Picture this: You’re standing on the beautiful Papamoa Beach, the waves crashing against the shore, the wind wildly flowing through your partners hair and you get down on one knee to ask the love of your life that all-important question. Isn’t that simply the perfect setting for a surprise proposal?

Speaking of surprises, do you know what can make this magical moment even more special? Capturing it with the help of a professional photographer. In this blog post, I’ll be sharing my experience documenting Jake and Kai’s heartwarming surprise proposal at Papamoa Beach and why planning a surprise proposal and hiring a photographer could be one of the best decisions you ever make.

The Importance of a Surprise Proposal

So why opt for a surprise proposal? Here are the top 3 reasons why:

  1. Creating an unforgettable memory: There’s nothing quite like the look on your partner’s face when they realise the beautiful moment unfolding before them. A surprise proposal adds an extra layer of emotion and joy, creating a cherished memory that you both will never forget.
  2. Showcasing your love and thoughtfulness: By carefully planning an unexpected and meaningful event that highlights your love story, you’re showcasing just how much thought and effort you’re willing to put into celebrating your life together.
  3. Starting a new chapter: A surprise proposal marks the beautiful beginning of your future as an engaged couple, and what a way to kick-start this new chapter in your life!

Why Hiring a Photographer is Essential

Hiring a photographer to secretly document your proposal has numerous benefits, such as:

  1. Reliving and sharing the moment: As incredible as the moment will undoubtedly be, it’s likely that your memory of it may fade over time. A professional set of photos will allow you and your partner to relive the magic, as well as share it with friends and family who will no doubt be eager to see your story unfold.
  2. Capturing genuine reactions: The surprise element will elicit the raw, genuine emotions of your partner, and having that priceless reaction photographed creates a long-lasting memory that you both can cherish forever.
  3. Quality and expertise: Even if you enlist the help of a friend or family member to snap some shots, smartphone cameras might not capture the true essence and beauty of the moment. A professional with their own equipment and experience will know exactly how to make your surprise proposal pictures shine.

The Magic of Jake and Kai’s Surprise Proposal

As an example of the impact a surprise proposal can have, let’s take a quick look at Jake and Kai’s heartwarming moment at Papamoa Beach.

Jake approached me through Instagram private message after being referred to me by a mutual friend. As soon as I read his message it excited me so much because this was the first surprise proposal I was to document. Once we confirmed a day and time we then spoke over the phone to discuss a spot that had significant meaning to the pair for Jake’s next monumental move. Once that was settled I then scouted the location and video called Jake. I expressed to him where I thought would be the best place for him to drop a knee. A spot that would be easy for the pair to get to, that had an epic view of their favourite spot and somewhere that I could get to easily enough without being noticed by Kai.

With our solid plans in place we were ready to go! From the moment Jake nervously led Kai by the hand to the scenic spot, I was able to document the entire proposal without Kai even being aware of my presence. The photos captured Kai’s utter shock and glee as Jake pulled out the ring and got down on one knee, as well as their loving embrace after Kai excitedly said “yes.”

These pictures spoke a thousand words and told the beautiful tale of their special moment, one they now have to remember and share for the rest of their lives.

Planning Your Own Surprise Proposal

If you’re contemplating planning your own surprise proposal, here are some helpful tips:

  1. Choose the ideal location: Pick a spot that holds a special meaning for you and your partner. Whether it’s the place where you first met or shared a momentous memory together, the setting will add to the romantic ambiance of the proposal.
  2. Choose the right photographer: When it comes to planning your surprise proposal, one of the most important things to do is choose the right photographer. You want to find someone who is experienced in photographing fast-paced moments like this and who will be able to capture all of the special moments very stealthily. Additionally, you’ll want to make sure that the photographer you choose is someone you feel comfortable with and who you know will be able to capture your personality as a couple.
  3. Keep it a secret: One of the most important parts of planning a successful surprise proposal is keeping it a secret from your partner. This means that you’ll need to be extra careful about not leaving any clues lying around and making sure that all of your plans are kept strictly between you and your photographer. If you’re not good at keeping secrets, then it might be best to enlist the help of a friend or family member who can keep your plans under wraps.
  4. Plan for the unexpected: No matter how much you plan, there’s always a chance that something could go wrong on the day of your proposal. That’s why it’s important to have a backup plan in place in case something doesn’t go according to plan. For example, if it starts raining on the day of your proposal, you might need to have an indoor backup location ready so that your photographer can still capture all of the special moments.
  5. Enjoy every moment: Once everything is planned and ready to go, it’s time to enjoy every moment leading up to the big question! savor each and every second with your partner and soak up all of the love and happiness surrounding you on this special day!


February 9, 2023

Newly engaged couple after their surprise proposal on the beach of Papamoa captured by Eilish Burt Photography

Surprise Engagement Proposal, Papamoa – Jake + Kai

Eilish Burt


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