Wow! Thank you so much for the great reception you gave to the first part of my article on my favourite outdoor family photo shoot locations. I absolutely adore shooting family portraits outside, and this was such a great exercise for me. It was very rewarding to look back at some of my favourite location portrait shoots from the past few years.
It’s been a busy week, but you make time for what is important – so now I am back with the final installment of my little review. I hope you are inspired by the light, colours and scenery as much as I have been, when telling each of these families’ story.
5. Coworth Park, Ascot, Berkshire
Coworth Park is a grand country house hotel and spa in Ascot. It is set on idyllic parklands with stunning landscaping features. What sets it apart from many other properties, in photographic terms, is its signature wildflower field, which blooms fully in July and creates an immense, colourful canvas of green, yellow, red, blue and white. Think of a real-life Monet painting and you won’t be far off. With the kind permission of the hotel management, I have been very fortunate to shoot on these enchanting grounds during the summer months on several occasions.
4. New Forest, Hampshire
The New Forest needs little introduction. It is the pride of Hampshire and an easy-to-reach retreat for families from all around the country. It spans a very large geographical area and its scenery is very diverse, from rivers to streams, to beaches, woodland and beyond. The treasure of wildlife in the New Forest is one of the best preserved in the country – drive around the country roads and you will see wild ponies, cattle, pigs and donkeys enjoying their freedom and space. What better place for a family photo shoot, than one of the forest’s hidden crannies? I won’t give too much away about this little place I found, but it is one of many corners of beauty that we could explore together.
More from this family and toddler portrait session in the New Forest, Hampshire.
3. Richmond Park, Richmond, West London
The largest of London’s Royal Parks, Richmond Park is an ideal outdoor location option for families based around West London. It is beautiful in every season and it offers a real countryside feel, complete with wildlife and classic buildings, even so close to the centre of the capital. It is worth noting that photo shoots at Richmond Park (like all other Royal Parks in London) incur an additional permit fee – but this is well worth the expense if for the convenience alone of such an incredible naturalistic haven so close to the centre of London.
More from this fun family photo shoot at Richmond Park
2. St Catherine’s Hill, Winchester, Hampshire
If you would like to combine a family photo shoot with a gentle hike or a picnic, St Catherine’s Hill is the place for you. On the way up, your children will love the accessible woodland, which is particularly colourful during the autumn. And once on the top, you will be rewarded by spectacular views over the city of Winchester and an extensive wild flower display during the summer months. So many butterflies to be spotted! My favourite part would have to be the steps on the clearer side of the hill, which look straight out of a fairytale illustration.
1. Dinton Pastures Country Park, Wokingham, Berkshire
Dinton Pastures is probably my go-to autumn family photo shoot location! Easily reached from Reading and covering an impressive 450 acres, the Park offers a multitude of accessible and picturesque corners that are just perfect for children of any age. The wooden jetties on the lakes are very popular for family photos (and to throw rocks in the water!), and there always a wealth of bramble berries to pick and crackling red leaves to throw around! And of course, the peaceful nature of the park lends itself very well to couple and maternity photo shoots as well. A great all-rounder location, with wildlife and colour
….Bonus entry! Strawberry Pick Your Own, Hampshire
Last but not least…! Two locations rolled into one, and a great idea for outdoors photos when you want to engage your children in an activity that they love! We LOVE picking strawberries in the summer. On a blue skied, sunny day, it is so much fun to hunt for big, juicy red strawberries hiding in the green rows. We are very lucky to have a couple of fabulous pick-your-own farms nearby (West Green Fruits in Hartley Wintney and Bourne Vallery PYO near Andover) and we often visit to get our fix of summer fruits. Of course, I could not resist using these for the occasional children’s photo session. Brilliant fun for everyone involved and a guaranteed treat at the end 🙂
See more from this strawberry picking children and toddler photo session
Well done to you for coming to the end of this long post! Take it as a starting point – it was tricky to narrow down eight years of location family photography to a list of just ten (or eleven!). There are at least twice as many gorgeous settings that I could recommend for your portrait photo shoots. So be inspired – next time you go and explore somewhere new right around you, take a great family photographer with you! 😉