SECRET CANBERRA BUSHWALKS EBOOK
FOR ADVENTUROUS COUPLES
Download my free eBook on 10 of my select secret locations around Canberra, perfect for adventurous couples who love to explore.
So you’ve made it past the awkward first date, had the kiss, gone on a heap of adventures, and now you’re ready for the next step! One of you proposed, and the other one didn’t awkwardly say ‘no way’, so here you are! It’s time to get some epic Canberra engagement photos!
Now you’re looking for a way to get in front of the Canberra to celebrate the fact that you’ve got the rest of your lives to adventure together.
Well, I’ve got the definitive list of excellent engagement photo locations in and around Canberra.
If you love your waterfalls, you’re in for a real treat. When it comes to sights and heights, Gibraltar falls is hard to beat, with its rolling pools of water, and a beautiful outlook over the Canberra forests. If you’re looking for Canberra engagement photos, you won’t go wrong with this area.
Don’t forget to check out the Foundry Coffee Co on your way out, at Tuggeranong! The best coffee that side of town!
Protip: Don’t be afraid to get your feet wet, so bring a rucksack with a towel in and get ready to have a bit of a plunge! Also, please take your rubbish with you!
One of the many jewels in Canberra’s crown. Don’t miss the sunsets up the top by Dairy Farmers Hill. There’s a reason that it attracts so many people year after year. You’ll find fewer better spots around Canberra to grab amazing sunset images!
If you want to check out how insane the sunset can look at the Arboretum, go and check out this engagement session with Nicola and Hayley!
Protip: the cork forest just as you go into the Arboretum on your right is very underrated, and perfect for those moody ‘between the trees’ images!
If you’re into your hiking, then you’re in for a great time with Booroomba Rocks! About an hour’s drive outside of Canberra, and a decent 30-minute climb, but once you get to the top, it is always worth it.
The flowers in these images come from the awesome Moxom and Whitney, who I couldn’t recommend more if you want to get some awesome florals for your Canberra engagement photos!
Protip: don’t forget to bring a bottle of water for the walk, and flashlight; you’ll want to stay for the end of sunset to see what Booroomba Rocks can give you!
One of the most underrated and hidden away gems in Canberra, this beautiful park just outside of Belconnen of all places, has a great variety of grassland, trees, and hilltops to get you some impressive views of Canberra.
The views you can get from the top of the Pinnacle Nature Reserve are something else, especially from Belconnen. Check out Alicia and Ross’ session for some more images of what it can be like up there!
Protip: bring a picnic blanket for when you get to the top of the reserve, as well as your favourite bottle of bubbly or beer. Perfect spot for some sunset drinks and feed!
A gorgeous walking trail in the Namadgi National Park, just about an hour outside of Canberra. Bring your good hiking boots for this one, and take in the vast landscapes and rolling hills. Right at the end of the trail, you can even see some original Aboriginal Cave Paintings as a special bonus. Worth the hike.
Stephen and Lilah had a kick-ass session with me out at Yankee Hat! Check out their session and even more images here.
Protip: if you’re into using a drone for your session, or want to capture some really epic landscapes, get up high to really capture some incredibly epic moments! If you’re looking for adventurous Canberra engagement photos, this is the peak of grassland zones!
I’ll be honest; the Namadgi National Park could have it’s own list of about 50 different incredible sights, so as a special mention I want to say that the whole of the Namadgi National Park can be used as a backdrop for your engagement session. However there are some parts which are slightly more awesome than others, and this is where I come in!
Be sure to check out the whole of the Namadgi National Park website, which has a great amount of information on all of the magical places around it.
Protip: when driving through the Namadgi, there are plenty of spots down long winding roads that will surprise you, so a 4×4 or AWD is always recommended if you really want to find the juiciest of spots.
Another of Canberra’s insanely incredible nature reserves. Located just outside of the nation’s capital, and near CISRO, this sprawling nature reserve is home to every type of nature attraction you’d want. Rolling hills, huge mountains (Gibraltar Peak gets a great mention), deep forests, and open grasslands. There is something for everyone here.
Tidbinbilla has a fantastic visitor centre which has a heap of useful information, and even gifts and supplies for your trip!
Protip: The kangaroos here are especially tame, and you’ll even be able to see some emus if you keep your eyes open, so these can make for some fun images.
No, this is the National Arboretum, this is the Bendora Arboretum. Hidden away in the back ends of the Namadgi National Park, this incredible arboretum has sprawling pine trees, a beautiful hut for gorgeous indoor portraits, and if you’re lucky, a lot of gorgeous red mushrooms for some magical photos! These Canberra engagement photos will be perfect for any couple who love a good adventure.
As the arboretum is a little bit out of the way, be sure to get a good 4×4 or AWD car that can handle the road, as it is a bit choppy!
Protip: spend some time at the hut by the Bendora Arboretum, as you’ll find an awesome signing book there, as well as gorgeous light for some really cool portraits.
Ok, so technically it isn’t in Canberra, but with it being only a few hours away from Canberra, I wanted to include this as it really is a stunning place, with so many varied places, to capture a great engagement session. A personal favourite location of mine is Cave Beach. If you want somewhere with a huge hole in the side of the cliff and great seascapes, this is your jam.
If you’re like me and love to get fish and chips down the coast, do yourself and check out the aptly named World Famous Fish and Chips. Seriously the best fish and chip place I’ve found down the coast.
Protip: Jervis Bay is home to so many incredible outlets, although be aware that Honeymoon Beach is a military use zone during the week, so save that one for the weekend!
Another one of Canberra’s hidden but incredible gems when it comes to finding beautiful and scenic nature spots. This stunning landscape stretches for quite a while, and it’s windy tracks provide some insanely cool views for the rest of Canberra. Just beware of cyclists.
When I’ve worked around the area, I’ve seen a tonne of Yellow-tailed black cockatoos. Listen out for their much more tuneful call compared to their noisy sulphur-crested cousin.
Protip: Issac’s ridge is a big place, so don’t be afraid to cross over the road to find even more spaces in-between the trees, with views over the whole forest.
How bloody lucky are we in Canberra to live 3 hours from Sydney, 3 hours from the snow, 2 hours from the beach, and hardly an hour to wine country in Murrumbateman. Well considering this, the whole of Murrumbateman provides some really gorgeous backdrops for your engagement session. Whilst it isn’t technically in Canberra, this area is perfect to get Canberra engagement photos which are laced with culture and awesome sights.
Whilst you’re in town, I recommend checking out some of the wineries in the area. My favourite pick is the Helm Winery, for the best reisling in the area.
Protip: if you’re going to want to enjoy a drink or two, ask your photographer if they can drive you around. I don’t think there should be a problem with this, I’ve done it before!
Not only is Mount Majura known for its awesome wine, but the area is also a haven for wildlife and beautiful scenery for your engagement session. The great thing about the whole zone is that there are multiple entrances. My favourite one is the one from Clancy’s Walking Track.
As you’ll be in the area, I really couldn’t speak higher of The Knox in Watson, which really is one of the best cafes in all of Canberra!
Protip: As Mount Majura is dog friendly, it is a great place to take your four legged friends for your engagement session. Just be sure to keep them on a leash because roos are prevalent in the area.
Googong is a fast-growing suburb in Canberra, and it is blessed to be near the Googong Foreshore, with it’s absolutely massive lake. With vast scenery and some really cool vistas, it is a fantastic place to celebrate the start of your lives together.
If you’re wanting a top-up of coffee or some great food to take with you for your session, go and check out the Yellow Belly Cafe is Googong!
Protip: the foreshore is awesome, however, London Bridge is also just around the corner, and worth a trip to go and see! Think Game Of Thrones meets some stone arches, and you’re in for a real treat! These Canberra engagement photos were captured on the wooden jetty by Lake Googong!
Whilst the Kambah pools have a great reputation throughout Canberra for being a great place to relax, just next door to it is the Red Rock Gorge walking trail. This scenic and gentle trail leads to a breathtaking view of the huge red rock gorge and is sure to be a great backdrop for your engagement session.
Whilst you are in the area, it is always worth checking out Kambah Pools for a swim. However, just make sure that you take the right path, as the one to the right leads to the nudist beach, which may not be for everyone!
Protip: wombats can be seen along the trail, so if you’re interested in seeing some up close and personal, this may be a great choice for you! It will certainly spice up your session a little bit!
Another space that is a stone throw’s away from Belconnen, in the North of Canberra. Shepherds lookout is a small bit really scenic little spot that paints the perfect background for a romantic experience.
Whilst there are holes in the fence, which lets you get a bit further out to get the view in shot, just be a little bit careful, as there are some steep areas.
Protip: due to the proximity of this to the city centre, why not make this a sunrise session? You’ll catch some gorgeous sunrise spots, and be able to catch a whole different time of day that many don’t get to see.
James is an adventurous wedding and elopement photographer based in Canberra, Australia. He travels everywhere to capture adventurous love stories with passionate and non-traditional couples.