Why You Should Elope on the Oregon Coast · Wild Earth Weddings

Why You Should Elope on the Oregon Coast

A couple embraces on the shoreline at Cape Kiwanda on their elopement day. They are framed by the sea stack off the Oregon Coast.

The Oregon coast is truly #thecoastwiththemost – and you can find it all here! It’s a pretty BIG area, and I’ve broken it down into three parts to help you decide where to elope.

The Southern Oregon Coast

Best Features:

  • Warmer
  • Fewer people
  • Redwoods!

Nearest airport: Rogue Valley International-Medford Airport (MFR)

The Southern Oregon coast is absolutely one of my favorite parts of the state. It’s an area that’s far enough away from big cities to not be overwhelmed by tourists, but epic enough that you wonder why there aren’t more people around!

Here you can find some of Oregon’s best and most instagrammed beaches, snugged in cozy towns with lots of cute airbnbs, amazing seafood (if that’s your thing!). The coast offers more than beaches- you can also spend your day exploring the forests, which often grow right up to the edges of the beaches! The star of the show are those epic giants: the coast redwoods!

Yes, Oregon has redwoods!! You’ll also be within a half hours drive of California redwoods state parks! (where they filmed scenes from Jurassic Park!) Epic!

If you’re looking for secluded views that make you feel like you’re in New Zealand, this is the place for you!

Best time to elope: 

There is almost always great weather in Southern Oregon. Sometimes this can even mean 80 degree winter days thanks to something called the Brookings effect or Chetco effect– yep there’s even a wikipedia page about it!

Essentially, high pressure systems move into the southern coast around Brookings, and this air warms up as it nears the coast. So don’t believe it when you hear that Oregon is always cold and rainy- you can find downright balmy beaches in the tourist off-season.

My favorite times to visit are  February- June, and September and October. Avoid August and the higher risk that smoke from wildfires may impact your day.

As with any location, if you choose to elope on a weekday you’ll be ten times more likely to have a private experience. 

Example Timeline for an epic all day Oregon coast adventure elopement:

12:30 – 2:00 Getting Ready at both airbnbs
2:00 – 2:30 –Travel- Redwoods
2:30 -3:15 First Look & Portraits in the Redwoods
3:15 – 3:45 –Travel– – Drive to second portrait location
3:45 – 4:45: Portraits at second location
5:00 – 5:15 Ceremony
5:30 – 5:45 Family Portraits
5:45 – 7:00 Candlelit first dance on the beach at sunset
6:30- 8:00 – Regroup with guests for outdoor dinner at restaurant.

The Central Oregon Coast

Best Features

Nearest Airport: Eugene Regional Airport (EUG)

Ok, so no one calls this area the “central coast” – it’s all “the coast” to locals- but I think that the areas between Florence and Lincoln City have their own vibe! That is to say, you’ll find glorious tide pools, laid back small towns, and fantastic campgrounds. 

For this stretch of the coast, the Highway 101 snugs right up against the ocean, so it’s easy to miss all that this area has to offer. Stop in a Yachats (YA-HOTS) for an easy going, super walkable seaside community, or head up to Newport and get up close and personal with marine life.

Lincoln City is home to a popular elopement spot named “God’s Thumb” – a short but strenuous hike up to a point knob (the thumb) where many couples have chosen to tie the knot.

The “central coast” transitions seamlessly into the vistas of the northern coast from here.

The Northern Oregon Coast

Best Features

A couple elopes on the Oregon Coast
  • Epic cliffs of basalt columns
  • Closer to Portland
  • Moody as heck
  • Sea stacks

Nearest airport: Portland International Airport (PDX)

The Northern Oregon Coast is like the older, more trendy sister to the other coasts. It’s got a vibe and it wants you to know it. (That vibe is “Game of Thrones, but romantic”) Catch this coast in its foggier and rainier months for epic crashing waves and deep, dark forests.

While you might be more likely to run into lots of other tourists, there are definitely some unique and harder-to-find lists for your adventure elopement or intimate wedding on the northern side of the Oregon coast.

Best times to elope:

For moody PNW vibes (and if you aren’t afraid of a little rain) the northern coast is gorgeously moody in the early spring. Summer is more reliably for sunny days, but I can’t say enough about the moody vibes of the cooler months. August and September are great choice. Be aware that “king tides” typically form in the winter along the coast. It’s important to be aware of high and low tides to access the coastline safely.

Photography for central Oregon Coast Elopements begin at $1000 for 2 hours of photography.

Example timeline for an elopement on the central Oregon Coast

Wondering what 2 hours on the Oregon coast could look like?

Here’s an example timeline for Kel’s and Robin’s Cape Kiwanda Elopement

  • 5:00 pm Meet at the Hungry Harbor Rd parking lot
  • 5-5:20 Walk across the beach to the big dune
  • 5:30-  Choose ceremony site
  • 5:45-6:00 Exchange vows
  • 6:00-6:15 Photos with guests
  • 6:20- 7:00 Couple’s Sunset Portraits

View more example timelines and Oregon coast elopement package prices here!

November 13, 2020

Wild Earth Weddings

You know, the one that always reminds you to bring extra socks on the overnight hike, and who definitely has the best podcasts queued up for the road trip.

From dreaming to planning, to the big day and after, I lend you my experience, my best ideas and inspiration, my favorite and most breathtaking locations, and the all cheering-on you need.

I create the space for you to feel easy, relaxed, and EXCITED as you treat yourselves to one heck of an adventure together.

More than epic photography

I believe that big weddings aren’t the right fit for everyone, and that your wedding day is an opportunity to do something different, something wild, and something completely unique.

I also believe that connecting with the earth connects you to your partner, and that wedding vows (and photos) are extra magical in the majestic landscapes of the American West.

Adventure Elopement Photographer + Wedding Wing-Woman

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  1. Malina Alexander says:

    Wow, you chocked this post FULL of awesome and helpful info about eloping on the Oregon Coast! I mean who wouldn’t want to?! Great post!

  2. Emmy says:

    Wow! I would have never known about the Brookings effect in souther oregon. That is so interesting. What great knowledge this is for couples!

  3. Katy Weaver says:

    Omg looove this long and detailed post about Oregon Coast elopements! So much helpful info for couples wanting the perfect Oregon elopement! Love it!

  4. This is such a wonderfully comprehensive guide about Oregon coast elopements! Thank you for the info!

  5. Alex C says:

    This is so helpful for planning an Oregon elopement! I especially love the timeline examples, it really helps to see it all laid out!

  6. sara says:

    I am just dying to get to Oregon Ive never gotten to shoot there. It looks so lovely and all these tips you gave are so helpful.

  7. OOoooo I love these tips. Thank you for including what the closest airports are. That is SO helpful. And you had me at ‘redwoods’!!! I wish I could go there now!

  8. Sienna says:

    There’s truly a place for everyone on the Oregon coast!

  9. Wow! This is super helpful! This is really a “one stop shop” for planning your elopement! Thanks for including such helpful tips.

  10. Sydney says:

    Such good information for anyone looking to elope on the Oregon Coast

  11. Jacqueline G says:

    What great options you have for elopement locations around the Oregon Coast! It is truly an unforgettable area to visit, let alone get married at!!

  12. Shanna says:

    This is so fantastic! Oregon looks INCREDIBLE and you’ve made me want to visit even more than I already did, haha. Thank you for sharing such a detailed guide. Love the example timelines, too!

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