Have you ever walked around the Cairns Botanical Gardens and really took it all in. It is a beautifully stunning example of a tropical garden. As a Cairns wedding location it is perfect for wedding photos.
I had a charming couple this week have their ceremony and photos there. There were so many great spots that we stayed there for 2 hours wondering around the gardens and nearby tanks area. I guess being a Cairns wedding photographer does have its advantages hey !
Tropical North Queensland is the jewel of the pacific and if you are lucky enough to get married here, you are in for a visual treat. So where are the best wedding photo locations in North Queensland. There are actually hundreds of stunning photo locations in the tropical north from Mission Beach, Cairns, Palm Cove and up to Port Douglas and the Atherton Tablelands. They range from long empty beaches to busy cityscapes, from clear tropical streams to cosmopolitan resorts. Let me take you on a practical photographic journey and go with just seven that are in public places that any wedding party can access for the very best wedding photo locations in Cairns, Palm Cove and Port Douglas.
Trinity Inlet Cairns
The view across the inlet to the cloud capped mountains beyond the water is stunning. As a backdrop it’s hard to beat, especially as the sun starts to go down and the sky takes on shades of pinks and purples above the green of the dense wilderness. Take a walk along the the boardwalk, starting at the very northern end near the Shangri-la hotel and end up at the new cruise terminal. It’s an easy stroll for the entire bridal party and has a few bars along the way if you need a refresher.
Cairns City and Esplanade
The tree lined paths on the esplanade near the lagoon feature warm light and long shadows as sunset approaches. Photos of newlyweds strolling hand in hand along the pathways are both beautiful and natural. Move a block inland and eclectic cafes and shops provide a completely different feel and you can have some fun with cityscape wedding photos.
So the first two areas above in our Best Wedding Photo Locations in Tropical North Queensland are both within a one km radius of the Cairns pier area. The variety for great wedding photography in this small area is unmatched in Australia. However, there is more !!! Lets move north…..
Freshwater is a suburb close to Cairns and well worth the 10 minute drive along the highway. First stop is the old saw mill for some rustic charm. It’s a real treat and a chance for the bridal party to fool around.
Further along the road are railway tracks (take care) and the Freshwater railway station. Unfortunately the station is off limits now for wedding photos without paying a fee ( Thanks for that). Don’t worry, because as you turn right and go down Old Freshwater Road, you are in for a real treat. It is the closest sugar cane fields to Cairns city and has the bonus of a beautiful tropical stream.
Palm Cove is 25 minutes north of Cairns and is one of the most perfect wedding locations in Australia. Everything you would ever want is in a 1 km stretch along the waters edge. With Australia’s only beach-side wedding chapel, a dozen beautiful resorts, palm trees and and endless view to the coral sea, Palm Cove is the ultimate destination wedding location.
It is a common sight to see a lucky bride and groom walking along the gorgeous Palm Cove Beach most days of the year. Both the coconut tree lined southern end and the jetty at the northern end of the beach are well worth spending some time. If you are lucky enough to have access to one of the many 5 star resorts, then you can round off your beach side photos with some beautiful photos around your resort.
Port Douglas – Rex Smeal Park and Sugar Wharf
Port Douglas is a favourite holiday and wedding destination for thousands of couples a year. The beautiful Rex Smeal Park is a place you just want to slow down and watch the boats come in and the clouds gathering over distant mountains. Then again maybe not, because it’s your wedding day and the park sets the stage for the most breathtaking wedding photography location you can imagine. A short walk along the foreshore you approach the heritage Sugar Wharf near the St Mary’s by the Sea chapel. The white lines of the old weatherboard warehouse and the views are perfect for great photos. The sun is often bright so the shadows and dramatic light is great.
The Port Douglas Marina
The marina area in Port Douglas is both a boutique shopping arcade and the main boating marina. It’s really worth exploring and you’ll be rewarded with fun photos around the shops and outside with a flotilla of boats as your backdrop. There is also a cute old looking train station adjacent to the marina area to add variety to your photos.
Before we leave Port Douglas it would be remiss of me to not mention the glorious 4 mile beach. If you have the time, head over and grab some images walking along the beach, especially when the tide is low and you can play with reflections.
The Atherton tablelands or as it is sometimes called, the Cairns Highlands, is full of charming villages and rolling green hills. It’s the perfect country wedding photo setting. You will need to drive around a bit. Yungaburra, including the massive fig tree, is well worth a visit. As is Lake Tinnaroo and the Malanda area.
I hope these photo location and the sample photos have provided you some great inspiration for your perfect Tropical North Queensland wedding.
Photographing a Photographer
Let me tell you a little story….. stay with me ’cause its a cool story….
A lot of international couples come to our beautiful region for their elopement wedding, so I get enquiries from all over the world. Many are from the UK and this is where my story starts.
Roger, the groom, was communicating with me via email from London. He asked lots of questions and they were not your average questions. Not the ones that I normally receive from couples. He wanted to know about my style, to see lots of my work, including entire weddings. He wanted to know about my equipment and would I give him the Raw files. Raw files are the really, really big unedited files out of the professional camera. That last one was most certainly an unusual request.
Mmmm … I’m beginning to think that this guy knows his stuff and is probably a photographer.
Anyway, I won the wedding and thought nothing more about it until the day of their wedding came around. When I meet Roger and Avril, they were an older couple getting married for the second time. A few of their adult children had also come out from the UK. It was not really your typical elopement wedding with no guests. The beach wedding went off without a hitch ( as they always do up here ) and we captured some great photos around Palm Cove.
Towards the end of the day, I’m really getting to know them more and mentioned to Roger that he sounded like a photographer in his emails. “Yes I am a photographer”, he declared. “I’ve photographed a few people you may have heard of”.
“Oh”, I say “who is that? ”
“Princess Diana and Charles’s wedding was one you would have heard of”, Roger said. “Also portraits her Majesty the Queen and Fergies wedding too”
What the !!!!!!
I’m glad I did not know who he was before I photographed his wedding. I asked him some questions about the weddings and it turns out it was only the ceremonies in Westminster Abby (only…..) and did a little bit of checking and sure enough, he was who he said he was.
Cool hey !
Want to see more of my photos ? Look here
Why have an Engagement Photo Shoot
There are many reasons to get engagement photos taken be fore your wedding.
- Your engagement photo shoot is an opportunity to get all dressed up.
- It’s an easy and inexpensive way to experience what it is like to have some professional images captured.
- Any nerves of being in front of a camera are eased once you have done it so on your wedding day. Guys in particular aren’t very keen on getting their photo taken. It really helps on the wedding day if they have already been through it.
- It is a perfect time for a make up trial and see how it looks in photographs.
- You get a great reason to go out on a date afterwards 😉
Best Wedding Photos
I set about making a new slide show of what I thought was my best wedding photos. Once I had finished I had left out a lot of photos, but them my daughter watched it and told me to halve it !! OK I guess she was right so I made it much shorter.
Do you like it?
You can see the actual photos and more in my gallery at this link www.poshphotos.com.au/portfolio
Who loves black and white wedding photos?
I have to say I do, but it really takes the right kind of image to look good. Photos with architecture, patterns and are not too busy work best.
Take for example the image taken at Paradise Palms. In colour it’s great, but in black and white it looks a bit flat.
All the greens of vegetation just become lots of variations of grey.
Then look at the one taken in the Shangri-la near Bar8. It is really cool as a black and white with the woodwork.
But what about something a bit in between? With digital photography we can do that and I really like the subtle toning of the 3rd photo taken in a Cairns cafe. What do you think?