I absolutely love the South West and Margaret River regions of our beautiful state. Not only do I have plenty of fond memories of growing up there, but I love that the coastal scenery is some of the best in the country.
As a Perth and Margaret River wedding photographer, I’m lucky enough to frequently visit some of the best parts of the region. One thing I particularly love about the South West is that it has a rugged, adventurous feel to it. With pristine, sandy beaches and dramatic cliffs and rock formations, it feels like there’s another adventure to be had around every corner.
If you’re planning to book an engagement photo shoot before your wedding, the South West has some of the most gorgeous areas for shoot locations. Here are some of my favourite coastal and inland places for engagement shoots in the region.
For a dramatic and impressive outdoor shoot, let’s head to Canal Rocks. Set just a few kilometres from Yallingup, this seascape offers unique granite rocks and a cute timber footbridge over the water, which makes a great spot for photos.
Like most of the South West, it’s gorgeous at sunrise and sunset. It’s a quintessential Western Australian locale, with jagged rocks, waves and sensational natural beauty. If you love the area, there are also plenty of South West wineries that make for ideal wedding locations here too.
Injidup Natural Spa
A gorgeous tidal pool, framed by huge rocks, Injidup Natural Spa reminds me of something out of a fairy tale. It’s one of my most recommended engagement shoot location ideas in South West Australia. If you’re an outdoorsy, adventurous couple, or you love spending time at the beach, this might be the picturesque location you’re looking for.
One of my top tips is to think about beach shoots in the winter! Many couples assume beaches are only good locations in the warm weather, but winter beach shoots offer the same spectacular views, but without the crowds.
With so many gorgeous coastal locations in the South West, it can be hard to decide, but I’m happy to make location suggestions based on your preferences and preferred style.
Castle Rock Beach
If you’re looking for crystal-clear, sparkling water in one of the region’s most jaw-dropping beaches, then Castle Rock might be the ideal spot for your engagement shoot.
This pristine beach in Dunsborough has miles of white sand, turquoise water, and beautiful viewpoints. Although it tends to be popular with both tourists and locals, I know the area well and can help you plan a shoot away from the crowds. I took Castle Rock engagement photos for a lovely couple, Rachel and James, and the beach provided the perfect backdrop for capturing their love and affection.
If rain is forecast, I can plan a back-up location. However, if you don’t mind a bit of rain, overcast days can create amazing photos thanks to the dramatic lighting and clouds, so we don’t necessarily need a sunny day to get great engagement shots.
Sugarloaf Rock is one of the most dramatic engagement shoot location ideas in Margaret River. It’s a natural granite island set about 12km from Dunsborough, off Cape Naturaliste Road.
The rock soars out of the ocean, creating a spectacular natural landscape that will take any engagement photo shoot to the next level. It attracts photographers from all over, keen to capture the unique formation rising straight out of the water.
(Note that Canal Rocks, Injidup Natural Spa, and Sugarloaf Rock are rugged locations, requiring a fair bit of walking and/or climbing. They’re not suited for high heels or formal wear.)
Boranup Forest is a truly inspiring and unique location for engagement and wedding photography in Margaret River. The forest is found just off Caves Road, between Margaret River and Augusta. It’s home to soaring karri, a type of eucalyptus that climb to over 60 metres in height.
While shooting, we’re also likely to see plenty of wildflowers, birds and orchids, creating an immersive environment for a serene nature engagement photoshoot. The sun streaming in between the trees allows for incredible images at any time of year.
The historic site of Wonnerup, between Busselton and Caple, is a stunning location for engagement shoots, especially in spring. The area really comes to life at this time of year, with white lilies, blooming flowers and a romantic feeling throughout the grounds.
With heritage buildings, gorgeous tuart eucalyptus forests and estuary wetlands, the scenic gardens of Wonnerup make for a beautiful alternative to coastal or beachside engagement shoots.
One of my favourite engagement shoot spots has to be Donnybrook, as it’s my hometown. It’s a small town (known for apples!), and you’ll find lots of great areas here to take photos.
You can take your pick of locations in spring, where all the fruit trees are blossoming, or we can shoot among the area’s oak trees or beautiful architecture. There’s plenty of variety here and I’m happy to take you to some of my top-secret spots.
Golden Valley Tree Park
Golden Valley Tree Park, in Balingup, is a hidden gem that really lives up to its name. It’s the state’s largest arboretum, home to 60 hectares of native and exotic plants, plus plenty of birds, scenic lookout points and hiking trails that make ideal locations for photos.
While the park is gorgeous all year, it truly becomes golden in autumn, thanks to the bronze, orange and red maple trees creating picturesque foliage. If you’re planning a shoot in the autumn months, Golden Valley is one of my top suggestions. Complete with wooden picket fences and rolling hills, it’s a romantic and picturesque location.
We’re so lucky to live in a region with such spectacular natural beauty, giving us almost endless options for shoot locations. As an experienced wedding photographer in South West WA, I know the area inside and out and can help you select the ideal spot, based on the look and feel you’d like for your photos.
I can’t wait to hear from you and help you plan your exciting engagement shoot!