Parksville Photoshoot Locations

Photographing Cathedreal Grove

Photoshoot Locations in Parksville and Surrounding Communities

Where to Take Family, Wedding, or Engagement Photos in Parksville

Have you hired a photographer in the Parksville area and are wondering what location to choose? There are a ton of options! I have been living in Parksville nearly my entire life and have come to know the area well. Since becoming a photographer 7+years ago, I now see the places I visit from a photographers perspective. I will list the popular locations below, and will save a few top secret locations just for my clients upon request.

When thinking of a setting, there are a few questions to ask yourself. Is there anybody in your family who has mobility issues that require an easy access location? Are you getting married and want to shoot somewhere pretty close to your reception venue to reduce driving time? Where in nature do you feel most connected or drawn to? These are some things to consider, as well as time of year and time of day.

Parksville Photoshoot Locations

Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park

Rathtrevor Beach Provincial Park is probably Parksville’s most popular provincial park! Centrally located, the 347-hectare park features a 2km stretch of sandy beach, trails through old-growth Douglas fir trees and a large campground. This is the number one location I take my clients, as it has both beach and forest settings, and is easy to navigate.

Rathtrevor Beach from a Photographers Perspective

  • Has both beach and forest setting, with very far low tides
  • Excellent sunset and sunrise opportunities
  • Family friendly, easy to navigate, wheelchair accessible
  • There is always a place to find within the park that is quiet
  • Kids enjoy finding the wild bunnies
  • There is a playground kids can play at after or before the shoot
  • The sandy beach is very shallow, excellent for walking in to take water shots
  • Dog friendly (except February 15th-April 30th during Brant Geese Festival, no dogs are allowed on this beach.)
  • There is a White Cherry Blossom Tree in the park, in bloom from March-April
  • Wild Nootka Rose are beautiful and in bloom here from May-July

Little Mountain

Little Mountain is a very picturesque and easy access mountain summit, centrally located in Parksville. At just 92 meters high, the views of distant mountains and the forested Errington community are quite stunning. This is a popular destination to watch the sunrise and sunset, and you can drive up to the summit.

Little Mountain from a Photographers Perspective

Little Qualicum Cheeseworks

Little Qualicum Cheeseworks is a family-friendly dairy farm located in French Creek near Parksville. They host Canada’s first milk-on-tap dispenser, make their own artisan cheeses, have a farmgate store, and also allow free self-guided tours throughout their farm. It’s really a fantastic place to visit! The animals and farm-style architecture make for some really fun photoshoot settings!

Little Qualicum Cheeseworks from a Photographers Perspective

  • Family-friendly, entertaining and unique
  • Barns, fences, distant mountain views, farm animals and tractors to shoot with!
  • No admission fee
  • Dog friendly, must be leashed
  • More than just a photoshoot, this experience can last all day with all the other activities you can do!
  • *Limited hours of operation

Nanoose Bay Photoshoot Locations

Es-hw Sme~nts (Oak Leaf) Community Park

Es-hw Sme~nts Community Park is a 3 acre park situated along the ocean on a rocky point. This 2015-established park feels like a surreal piece of paradise, and it is! This locations is a popular dive spot, so you’ll often see divers bobbing in the water and mistake them for seals! Real seals are a common sight here too, and sunset and sunrise are both beautiful to view here. You will run into friendly neighbors here who are enjoying the serenity of nature, either walking their dog, going for a swim (year-round!), or launching their paddleboards into the ocean. Oak Leaf Park has become my favorite photoshoot locations

Es-hw Sme~nts (Oak Leaf) Community Park from a Photographers Perspective

  • Family-friendly, wheelchair accessible
  • Ocean views, Oak and Maple Tree forest, pebbly beaches, rocky bluffs, tall golden summer grass
  • Excellent Autumn location for colorful maple leaves
  • Amazing sunset and sunrise
  • Nature and wildlife viewing
  • Dog-friendly

Madrona Point

Madrona Point is a cute little rocky beach set in between oceanfront homes. The small space has two beaches which are great for sunrise and sunset viewing. The unique sandstone formations here are unlike any other in the area. You can see distant mountains such as Arrowsmith and Moriarty, and this is also a great spot to check during the annual Herring Spawn.

Madrona Point from a Photographers Perspective

  • Beautiful sunset and sunrise location
  • Unique sandstone rock formations make for an interesting landscape
  • Dog friendly
  • *Not mobility friendly
  • *Limited to ocean beauty only, as there isn’t much forest

Beachcomber Regional Park

Beachcomber Regional Park is another wonderful Nanoose Bay park. The 1-hectare park is a popular destination for sunset dates, wildlife viewing, and teaching kids about nature.

Beachcomber Park from a Photographers Perspective

Qualicum Beach Photoshoot Locations

Qualicum Beach Waterfront

The Qualicum Beach waterfront is a large expanse of soft sandy beach- 4km of it actually! The large curve is pleasing to the eyes, and there are many places to park and enjoy the beach.

Qualicum Beach Waterfront from a Photographers Perspective

Cathedral Grove and Cameron Lake

If you’re visiting Parksville, you’ll likely explore the giant trees of Cathedral Grove. This is a small preservation of old growth Douglas Fir and Cedar trees which are absolutely stunning. I know of a quiet trail within the busy park, which also leads to Cameron Lake. I enjoy taking clients here for a mix of old-growth serenity and lakeside bliss.

Cathedral Grove and Cameron Lake from a Photographers Perspective

  • Stunning unique old growth forest setting
  • Relaxing and wonderous time exploring the ancient forest
  • Lakeside setting within close distance to change it up
  • Mobility friendly, dog friendly, family friendly
  • *Busy parking lot
  • *Not good for sunset or sunrise

Nanaimo Photoshoot Locations

Neck Point Park and Pipers Lagoon Park

Neck Point and Pipers Lagoon are two very beautiful and similar beaches in Nanaimo. They are a three minute drive from each other, and are a popular destination for family and engagement photoshoots. Neck Point even offers a designated area for wedding ceremonies that is absolutely gorgeous!

Neck Point Park and Pipers Lagoon Park from a Photographers Perspective

Nanaimo Waterfront Walkway

Nanaimo’s Waterfront Walkway is a fun and happening location to both visit and take your family photos at. It definitely has a unique vibe to it; mixing nature with city. Cherry blossom trees can be found here, as well as the marina, historic Nanaimo architecture, and Maffeo Sutton Park. There is so much to see here! If you are digging the city vibe to showcase your visit to Nanaimo, this might be a location you are interested in.

Nanaimo Waterfront Walkway from a Photographers Perspective

  • Good sunset and sunrise setting
  • Very entertaining with boats, cafes, ocean, architecture, history, nature and people walking
  • Cherry Blossoms can be found here in March-April
  • If it rains, there are plenty of buildings with overhangs to keep you dry
  • Mobility friendly, dog friendly, family friendly
  • Turn your photoshoot into a “Discover Nanaimo” day!
  • *Very busy

Ammonite Falls

Ammonite Falls is Nanaimo’s iconic waterfall. The simple and powerful waterfall is a beautiful sight at all times of the year, though is most flowing during rainy periods. In 2021, a sturdy viewing platform and staircase was built, allowing an easier access to this beautiful waterfall.

Ammonite Falls from a Photographers Perspective

  • Unique setting with waterfall, river and forest scenes
  • In the summer, you can wade and swim in the waterfall pool!
  • For those seeking adventure and something uncommon!
  • *Not mobility friendly
  • *20+ minute walking trail to reach the waterfall, with elevation gain and loss
  • *Can be busy
  • *Cannot see sunset or sunrise here