A sweet Family Photoshoot on the beach in Botany Bay, Kent

I. Introduction: A sweet Family Photoshoot on the beach in Botany Bay, Kent.

Vinnie’s first time in the sand

A. History of Botany Bay, Thanet

Welcome to the captivating history of Botany Bay, Thanet. As you stand on the stunning white cliffs and take in the breathtaking view of the sea, imagine the countless ships and lives that have been shaped by these very tides. This historic site is not only rich in maritime history but also a sanctuary for diverse wildlife. As you explore this beautiful coastal area, don’t forget to capture timeless family photography amidst the splendor of the chalk cliffs, sand dunes, and the sea. Let the history of Botany Bay inspire you to appreciate the beauty and significance of this natural treasure. 

B. Why Botany Bay?

This year, I’ve been yearning to leave the big smoke and head back to the seaside. I come from a line of fishermen and seamen and always lived close to the coast in France. I found Botany Bay by seeing another family photographer’s work: Nina Goks. I fell in love with her moody photographs, with families walking barefoot in the sand, dipping their toes in water, and with the wind messing up their hair. I wanted this too, so I organised a session with some of my partner’s friends living nearby who just had a baby last year so I could test out the location.

II. Planning your Family Photoshoot in Botany Bay

A. What time to shoot In Botany Bay? Is it best at sunrise or sunset?

As an outdoor family photographer, I always shoot at golden hour; in the first or last hour of sunlight. It creates this gorgeous soft light that is most flattering for family photography.

We planned this session at the evening golden hour as Vinnie the baby wasn’t able to do the morning golden hour due to his sleep schedule. It appeared that I completely misunderstood where the sun was setting. It was going down on the cliffs! My initial plan was to have the sunset on the water so I could capture the family with the glow behind them, but I had to make the best out of what I had. The sun instead glowed a soft pink light on the subject, which created a beautiful ambiance. 

If you don’t know Thanet, it is at the bottom right tip of the continent, so you can have Margate which is North Facing (almost no sun), Broadstairs which is East Facing (morning light) and Ramsgate which is south Facing (afternoon light). So if you want a gorgeous family shoot with beautiful light, I would highly suggest doing a shoot at sunrise. This can be very early so if this isn’t possible with your family’s schedule, evening golden can work, but you will have to start half an hour earlier than the usual start time, otherwise, the cliffs will obstruct the light.

B. What season of the year should you shoot at Botany Bay?

There is no wrong with this location. As there are no trees on the beach but only sand, shells, and seagrass, you can do a session any time of the year. Just bear in mind, that we might bump into nudists in summer as it is tolerated in the sandy dunes. They usually aren’t visible from the beach as they sunbathe near the cliffs in the dunes, so it’s not a big deal for me but I just want to make you aware.

C. What to wear for the session?

The main rule is no shoes! It’s a beach so you want to feel the sand in between your toes! Don’t worry if your partner has white feet, mine too lol! I won’t be taking close photos of them so don’t worry. I’ve found after doing my test shoot, that shoes are definitely a no-no. If you are brave, we could finish the session in the water, either with your clothes on or without (simple black or nude underwear or naked is okay if you are comfortable). I love it when mums and girls wear long dresses and walk in the water so only the bottom is wet. I feel this really tells the story of a family that goes with the flow and doesn’t take themselves seriously. If that is you please reach out, you’re my kind of people!

Overall, men can wear loose linen pants and a simple shirt. Please don’t tuck your shirt, we want the session to look relaxed and casual. Mums can wear long flowy dresses (it looks amazing in the wind), with an opening on one leg if possible and girls can either wear similar long dresses or short skirt/dress. Boy’s styling is similar to dad’s but can also be creative with overalls for example.

In terms of wear, if you have long hair, I like it when it’s wavy or curly, worn loose so it can flow in the wind. If you have girls with long hair, I would love to capture you braiding their hair.

If your child has a favorite teddy, please bring it, I will include them in a few photos. Don’t forget to bring a warm change of clothes, especially if we are planning to end the session in the water.

Be creative and play with layering and texture. It can be wool, leather, cotton, fur, etc… If you want to know more have created What to Wear Guides with photos and Pinterest Boards for each season that you can see on my blog here.

D. You live in London? Make it a Family outing to explore the UK seaside

Do you live in London and are unable to come all the way and be on time for the sunrise family session? Make this opportunity a fun family holiday to the seaside. Speed trains from London are roughly 1h20 and there is a shuttle bus going around Ramsgate, Margate, and Broadstairs if you need public transport. Book a cute Airbnb or a room in the fancy Fort Road Hotel (with a sea view!!) in Margate for a few days and explore the beautiful beach of Thanet in Kent. Thanet has a beautiful coastline, with lots of family activities to do and plenty of delicious restaurants and ice cream shops, perfect for the whole family. Walk around the lovely Joss Bay and Kingsgate Bay, help your kids create sand castles, go fossil hunting, climb rocks in search of crabs, visit the museum, adventure in a cove in search of a Viking treasure, swim with them in the refreshing English channels, spot the boats going past, or find seashells. There is so much more to do!

I will also be coming from London and using this opportunity to spend some relaxed time on the coast with my dog Bernie and my partner Daniel. Being there for the whole weekend is also a good option in case the weather is bad on our photoshoot morning, as we can reschedule for the next morning.

III. Booking your session with me at Botany Bay

A. How much does it cost?

The session fee in Botany Bay is the same as my traditional Family Sessions but with an additional travel charge of £147. If I have two sessions in Botany Bay over this weekend, it will be split evenly between both clients. Note I offer free travel on your session if you spend over £900. You can find more information about my pricing on this page.

PS: This might change at the end of 2024 as I love this location so much that we have been thinking of moving over there. If that is the case then there won’t be any fee as I would live within 10 miles of Botany Bay. Londoners might however pay that charge as I will then commute to London for family sessions.

B. Where to Park?

You can park for free in the small parking space that is big enough for a dozen cars, or anywhere along the residential area, there is no restriction.

C. Planning your session prior to visiting Botany Bay

Do you like the idea of a Family Photoshoot by the beach? Me too! Are you brave? Will have a dip in the water? Or will you stay warm, wrapped up in a blanket in the dunes? Whatever you prefer I would love to capture your family’s story. If you like my work and want to work with me, please send me an email on my booking page below:


If you’re after a candid, relaxed and intimate photography experience, you’ve come to the right place. 
My work focus on emotions, no stiff poses and forced smile; only gentle love and embraces. I offer a very hands-on experience, connecting over a video consultation with each family beforehand ; we explore their stories of love, loss and wins and turn it into a beautiful, meaningful session. Each family and session are unique and crafted with patience, love and understanding. 

Scroll to Top

Join my newsletter and be the first to know about news and promotions!