If you’ve ever driven down Route 101, you know that even seeing the Oregon coast from the car is an experience like no other – from the remote, rugged cliff sides that peek over the ocean to the cute beach towns dotting the coastline. An Oregon coast elopement is without a doubt perfect for any couple looking for a little adventure on their wedding day, whether you want to relax on the beach, hike by the ocean, or paddle out for a surf!
Here are some of the best places to elope on the Oregon coast, and a few tips for planning your day.
You have countless places to choose from – and I certainly can’t list all of them, but here are a few of my favorite spots for an Oregon coast elopement!
On pretty much every single list that exists for places to visit on the Oregon Coast, you’ll find Cannon Beach. It’s definitely a popular spot, but it’s easy to see why! The town of Cannon Beach is sprinkled with art galleries, restaurants, local cafes, historic sites, and vacation homes. The beach itself is best known for Haystack Rock, a 235-foot sea stack created by an ancient lava flow. It peeks out over the ocean, providing a home for colonies of puffins. At low tide, you can walk up to Haystack Rock and spot the tide pools!
There are several waterfront hotels and resorts like The Ocean Lodge and the Driftwood Inn to complete your elopement experience! If you decide on a Cannon Beach elopement, keep in mind the popularity of this spot, and it’s extra important to plan for a weekday to help you avoid some of the crowds.
An Oregon coast elopement at the Samuel H. Boardman scenic corridor is bound to be filled with rugged coastline and epic views! With 12 miles along the coast, there are tons of stops and places perfect for your ceremony. The corridor is more remote, offering several hiking trails that will help you find a secluded spot and secret beaches.
The area is best known for the natural bridges made of rock that extend into the ocean, creating some absolutely incredible views! You can walk along some of these bridges, though the slippery rock can make this a slightly dangerous feat.
This is one of the more private places you can find for an Oregon Coast elopement because Neskowin Beach isn’t visible from the highway. There is an old collection of Spruce stumps (known as “The Ghost Forest” that you can see scattered across part of the beach at low tide, but it’s best known for Proposal Rock – a huge sea stack located right in the middle of the beach. There are several beach hikes here, where you can wander through the temperate rainforest and emerge by the ocean!
Brookings is the southernmost town on the Oregon coast, offering the perfect adorable beach town vibe for your elopement day. There are local cafes and great oceanside getaways, along with several parks to explore! Around Brookings, you can also see some of the Redwood trees that call Oregon home or head to the beach. Harris Beach State Park and Patrick’s Point State Park are stunning scenic beaches with sea stacks and rocky coastlines!
Floras Lake is less visited but incredibly underrated! It’s the perfect place for a private Oregon coast elopement, and the beach is one of the most remote places you’ll find. The cliffs tower over the ocean, and you can marvel at the sea from above, or head down to the beach! The trails to the beach are pretty long but flat and easy – and the distance just means you’re likely to get the place to yourself.
To make the most of your day, here are some tips for planning your Oregon coast elopement!
Many places on the coast are popular, especially in the summer. While you can totally find some spots that are a little off the beaten path, here are some tips for avoiding crowds!
First, I recommend eloping in the off-season – summer is the most popular time to visit, and winter is the least popular. Winter is, however, pretty chilly, and often very rainy – so the best time to elope on the Oregon coast is late spring or early fall! There will be fewer crowds, but the weather will likely still be favorable.
Another tip I always give my couples is to elope on a weekday. No matter where you go on the Oregon Coast, weekends will always be busier – so avoid Saturdays and Sundays (and even Friday evenings) for your elopement.
This is actually another way to avoid crowds! But the reason I recommend eloping at sunrise or sunset is that this is when the lighting is best. Depending on your elopement location, some places may be more exposed, with less tree cover or shade. During the day, that means the sun will be harsh, which isn’t good for photos – and squinting to see is no fun either!
Planning your ceremony close to sunrise or sunset means you’ll have the best lighting, and of course, you’ll get to see the sky light up in different shades of red! During the day, you can explore more woodsy areas by the Oregon coast, where the trees provide some shade and protect you from the sun.
Don’t hesitate to consult your elopement photographer about the best time for your ceremony, and how to plan your day!
The great thing about eloping on the Oregon coast is that most of the time, you won’t need a permit! However, this does depend on your location, and if you’re planning an intimate wedding with 50 people or more, you may need to get a permit to have your ceremony on an Oregon beach. After you decide on an elopement location, do a little digging to figure out if you need a permit!
As an elopement photographer, I’m all about the experience – every couple deserves a wedding day that’s one of a kind, unforgettable, and absolutely perfect for them. So I’m ready to help you create a day that’s stress-free, authentic, and completely yours. I’ll help you find the best place for your Oregon coast elopement, get the right permits, and plan a day you’ll remember forever!
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