What better place to take engagement photos than the one and only Palm Springs? As a Palm Springs wedding photographer, I’ve got your hookup for the most amazing spots. The best palm springs engagement photo locations aren’t hard to find anymore, now that you’re here on my site. 😉A lot of people ask me if I have a favorite location here in Palm Springs, but I actually have ten favorites. Seriously could not pick a single spot that is better than the rest. Let me list ’em out for you!
Here are the 10 best Palm Springs
engagement photo locations
Palm Springs Windmills
Truly the most recognizable Palm Springs photo spot. The windmills are iconic, and if you’re looking to have a fun and playful spot, this one gets my vote! There’s plenty of room to run around and get incredible wide shots, as well as up-close moments. My favorite time to shoot here is right after the sun dips below the mountains. It creates this incredible glow with the last bit of light before nightfall.
Moorten Botanical Garden
Moorten Botanical Garden is an absolute gem of a location. Home of the world’s first cactarium (and possibly only cactarium?) there are so many incredible nooks to take photos! What’s even better is that they sell plants out of the nursery. A small cactus would be the perfect souvenir to take home and place next to your favorite framed engagement photo. It’s just too cute! To support the garden, admission is $5 per person and there’s a $25 permit fee for photography. (Don’t worry – they take cash and cards!)
Mid century modern heaven. There are so many amazing neighborhoods in Palm Springs to take photos. Palm tree lined streets and vintage cars parked outside of amazing homes are typical things to find! Taking photos on a quiet residential road with the mountains in the background is such a gorgeous look, and the abundance of palm trees just adds to the fun Southern California vibe.
The Ace Hotel, besides being an incredible place to get married, also works so well as a backdrop for your engagement photos. There is an amazing mural wall at the hotel that’s updated with new artwork every so often. Each update as creative and fun as the last. There’s also a restaurant on site called King’s Highway that is such a cute spot. Snuggle up in a corner booth or snag some stools at the counter for a fun, retro meets modern diner shoot.
The Saguaro Hotel is the king of color when it comes to Palm Springs photo locations. With their neon colored walls and bright blue pool, the party vibe is strong here at the Saguaro. Pro tip: avoid this spot during spring break and check the schedule to make sure they don’t have a festival happening. Things can get quite crowded at this hotel, and understandably so. It’s a popular spot and everyone will love the vibrant colors in your photos!
This “location” is actually a collection of locations. Let me explain. Desert X is a modern art exhibition that takes place every other year in Coachella Valley. Their site contains the list of art installations as well as coordinates to each location. Desert X is a really beautiful and meaningful organization. Here’s what their site says about who they are and their mission:
“Desert x is produced by the desert biennial, a 501(c)3 charitable organization, conceived to produce recurring international contemporary art exhibitions that activate desert locations through site-specific installations by acclaimed international artists. Its guiding purposes and principles include presenting public exhibitions of art that respond meaningfully to the conditions of desert locations, the environment and indigenous communities; promoting cultural exchange and education programs that foster dialogue and understanding among cultures and communities about shared artistic, historical, and societal issues; and providing an accessible platform for artists from around the world to address ecological, cultural, spiritual, and other existential themes.” Source: Desert X (follow them on instagram)
This photo is from the last Desert X that took place in 2019. Their 2021 exhibition is set for February 6th – April 11th. It’s a great spot for a unique engagement session, and such a treat to see these incredible pieces of art and to take time to appreciate the work and intention behind them.
Palm Springs Visitor Center
The visitor center welcomes you to Palm Springs, it’s the first thing you see driving in. With the Palm Springs sign set against the backdrop of the mountains, it’s a fabulous spot to snag some photos. There are gorgeous palm trees near the sign as well which makes that spot a bit of a small oasis with the shade they provide. It’s simply a classic and cute location!
Going out into the open desert with the mountains in the background is another stellar option. There’s plenty of spots in Palm Springs that look like this, but my favorite is just beyond the visitor center. Parking is a breeze there and you can walk out into the open area and have the stunning mountains behind you for your engagement photos.
Just Beyond the City Limits
Right before you hit the city limits, there are some pretty cool spots to just pull off the road and take photos at. My favorite time of year for these spots is in the spring, right when the desert blooms. The greenery and wildflowers make all the difference.
Mid Century Modern Home
Rent one on Airbnb or VRBO and enjoy your best Palm Springs life. My personal favorite mid century modern home in Palm Springs is the Twin Palms Frank Sinatra Estate. There is just nothing like it, and the fact that it once belonged to Frank Sinatra is just too cool. The special pool shaped piano (built specifically for Frank Sinatra) is such a cool feature and the interior design is exquisite. What’s even better? They host weddings at Twin Palms. Pro tip: you are required to have a planner (click here for my favorite wedding planner) and they only take bookings one year in advance.
And there you have it. The 10 best Palm Springs engagement photo locations. Looking for more Palm Springs photos? Check out Bonnie + Mike’s wedding at The Saguaro!
Marissa Hyland is a Southern California wedding photographer known for her bright and colorful photos and expert advice. Her passion is capturing the playfulness and fun of couples combined with the artful nature of romance. Feel free to get lost in the moment, she will get it ALL on camera. To book Marissa for your Southern California wedding photos – click here!