15 Spots for the Perfect Charlotte Wedding Photo
Elegant. Edgy. Retro. Rustic. Whether you’re taking casual engagement shots or snapping a few pics before saying “I do,” these Charlotte backdrops will capture your memory perfectly.
by Kristen Moore
Note: We encourage you to contact each location directly before your photo shoot. Some venues require advanced notice, a reservation or have a photo shoot fee.
Whether you’re going for a chic city backdrop, a Carolina blue sky background or even fireworks in the frame (when timed perfectly with a Friday night Charlotte Knights game), the views and setting at Merchant & Trade will help you land the ideal photo. On the outdoor patio, the stylish decor, greenery and natural lighting are perfect for capturing a variety of shots.
One of the newer rooftops to the Uptown landscape, Aura Rooftop on the fifth floor of the J.W. Marriott hotel provides a stunning scene to capture your romantic moments. Soft aesthetics, lush foliage and reflective mirrors and windows offer many opportunities to catch the perfect shots on camera.
Choose from the dark and sultry South American-style setting at Búho Bar on the hotel’s 16th floor or the ground-floor Mico Restaurant or the light and airy outdoor spots at The Bohemian Garden or Búho Bar’s patio. No matter what location you choose in this stunning hotel (even the hallways and elevators are breathtaking), you’ll feel inspired by the glamorous and romantic experience.
Iconic Charlotte Landmarks
Beautiful backdrops abound at the two locations of North Carolina’s first art museum. At the original building in Myers Park, which once served as the first branch of the United States Mint, choose from the two-story lobby with floor-to-ceiling windows, the regal galleries, the exterior stairs at the back of the building or the expansive lawn to set the scene. At the Mint Museum Uptown, which features a newer, more modern aesthetic, you’ll find captivating spots like the exterior plaza with the geometric building behind, the entrance with the magnificent Chihuly chandelier hanging above, the grand atrium featuring large art pieces and four levels of cascading escalators, and a rooftop terrace overlooking the city.
Capture your love for each other and Charlotte by snapping a photo in front of one of the city’s most well-known pieces of public art. Designed by French sculptor Niki de Saint Phalle, the Firebird, or Le Grand Oiseau de Feu sur l’Arche (The Large Bird of Fire on an Arch) as it’s officially named, is a 17.5-foot whimsical mosaic sculpture situated in front of the Bechtler Museum of Modern Art. Adorned with 7,500 pieces of mirrored glass, it’s sure to catch the reflection of romance in your photo.
One of Uptown’s most narrow buildings honors the many contributions of African-American culture to the nation as well Brooklyn, the former African-American neighborhood that was once near the site of the museum. The building’s exterior architecture features a unique and eye-catching design that emulates African textile and quilting patterns, making for a unique background. Head to the rooftop terrace for a cityscape backdrop.
Natural light and aesthetics abound in this two-story historic shopping arcade built in 1914 that features a glass roof and an adjoining open-air brick courtyard (with hanging lights above) known as Brevard Court. The linear corridors offer an opportunity to get the perfect abstract-style photo with a visually interesting backdrop.
Neighborhood: South End
You’ll feel the explosion of love with this colorful hearts mural created by local artist Evelyn Henson as the background for your passion-filled picture. Choose a color or two from the mural to match your outfits and then pick your pose. The outcome is sure to be lovely and light-hearted.
Named in honor of Charlotte-born African-American artist Romare Bearden, this urban park is filled with lovely locations to snap that perfect shot. From the colorful water feature with the skyline behind to the winding walkways or benches amidst greenery, you’re sure to fill the camera roll with your favorite photos.
This 98-acre picturesque park is full of charming photo opps. From bridges and stairways to the pond and the foliage, a photo at Freedom Park brings nature’s finest to the forefront.
This playful pocket park in the heart of Uptown is something straight out of a storybook — literally. The literary-themed park features bronze sculptures of a stack of classic novels, poetry and quotes scattered throughout, the famous Charlotte sign (with mileage from Charlotte to cities that represent famous authors) and the larger-than-life fish fountains. You’re sure to get your fairytale photo here.
Neighborhood: Myers Park
Built in 1915 with a colonial revival architecture style, The Duke Mansion is a community gem in the Myers Park neighborhood. Southern charm is on display at this beautiful mansion, which now operates as a nonprofit bed-and-breakfast and event venue. From the Nisbet Garden to the Barnhardt Terrace, the grounds are lush and lovely. And inside, natural light and traditional decor fill the garden rooms.
Neighborhood: Camp North End
Capture your once-in-a-lifetime moments at one of Charlotte’s one-of-a-kind locations: Camp North End, a 76-acre historic site turned innovation hub with murals, repurposed decor and unique backdrops galore. From abandoned train tracks with the city skyline behind to stacked shipping containers covered in artwork, you’ll find an abundance of backgrounds to fit the style that reflects your relationship.
Neighborhood: East Charlotte
The interior and surrounding grounds of the Charlotte Museum of History offers several scenes ideal for capturing those sentimental moments. Honor the history of Charlotte with photos in one of the museum’s fascinating exhibits or use the Hezekiah Alexander Rock House & Homesite as your backdrop. Erected in 1774, it’s the oldest standing structure and only surviving pre-Revolutionary War home in Mecklenburg County. The museum’s front entryway and rotunda with the American Freedom Bell on display is also a great spot.
Area: Yadkin Valley
Known as “Chianti in the Carolinas,” Raffaldini is a breathtaking Tuscan-style winery about an hour north of Charlotte. As you drive up to the winery, you’ll feel like you’ve escaped to the Italian countryside. Take some pictures among the grapes in the vineyards and with the exterior of the beautiful building as your backdrop.
Area: Kings Mountain
Crowders Mountain and Carolina blue skies are on display at this beautiful vineyard west of Charlotte. Get a rustic-style shot in front of the wine barrels in the winery then head to the patio and vineyard grounds to capture the Carolina landscape with your loved one.
This family-owned winery is known for the charming treehouses on the vineyard grounds. Snap a few shots on the treehouse porches and then roam the vineyard for other idyllic spots.
If you are a beer-loving couple, then the German-style Brauhaus and outdoor Biergarten at The Olde Mecklenburg Brewery are ideal settings for your photo shoot. Dark wood and brick walls inside and the 8-acre patio under large oak, pecan and hickory trees will make you feel like you’ve been transported to Germany.
Neighborhood: North Charlotte
The vibe at Petty Thieves Brewing Co. is best described as old-school, vintage and rustic. It’s like walking into an old cigar lounge or vintage library with dark leather couches, nostalgic decor and even a secret room accessible via a rotating bookcase. If a dark and romantic vibe is your scene, head to Petty Thieves to “steal” some of the best shots with your significant other.
You’ll find a beautiful skyline background on the upstairs patio at this popular brewery just outside uptown. The main level patio is adorned with hanging lights while the white brick walls on the exterior of the building offer another lovely backdrop. Inside the brewery, brick walls and exposed ductwork offer a modern-industrial vibe.
From lush greenery and florals to fountains and pergolas, the beauty of nature comes to life at Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden. Snap a shot among the tropical plants and orchids in the conservatory or amidst the native plants and flowers throughout the gardens and trails.
Nothing says “I love you” like roses. The McGill Rose Garden just outside of Uptown is brimming with colorful roses and green foliage that make it an ideal setting for a romantic rendezvous.
Neighborhood: University City
The UNC-C Botanical Gardens are dedicated to collecting, cultivating and preserving a wide range of plants across its two outdoor gardens and the McMillan Greenhouse. The Dinosaur Garden within the greenhouse features fossils and prehistoric vegetation, making for a natural and primitive photo opp.
The largest nature preserve in Mecklenburg County, Latta Nature Preserve’s 654 acres feature natural flora and fauna, nature trails, historic structures and lakeside views (the preserve is a peninsula that extends into Mountain Island Lake). The breathtaking natural landscape is ideal for photos.
Neighborhood: Southwest Charlotte
McDowell Nature Preserve is the oldest in the county and protects the rolling, forested terrain along Lake Wylie. The preserve features McDowell Campground, Copperhead Island, nature trails and more than 1,100 acres of natural beauty providing a beautiful setting for pictures.
Area: Fort Mill
Small lakes and forests surround this 2,100-acre nature preserve south of Charlotte. From trails and open land to lakeside piers and a beautiful red barn, there are dozens of spectacular photo opps across this outdoor oasis.
Neighborhood: West Charlotte
Home to the largest man-made whitewater river in the world and comprising over 1,300 acres along the Catawba River, the U.S. National Whitewater Center is an outdoor adventure facility that’s one with nature. If you’re a couple who loves the outdoors, this is the perfect spot to capture a photo of you in action on the whitewater rapids, kayaking on the river or walking hand-in-hand along the nature trails.
If you and your loved one live the lake life, this is an ideal location for a lake-themed photo shoot. The fine dining restaurant’s interior decor is an ode to life on the water, while the outdoor patio provides a stunning waterfront view of Lake Norman.
Hidden in the middle of this 275-acre family farm, The Quarry at Carrigan Farms features 70-foot natural granite cliffs with a breathtaking waterfall that empties into the fresh water below. The Quarry’s boardwalk extends into the water and is surrounded by a sugar sand beach, offering both beach- and mountain-like views for your backdrop.