Best Places to Take Family Pictures in Phoenix

family of five snuggling in pastel clothes among the trees and desert at Butcher Jones Recreation

When it comes to capturing the adventurous spirit and unique personalities during family and maternity sessions, the right location can make all the difference and set the tone. Central Arizona offers an array of stunning backdrops that enhance the beauty and emotion of these special moments. Here are my top five recommendations for the best places to take family pictures in Phoenix: Butcher Jones, Water Users Recreation Area, Phon D Sutton, Riparian Preserve, and the North Scottsdale Boulders.

Best Places to Take Family Pictures in Phoenix for Adventurous Maternity or Family Photos

Butcher Jones: Lakeside Serenity and Scenic Views

family of five snuggling in pastel clothes among the trees and desert at Butcher Jones RecreationButcher Jones, located on the shores of Saguaro Lake, is one of the best places to take family pictures in Phoenix. The combination of the shimmering lake, rugged hills, and sandy shores creates a diverse backdrop that adds depth and variety to your photos.

The lighting at Butcher Jones is particularly calming during the golden hour. As the sun sets behind the mountains, the light reflects off the water and beautifully highlights the natural surroundings.  It creates a serene, almost magical atmosphere. This lighting is perfect for capturing tender family moments or the radiant glow of an expectant mother.

family of five walking alongside the lake's edge at Butcher Jones - one of the best places for family photos in PhoenixAccessibility is a significant advantage at Butcher Jones. The area features ample parking and well-maintained trails that lead to the lakeside, making it easy for families with children to navigate. The combination of easy access and breathtaking scenery makes Butcher Jones an excellent choice for capturing both adventure and intimacy in your photos.toes of a young girl in a teal dress playing in the lake at Butcher Jones

Water Users Recreation Area: Mountainside Beauty and Rugged Charm

The Water Users Recreation Area, located along the Salt River, offers a unique blend of mountainside beauty and rugged charm. This location is perfect for families and expectant mothers who love the outdoors.  How wonderful to incorporate the natural beauty of the red mountains and flowing river into your photo sessions.

The sweeping backdrops at the Water Users Recreation Area are stunning, with towering cliffs, lush vegetation, and the gently flowing river.  This spot provides a dynamic and picturesque setting. The lighting here is particularly beautiful in the early morning and late afternoon, when the sun casts a soft, diffused light over the landscape, enhancing the natural beauty and adding a touch of warmth to your photos.

There is a large parking lot close to the riverbank. Depending on your mobility we can choose between an easily accessible route or be more exploratory and forge through some of the greenery to get close to the river.  The ability to choose your adventure at Water Users Recreation Area makes it one of the best places to take family pictures in Phoenix.

Phon D Sutton: Lush Riverside and Mountain Views

pregnant mama in a blue dress and cream shawl standing among the trees at Phon D sutton one of the best places for family photos in Phoenix Phon D Sutton, another gem along the Salt River, offers a mix of a lush riverside experiences alongside views of the Four Peaks Mountain Range.  This location is ideal for families and expectant mothers who appreciate the stark beauty of the desert landscape combined with the tranquility of the river.

The sweeping desert vistas at Phon D Sutton are complemented by the lush greenery along the river, creating a unique and varied backdrop. Additionally, the lighting here is exceptional, especially during the golden hour.  As the sun sets over the desert, long shadows are cast, bathing the landscape in a warm, golden light.

mother sits on a blanket with her young daughter at Phon D Sutton as dad dances with their older daughter in the background at the bank of the river

Accessibility at Phon D Sutton is excellent, with ample parking and well-maintained trails that lead to the riverbank and surrounding desert areas. In addition, the more hidden trails provide a unique backdrop if you’re in the mood to explore.  This ease of access, combined with the stunning natural beauty, makes Phon D Sutton one of the best places to take family pictures in Phoenix for capturing adventurous and intimate family and maternity moments.

family of four walking among the trees near at one of the best places for family photos in Phoenix

Riparian Preserve: Wildflower Trails and Tranquil Waterways

dad and pregnant mom swinging their toddler girl at a Phoenix park during their Phoenix maternity photos

The Riparian Preserve in Gilbert offers a lush, green oasis in the heart of the desert, making it a perfect location for family and maternity photo sessions. The preserve features a variety of habitats, including ponds, wetlands, and wooded areas, providing a diverse and special backdrop for your photos.

Phoenix pregnant woman holding her baby in green maternity dress with sunflare The tranquil waterways and trails lined with wildflowers at the Riparian Preserve create a serene and peaceful atmosphere.  Therefore, it is ideal for capturing the joy and love of family and the anticipation of a new arrival. The lighting in the preserve is soft and diffused, especially in the early morning and late afternoon.

Accessibility is a highlight of the Riparian Preserve, with plenty of parking and well-maintained trails that are easy to navigate. This makes it a convenient and beautiful location for families with young children, offering a variety of scenic spots for memorable photo sessions.

pregnant mama holding her tummy with a mustard yellow maternity gown with sunlight shining behind her

North Scottsdale Boulders: Majestic Rock Formations and Desert Beauty

The North Scottsdale Boulders provide a dramatic and awe-inspiring backdrop for adventurous families and pregnant mamas. The majestic rock formations and expansive desert landscape create a striking setting that enhances the beauty and emotion of your photos.

In addition, the sweeping backdrops at the North Scottsdale Boulders are truly breathtaking, with towering boulders, cacti, and open desert spaces providing a stunning and varied backdrop.

The combination of dramatic scenery and easy access makes the North Scottsdale Boulders one of the best places to take family pictures in Phoenix.  Families of all sizes looking to capture the adventurous spirit and profound joy of their journey will feel at ease here.

Capturing the Adventure in Family and Maternity Sessions

Each of these locations offers something unique and beautiful for adventure family and maternity sessions. Whether it’s the lakeside serenity of Butcher Jones, the riverside beauty of the Water Users Recreation Area, the lush vistas of Phon D Sutton, the easy and flowery paths of the Riparian Preserve, or the majestic rock formations of the North Scottsdale Boulders, these spots provide the perfect backdrop for capturing the love, joy, and adventure of your family’s journey. By choosing the right location, you can create stunning and memorable photos that celebrate this special time in your life.

Ready to explore and adventure as a family for your next photo sessions? As a family and maternity Photographer in Phoenix, I love providing a relaxing and laid back experience for expectant mamas and families with lots of kiddos.  Reach out to me today to schedule your Adventure Photo Session!

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