Friday, September 22, 2017

Top Ten Wedding Photo Locations in Chicago

by Camille McLamb
reprinted as appeared on
With its impressive architecture and unique attractions, Chicago provides a variety of stunning backdrops for photography. Many couples take advantage of the city’s features, spending a few hours on wedding day, either before or after the ceremony, to take wedding photos around town. Whether you want skyline vistas or garden foliage, here is my top ten list of wedding day photo spots in Chicago:

Chicago Marquee
A shot of the newlyweds with the famous Chicago Theatre marquee will make it clear for posterity where you got married. The lights on the sign are spectacular at night, but the colorful sign grabs attention for great daytime shots, as well.
Address: 175 N. State St.

The Bean
This quirky sculpture, formally named Cloud Gate, is a popular tourist destination and a favorite with wedding parties. The reflective surface can make for some artistic shots. But it can be crowded, and you likely won’t be the only wedding group there.
Address: 201 E. Randolph St.

Buckingham Fountain
A Chicago landmark that is a fun stop for a summer wedding. The fountain’s water display occurs for 20 minutes every hour. Inspired by the Palace of Versailles, the fountain provides an elegant setting for group photos while still being outdoors.
Address: 301 S. Columbus Dr.

Adler Planetarium
For some of the best skyline views, couples head to Adler Planetarium. With the lake and the beach there too, it’s a scenic spot for photos. But be sure to allow for plenty of time getting to and from the museum campus.
Address: 1300 S. Lake Shore Dr.

Art Institute Garden
This little courtyard garden on the Art Institute’s south side provides a respite from the hustle and bustle of Michigan Avenue. Generally a quiet space, the canopy of trees, sculpture fountain, and stone benches offer nice photo opportunities and a moment of peace. 
Address: 111 S. Michigan Ave.

Michigan Avenue at Wrigley Building/Riverwalk
On the other hand, if you want to capture the energy of the city, go for a shot of the couple on the median of Michigan Avenue, as cabs and cars whisk by. You can then head down the spiral stone stairs to the Riverwalk for some photos of the Chicago River and surrounding famous architecture.
Address: 400-410 Michigan Ave.

Kinzie Street Bridge
For that industrial Chicago feel, Kinzie Street Bridge, with its high steel trusses, has become a must. It’s a great location for the full wedding party, but be prepared to wait, as other wedding groups take their turn.
Address: Kinzie St. & N. Canal St.

Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool
If you want to get back to nature, the Lily Pool offers rocky limestone paths, a prairie style shelter, and, of course, plenty of lily pads. Located in Lincoln Park, it is a national historic landmark.
Address: 125 W. Fullerton Parkway

Union Station
When planning the photo locales, don’t forget to consider a possible rain plan! With its massive stone columns, elegant staircase, and detailed ceiling, Union Station provides a grandiose indoor stop for photos.
Address: 225 S. Canal St.

Chicago Cultural Center
Stained glass domes, curving staircases, and marble walls with colorful mosaics create a magnificent backdrop. The location near Millennium Park is convenient if an unexpected rainstorm interrupts your photos, or if you simply need a break from the heat! 
Address: 78 E. Washington St.

When choosing your photo stops around town, map out the route in advance to best maximize your time around town. When planning the number of stops and amount of time for the trip, be sure to take into account likely city traffic. Rather than worrying about making it to each planned stop, be flexible and enjoy each location! You’ll get beautiful photos but will also be making memories in the process, as you spend time with your closest pals and newly minted spouse!

Tell us your favorite photo spots in the city!