5 Best Places for Dreamy Engagement Photos in Scottsdale, Arizona


HEY - I'm Annette

An Arizona based Wedding, Elopement & Couple's Photographer. I am here for the wild, messy and imperfect moments. Let me help you create an experience that will last a lifetime.


February 7, 2024

Annette Ambrose Photography, an Arizona-based wedding photographer (and recent bride-to-be) shares the best spots for Engagement Photos in Scottsdale, Arizona.

Can we talk about how beautiful Arizona’s desert landscape is? With some of the most stunning sunsets imaginable, there’s no need to venture far – Scottsdale is an Arizona desert paradise right in the heart of it all.

As a Scottsdale wedding photographer, I’ve had the privilege of capturing countless engagement sessions against the backdrop of this breathtaking landscape. Let’s delve into some of my favorite spots to make your engagement photos truly magical.

Desert Locations for Engagement Photos in Scottsdale, Arizona

ONE | Camelback Mountain

As the most popular mountain in Arizona, Camelback Mountain stands proudly in the Phoenix/Scottsdale area. Its diverse locations offer gorgeous views, making it a top choice for locals and tourists alike.

TWO | Tom’s Thumb:

Heading up North Scottsdale, Tom’s Thumb provides a shift in desert terrain with prominent boulders and captivating cactus views, creating a unique and dreamy setting for engagement photos.

THREE | Pinnacle Peak

Adjacent to Tom’s Thumb, Pinnacle Peak offers more boulder-like rocks and stunning cactus views. The vibrant colors of the Arizona desert in this area are unparalleled, providing a captivating background for your engagement shoot.

FOUR | Brown’s Ranch Trailhead

 Further north in Scottsdale, beyond Tom’s Thumb, Brown’s Ranch Trailhead features a flatter desert terrain. It offers easy access for a quick drive-up session, providing a stunning backdrop for engagement photos.

FIVE | McDowell Sonoran Preserve

Nestled in the northeast region of the valley, McDowell Sonoran Preserve showcases the beauty of preserved cacti and mountainous views. The flat desert terrain here allows for convenient parking and a picturesque setting for your engagement shoot.

Engagement Session Details in Scottsdale

Once you’ve chosen your ideal location, the fun truly begins with planning the engagement session details. This is a time to loosen up, get to know each other, and infuse a bit of creativity into your save-the-date announcements.

Engagement Ideas

  • Champagne Pop
  • Newspaper Announcement Ideas
  • Black Tie + Cute Mini White Dress
  • Rent a Retro Car
  • Fun Sunglasses

Current Style Trends

  • Editorial
  • Vogue-esque
  • Classy

For those seeking inspiration for their engagement outfits, CLICK HERE for editorial engagement outfit ideas.

Scottsdale’s desert landscape provides the perfect canvas for creating dreamy and unforgettable engagement photos. Whether against the backdrop of Camelback Mountain, Tom’s Thumb, Pinnacle Peak, Brown’s Ranch Trailhead, or McDowell Sonoran Preserve, each location offers a unique charm that will elevate your engagement session to new heights.

So, let the love between you and your partner bloom amidst the breathtaking beauty of Scottsdale’s desert paradise.


If you are willing to drive a little further outside of the Scottsdale area, there are SO MANY MORE desert locations. Here are some other ideas for desert photo locations in the Phoenix area:

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HEY - I'm Annette!

An Arizona based Wedding, Elopement & Couple's Photographer. I am here for the wild, messy and imperfect moments. Let me help you create an experience that will last a lifetime.


Annette Ambrose

Weddings, Elopements, & COUPLES