Long Island’s Best Family Photo Ops for Shutterbugs of All Ability Levels


As summer winds down, capture the joy and fun of the past couple of months in a bright and cheerful family photo.

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Before you have to say goodbye to summer, make sure you get a fantastic family photo that will always remind you of the good times you had during the summer month.  Long Island has numerous spots for fantastic photo ops – most of which are at the beach or near water or gardens.  For the perfect family photo, coordinate everyone’s clothes without going over the top with matching.  Instead, pick a color scheme that works for everyone, and use that palette to inspire everyone’s outfits.  Overall, try to limit patterns or characters on clothing because it may be distracting in your final photo, and to increase the amount of details that your camera picks up in the photo, avoid all white and all black outfits.  When it comes to your location, pick a time and place where the sunlight won’t be blinding your family, but where there will also be enough light to illuminate their faces.  Be sure to snap lots of pictures, since it is better to have more to choose from than only a few that did not turn out how you would have liked.  Here are some of the best spots around Long Island to take family photos to capture the end of Summer 2014:

  • Port Jefferson Harbor:  Here, you can get great family photos on the docks at Port Jefferson Harbor, or even rollicking in the grass at the beautiful Harborfront Park.
  • The Nissequogue or Carman’s River These rivers are prime spots for canoeing and kayaking, which can make a great action shot for the family on the go.  Try the canoe selfie, and line up everyone on your canoe so that you can get everyone in the shot.  You can also go down to the edge of the river at sunset, make sure your family is standing so that their faces are lit by the last remaining sunlight, and snap some shots with the river and reeds as a background.
  • Setauket Mill Pond: Also known as “the Duck Pond,” this is a great little spot to bring the kids to take photos, see the geese and swans, and maybe even spot the pond’s giant snapping turtle resting in the sun.  There is also an old stone bridge that is a great spot for photos.
  • Montauk Spots:  Montauk has many great spots for family photo ops, such as the Montauk Point Lighthouse, or any of the many overlook spots that dot the side of Montauk Highway. 
  • Fire Island Lighthouse:  If you don’t want to drive all the way to Montauk for a lighthouse photo, say goodbye to summer with a great family photo at the Fire Island Lighthouse.
  • Sag Harbor:  The Sag Harbor windmill makes for a great scenic background
  • Bayard Cutting Arboretum State Park:  This state park in Great River is the epitome of Gold Coast Long Island, including the grandiose Bayard Cutting estate and a scenic view of the great lawn and Connetquot River.  There are more varieties of flowers and trees in the garden than you can count, and for a one-of-a-kind shot, take pictures in the dahlia garden, where you can see beautiful species of dahlias, including hybrids of all different colors.
  • Old Westbury Gardens: The gardens at Old Westbury offer a lush backdrop to your family photo, with numerous species of blooming flowers, as well as an array of statues.
  • Cold Spring Harbor Marina:  This small, cozy marina allows you to get a smaller, quainter backdrop than a busier harbor would.  If you want your photos to have an autumnal feel, shoot them at this marina where you can get a rich color scheme of reds, oranges, and golds in the fall.


  • What are your favorite photo op spots?  Tell us in the comments!