You’ve heard about the spacious skies and amber waves of grain, but what about the painted deserts, prismatic hot springs, giant redwood forests, and active volcanoes for your destination wedding?
You could spend a lifetime exploring the sites of America, all as beautiful as they are diverse. But it takes a very special location to host a destination wedding.
We talked about all the great places in the U.S. that we all personally loved for a destination wedding. We talked about couples past, and all the glorious places THEY wed. We went to our community of wedding planning professionals and asked what their favorites were.
This is what we found. Our favorite trending western destination wedding locations for 2018.
Monument Valley, Arizona – The park itself is over 10 square miles with many wonderful destination wedding sites. There is no permit required if there are only 4 persons present and the ceremony is performed on the main road.
This destination wedding location is perfect for a bride & groom, the officiant and a photographer ONLY.
Groups of 5 or more will require a permit in advance. The special use permit must be submitted by mail directly to the Navajo Tribal Park, in this case Monument Valley. They require a payment $100.00. This “Processing Fee” is issued for weddings, film companies or photography workshops that involve five or more people within the park.
Bryce Canyon, Utah – Bryce Canyon located off highway 12, is off the beaten path and as such offers ample opportunity to have a secluded, intimate wedding. With an elevation of over 8000 feet above sea level, Bryce Canyon is available year-round but winters can be quite nippy for a wedding.
Located in remote southern Utah, surrounded by tall Ponderosa Pines which sweeten each breath you take, a forest with magical views into the canyon of world famous “Hoodoo” formations make Bryce Canyon a unique location. Awesome simple cowboy cabins will take you back in time or well-appointed modern rooms await guests.
Antelope Canyon, Arizona – One of our personal favorites and an amazing wedding experience. Lower Antelope Canyon is much less visited than Upper Antelope Canyon. Specialty wedding planners, who cater to this specific area, will provide flowers, champagne and even a flute player should you decide to spend the money, and it is well worth it.
Antelope is a beautiful natural wonder offering both Upper and Lower Canyons. Either canyon is not an option for anyone who has mobility issues, walking is a must. We like to recommend the intimacy of Lower Canyon.
Lower Canyon – This canyon requires climbing down ladders into tight narrow places and is not for the faint of heart or those with a fear of heights. You can drive directly to the canyon entrance yourself.
Grand Canyon / Havasu Falls, Arizona – Located deep in the heart of the Grand Canyon where Hualapai & Havasu Canyons meet, we find Havasu Creek. The creek is fed by an enormous underground limestone aquifer which percolates to the surface just a few miles upstream from the ancient village of Supai. As the sacred waters descends the canyon they quickly become a magnificent, cascading river of blue-green.
Colored by the limestone which is gently carried in its flow, the fine sediments are slowly deposited on everything they encounter. The layering of the travertine creates striking natural pools and dams. Havasu Creek is a natural wonder and one of only three travertine rivers in the entire southwest.
Isolated does not even begin to cover the location of the tiny village of Supai. There are three ways to reach the village and falls, by Hiking, by Mule or by Helicopter, take your pick and feel free to mix and match. Lodging is available in the village at the Havasupai Lodge or in the campground. RESERVATIONS ARE REQUIRED.
Havasu Falls is the ultimate extreme wedding for the really adventurous who love hiking and are free spirited enough to roll with any changes or problems should they arise, and they do.
The trail from Hilltop to Supai is 8 miles and continues another 2 miles to the falls & campground.
Grand Canyon / North Rim, Arizona – The less visited North Rim is off the beaten path and as such offers ample opportunity to have a secluded, intimate wedding. With an elevation of over 8000 feet above sea level, North Rim is available only from mid-May to mid-November.
Located in remote northern Arizona, surrounded by tall Ponderosa Pines which sweeten each breath you take, a forest with magical views into the canyon and even water at Cliff Springs, make the North Rim a unique location. Awesome simple cowboy cabins will take you back in time or the Grand Canyon Lodge is breathtaking with exceptional views.
Grand Canyon / South Rim, Arizona – Let us help make your Grand Canyon Wedding a reality. The South Rim of the Grand Canyon is enjoyed by millions of visitors a year, is open year-round and has a wealth of wedding options.
A beautiful room at the historic El Tovar or rustic cabins by the rim will help set the stage for a romantic adventure old west style. For smaller parties, intimate five-star dining is available at the El Tovar and for larger parties banquet rooms with exceptional views are available for your celebration. Enjoy your ceremony on a point or a short hike to a more remote location. Las Vegas and Phoenix are convenient starting points with flights into the South Rim available as well.
All outdoor weddings require the NPS Special Use Permit. There is a $135 non-refundable permit fee for all sites except Shoshone Point which is $420 please see information below. The permit does not grant exclusive use of the area and public access cannot be restricted in any way. Parking is limited and guests should carpool to the site. The following authorized sites are arranged from west to east along the South Rim.
White Sands, New Mexico – These two wanted a place unique, surreal, quiet and elusive. The guidelines for White Sands weddings severely limits decoration – fresh flowers and greens are not allowed and candles are useless against the high winds and blowing gypsum minerals. The best part about White Sands is the sunset. When the sky turns pink and the white dunes turn blue – it’s almost impossible to know which way is up!
Because fresh flowers were not allowed in the park, beautiful dried bouquets of air plants are often seen in bridal parties. Think king protea and eucalyptus to carry. If you want a ceremony backdrop to not only withstand the high winds but also to mimic the surreal landscape, a stark canvas tipi that just blends into the peaks of white gypsum is an ideal solution.
Jackson Hole, Wyoming – Jackson Hole is one of the most beautiful and exciting places in the world. The gorgeous landscape provides a beautiful backdrop for your special day. Surrounded by natural beauty, your wedding guests will lose themselves in romance. Make it a perfect day to remember!
Jackson Hole, Wyoming is the perfect location for planning a destination wedding. Stunning backdrops are matched with businesses that are experienced in helping the happy couple plan their perfect day.
Maroon Bells, Colorado – If you needed any more convincing that small weddings can be just as breathtaking and epic as their larger counterparts, then a destination wedding at the Maroon Bells is for you!
Treat your guests to spellbinding mountain views at a Maroon Bells Amphitheatre outdoor ceremony destination wedding ceremony, then get whisked away to complete the evening with an intimate dinner at The Little Nell. If you want to highlight the natural beauty that Colorado’s landscapes have to offer, so keep your color palette delicate and organic with a blush pink gown and romantic pastels.
So, there you are! The hot spots in the west that will make for an amazingly magical, and memorable, destination wedding event in the west.
Be sure to check out these state-specific destination wedding invitations right here. If you’re looking at Western, Rustic, or Cowboy themes, we’ve got you covered there, too. The possibilities in destination wedding invitations and stationery are endless with any of these locations.
We’ve got a fabulous collection of images over here, covering everything from Western to Boho Chic to ultra-whimsical.
Still trying to figure the destination wedding stationery thing out? Get in touch with us here. Fran is available to talk with you about themes, colors, fonts, papers and more, to help you create the wedding invitation suite of your dreams. Don’t be shy; we’re here to help.
We know that you’ve both put everything you are into this perfect day. We seriously couldn’t be happier for you! It’s going to be incredible; we just know it. Your Best Day Ever!