polly's cove nova scotia engagement photography

resources | tips & advice

Best Beaches & Hiking Trails for Portrait Sessions

If you’re not into the city or park vibe, or perhaps you’d like to go to a place with little to no people, a beach or hiking trail may be your best bet. I’ve spent a ton of time at each of these locations between dog walks, hikes and photo shoots so I know my way around!

Rainbow Haven

cow bay

A fairly long beach with lots of evergreens, Rainbow Haven Beach is perfect if you’d like some trees in your shots. It also has a couple of trails throughout the grassy areas. I’ve spent many hours here walking my dog, Molly, so I know the beach quite well. Getting to the end of the beach is a bit of a walk, but it’s usually pretty quiet if you’d like something more private.

parking: Two parking lots, first one is open year round

Lawrencetown Beach


One of my personal favourites, the views never disappoint in Lawrencetown. Whether it’s a bit foggy or sunset, it’s a magical place. There's a mix of rocky beach, crashing waves, dunes, and trails along the beach. I've spent a lot of time on this beach so I know a few good spots for your photos!

parking: large parking lot along beach open year round

Conrad's Beach


Conrad's beach is my favourite beach at the moment because it's been a staple for weekend dog walks all winter. Conrad’s has an extremely long boardwalk, a marshy area, grassy paths and stretches on forever. If you're up for a walk I can show you a few places that are generally quieter than the main part of the beach.

parking: small lot, roadside parking on busy days/all summer

Crystal Crescent


Crystal crescent has it all — stunning ocean views, a trail head and lots of forested areas. And if you’re down to walk a bit, there are some cool rocky spaces to explore further down the trail.

parking: two lots in the summer, may have to park roadside in summer. walk in only during off season

A few more spots in Lawrencetown area: Stoney Beach, Half Island Point and Atlantic View Trail. Also nearby Rainbow Haven is the Salt Marsh Trail

Duncan's Cove

ketch harbour road

Aside from some of the trails I’ve hiked in Cape Breton, Duncan’s Cove is my favourite in Nova Scotia. From the very first visit I’ve found it breathtaking with its stunning coastal views and rocky landscape. If you’re down for a hike and a photo session this is the trail to visit. It can be muddy at times so make sure you bring appropriate footwear to change into during the walking parts of the shoot

parking: roadside only

Polly's Cove

west dover

This is another trail with amazing coastal views and a lot of rock cliffs. Like Duncan’s Cove, it can be muddy in spots so make sure you bring shoes to change in and out of. Polly's Cove is a few minutes drive from Peggy's Cove so can visit Nova Scotia's most iconic lighthouse afterwards if you like!

parking: two small lots, may have to park roadside on weekends/summer. use caution it's a busy road in the summer

A trail I've hiked a few times but have yet to shoot at is High Head. It's beautiful and if you want to do your session there let me know!