Best family photography locations around Victoria, BC

June 10, 2020

With summer's arrival on Vancouver Island, it's the perfect time to gather your family for a morning, afternoon, or evening and make some memories! Whether you're looking to shoot with your iPhone or one of Focal's amazing family photographers, the opportunities are endless to capture that postcard-worthy photo.

Market Square

In the heart of downtown Victoria, Market Square is a gorgeous, open-air courtyard. Surrounded by brick and beam heritage buildings, cafes and restaurants spill out onto patio tables well into the evening.

The best part for photographers? Because of its protection from harsh sunlight during the day, you can always find a nice shaded spot for family photos that won't suffer from the stark shadows or blown-out backgrounds created by bright sun. (The square also offers plenty of coverage for those rainy days -- which, when you're on the West Coast, tends to come in handy.)

Family photo in market square Victoria
grandma and son portrait market square victoria

Photography by Marlboro Wang Photo

Beacon Hill Park

It's hard to talk about photography in Victoria without mentioning Beacon Hill Park. Nestled just outside of downtown, Beacon Hill offers something for everyone. Ocean views? Check. Tall grass and towering Douglas firs? Check and check. Turtle-filled ponds? Parading peacocks? Native flowerbeds? Got 'em all.

Family Photo in beacon hill park
kid posing by pond beacon hill park victoria
grandma family photo laughing beacon hill park victoria

Photography by Ooh Ooh Darling Photography

Mill Bay Marina

A short drive up-island, roughly 35 minutes outside of Victoria, Mill Bay Marina is a spectacular location for oceanfront photos away from the city. The pebble beach, picturesque harbour, and lush greenery all provide backdrops sure to add a splash to your next family shoot.

Family Photo Mill bay marina ooh ooh darling photography
Family Photo Mill bay marina ooh ooh darling photography
grandma and kids laughing Mill bay marina ooh ooh darling photography

Photography by Ooh Ooh Darling Photography

UVic Quad

You don't need to be a student or faculty to enjoy the University of Victoria's natural beauty. From the massive Sitka spruce to the sprawling greens of the quad, UVic is a prime location for family portraits. If you stop by in the fall, you'll be treated to vibrant autumn colours. (Come back for the cherry blossoms in spring.) The best part? The tree canopy offers excellent protection against harsh direct sunlight that can ruin your photos.

dad and daughter grad photo uvic
family uvic grad photo victoria

Photography by Marlboro Wang Photography and Naomi Maya Photography

Mount Douglas / PKOLS

Another Victoria classic, boasting perhaps the best views of anywhere in the city. Mount Douglas -- known and referred to as PKOLS by the W̱SÁNEĆ people, for "white rock" -- is easily accessible by a short hike or drive to the lookout point at the top. Three-hundred and sixty degree views of city and coastline unfurl below, extending all the way to Washington State's Olympic Mountains and making the viewpoint one of the best places to catch a sunset in Victoria.

mt doug. family photo ooh ooh darling photography
mom and son photo mt doug victoria ooh ooh darling photography
dad and daughter mt doug photo ooh ooh darling photography

Photography by Ooh Ooh Darling Photography

Cowichan Bay Marina

Head farther up-island, about 50 minutes from Victoria, and you'll reach the Cowichan Bay Marina. With its surrounding beaches of tall grass and driftwood, coupled with striking ocean views, the waterfront makes for an excellent day trip -- and a photogenic one, to boot.

Cowichan bay marina grandma, grandpa and grandson laughing
family photo cowichan bay marina

Photography by Marlboro Wang Photo

Your Backyard

Sometimes, the best place for a family photoshoot is right at home. After all, getting family portraits is really about taking advantage of moments when your family is all together -- the location is secondary. A talented family photographer can make the most of any space and turn your backyard into a place you'll be proud to share.

Family Photographers on Focal

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