Planning a wedding or elopement at

The Oregon Coast

If you are dreaming of a quiet getaway - immersed in solitude, surrounding by natural beauty, and near the serene ocean front of the Pacific - the Oregon Coast is the perfect location. From the dramatic coastlines to the vibrant and lush forests, this guide shares all the best locations and vendors for your intimate wedding or elopement on the Oregon Coast.

Visiting the Oregon Coast

Best Time of Year to Visit

Although the Oregon Coast has relatively mild and chilly weather year round, the best time of year to visit the Oregon Coast is late summer into early fall. The months of August and September are especially beautiful, as the summer crowds from June and July have dissipated and the fall time rain hasn't quite hit. Although the day-time high rarely gets above 60 degrees, this is also the warmest time of year to visit. Spring (April through June) is also a stunning time to visit as it's not as crowded as summer or cold as winter.

Best Places to Stay

Along the entire span of the Oregon Coast are a ton of beautiful, quaint, and comfortable accommodations. From endless private rental options such as Airbnb and VRBO, to modest models and even luxurious hotels, you are sure to find a selection of accommodations in every town. Some of the most luxurious Oregon Coast accommodations I have discovered so far include:

Things to Do

Unlike the nearby California Coast, you won't find any large chain hotels, restaurants, or busy piers, or boujie shopping centers. Instead, the Oregon coast is peaceful, quaint, and mainly features small fishing towns and oceanfront lodges.

Although the Oregon coast is quiet, this doesn't mean there aren't things to do! For the most part, you will find yourself in the outdoors and can keep yourself busy with a hike, horseback riding on the beach, or visiting a nearby brewery. For the brave of heart, the Oregon coast is also a great place for surfing (on approved beaches only), camping, and having a campfire! Otherwise, plan to spend most of your time relaxing and taking in the fresh sea air!

Best Places to for Your Oregon Coast Elopement Ceremony

Most of the specific locations listed below are open to public access and do not have an option for exclusive use. To avoid crowds, choose a week day and avoid peak months and holiday weeks. In some cases, a wedding permit or vendor permits may be required, and decorations such as installations and heavy florals may not be permitted. Most of these locations can not accommodate large groups and are only advised for elopements and small wedding celebrations of 20 guests or fewer.

Columbia River Gorge

Not technically on the Oregon Coast, but still featuring waterfront views at the perimeter of Oregon - the Columbia River Gorge is a long canyon just north of Portland that separates the states of Oregon and Washington. It features hundreds of waterfalls, lush forest, and stunning views of the nearby mountains and riverbed cliffs.

  • LaTourell Falls
  • Wahclella Falls
  • Government Cove

Cannon Beach

Famous for it's iconic Haystack Rock, Cannon Beach is one of the most popular towns along the Oregon Coast. Although Cannon Beach is a touristy town that draws crowds in the summer months, it does offer a wide range of accommodations, restaurants, and places to shop.

  • Ecola State Park
  • Haystack Rock
  • Hug Point
  • Arch Cape

Manzanita to Tillamook

A sleepy area on the Oregon Coast, Manzanita and Tillamook are great towns to visit if you want to escape the noise and crowds of the other coastal towns. Other than the stunning beach and famous Tillamook Creamery, there isn't a ton going on in this area - but for some, this only adds to the charm.

  • Nehalem Bay State Park
  • Oswald West State Park
  • Tillamook State Forest
  • Oceanside Beach

Pacific City and Lincoln City

Both Pacific and Lincoln cities are located just south of Manzanita and find a good balance between quaint and accommodating for tourists. Both towns are just slightly smaller and less crowded than Cannon Beach but boast more energy than Manzanita, and are a great place unwind. With plenty of nearby natural attractions and a few beautiful hotel accommodations, this is a great area to stay for your Oregon Coast wedding weekend.

Also - check out the bunnies that live wildly all over Pacific city! They are friendly, abundant, and love people - but do not feed them or try to pet!

  • Cape Kiwanda
  • Bob Straub State Park
  • The Knoll (God's Thumb)

Bandon

As you continue heading south from Pacific and Lincoln cities, eventually you will end up in Bandon, OR. Bandon is a beautiful coastal town with great energy and offers a variety of activities and one of the most beautiful, moody beaches along the coast. Bandon Beach features a long stretch of sand with dozens of dramatic rock formations jutting out from the sea's edge; a glorious place to host your elopement or wedding ceremony.

  • Coquille Point
  • Bandon Beach

Brookings

At the southernmost part of the Oregon Coast, you will find yourself in the romantic town of Brookings. Higher in elevation and bordering Oregon's redwood forest, Brookings features amazing natural sites such as dramatic cliffs, natural bridges, and lush forest. Although Brookings is a magical place to visit, it is a distance from any major airports and is quite the trek to get to if you're traveling from out of state; I only recommend it for tiny ceremonies or true elopements between two people.

  • Samuel H Boardman State Park
  • Harris Beach State Park
  • Oregon Redwoods

Oregon Coast Wedding & Elopement Vendors

Other Questions

What weather can we anticipate?

The Oregon coast is notorious for it's rain, wind, and ocean fog. Especially in the summer months, it isn't uncommon for a marine layer to linger into the early afternoon and for daytime temperatures to fluctuate. The warm season averages around 60 degrees and lasts July through September, and the cold season lasts December though February and averages near 40 degrees. Because you're on the Pacific ocean, on average you can expect a steady breeze or wind, frequent rainfall, and cold to comfortable temperatures. Dress in layers and make sure you bring a waterproof jacket, shoes, and an umbrella!

What's the best way to get around?

There is virtually no public transportation along the Oregon coast so you will definitely want to hire a car! Having a car rental will be especially great for all of those long, coastal drives you're bound to take - the Oregon coast is stunning and driving from town to town along route 1 is a great way to spend your time.

Do you have any other general travel suggestions?

It will be cold, and it will probably rain. The Oregon Coast is known for it's moody mornings, mild temperatures, and frequent rain fall. On average, the temperatures here range from 40 to 60 degrees but there tends to be a consistent cold sea breeze. No matter the time of year, you will want to keep with you a jacket, shoes, and hat or umbrella that are waterproof just in case.

You will get wet and dirty. I get it, you spent a lot of money on your hair, makeup, and attire. But here's the thing - you chose one of the foggiest and dampest places in the continental USA to get married! Also being the fact that you're choosing to get married on a coast, there's going to be a ton of mud, wet sand, and sticky marine wash-up that you'll probably find yourself walking through. Unless you stay indoors the entire time, you will get dirty. Instead of constantly stressing and worrying - just embrace it! Wear something you don't mind getting wet and dirty and shoes that can withstand the elements. Also, bring a change of clothes for when you're ready to get dry and cozy indoors.

Plan for a weekday elopement. If you are planning your intimate wedding or elopement along the Oregon Coast, you will likely be choosing a ceremony spot on public land. Although much of the beach front does not require a wedding or photography permits (yay!), it does get crowded with tourists during the daylight hours and even into the evenings (people love their beach bon fires in Oregon). This means, you should plan your date for a week day (Monday through Thursday) and preferably during a less popular month for traveling. I recommend avoiding dates in June through mid-August, and avoid holiday weekends such as Memorial Day and Labor Day.

Ask permission from your accommodation host. I love the idea of an Airbnb elopement or intimate wedding celebration just as much as the next person, but do be sure to ask the host for their permission before you start hiring vendors! This isn't unique to the Oregon coast but I do see it happen more frequently here - many Airbnb hosts do not allow events or professional photography on their property as it can be disruptive to nearby neighbors and can violate their rental license. If you are hoping to host your intimate wedding or elopement ceremony at an Airbnb, make sure to message the host before you book; let them know all the details of your intentions including number of guests, start time and duration of the event, types of vendors you want to hire, if there will be a professional photographer, and if you plan to bring in any decorations or musicians. Also, don't be surprised if additional fees apply.

Planning a Wedding or Elopement on the Oregon Coast
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