Big Sur is one of the most epic adventurous location for your elopement–from the cliffs to the forests to the mountaintops and the beaches. When it comes to planning an elopement in Big Sur, it can get a little overwhelming. Especially if you aren’t familiar with the different landscapes and options that the area has to offer. Never fear! We have pulled together the ultimate guide to planning an adventure elopement in Big Sur!

Planning an Adventure Elopement in Big Sur

We are a husband and wife documentary photography duo living on a mountaintop in Big Sur. We spent every dating anniversary in Big Sur and when we got engaged, we knew there was no place in the world that we would rather be married!!! After we got married here in 2016, we loved the area so much we decided to move here! So, when it comes to planning an elopement in Big Sur, we’re proud to call ourselves experts. We’ve now been adventuring in Big Sur for over 8 years! We love the rugged coastline of Big Sur, hiking through the redwood forests, sleeping under the stars, dinners with a view, and of course… all the adventure!

Choosing the Location:

Let your love story lead your adventure–choose a place that is meaningful to you!

  • If you are a forest lover, spend your time hiking through Big Sur’s amazing Redwood forests! The majesty of the towering trees would make for a stunning backdrop for your Big Sur elopement!
  • If you love hiking or rock climbing, imagine saying your vows on a windswept cliff overlooking the ocean!
  • For beach lovers, Big Sur has spectacular coves and beaches for your adventure elopement! Big Sur beaches have unbelievable natural views. The beaches in Big Sur have so many different personalities ranging from rugged and wild to tranquil and tropical.

Seasons for Big Sur Elopements:

What’s your favorite season? People who aren’t from California say that there aren’t seasons, but that’s simply not true! Big Sur is beautiful all throughout the year with different weather as the year goes on. Big Sur Summer days are long, bright and beautiful with epic sunsets. Fall in Big Sur is mild with crisp, cool temperatures and striking colors across the landscape. Winter brings moody, rainy days with dramatic, stormy clouds. But then spring comes to Big Sur. Spring is when the wildflowers put on a breathtaking show starting in February and then slowly evolving as the different flowers bloom. Whatever season you love, Big Sur has magnificent natural wonders to show off for your adventure elopement!

Choosing Elopement Attire

Depending on where your Big Sur adventures take you, make sure you choose the right wedding attire! First, think about your footwear. Think about finding a cute pair of rugged boots or shoes. Stay away from stiletto heels so you can walk and hike comfortably. When you are deep in the forest, you don’t want to trip!

Speaking of the forest, when choosing an elopement wedding gown, look for a dress without too much tulle. Tulle gowns have a magical ability to attract and pick up every pine needle in the forest. For cooler days and evenings, consider a cute jacket, shawl or wrap. When you’re on an adventure elopement, you want to be comfortable so you can focus on what matters: the person you love!

Personal Touches for your Elopement

One of the beautiful things about an elopement is that it is something special and intimate for the two of you to celebrate. We love when our couples add personal touches to their elopement! Consider bringing vow books where you’ve hand-written your vows to each other. You might want to bring special, personalized ring boxes for an added touch. Or you might consider bringing a special bottle of wine or champagne to pop after you have said your “I dos.” We love capturing these special, personal details for our couples!

Big Sur Local Wedding Vendors

When planning a Big Sur elopement, the most important tip is to pick local vendors. It’s crucial to use wedding vendors who know the area, the weather and the perfect secret spots. Local vendors can plan the perfect picnic in the forest or on the beach. They understand the terrain and can help you navigate that terrain in a wedding gown.

Here is a quick reference guide of Big Sur Wedding Vendors:

Big Sur Wedding Planners:

Diane Allen–Big Sur Weddings (Big Sur local)

Mariah Green Events (Big Sur local)

Jamie of Sea Stars Catering + Events

Local Florists:

Kate Healey of Big Sur Flowers (Big Sur local)

Willow and Plum (Monterey/Carmel based)

Barefoot Floral

Recommended Hair and Makeup Artists:

Hair and Makeup by Kat

Face Forward Bridal

Kim Larson Bridal

Here are a few of our favorite Big Sur Wedding Venues:

Post Ranch Inn

Ventana Inn

Wind & Sea

Glen Oaks

Big Sur Accommodations and Elopement Location Inspiration:

Post Ranch Inn

Ventana Inn

The Ventana Glamping Campground

Glen Oaks

The Bridge House (at Glen Oaks)

Make it Legal

Make sure you hire an officiant! We love Soaring Starkey. She does the most beautiful ceremonies.

Big Sur Wedding Photography

While we love to adventure, what we truly love most is photographing LOVE. Our passion is photographing Big Sur weddings and elopements for fashion-forward couples who are romantic, a bit whimsical, and madly in love. Our couples write their own vows, wipe each other tears, and hold one another tightly. They don’t mind that their dress and shoes will get a bit dirty… We are adventuring after all!

Our elopement package includes both Photo and Video! We take you to the BEST and most beautiful locations in Big Sur (some of our secret spots!). We love celebrating your love—we even bring a bottle of champagne to pop with you!

Anthony is the lead for video, and Kendal is the lead for photography. We spend the day with you capturing all the moments, big and small. It’s such an honor to capture the raw, real, adventurous moments of your love and your elopement for you to cherish for years to come!

Would you like to hear more? Please make sure to contact us to tell us more about your wedding or elopement!


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