My 10 best places for a photoshoot in and around Stroud, Gloucestershire

I include a free engagement photo shoot with all 3 of my wedding photography packages for many reasons that I've listed over on my engagement page.

I like to do these locally so have listed my top spots just for you around Stroud in Gloucestershire, in the heart of the stunning Cotswolds. There's many more as it's just simply a stunning part of the UK to live in but here are some of my favourite places (in no particular order)...

Stratford Park

Situated in the heart of Stroud, this fantastic arboretum is completely free to park and walk around. Featuring an ornamental pond, a bandstand, a museum and a walled garden you have the perfect place filled with different backdrops.


Selsey Hill

With views stretching over the Stroud valleys and down to the River Severn, Selsey is popular with hikers and dog walkers alike due to its ancient pathways and grassed over abandoned quarries.


Coaley Peak

Slighter smaller but the view from up here is my absolute favourite. Looking over towards Haresfield beacon, the River Severn, The Forest of Dean and on a clearer day you can see all the way over the Brecon Beacons. This place certainly has the ‘wow’ factor for backdrops.


Haresfield Beacon

Much like Selsey and Coaley, the views are phenomenal and very popular with walkers and paragliders! The hill also has free-roaming cows. There is some free parking or National Trust run car parks.


Westonbirt Arboretum

This is a little further out from Stroud but easy to get to and very popular and perfect for any time of year. It’s especially splendid (in my opinion) in autumn when the leaves are an array of reds, golds and ambers.


Painswick Rocco Garden

Simply gorgeous in spring when the flowers are in bloom and against the ornate archways, these historic 18th-century gardens have an Italian feel to them and are famous for their beautiful snowdrops in spring.


Painswick village

I lived in this gorgeous village a few years ago and still absolutely love it. It’s not called ‘The Queen of the Cotswold’s’ for nothing! With numerous old Cotswolds’ Stone building and a historic church with yew trees galore outside and majestic sweeping views of the valley, it would be difficult to take anything other than great photos here.


Woodchester Mansion

Renowned for its unfinished state and ghost stories, this Victorian Gothic mansion also boasts one of the nicest walks in the Stroud Valleys with 3 different lakes. If you wanted privacy whilst having your photos taken, it’s almost guaranteed as the estate is so large with many different walks for all abilities.


Minchinhampton Common

With free-roaming cows, free parking and simply stunning views (as well as Winston's ice cream parlour!) if you wanted the ‘Cotswolds look’ this is one of the places to be. Plenty of free parking is also available.


Purton Ships Graveyard

Granted, the name may put you off but don’t let it! There’s just something so majestic about old boats on the sand and mud banks of the River Severn with sweeping views up the estuary. Some of my favourite photo shoots have been taken down here and it’s been magical every time, even in the rain.

Engagement photoshoot at purton hulks ship graveyard gloucestershire by Zara Davis photographer
engagement photo shoot at coaley peak in gloucestershire stroud by zara davis photographer
engagement photoshoot near stroud in the cotswolds gloucestershire field by zara davis photographer