Head to the Lincoln Memorial for an engagement session in either the early morning or early evening and you'll be rewarded in two ways. One, you'll avoid the crowds of tourists and, two, you'll enjoy that golden hour glow that makes for the most magical photos. With the Washington Monument in the background, along with the iconic reflecting pool, there are so many perfect backdrops right there for the choosing. Even photos without a recognizable landmark are possible, when you take advantage of the well-groomed landscaping and sidewalks in the surrounding area.
We all know the recognizable national landmark, but how many of us consider it a fantastic spot for an engagement session? If you're a little bit skeptical, this shoot will certainly change your mind. The beautifully classic architecture, stark marble and views of the Washington Monument all come together for dramatic shots with just the right amount of elegance and romance. Plus, come at just the right time of day, and you'll be treated to an uncrowded shoot location, in one of the most-visited spots in the country.
A gorgeous estate, Whitehall makes an impression immediately, with its white-columned entrance and century-old trees dotting the landscape. The 200-year-old manor is remarkable in of itself, but the charming and intimate gazebo makes for a fantastic outdoor wedding setting. It's all set against the Northern Virginia countryside and Blue Ridge Mountains, for a mix of both historically rustic and elegant.
Clifton's charming little pub in the old Texaco station was the perfect start and end point to this adorable engagement shoot. Situated in the equally charming neighborhood of the Clifton Historic District, there's plenty of picturesque photo backdrops in the near vicinity. The small town vibe offers just the right dose of Americana, from the white picket fences and wooden benches, to the bright red caboose and gently waving flags.
A rustic and romantic Virginia wedding venue, The Barns at Hamilton Station Vineyards was the perfect spot for an outdoor ceremony, followed by a fun-filled reception. The 106-year-old restored stone and wood barn is a charming representation of beautiful Loudoun County. Plus, you won't want to miss bridal party and bride and groom photos with the silo or the vineyards (or both!) in the background.
Set on 30 pristine acres, Overhills Mansion is a spacious wedding venue that is stately in every way. The historic home makes a stunning first impression, with its white columns and picturesque verandas, and continues to impress throughout. Constructed in 1897, the interior is filled with elegant touches that compliment any wedding style or theme.
Located on more than 150 acres in the quaint Northern Virginia town of Vienna, Westwood Country Club is everything a bride could want for a wedding that's both classic and elegant. The grand ballroom was the perfect canvas for creating a memorable event like Adela and Jay's big day.
Set against a beautiful backdrop of Maryland mountains, Springfield Manor is a perfectly idyllic wedding setting regardless of the season. The estate, built in 1774, features a magnificent ballroom to accommodate even the largest weddings. Beyond, the private suites are immaculately adorned, for those not-to-be-missed pre-wedding photos with your bridal party. However, possibly the best part of this venue is the outdoors, where the 130 acres provide not only a pristine arbor to grace your ceremony space, but also romantic lavender fields and a lush vineyard.
Bull Run Regional Park is home to quite a bit of hiking with quite a bit of history. The trails saw action as trade routes, and then in the Civil War, but this spectacular setting more recently saw the beginnings of one couple's happily ever after.
At the spot where Little Hunting Creek meets the Potomac, the Mt. Vernon Trail intersects with a small section of park, right on the water and accessible via walking and bike paths. The tucked-away space is perfect for some casually sweet engagement photos, with lots of different backdrops, from wooden bridges to rock walls to the waterfront. Even though the day was windy, this couple made the most of things, and their shoot was filled with laughs! Plus, the slightly gray day made Angela's blue dress pop!
True Southern class at its finest, Whitehall Estate offers all the luxurious charm a bride could want for her dream wedding. The venue boasts a fine history, and the land is said to have once resided in the Washington family, and to have also been present for a Civil War skirmish. It later saw use as a dairy farm, but was converted in 1992 to a fine country inn. Additions were made in following years, to host larger events and weddings, as well as provide all the modern amenities a grand affair would require.
This historic venue is perfect for a chic wedding with a rustic flair. Couples are invited to celebrate their nuptials on the unique grounds (which are still used as part of a real working farm!), where elegant centerpieces and flower arrangements may meet the occasional vintage tractor or a stray rooster or two. Total Southern charm abounds, as bridal parties and guests are transported to a time period totally removed from the cares of everyday life. In other words, it's an amazing setting for a one-of-a-kind wedding.
Situated next to the Occoquan River, Osprey's at Belmont Bay is a lovely setting for an outdoor, waterfront wedding. A nice mix of nature and luxury, the venue offers indoor spaces including a clubhouse with a spacious ballroom, the perfect blank canvas for any bride and groom's particular style. Of course, most couples can't resist using the flagstone patio with its pergola and shaded seating area for their ceremony, which also gives their guests great views of the water.
A venue made complete with its own on-site bed and breakfast, Zion Springs is a charming spot for a rustic chic wedding. The beautiful barn, lush fields and slate patio give you a wide array of settings to work with, each different, but each complimentary in its own way. Regardless of the season, this picture-perfect location continues to delight couples of all styles and tastes.
For brides and grooms looking for a unique touch to their wedding reception, regardless of style or theme, the gorgeous, hand-crafted farm tables created by Local Wood, in Berryville, Va., are a fantastic place to start.
Woodlawn is a charming Georgian-style manor located in rustic Montgomery County, Maryland. The historic Manor House boasts a history stretching back to 1800, and the expansive grounds with various other picturesque buildings from the same time period make for a beautiful setting.
When you think "romantic spots for an engagement photo shoot," you don't automatically think of your alma mater. However, for these two lovebirds, it just made sense to celebrate their newly engaged status with some photos on the campus they both once called home. Luckily for us, their venue choice was a fantastic setting, proving that your university can definitely be a photo shoot backdrop that's both beautiful and filled with memories. Switching between indoors and out, we were able to capture some magical moments that truly reflected Sam and Tayina's personalities.
Just minutes away from D.C., Old Town Alexandria is a conveniently placed escape, filled with charming local shops and restaurants, cobblestone streets, historic spots and lovely green spaces. And don't forget about the waterfront on the Potomac! No matter the setting or mood you prefer, you'll find it in Old Town Alexandria!
Located in Leesburg, Va., Raspberry Plain Manor is a historic wedding venue perfect for any elegant affair. The spacious setting oozes glamor and class, so it fit this particular ceremony and reception perfectly.
Historic Old Town Alexandria is a charming respite from the hubbub of Washington, D.C. Filled with not only a treasured past, but multitudes of local shops and restaurants, cobblestone streets and beautiful architecture, it's a lovely choice for any engagement shoot. This session made great use of the local green space, as well as the waterfront and the cityscape, making for a fantastic mix.