, Rattlesnake Lake is it. I recommend going either in the off season or at sunrise to avoid the crowds. It’s one of the more popular spots near Seattle.
You want variety? Discovery Park is the largest city park in Seattle. 534 acres of trails, bluffs, trees, and views of the Sound.
It’s another popular location, but with so much space, I say it’s still worth a visit.
I could go back here over and over and find something new every time. On top of the different backdrops, it changes drastically with the weather and seasons. Definitely one to put on the list for Seattle engagement photos.
Touristy? Can be.
But Pike Place Market is a Seattle icon; everyone recognizes that big, red sign. If a city vibe is what you’re looking for for your Seattle engagement photos, this is an excellent place to start. (Plus, you know…snacks.)
From there, it’s easy to visit several other areas downtown. You can walk along the waterfront, head to a cafe, whatever you fancy.
As much as I love the mountains and lakes, I have to admit that downtown Seattle is a nice change of pace for engagement photos!
It’s probably starting to sound like I’m making this up (or can’t think of anything else), but really, the variety in Washington is incredible. Water, trees, mountains, lakes, open fields…take your pick.
Seahurst Park is a long stretch of land along the Sound, with a rocky beach and several miles of trails. Fancy a picnic? This is the perfect place for it. The hikes are easy but pretty, the beach is gorgeous, and I honestly don’t know what more you could ask for for relaxed Seattle engagement photos.
Ok, technically, Point Defiance is more of a Tacoma location, but most of the places I’ve mentioned aren’t technically in Seattle city limits anyway.
I’m taking some creative liberties.
But my point remains the same: if you think “Seattle engagement photos” and adjust that in your head to mean “really cool/beautiful locations for photos within an hour of Seattle,” then my list makes perfect sense, and we can all move on with our lives.
Point Defiance had been on my “to visit” list for a while, and I’m glad I finally got the chance. The forest is more dense here, more green. Following our trend, there’s still plenty of beach along the water and plenty of places to explore away from it.
This park can also get a bit crowded, depending on the weather and the time of day, but again, it’s big enough that if you put a little effort it, there are some beautiful secluded areas.
Those are my top suggestions for Seattle engagement photos!
My very best “hidden gems,” though, are just that: hidden. They aren’t on this list.
If you’re familiar with Leave No Trace principles, one of the biggest factors contributing to the destruction of outdoor spaces is…the internet. Social media. Geotagging.
People share the exact locations and coordinates of remote places, and all of a sudden, they aren’t so remote any more. There’s an influx of humans who may or may not be familiar with best practices for caring for those spaces.
It’s kind of a controversial topic– but it’s not about keeping people away from the outdoors. It’s about teaching people to appreciate outdoor spaces, to take the time to explore and seek these places out. To learn about their impact. It’s “too easy” if it’s a popular spot on Instagram, you know?
I keep my very best secrets for my clients, so let me know if you’d like to be one of them (: