Revealing The Best Wedding Photo Locations In Melbourne
| Tips From A Wedding Photographer For Melbourne Brides-To-Be|
One of the most asked questions, when we are dealing with our clients, is “what’s the best location to get wedding photos in Melbourne？” This is a sort of depends-on-you question. Melbourne is the city known for its greens, the historical buildings from the Victorian Era, the stunning coastal line and the cultural diversity. So the great thing with getting wedding location photos around Melbourne is you have various options to choose from.
Who am I to make this list？ Well, I’m a wedding photographer who works almost exclusively in Melbourne and its surrounding suburbs. I am usually a part of the wedding day from the start to finish, capturing the wedding photos for preparation, ceremony, location portrait and reception. Frankly, I believe I am in the best position to make this list of the most beautiful wedding photo locations in Melbourne.
Now, let’s get to the point. The best wedding photo locations in Melbourne, in a wedding photographer’s point of view. Below is a podcast recorded by Tree Studio’s wedding photographer Mark talking about the wedding photo locations in Melbourne. Have a listen and grab an idea to get started.
A Wedding Podcast for Wedding Photo Locations In Melbourne
- 1. Parliament House
- 2. South Melbourne Town Hall
- 3. RMIT University
- 4. Melbourne University
- 5. Fitzroy Town Hall
- 6. Victoria Barracks
- 7. Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens
- 8. Albert Park Lake
- 9. Fitzroy Garden
- 10. St Kilda Botanical Garden
- 11. Hosier Lane
- 12. Australian Center for Contemporary Art （ACCA）
- 13. Spice Market
- 14. National Gallery of Victoria （NGV）
- 15. Luna Park Melbourne
- 16. Chanel Melbourne City
- 17. Princes Pier Port Melbourne
- 18. Gem Pier Williamstown
1. Parliament House
Set on Spring Street, East Melbourne. Parliament House is one of the most popular and iconic wedding photo locations in Melbourne. Constructed from 1855, Parliament House is the place to offer a grand, classic and historic backdrop for your wedding photos. It can perfectly match your lavish and elegant wedding theme. From my experience, this is the go-to photo location when you have a large bridal party come together with you. The covered behind-pillar space could allow you to still have some fantastic photos when the wet weather comes.
As a popular and open to the public place, Parliament House has some drawbacks for taking wedding photography here. No matter on weekdays or weekends, It normally has quite a few people here and delivers a hustle and bustle kind of feelings. During the busy season, you may have to wait for other couples who arrive earlier and your photographer persuading the tourist to walk away from their camera.
2. South Melbourne Town Hall
South Melbourne Town Hall is a historic civic building on Bank Street, South Melbourne. Lots of master Melbourne wedding photographers love here as it has a quiet and relaxing atmosphere to do wedding photography. You could also organize the wedding day cars parking in front of the buildings. Now your photographer could capture you, the cars and the backdrop historical building in one image. Plus, there are some iconic Melbourne wedding receptions set nearby – Crown, Luminare, The Park, Carousel, Show Time Event Center, Cargo Hall and Aerial. You normally won’t need more than 10 mins to drive there.
Although South Melbourne Town Hall normally doesn’t have heaps tourists, it is a place incredibly favoured by Melbourne wedding photographers. I have seen 4 couples in front of the Town Hall and have their own wedding photographer capturing them.
3. RMIT University
Scattered in the Melbourne CBD, RMIT University has a few heritage-listed buildings and contemporary architectures where could be your perfect wedding photo locations. One of the most iconic locations is the Building 20 at the corner of Russell St and La Trobe St. Used to be the Magistrates’ Court, This historic building’s Romanesque style blend the ancient British feel in your wedding photos.
If you prefer a contemporary architecture as the background for your wedding photos, the Design Archives Building on Victoria Street is a superb choice. The round mirror rendered wall and the pathway with full height glass on sides will bring the modern and artistic feeling to the wedding photography.
As a public university, RMIT is normally busy during the weekdays. So heading there for a weekend wedding is more feasible than weekdays. If you plan to have a weekday wedding, it is probably not the right place to shoot wedding photos.
4. Melbourne University
Found in 1853, Melbourne University is the oldest university in Victoria and a Melbourne culture icon. Hundreds of the newlyweds come to here to take wedding photos. Some of them may graduate from here and their love probably starts a lunch break on South Lawn. The period architecture is the perfect backdrop. You could also organize your wedding car shot at the architectural featured underground car park in Melbourne University. To ensure your wedding day running smoothly, having a wedding ceremony at Chapel of Holy Spirit in Norman College, One of the residential College close to Melbourne University is recommended.
The con is you have to buy a permit to take your wedding photos here. And try booking a weekend rather than weekdays as there will be too many people walk through during school days.
5. Fitzroy Town Hall
Built in the Golden Rush Era, Fitzroy Town Hall has a classic Victorian design facade as the backdrop for a wedding photo location. From my experience, on most weekends, the traffic and parking are fairly easy around Fitzroy Town Hall. You could also grab a chance to park your vintage wedding car here for the photos.
The drawback, if I have to pick one, is Fitzroy Town Hall is not a perfect place for its lighting conditions. When you choose to go there a bit earlier, like around 2 pm, the harsh lighting is very challenged for your wedding photographer. When you go there a bit late, the building itself will block the creamy glare. So this is not a place when you look for perfect sunsets photos.
6. Victoria Barracks
Located on St Kilda Road in Southbank, Victoria Barracks is one of the most impressive 19th Century building in terms of historical and architectural meanings. Melbourne wedding photographers love to bring the couples to take photos as it can provide a green covered stone wall as the beautiful backdrop, plus the traffic here is easier than the locations inside the Melbourne CBD. It is super handy when you booked an inner southern suburb wedding venue.
The only drawback is you do need to apply for the permit to take wedding photos at Victoria Barracks via Department of Defence.
7. Royal Exhibition Building and Carlton Gardens
Built from 1879, Royal Exhibition Building and Surrounds Carlton Gardens is a go-to wedding photo location in Melbourne. Located on the North-Eastern edge of Melbourne CBD, it is one of the iconic places display Melbourne in front of the world. The 26 hectares of manicured gardens, historical building and contemporary architecture make this place suitable for most wedding themes. The spawning lawns, the tree-lined pathway and the charming fountain in front of the Royal Exhibition Building provide the stunning backdrop for your wedding photos. There are some well-known wedding receptions set on the inner northern suburb, such as the San Remo Ballroom and Regal Ballroom, where has an easier link to Carlton Gardens.
8. Albert Park Lake
Expanding on 560 acres of Parkland, Albert Park Lake and its surrounding Gardens is simply a gorgeous place for your wedding photography. This is the place where perfectly mixed with the natural and modern feel. The swans, the tropical trees, the boat on the lake, the buildings from near to far and city skylines, these above could all be the perfect view for your ‘wedding photography. There are also some iconic waterfront wedding receptions surrounding the lake. Your wedding day can definitely run seamlessly when you choose your wedding reception and wedding portrait all here in Albert Park Lake.
9. Fitzroy Garden
When you are celebrating your wedding day in Melbourne CBD or nearby, and love to add some greens as the backdrop of the wedding photo, then Fitzroy Garden is one of the best wedding photo location choices. With a close distance to the receptions in Melbourne City, inner northern and eastern suburb. The iconic majestic tree-lined pathway, the Conservatory, the River God Fountain and the Wind Temple are just a few options in Fitzroy Garden.
As a popular tourist visit garden, you should expect some extra time for your wedding photographer to take some photos with a clean background. Photoshop these peoples off in the post-editing will cost a significant amount of time.
10. St Kilda Botanical Garden
Located in Melbourne’s inner south suburb, St Kilda Botanical Garden is an extraordinary place to capture your wedding location photos, especially when you prefer to get away from Melbourne CBD weekends traffic. The Rose Garden, the Rainman Fountain and its pond, the conservatory and the palm line path are just a few spots inside the St Kilda Botanical Garden for your to take wedding location photos.
For a wedding photography license only in the St Kilda Botanical Garden, you have to pay $100 for the permit. This is probably the only con I could find for St Kilda Botanical Garden as a wedding photo location after the ceremony.
The Place to Make Melbourne “Cultural Capital”
11. Hosier Lane
Known as the most iconic place for Melbourne’s street art, Hosier Lane is a unique place for your wedding photography. The walls at this laneway are filled with vibrant colours, edgy graffiti and stencils. If you are planning a classic and traditional wedding, this is probably not the right place for you. However, if you plan to connect your wedding with Melbourne street art and the unique feelings, Hosier Lane is one of the best places that Melbourne could offer. As Hosier Lane is set in the heart of Melbourne CBD, the traffic and parking is always a non-easy job.
12. Australian Center for Contemporary Art （ACCA）
Set on Stuart Street in South Bank, Australian Center for Contemporary Art is one of the best wedding photography locations for the weddings in Melbourne urban area. When you plan to have some exceptional wedding car involved to your weddings, such as the extra-long limo, multiple sports and vintage cars, and a group of Harley Motorbikes, ACCA is the place for you. With a contemporary architecture backdrop, incredibly spacious parking room, Melbourne’s heart location and a normally quiet environment, I will say it is my No.1 place if you ask to have some dramatic wedding photos with you and your cars.
13. Spice Market
When you looking for a unique and exotic place to take the wedding photos, Spice Market is the go-to choice. Set on Beaney Lane in the Melbourne CBD, Spice Market provides you with a chance to take the vibrant and subterranean style photos with its exotic Middle Eastern decors.
The cons？The Spice Market set in the Melbourne CBD, so it is probably only suited for the couple who get married around the Melbourne City or inner suburbs. It is probably cost too much time to travel when either your wedding ceremony place or wedding reception place in this area. Secondly, it is not a free place for these wedding photo opportunities. They charge around $350 for 1.5 hours photo shooting there.
14. National Gallery of Victoria （NGV）
Found in 1861, National Gallery of Victoria is an art museum with longest history, largest space and most visited people in Australia. If having a unique wedding with both the historical and contemporary art feeling is your MO, NGV is definitely the place for you. The stained glass ceiling with the cathedral height, the edgy contemporary art display room and its convenient South Bank location are all the bonus point for NGV to be a wedding photo location.
15. Luna Park Melbourne
Set on the foreshore of Port Phillip Bay in St Kilda, Luna Park is an iconic amusement Park in Melbourne. When you choose to have your wedding photography at Luna Park, it can provide an atmosphere filled with fun. It is a wedding photo location like no others. Some unique wedding receptions, such as Encore, The George Ballroom, Harbour room, sit within 10 mins driving from Luna Park. When you planning the wedding celebration in St Kilda and want to have something fun for your wedding, Luna Park is the right place.
16. Chanel Melbourne City
Sit on Flinders Lane, the Boutique Chanel shop has a contemporary architectural render wall, which is a perfect backdrop for modern and dramatic wedding photos. The fashion and elegant feeling delivered by Chanel mixed with the Melbourne street culture make here one of the favourite places for wedding photography locations. The shortcoming is traffic and crowed passengers. Leave a bit of flexible time here is essential.
Find your Wedding Photo With The Ocean View
17. Princes Pier Port Melbourne
Set on Port Phillip in Port Melbourne, Princes Pier is a historic pier with 580 meters out over the ocean. It is one of the best places to capture your wedding photos with the stunning Port Phillip view, Tasmania Spirit and original wooden pillars as the backdrop. Plus, Princes Pier is also an extraordinary place to have sunsets photos. When you already choose to celebrate your wedding at Melbourne CBD or south inner suburb location receptions, Princes Pier is a perfect wedding photo location with superb traffic conditions. When you have multiple locations to cover on your big day, we would recommend this place as the last one.
The drawback is you need to have a plan B. When Melbourne’s weather turns crazily windy and rainy, Princes Pier, same as the other coastal photo locations, is not the place you want to visit. It doesn’t have any cover there and the wild wind or rain could mess your hair or wedding dress.
18. Gem Pier Williamstown
Gem Pier is a historic pier in Williamstown, where is the first port settlement in Melbourne area. When you go there during the gold hour to capture your wedding photos, the combination of the historical essence, stunning ocean view and the city skyline could provide a perfect backdrop for your photographer. Most of the time, you may also find a retired cruiser there as well, which gonna make your photos here a bit unique compared to others.
Except for the drawback for the possible weather change, Gem Pier at Williamstown is also a popular public tourist place. Sometimes capture the wedding photos here need some extra time to find a clear backdrop. For the timing to capture the wedding photos here, please operate it a bit away from the middle day. The harsh sun lighting is very challenged for creating perfect wedding pictures.
My No.1 Tip for Choosing Wedding Photo Location
Before confirming the wedding photo location choice with your wedding photographer and cinematographer, I will always ask the couple to consider the real wedding day schedule. Depends on your culture, your budget, your wedding ceremony and reception venues, the typical time for wedding photo locations, between the wedding ceremony and reception, is 1 to 4 hours. No matter how much time we have for wedding location photography, avoid spending hours travelling is a smart choice. My suggestion is to choose your wedding photo locations within 30-min driving from your wedding ceremony or reception venues. Make sure your wedding day runs seamlessly is the prime goal.
Happy Planning Your Wedding!