A comprehensive list of 19 Locations to get engaged in around Wilmington, NC

Update: September 21, 2022

Added Airlie Gardens Gallery Link


Update: September 12, 2022

Added Galleries for New Hanover Arboretum Location


Update: August 23, 2022

Added Johnnie Mercer Pier Location | Dram Tree Park | Carolina Beach


Updated: July 12, 2022

Completed another session in Downtown, Wilmington with Max and Rachel! Gallery available.

Coming soon; Beach Access 4, Johnnie Mercer Pier, 3rd Street and Orange, Greenfield Lake


Updated: April 26, 2022

I'm back at it again! We're adding The Airlie Gardens for places to do your engagement session! With Gallery


Updated: March 11, 2022


Hi couples and coffee drinkers a like! I'm excited to add Fort Fisher to my list of places to do your engagement session!


Now that I am more acquainted in Wilmington, I've spotted more areas to suggest to photograph.


This is exciting for me because the more materials that I have, the more I become a better guide/photographer.


Bonus Tip: I've added links to full engagement sessions at the end of each location :)

wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer

Fort Fisher

The best time to do your couples session would be during the golden hour or 1 hour prior to sunset. The boardwalk that takes you in between the grassy marsh land is beautiful. The sunlight will be shining on you and your partner perfectly. There will be a large variety of coastal trees to choose from to take pictures in front of. You can find some rocks where the water breaks from the ocean to get some shots with as well. The lighting and scenery will make for some very romantic and stunning photos that you'll cherish for years to come. So make sure to plan your session accordingly!


The best time to photograph is when the sun is just peeking over the horizon. The light will be soft and gentle, and it will filter through the leaves of the tree, creating a beautiful effect. If you can get up early enough, you'll also be able to capture the mist rising from the marshland. The boardwalk is the perfect place to set up your tripod and camera, and it's easy to spend an entire day exploring this beautiful spot. In addition to the tree, there are also some fascinating cylindrical stumps made out of concrete and gravel. They were left behind by a sawmill that operated in the area many years ago, and they make for interesting subjects to photograph. Whether you're an experienced photographer or a complete novice, this is a great place to explore your creativity.


Location: Google Maps


Sunrise and Sunset in Wilmington, NC in Summer: 6:59 AM - 8:22 PM (Jun 8, 2021)

Sunrise and Sunset in Wilmington, NC in Fall: 6:15 AM - 6:59 PM (as of September 28, 2021)

Sunrise and Sunset in Wilmington, NC in Winter: 7:14 AM - 5:06 PM (Dec 21, 2021)

Sunrise and Sunset in Wilmington, NC in Spring: 6:24 AM - 6:18 PM (Mar 13, 2021)


Gallery Link #1



wilmington nc wedding photographer

New Hanover Arboretum


Description: If you're looking for a beautiful and unique place to have your engagement photos taken, the New Hanover Arboretum is a perfect option. With its lush gardens and gorgeous plant life, the Arboretum provides a stunning backdrop for your photos. Plus, there are tons of nooks and crannies to explore, making it easy to find the perfect spot for your shoot. And as a Wilmington photographer, I can attest to the fact that the Arboretum is one of my favorite places to photograph couples. So if you're looking for a beautiful location for your wedding photos, be sure to check out the New Hanover Arboretum.


Gallery Link#1

wilmington nc wedding photographer

Downtown Wilmington


  • The Riverfront
  • Historic District
  • Parking Decks
  • Dock Street
  • Alleyways and Cobblestone Streets


Description: Photographing downtown may look intimidating with people passing by, but it becomes really exciting, exploring the city's angles, anytime of the day is very liberating and can create beautiful results.

Suggestion: Schedule any time of day, I would suggest wearing something formal. Something that you wear for a high end restaurant. Bring plenty of water and sunscreen.


Updated on July 12, 2022: I recently did a shoot with Rachel and Max in Downtown Wilmington. We started on Orange and Front Street and made our way to Elijah's restaurant featuring blooming trees, cobblestones, fairy lights, and a spontaneous visit to an Airbnb room overlooking the bridge and Cape Fear River. Check out their gallery here!


Time: 7:00-8:30

Approximately 90 minutes until Sundown.


Gallery Link #1


wilmington nc wedding photographer

Johnnie Mercer Pier


Description: One of my favorite proposals is located in one of the most iconic areas in Wrightsville Beach. The pier can be photographed if we are lucky. Usually its busy almost all year round, the walk can be long and people do leave frequently. The pros are that we are high enough that we can still spot the sun's light, making it brilliant photograph. I see different angles that I can possibly photograph, making a good use of the white rapid or calm blue water, beach and sands, making use of the seats, the concrete rails, and lamps. Cons, there's a ton of foot traffic but its not difficult to photograph around them. You can find my sample gallery here!


Time: 7:00-8:30

Approximately 90 minutes until Sundown.


There's a $2 fee, parking is about $5/hr.


Gallery Link #1

wilmington nc wedding photographer

Abbey Nature Preserve


About 20 minutes Northeast from Downtown Wilmington is a nature preserve with lots of turning trees into oranges and a boardwalk that sits above the water and creates symmetry to your photos. I think it's the most beautiful place to photograph your engagement.

Location: Google Maps

Best time to photograph: Early morning, about 1 hour before sunrise, and late afternoon, 1 hour after the sunrise.

wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer

Dram Tree Park


This location is not much to many people, but I see a TON of potential here. First off, I can point out the obvious, which is the iconic Cape Fear Memorial Bridge. The pros is that golden hour here is beautiful, not much foot traffic, but you can rest assured that there won't be anyone clapping or calling out "congratulations" and get my clients distracted. Another is the ramp, I can use this to photograph you against the concrete wall, to give it more industrial look. I feel when couples do find themselves in a city, it can almost bring out metaphorical contrast to the meaning of the image. Cons, its very noisy because of the cars on the bridge.


I would suggest photographing during golden hour around 6-7pm when the sun is setting and the light is most flattering. The cons of this location is that it can be quite noisy because of all the traffic on the bridge. However, I think that the pros outweigh the cons and this could be a really great spot for photos.


Check out some of the galleries here

Gallery Link #1

Gallery Link #2

wilmington nc wedding photographer

Greenfield Lake


Greenfield Lake is a beautiful place to shoot engagement photos. The lake is located in Wilmington, NC and is a popular spot for engagement shoots. The best time to shoot at Greenfield Lake is in the morning or early evening during the golden hour. During these times, the light is softer and the colors are more vibrant. The lake is also incredibly peaceful during these times, which makes for great photos. Mid-October is also a great time to shoot at Greenfield Lake because the leaves are beginning to turn. This adds a beautiful pop of color to your photos.


Location: Google Maps

Best time to photograph: preferably early morning but anytime of day would work.

wilmington nc wedding photographer

Airlie Gardens


Airlie Gardens features large beautiful trees that can create beautiful vignettes on your photos. There are plenty of shade during the day but beware that it may cause some sunspots around the face which may or may not appeal to you. This is the go to spots for many photographers and couples at any day of the week so you might run into another one while you're on the session. Please be mindful of the the flowers and grass when you go.

Location: Google Maps

Best time to photograph: anytime of day


Gallery Link #1

Gallery Link #2

wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer

Satellite Bar


Description: I suggest grabbing a quick drink before and after the shoot. Tip the bartender, of course and ask them if you could grab a few shots in front of their bar. The area features lots of red bricked walls and olden windows.

Location: Google Maps

Best time to photograph: 1 hour before Sunset and 1 hour after Sunrise

wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer

Snow's Cut Park


Description: Snow's Cut is a park located underneath the Carolina Bridge in Wilmington, NC. According to Google, this park may be closed. NPS says the park is open. When you're doing an engagement session, please be mindful of the people staying in RVs. This park is a snow cut bridge that has been turned into a pedestrian park. It's a really neat place for an engagement session! The only thing to be aware of is that there are people living in RVs down there, so just be respectful of their space. Thanks!

Location: Google Maps

Best Time to Photograph: Could be great anytime of the day but like many shoots, early in the AM or 1 Hour Prior to sunset.

gay holding hands by wilmington photographer

Long Leaf Park


Description: Quite a busy park with kids running around. There is a pond on the south east end of the park which can be a great option early AM.

Location: Google Maps

Best Time to photograph: Very early in the AM, 1 HR before sunrise

gay couple holding hands by wilmington photographer
holding hands by wilmington photographer
gay couple kissing by wilmington photographer
jerry and sahin by wilmington engagement photographer

Shell Island Resort - North End Marshes of Wrightsville Beach


Description: There's a path/trail that will take you into a small inlet of water, unfortunately there isn't much shade around.

Location:Google Maps

Best Time to photograph: Very early in the AM, 1 HR before sunrise or sunset

wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer

Jack Parker Beach


Jack Parker Beach is one of the most popular spots for engagements, weddings, and other special occasions. The beautiful ocean views and the stunning sunset make it a perfect place to capture memories that will last a lifetime. However, because it is such a popular spot, you may not always find the seclusion you are looking for. There may be other photographers and couples taking pictures, and the beach may be crowded with people enjoying the sunny day. But if you are willing to share the space, Jack Parker Beach is an absolutely amazing place to have your engagement or wedding photos taken. So if you are planning a special event, be sure to consider Jack Parker Beach as your perfect photo location.


Link #1

wilmington nc wedding photographer
wilmington nc wedding photographer

Carolina Beach


Carolina Beach is a beautiful place to take engagement photos! Most of my couples choose Carolina Beach because it is so convenient to them, but there are many other beautiful places to photograph in North Carolina. I would love to hear from you if you are considering Carolina Beach for your engagement photos! Wilmington engagement photographers like myself are excited to capture your love story in this beautiful place. Carolina Beach has so much to offer engaged couples looking for the perfect place to have their photos taken. The water is gorgeous, the sand is pristine, and there are endless possibilities for beautiful backdrops. I would be honored to capture your Carolina Beach engagement photos and help you create memories that will last a lifetime. Contact me today to learn more!


Link #1

wilmington nc wedding photographer

The Cotton Exchange


This historic building is a major part of Wilmington's identity. Situated in the heart of the downtown area, it's the perfect place to start your life together.


wilmington nc wedding photographer

Orton Plantation Gardens


These gorgeous gardens are a must-see in Wilmington. With their lush vegetation and tranquil ponds, they're sure to set the mood for a romantic proposal.

wilmington nc wedding photographer

The Riverwalk


Wilmington's Riverwalk is a beautiful spot for a leisurely stroll or a romantic picnic. It's also the perfect place to get down on one knee and ask for your partner's hand in marriage.

wilmington nc wedding photographer

The Bellamy Mansion


This antebellum mansion is one of Wilmington's most iconic landmarks. Its elegance and history make it a truly unique place to get engaged.

wilmington nc wedding photographer

Battleship North Carolina


Another unique spot for an engagement is Battleship North Carolina. This WWII battleship is now a museum, and it offers stunning views of downtown Wilmington and the riverfront area. It's also a great place for history buffs to get engaged!


wilmington nc wedding photographer

Poplar Grove Plantation


Poplar Grove Plantation is a historic plantation that dates back to 1795. With its beautiful grounds and historic buildings, it's no wonder that this plantation is one of Wilmington's most popular engagement spots.

Editorial and Fine Art Photographer | Wilmington, NC

Capturing Memories

Hi guys! my name is Glenn, and I'm a Wilmington engagement photographer. I specialize in couples photography, and I love capturing the special bond between two people in love. If you're considering booking a session with me, I'd like to offer you a 20% discount if you mention this ad. I'm passionate about my work, and I believe that engagement photos should be a fun and memorable experience. I'm confident that I can capture the love and connection between you and your partner.

Best
Glenn

Contact Me!