It’s Top 10 Tuesday and today I am spilling all of my secrets on my Favorite NJ Portrait Locations, where they are and how I find them! A lot of people ask me where they should go for portraits sessions, and I actually have a huge list of places to go with permit information as well. Can we shoot there without a permit? Do we need a permit? Are there opening/closing hours? If the sun good there? Will we see a sunset? All of those questions will be answered right here; so keep reading!

Favorite NJ Portrait Locations Bokeh Love Photography
I try to find locations that do not require a permit or a fee to use the space for photography. Some locations do require a permit, which my clients are responsible for paying. The list below are my go to spots, the most cost effective locations and some of my absolute favorites! I find myself going to the same spots over and over again, but I do welcome new locations to keep my creativity flowing!

How to I find my locations? Sometimes it’s difficult. I used to drive around for hours looking for spots, I still do sometimes! I have an app where I am able to snap a quick photo, and save the coordinates of the location that I took the photo. This way, I can quickly go in my phone, and send my clients pictures of spots, and coordinates of where to find me! It’s super easy and very effective! Other times, I use google earth! Which is an amazing resource that allows me to see the arial view of the surrounding beaches.

I look for spots that have other aspects besides just the beach! 

A boardwalk is always great, rocks/jetty, a fishing pier is always a win! I try to keep my mind open and always see the beauty in something that, someone who isn’t a photographer may not be able to see.


So here it is! My Top 10 Favorite NJ Portrait Locations!

1. The Historic Smithville Village – Galloway, NJ
615 E Moss Mill Rd, Smithville, NJ
The Smithville Village is basically in my back yard! I love it, and I visit here all the time. Okay, it’s not right in my backyard, but it is a 5 minute ride! I photograph many families here and have also photographed many weddings here. It’s is my number 1 because I could go back here a million times and always be inspired.
Bokeh Love Photography Smithville Village South Jersey Family Photographer

2. The Ventnor Fishing Pier – Ventnor, NJ
S Cambridge Ave & Boardwalk, Ventnor City, NJ 
The Ventnor Fishing Pier is my favorite, because you get the best of the beach, under the pier, the boardwalk and the ocean! It’s so versatile and makes for really amazing images.
Permit Required? The beach is free after 5pm
Does it cost anything? The beach is free after 5pm
Bokeh Love Photography Ventnor Fishing Pier South Jersey Beach Photographer

3. Historic Batsto Village – Hammonton, NJ
31 Batsto Rd, Hammonton, NJ
Historic Batsto Village is one of my favorite portrait locations. There are so many areas to get creative within the village. Whether you are looking to have the buildings in your images or just tall grass. It’s very versatile and the images are always stunning here!
Permit Required? Uncertain at this time
Does it cost anything? Uncertain at this time
Bokeh Love Photography Historic Batsto Village South jersey Family Photographer

4. Stockton University – Galloway, NJ
101 Vera King Farris Dr, Galloway, NJ
Stockton University, formally known as Stockton State College is a beautiful campus with vines growing up walls, beautiful rose bushes, lush lawns and stone steps. What makes this location even better for a portrait option is if you’ve graduated here yourself!
Permit Required? No
Does it cost anything? Only if you’re planning on attending school! (Or visiting the cafeteria for Chicfil-A!)
Bokeh Love Photography Stockton University Galloway Family Photographer

5. Smithville Mansion – Eastampton Township, NJ
803 Smithville Road, EastamptonNew Jersey
Not to be confused with the Historic Smithville Village in Galloway, The Smithville Mansion is a historic location full of beautiful flowers, arbors, arched wooden barn doors, court yards and more. You feel as though you’ve stepped back in time here.
Permit Required? No
Does it cost anything? No, not unless you are visiting for a private event that charges a ticket price.

Bokeh Love Photography Smithville Mansion South jersey family photographer
6. Brigantine Beach – Brigantine, NJ
16th Street
I have photographed all over the island, so I won’t name every street. I will say that all of Brigantine is gorgeous and I am so happy I live so close to the beach to be able to photograph there often.
Permit Required? Beach tags til 5, free after 5. But no one photographers before sunset!
Does it cost anything? Nope, not unless you are on the beach before 5.
Bokeh Love Photography Brigantine Beach South Jersey Family Photographer

7. Cape May Park North – Cape May Court House, NJ
1099 South Route 9, Cape May Court House, NJ
Cape May Park North is such a gem! The park closes at dusk, but once outside of the gates there is a front lawn that catches the glow of the sunset perfectly! No need to chase light, it finds us right here!
Permit Required? No, just be respectful. There are a lot of animals, admire & never touch an animal!
Does it cost anything? No, but if you see trash, pick it up and help keep this park beautiful and remember whatever you bring in, make sure it leaves with you. As with any park, or any location for that matter, leave no traces that you were ever there.
Bokeh Love Photography Cape May Family Photographer

8. Estell Manor Park – Mays Landing, NJ
109 NJ-50, Mays Landing, NJ 08330
Estell Manor Park is home to many Vetrans, including my own Grandfather. When I go there, I feel at peace. Not only that, but when the sun sets, it lights up the leaves in the early fall like nothing else you’ve ever seen. Well, maybe you’ve seen that before, but I still find the magic in it.
Permit Required? No, just be respectful.
Does it cost anything? No, but if you see trash, pick it up and help keep this park beautiful and remember whatever you bring in, make sure it leaves with you. As with any park, or any location for that matter, leave no traces that you were ever there.
Bokeh Love Photography Estell Manor Mays Landing Family Photographer

9. Harold E. Taylor Observatory aka “The Stockton Observatory”– Galloway, NJ
36 Pomona Road, Route 575, Galloway, NJ
The Observatory is actually a very cool place for a class trip, but I go there for the field and the woods. I love how the sun just kisses the grass here. It’s really very beautiful. There is a telephone number if you would like to call and schedule a tour of the dome: (609) 652-4520
Permit Required? No
Does it cost anything? To walk in the field, no. I am unsure if there is any price required to enter the telescope dome. I have never done that. As with any park, or any location for that matter, leave no traces that you were ever there.
Bokeh Love Photography The Stockton Observatory Galloway Family Photographer

10. Good Old Days Sunflower Farm – Woodbine, NJ
119 S. Old Tuckahoe Rd. Woodbine, NJ Cape May County
Donald is the owner of the Good Old Days Sunflower Farm. He plants his seeds in Mid April to bloom in the end of June. Throughout the summer he plants more seeds to keep the sunflowers blooming until late April/early September. You can reach Donald at: 609-536-4080.
Permit Required? No
Does it cost anything? He sells fresh cut sunflowers from an antique flower cart. Payment is based on the honor system. He keeps an old metal lockbox on the cart for you to pay for the flowers you take. If you go here, be sure to buy some flowers! I always leave a little extra! 

Bokeh Love Photography, Cape May Sun Flower Farm, Summer Portraits, Cape May Family Photographer

I hope you enjoyed this week’s Top Ten Tuesday – ‘Favorite NJ Portrait Locations’. Subscribe to our mailing list and be sure to come back every Tuesday for more amazing Top Ten’s!

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Top Ten Tuesday

April 7, 2020

Favorite NJ Portrait Locations

Favorite NJ Portrait Locations Bokeh Love Photography Smithville Galloway Ocean City Ventnor Egg Harbor City Batsto Mays Landing

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