Are you considering a Big Sur elopement, but you’re overwhelmed with where to start? This one’s for you! Whether you fell in love with the crashing waves, the broad sky, or the sheer magic of Big Sur, eloping on this part of the California coastline is a stunning way to celebrate your marriage. Keep reading to learn all about how to elope in Big Sur!
Why Big Sur?
Big Sur has some of the most breathtaking scenery I’ve ever seen, hands-down. Looking at these photos, it’s hard to believe that this beautiful destination is in the US! Plus, thanks to the variety of scenery, this location is perfect for forest elopements to stunning beach photos. It is the perfect elopement destination for my adventurous couples out there!
1. Figure out Your Budget
Once you’ve decided you want to elope in Big Sur (woohoo!), it’s time to set your budget. This might be one of the hardest parts of planning your elopement, because you’ll probably have to make a few tough decisions. I tell my elopement couples to prioritize preferred vendors, and take a look at what they’re charging. That way, you have a baseline for about how much you’ll probably be spending. You and your partner will also be able to start deciding what is most important to you both while keeping budget in mind!
2. Create Your Guest List
Now that you have a budget estimate for your Big Sur elopement, the next step is to decide on your guest list! While a lot of elopements I photograph are just the couple, you and your partner may decide to include others. Whether you want to include a few family members, just friends, or a mix of both, every elopement is different. Make sure that you are both being authentic to your elopement vision, whatever that looks like! I know some couples who didn’t invite anyone to their elopement because that’s what they’d seen on social media, only to regret not having family present for their special day.
3. Choose a Location (or more)
As I said earlier, Big Sur offers a wide variety of different location options. With your partner, answer the following questions: What kind of vibe are you looking for? How do you want your ceremony/reception/photos to look? Do you want to be surrounded by nature, or have everything indoors (or a mix of both)? Big Sur is full of incredible places to exchange vows. If possible, I suggest visiting your elopement location (ideally with your photographer) before the big day to experience the area and choose your location. After all, photos only get you so far, but nothing compares visiting in-person.
4. Choose the Season
Choosing your date definitely ties into the vibes you hope to have for your elopement. Big Sur transforms drastically throughout the seasons. Once you’ve chosen your season, narrow down on your dates (with consideration on your preferred vendors). Personally, I don’t think there’s one season that is better than others, especially at a location as diverse as Big Sur. At the end of the day, it truly depends on what you are both envisioning for your elopement!
Looking for a Big Sur elopement photographer?
Your elopement is to celebrate you, and the start of your marriage. If you’re planning an elopement, I would love to hear from you! Fill out my contact form here, and I’ll get back to you as soon as I can! In the meantime, take a peek at this couple who chose to elope in Big Sur!