I spent the first few years of my photography career based out of Valparaiso, Indiana and found tons of places to take engagement photos in northwest Indiana that felt unique. From old warehouses, farms, and fields to downtown locations that felt a little more hidden there are plenty of places you can have your engagement photos taken in northwest Indiana. Below you’ll find a list of my favorite locations that you can use for your own engagement sessions!
Where to Take Photos in Valparaiso
Valparaiso University has a ton of unique architecture and plant life that makes it stand out in engagement photographs. Theres a chapel, a bunch of older looking buildings and a few gardens to choose from. If used in the summer its also relatively empty!
Address: 1700 Chapel Dr, Valparaiso, IN 46383
Gabis Arboretum at Purdue Northwest
Gabis Arboretum at Purdue Northwest, formally known as Taltree Arboretum, has tons of locations inside of it. There are fields, trails, gazebos and water features in the surrounding area.
Address: 450 W 100 N, Valparaiso, IN 46385
Four Corners Winery
Four Corners Winery is a local wedding venue with an indoor barn, fields of grapes, and a vast open field that looks amazing at sunset. Bonus: No one says you can’t leave your engagement session with a few new wines to try at home. That is a win-win in my book.
Address: 294 E 600 N, Valparaiso, IN 46383
Sunset Hill Farms
Sunset hill farm is location at the intersection of US 6 and Meridian road in Valparaiso. It’s a large property with antique farming equipment, barns, fields, and occasionally hosts festivals. This location is great for couples who prefer privacy as the property is so large there are several picturesque places you can run off to that are less likely to have people around.
Address: 775 Meridian Rd #8507, Valparaiso, IN
Valparaiso has spent a ton of time and resources into creating a beautiful downtown setting that encourages community. There are historical looking buildings, garden features, rooftops, and unique locations like Valparaiso Velvet to choose from as your backdrop.
Address: 68 Lafayette St, Valparaiso, IN 46383
Stacks Bar & Grill
I tend to like locations that could double as normal dates and stacks definitely meets the criteria. Personally, I think they have the best food in the region. You probably need to schedule your session before open – and definitely need to get permission before using this location. That said with a rooftop, trendy looking upstairs bar, and the library theme… your photographs will absolutely stand out here.
Address: 175 W Lincolnway, Valparaiso, IN
Moraine Nature Preserve
This is kind of a hidden gem, most people don’t even know it exists. Moraine Nature preserve is best in spring when the flowers are in full bloom, but is also beautiful in the snow. There are trails, fields, and winding roads to choose from.
Address: 240 Meska Road Valparaiso, IN
Locations for Engagement Photos outside of Valparaiso
Brincka Cross Gardens
The Brincka Cross Gardens is home to over 61 acres of woodland, greenery and flowers. Throughout the numerous trails through the park, there are numerous different plant species making for unique photos throughout the park.
Address: 427 E Furness Rd, Michigan City, IN
Michigan City Lighthouse & Museum
The lighthouse is a really versatile space with the beach, a nearby park and even a zoo for location changes. This is great for couples who are looking for a historic look to their photographs but also don’t want to miss sunset.
Address: 100 Heisman Harbor, Michigan City, IN
County Line Orchard
County Line Orchard is located in Hobart, IN. Depending on the season, they have sunflower fields, the orchard itself, several barns and even pumpkins. It is one of the largest wedding venues in the region and is extremely popular. You really can’t go wrong here, just make sure you have permission from the orchard and you are good to go.
Address: 200 S County Line Rd, Hobart, IN
Indiana Dunes National Park
The dunes are a classic for good reason. Lake Michigan is one of the largest freshwater lakes in the country and its incredibly picturesque. You can hike dunes, hop in the lake or even set camp for your engagement photos. You may need a permit depending on the time of year, i would recommend checking with the park directly.
Address: 1215 N State Rd 49, Porter, IN
Friendship Botanical Gardens
These historic gardens are inspired by the 1933 Century of Progress Fair in Chicago and include trails used for hundreds of years by Native Americans. The gardens have over 105 acres of trails through the woods and open spaces with gardens, a meadow, and Lake Lucerne. This is great for outdoorsy couples – but don’t forget the mosquito spray.
Address: 2055 East, US-12, Michigan City, IN
Hamstra Gardens are located out in Wheatfield, Indiana. They are basically one of the only things in Wheatfield besides actual wheat fields. Every session at Hamstra Gardens is entirely different from the next which means every couple is gets a unique experience. The tower, classic looking buildings, and the gardens are all so well maintained it is the one place in the midwest that reminds me of Walt Disney World (on a less smaller, less mouse centric scale). The paths and greenery make it possible to find different kinds of light any time of the day, but the water and bridge are my favorite spots to shoot in. The boat is available to use as well, and while no one has actually fell into the water… I think it’s best to save that for next to last.
Address: 12028 N County Rd 200 W Wheatfield, IN
More information: Hamstra Gardens Engagements & Weddings
University of Notre Dame
The University of Notre Dame is located in South Bend, it is a bit of a drive, but less hectic than Chicago. What I love about this location are the multiple reflective ponds, gardens, and architecture. There are hundreds of locations within this university, most of which are easily accessible.
Address: 220 Main Building Notre Dame, IN