Top Ten Places to Elope in Arizona
WOAH! Sedona has an insane amount of locations for any couple to get married. I could really write a whole blog on the top ten places to elope in Sedona! If you are looking to get married in a church or at a venue and then want to venture out into the wild for portraits, this is your spot. If you are looking for a hiking adventure elopement this is your location. If you are looking for a place to go climbing to a wild sunset view this is your location! It really has something for everyone. Some places you’ve probably seen in Sedona that are popular spots for elopements and engagement sessions are Devil’s Bridge, Cathedral Rock, and Airport Mesa. The best way to select an elopement location in Sedona is to chat a lot with your photographer and find the perfect spot that fits exactly what you are envisioning for this day! Sedona is really a perfect elopement location almost all 12 months out of the year! If you are looking for some Sedona elopement inspiration check out Izzy & Garrett’s elopement with their closest friends and fur babies at Bell Rock.
The Salt River
This location is really just a hop-skip away from Phoenix. If you are looking for somewhere not too far from the city I think this is your best option. It is one of my favorite places to catch the sunset. You may even have a few wild horses as your wedding guests at this location. There are great trails, epic views of Four Peaks and an abundance of cacti and water. If you want to see what this area looks like for a session check out this couple’s romantic engagement session.
Lost Dutchman State Park
A short drive from Phoenix, this Arizona staple will give you the most beautiful backdrop for your wedding. All levels of adventure are great for this location. If you’d like to go on one heck of a hike with a killer view and feel on top of the world you can conquer Flat Iron on your wedding day. The park has tent camping, RV camping, and little cabins for rent during your stay if you’re looking to be there over night. The park is also near a cute, old-school-western white chapel if you’re looking to keep your ceremony traditional.
If you are looking to elope among pine trees and a rock view overlooking a mountainous valley this is a great place to consider for your elopement! This area is just a two hour drive out of the city and to me is the most beautiful drive in Arizona. Payson can be particularly beautiful after a snow fall, just be sure to consider road closures and safety. You can access the rim without a long hike, but if you are looking for adventure on your wedding day Fossil Creek, a nine-mile hike to an epic swimming hole is near by. You will also find the Tonto national bridge not too far away which is a fun adventure especially if you want some moody cave-like images from your elopement day. It is strikingly different from the rim and a fun thing to do. Erica and Tom celebrated their ten year wedding anniversary on the Rim and it is a beautiful example of what your elopement could be like at this location.
A great spot to camp and hike near Flagstaff, Arizona this spot will almost make you think you are in Colorado. Eloping here in the early fall is a colorful dream come true with the yellow leafs falling from the Aspens in the early fall. In late fall you will get to enjoy the beautiful snow covered mountain tops 360 degrees around you. This does require a hike in, but it’s something you could for sure bring a few guests along the way. You may want to consider four wheel drive to get to the trail head.
The Epic (Secret) Beautiful Canyon
Only a short drive outside of Flagstaff, Arizona this place will blow your mind at sunrise or sunset. I call it the little Grand Canyon and while you may recognize this location from other sessions or photographers I am not disclosing the name. This location is on the border of the Hopi & Navajo Reservation and it does require a permit to access the land, eloping or not. This is a very fragile landscape and must be respected. Please follow Leave No Trace Behind Principals when visiting this area. Typically when here you can expect to have the location to yourself or just a few other folks.
Lake Powell/Horseshoe Bend
Red rock canyons are shaped by a beautiful lake. Lake Powell is so beautiful with so many trails, off road vehicle routes, and dock accesses you are bound to find your own little nook at this elopement location. The sunsets in this area are so beautiful and its such a magical experience to watch the rocks turn purple and the sky to indigo. Have you ever imagined accessing your elopement location via boat? Here you can do it! You may also even find yourself a private slot canyon. The other fantastic thing about Lake Powell is that its near Horseshoe Bend, the Utah border, and all of the slot canyons.
Ahhh the ever famous elopement destination in Arizona. Even though this location has become an extremely popular tourist spot it is still a gem among couples wanting to have a desert elopement. The fact of the matter is it’s such an epic view to access easily without a long hike. Not to mention it is surrounded by an insane amount of other things to do. Check a slot canyon elopement here and learn more about the canyons!
The Grand Canyon
The most popular National Park within this great state is high on the elopement destination list for a lot of folks. The Grand Canyon is one of those places where you cannot explain the view unless you are standing there looking into its expanse. With quiet and beautiful sunrises and breath-taking sunsets, it will be sure to bring peace to your elopement day. If you are looking for an adventure on your wedding day you have come to the right location. If you are looking for an elopement location where you can have a two-day or longer elopement experience this is the best in the state! You can hike Rim to Rim with your partner and camp at the bottom of the canyon. If you pull a permit at the right time you can even do a trip to Havasu Falls which is within the park. No matter what you are considering, if you elope here you will need to contact the park and apply for a wedding permit. Your photographer will also need to pull a permit. Be sure to visit the National Park site to learn about any restrictions they have for ceremony locations and items you cannot bring into the park. Camping here is a great option for your elopement night and you might even have elk as some visitors.
The Petrified Forest
Something a little different and perfect for any couple that is interested in Si-Fi. Every time I go to the National Park I cannot stop imagining a couple in some insane edgy attire getting married in a whole other world. This place has wild history and is different from the rest of Arizona. If you’re looking for a place that’s a little more moody and out of this world you have found it. This park will give you more privacy than Horseshoe Bend, The Grand Canyon, and Sedona. The area surrounding this park is pretty empty so you may consider staying in Payson, Flagstaff or even Albuquerque, New Mexico.
Saguaro National Park
Just outside of Tucson you will find a national park nestled by mountains with tons and tons of old tall cacti. A true desert dream for your elopement day! The park is also close to many other great hikes and places to adventure like Mt. Lemmon. Tuscan has lots of fun places to stay, eat and drink. You can not go wrong here if you want an elopement with tall cacti surrounding you, especially in the spring when all of the wild flowers are blooming.
Arizona has an insane amount of adventure and amazing places to offer any couple of considering an elopement. I may be a little bias because Arizona has strongly resonated with me since the very first time I visited, so much so that I quit my job and moved here to start photographing elopements after my second visit. Sometimes selecting an elopement location can be the biggest choice you make when planning your elopement. It either comes to you naturally, “This is where we should get married!!!” or it is a little more difficult. Remember to imagine together and keep an open mind. If you would like help in the starting phase of planning your elopement download my free planning guide here.