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5 Tips for Engagement Photos in Croatia

engagement shoot dubrovnik

Croatia has beautiful options for engagement photos. I have tread water, run through fields, caught the morning sunrise, rode a tractor and climb to cliff tops. The options are limitless and bountiful in such a beautiful country.  Engagement photos are also an excellent way to get personalized save-the-date cards for your wedding or a great way to announce your big day to family and friends. But what makes these shoots so artfully bliss is that there is more time to make the magic happen because they come free of the nerves and time constraints of the wedding day.

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Here are 5 tips I would like to share with you to get the perfect photos.

1. Concept, concept, concept

This is a great opportunity to get those editorial style photos you have always wanted. Wedding photos are beautiful, there is no denying that. However, with the buzz of the day and the pressure of waiting guests, your time is cut a little short. Think of concept for your engagement photos. Pinterest is great for inspiration. Secret woodland? Secluded beaches? Under a waterfall? Alice in Wonderland? There are no limits. I can help you with some concepts, or you can come to me with your own, and together we work on elaborating it and putting it together.

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engagement shoot croatia

2. Props

It’s all in the details, and this stands true for your engagement photos. Secret tip: those beautiful Instagram-worthy photos you come across don’t happen by chance. They’re all carefully thought out and executed. Take some time to think of detailed shots you would like to have. I have loads of experience, and I’m happy to help. Large helium balloons. Colored confetti. A personalized wooden sign. All these are great ideas and make fantastic photos.

3. The right clothing

What do you recommend we wear? I get this question often, and it is a tricky one. There is no right answer, and it depends on a few things. I guess it first starts with the location followed by the concept. Once we figure out where you would like to have your engagement photos taken, I can make some suggestions of what would suit the backdrop. Personality is also a big factor. I always tell my couples to take on my suggestions but to fit it to their personalities and make it their own.

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4. When to take the photos?

Believe it or not, most couples do not take their engagement photos immediately after popping the question. It’s all about when feels right for you. You might be on holiday in Croatia several months after having gotten engaged. The photos are a way for you to commemorate the occasion, remember being engaged is not just a day, but it’s the entire period leading up to your wedding. My personal recommendation is to take the photos before sending out your wedding invites. The photos are too good not to share with the world, and you could use them for your save-the-date cards.

5. When to book

Here’s a little industry scoop. Unfortunately, odds are you will be hard pressed to find a photographer that is available/ready to shoot on the weekends as that is prime wedding time. Having said, it’s never too early to lock in your engagement shoot; the sooner, the better. But it’s also never too late. If you find are holidaying in Croatia and are flexible on time, you might be able to score some sweet deals, especially if your preferred location overlaps with a destination we are already due at. I always let my couples know what my travel plans look like and try to arrange an in-between to help save on the travel costs.

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Interested in an Engagement shoot in Croatia? Prices start from as little as 250 Euros for bookings this summer 2017. Just send me an email at info@robertpljuscec.com.

A Beautiful “Highlights of Hvar” Wedding

So it’s no secret being a destination wedding photographer in Croatia takes me to some pretty amazing places. This special day saw me covering a few of my favourites across Hvar, all in the span of a few hours.

This is the story of a bashful bride and handsome groom. Kyle and Kristina came from Australia to celebrate their special day, with the groom’s family coming in from the US and the bride’s family well…from all over. I had the honour of being their wedding photographer for their beautiful wedding in late June last year (side note: for the undecided couples out there trying to figure out the best time to get married in Croatia, June is an excellent choice – great weather and not too many tourists. Just right).

Their wedding day covered a few of the best venues in Hvar. The early afternoon started with a small gathering in the private courtyard of St. Mark’s. A local a cappella group (locally known as a klapa) serenaded the guests as they ate some finger food and started the day off on the right note – with drinks in hand.

The ceremony was held in the church of St. Stephen’s on the main square (Crkva Sv. Stjepana). Shooting inside can be a little tricky. The church is beautiful and ornate but a little dark inside. Given the time of day I was very lucky and I think I managed to do well, even if I say so myself.

Following the wedding ceremony, we captured some great shots around the old town of Hvar before heading off to the reception venue which was nestled amongst the Pakleni Islands. You may have heard of the place and come across this beauty known as Zori. Fresh local food and definite forerunner of the “Venue with the best WOW effect” contest.

I leave you with some shots from this beautiful wedding.
Spoiler alert: the bride’s smile is infectious.

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Wedding at Plitvice Lakes

When it comes to destination weddings, of all the spectacular backdrops Croatia has to offer, Plitvice Lakes take the cake. For nature loving couples looking for the perfect place to exchange their vows, National Park Plitvice offers a chain of 16 terraced lakes, joined by waterfalls, that extend into a limestone canyon. There are small plateaus scattered across the park that are perfect for intimate ceremonies.

As an artist, I couldn’t ask for a better canvas. The colors are absolutely mesmerising and the scenery secretly makes my job (a little) easier, as the most wonderful wedding photos are guaranteed. Light can be a bit of a problem – the shadows cast by the dense trees require a lot of strategic planning. But for my brides and grooms getting married at Plitvice, I always recommend taking a few extra hours so we can play around with different locations to ensure they take home the most spectacular wedding day snaps.

See for yourselves. Here are a few I’d love to share with you. I hope you enjoy :)

This wedding was organised by the team at Croatian Moments wedding planning.

Wedding Ceremony Plitvice Lakes Groom getting married at Plitvice Wedding Photo Plitvice Wedding ceremony Plitvice Lakes Bride National Park Croatia Plitvice Lakes Bride and Groom Plitvice Waterfall

Wedding at Bonj ‘les bain’ Beach Club

Undoubtedly one of the most popular wedding venues in Hvar, Bonj ‘les bains’ beach club (which translates to ‘the baths’), is a quintessential Hvar landmark. Run by Suncani Hvar hotels, the venue was built in the 1930s and is reminiscent of the fabulous jet-set scenes you come across in Monaco and the Côte d’Azur.

The reception venue looks over the private Amfora Hotel beach as well as the surrounding Pakleni islands. You’ll also be treated to local fishing boats as the sun sets.

I’ve covered many weddings here and it’s magic never ceases to impress me. There are so many photos ops, the light is mesmerising and of course each couple radiates a different vibe that I can just feel in the photos.

I’d like to share some captures from Lissa and Steve’s wedding. They were a super chill couple and their guests knew how to have a good time. Make sure you get to the end, the sunset venue photos are pretty breathtaking. Even if I say so myself.

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Winter on Neretva Estuary

A little secret (or not-so-secret) passion if mine is fishing and spending time in the great outdoors. These last few months I’ve had the great opportunity to fish along the Neretva river. In today’s blog post I’d like to take a reluctant break from weddings and share a few shots from the last few weeks. The wedding season might be in hibernation, but my camera still loves to come out and play.

Ice on the Neretva river

Winter beaches in Croatia

Neretva winter sunrise

Washed away

The banks of the Neretva

Winter waves

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Scenic shot of Neretva

Solitary tree

Winter estuary

Frozen sandbanks

Frozen river bank

Deserted beach in winter

Kiteboarding sign

Post with directions

Croatian beach in ice

10 photos of your wedding you need to have

Your wedding is a special once-in-a-lifetime event that is over in the blink of an eye. You spend months (sometimes even years) planning the amazing day and when it finally arrives there’s so much excitement in the air, so many familiar faces all in one place, so many details finally coming together, you realise you’re walking over the threshold just as fast as you were walking down the aisle. When asked about their wedding, do you know what the most common response from every couple is? “It went by so fast.”
This is why I always recommend having someone capture the day for you, so you can look back and take in all the moments you might have missed. And there is nothing like the anticipation of your weddings photos once everything has slowed down again and getting the chance to relive it all.
Each photographer has their unique style and way of taking photos, their own eye-for-detail, if you will. The photos might look candid, but trust me, a lot of thought goes into them. Despite our different styles, there are some photo ‘must haves’ that each photographer should capture. And this leads me to today’s topic. Here is a list of 10 photos you should make sure to ask your photographer about.
1. The Getting Ready photo
Amfora Hotel Room Hvar
2. The Ring Close-up
Wedding ring close up
3. Shoe Close-up
Bridal shoes
4. The First Kiss
Wedding first kiss
5. The Sunset Photo
Sunset wedding photo
6. The table and Decoration Details
Reception table details
7. The Emotional Capture
Wedding emotions
8. The Close-up
Wedding photo close up
9. The Hero Shot 
Scenic wedding photo
10. The First Dance 
First dance

Vis

One of the most beautiful Croatia islands (and the competition is plentiful), plays host to one of the most attractive wedding venues in Croatia. Forte George, nestled on the Island of Vis, has it all. A historical charm, stunning views, a romantic open-air ceremony location, and an expansive rooftop perched at the top of a tower ideal for post-ceremony drinks. At sunset, Forte George is transformed into the perfect reception venue for intimate dinners and twilight dancing.   Vis is home to some of the most beautiful and private swimming beaches and coves, as well as nature reserves, and as such is becoming increasingly popular amongst tourists looking for a place to both relax and the occasional night out. Cast your eyes on a few photos I captured from a wedding on Vis and see for yourself how special the location really is. It could just be the perfect place for your wedding in Croatia.

Entrance to Fort George on island Vis

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A small heartfelt wedding in Split

This was another beautiful love story that I had the privelege of capturing. Annette and Stuart fell in love with Croatia on a joint vacation a few years back and decided this will be the place they say “yes” to forever.

The ceremony took place by a small little chapel nestled in the rocky face of Split’s Marjan hills. The beautiful gothic church known as St. Jere (Sv. Jere) was built in the 15th century and provides the most romantic backdrop for exchanging vows. The surroundings contributed to the intimate ambience followed by dinner at Grašo restaurant located in Split’s ACI Marina. With a view overlooking the sea and sunset, it was the perfect ending to a wonderful day, and just the beginning of a beautiful story.

Our happy couple are so in love with Croatia that they are searching for their own piece of paradise near Split so they can relocate indefinitely.
Every detail of their warm, intimate and beautiful wedding is credited to wedding planner Maja Juric from weddingscroatia.com

 

Top 10 Croatia Wedding Destinations!

1. Let me start by saying that Dubrovnik is without a doubt the most popular destination western tourists. Why? I will just say it is the city that portrays King’s Landing, the capital in the TV series “Game of Thrones” and it will also soon star in Star Wars Episode VIII. Not much needs to be said about Dubrovnik as its beauty speaks for itself. The old town’s  architecture and history leaves your breathless. For couples seeking the true historical feeling of the Mediterranean this jewel really is the TOP destination. So I will put this city in first place. But there are so many places in Croatia just as beautiful, if not more ;)

2. POREC

Istria has always had a special place in my heart and Villa Polesini in Porec is one of my favourite wedding destinations. With nice promenades along the water and old the architecture; villas in Istria provide gorgeous outdoor wedding options that are hard to surpass even by the larger cities and towns in Dalmatia.

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3. VIS 

One of the lesser known yet still exclusive destinations, island of Vis is notable for Fort George, an old military fort that has been transformed into an absolutely stunning location for organizing events like weddings and private parties. This location is beautiful, full of untouched nature and it offers a unique experience to each couple and their guests. You can take a look on one wedding from Vis here – http://tihanatadic.com/RP/tag/vis/ 

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4. PLITVICE LAKES

One of the most famous places in Croatia. Each year the lakes are visited by over 1 million people looking to experience this unique natural phenomenon. It is little less known that the Plitvice Lakes national park offers couples the opportunity to get married on the spot which makes this destination a TOP recommendation for those looking to surround themselves with nature and have those amazing waterfalls as their backdrop.

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5. HVAR

Hvar has a long-standing reputation as the sunniest island in Croatia. It is with a good reason. Not only does it have the most number of sunny days per year but Hvar will quite literally ‘light up’ your holiday. Together with Dubrovnik, Hvar is a world renowned destination visited by many A-listers such as Beyonce, Kevin Spacey, Tom Cruise, Michael Schumacher, Roman Abramovic and many others. Along with a quiet and romantic experience at some of the finest restaurants along the Adriatic, Hvar also offers a great party scene and excellent adventure sport opportunities like rock climbing, mountain biking, kayaking etc. With all of this combined Hvar is a perfect destination to organize your wedding.

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6. SPLIT 

The town nestled at the feet of the Marjan hills was once just a transit port but has become a destination for exclusive holidays and has finally experienced the transformation it deserves. Split is the second largest city in Croatia, a jewel of the Adriatic coast with a historical old town center where you will still find buildings and palaces from ancient Roman times. This unique place not only provides beautiful locations for photos but also has a large range of restaurants and wedding venues.

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7. LOKVE GORSKI KOTAR

Definitely a lesser known location than the ones mentioned so far, Lokve are the heart Gorski Kotar region and a well preserved secret by tourists who have been visiting here for a long time. During summer months Lokve offer a fresher climate due to higher altitude and rich, thick forests not more than 40 minutes away from the beach. Still, main attraction is a large lake with numerous little islets providing nature-loving couples unforgettable photo backdrops. It is ripe with tourist activities such as rowing, kayaking, bike riding, nature walks, hiking trails and fishing. Lokve is the ideal place for those who love adventure and being one with nature.

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8. ZAGREB

The capital of Croatia, both politically and in terms of parties and events. This beautiful city with over 900 years of history flowing through its streets hides some of the most romantic spots you can imagine. Still, Zagreb undeservedly has a lower number of couples from abroad choosing it as their wedding destination. Along with many interesting restaurants and venues Zagreb offers so much to do and experience but is also a gateway to beautiful nature and national parks all within a 30 minute drive of the city.

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9. NERETVA

The mouth of river Neretva unfortunately has not become famous as a wedding destination because of the small number of restaurant options. However as a location for engagement photo shoots or general locational photography it is SENSATIONAL! Beautiful sand beaches, colourful fields full of mandarin trees as far as the eye can see, a network of channels and raw nature offer a unique atmosphere and present one of the better places to take photos by the beach. An especially good option for coming from Dubrovnik, it is only an hour drive to these must see locations.

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10. ROVINJ

Together with Porec, Rovinj is Istria’s busiest tourist center and going by the number of visitors it very closely ranks as the top destination along the Adriatic. Rovinj secretly hides a magical old town that is the perfect spot for wedding photos after the ceremony. The town itself as well as the surrounding countryside is the home to amazing rustic villas that are a brilliant option for weddings.

Almost as famous as Rovinj itself is the Island of St. Andrew or Red Island (Crveni Otok), which is located just a short boat ride away. The island has a hotel and restaurant in a rustic setting that provides a wonderful location for your ceremony and reception.

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The End… But just the beginning of your wedding journey! :)