Documenting all love stories near or far

Shelby Jane

March 11, 2022

Best National Parks To Elope in 2022

FILED IN: Advice

If you want to elope with your boo surrounded by some of the best views the US has to offer, you’ve come to the right place. The idea of eloping at a national park has become more and more common amongst modern couples, and for good reason! There’s nothing like saying “I do” on top of a mountain, right on a lakeshore, or surrounded by wildflowers and wildlife. If that sounds like your jam, you’re definitely going to want to stick around and read all about the best national parks to elope in 2022. 

Bryce Canyon National Park – Utah

Eloping in Bryce Canyon National Park would be a beautiful option if you’re looking for a phenomenal backdrop (pink cliffs, anyone??). There are two different pre-approved ceremony sites at BCNP, and those are the only spots where you can tie the knot. Those locations (both at Sunset Point) are: 

  • The Main Amphitheater Overlook
  • The Silent City Overlook 

With all of these locations, I HIGHLY recommend putting in your permit request 8-12 months prior to your elopement. Especially because most national parks only have select locations where you can hold your ceremony, so they can get booked up pretty quickly. 

To apply for your permit, you can click here

When should you elope at Bryce Canyon National Park?

Although Bryce Canyon National Park is open all year round, there are definitely more optimal times to elope here. Between the months of May and September, the weather/temperatures are the warmest! Keep in mind, these months are also the busiest/most crowded times to visit. If you want to elope when there’s less foot traffic, I would recommend planning between the months of October and April. During the winter months, the park is transformed into a winter wonderland. So if that’s not your style, try eloping in October/November or March/April!

Zion National Park – Utah

Another one of Utah’s many wonders – Zion National Park. The red rock walls and stunning views of the Virgin River are enough to make anyone want to say “I do” here! There are six different pre-approved ceremony sites, which are:

  • Temple of Sinawava 
  • Menu Falls
  • The Zion Lodge Lawn
  • The Nature Center Lawn
  • The South Campground Amphitheater 
  • The Timber Creek Overlook 

As you can see, you have tons of options for ceremony spots! And don’t forget, you can always have your ceremony at one of these sites, and then we can spend the day exploring the park to take photos. 

To apply for your permit, you can click here

When should you elope at Zion National Park?

Summer at ZNP is… hot. The temperatures can get up to 100 degrees fahrenheit, which isn’t super ideal for planning an elopement. To avoid undesirable temps, try shooting for October or November when the park is much less busy and the weather is beautiful. The fall colors start showing at higher elevations and slowly make their way down the park in late October/early November. During the winter months, the park becomes covered in snow and many locations are inaccessible due to possible falling ice. 

Yosemite National Park – California

Yosemite is by far one of the best places to elope in California. The various peaks and viewpoints that YNP has to offer are absolutely breathtaking! Unlike the previous national parks we’ve talked about, Yosemite has thirteen different designated ceremony spots to choose from, which are: 

Yosemite Valley

  • Cascades Picnic Area
  • Lower Yosemite Fall Paved Trail 
  • Swinging Bridge Picnic Area
  • Cathedral Beach Picnic Area
  • Sentinel Beach Picnic Area
  • Bridalveil Fall


  • Glacier Point Amphitheater
  • Chilnualna Falls Trailhead Parking Lot 

Tuolumne Meadows

  • Tenaya Lake Beach
  • Tuolumne Meadows Lodge Area

Big Oak Flat Area

  • Tuolumne Grove
  • Merced Grove

Keep in mind that there are certain restrictions for specific areas depending on the time of year. Be sure to check for those guidelines!

To apply for your ceremony permit, you can click here

When should you elope at Yosemite National Park?

Honestly, Yosemite is a beautiful national park to elope in during all times of year! Of course there are things you should take into consideration when planning your elopement. Springtime is peak waterfall season, so if you want that type of scenery for photos, you know that’s around the time you should be planning for. Late April to mid-May are the best spring months to visit if you want to be in the clear when it comes to snow-related road closures. 

Summer is of course the most popular time of year to visit, which means there will be a lot of foot traffic. If you still want to elope during the summer months, I recommend having your ceremony early in the morning to have some privacy! Mid to late October is also a great time to elope here – the park is starting to cool off and the leaves are starting to turn. Come wintertime, there are a lot more road closures and your ceremony location options will start to be more limited. Although it is still 100% possible to plan your elopement in the winter months, keep in mind that you may not have as many options! 

Best National Parks To Elope in 2022

Denali National Park – Alaska

Denali National Park is so much more than just a mountain. This NP encompasses over 6 million acres of wild land, and is home to North America’s highest peak. There are no specific pre-approved wedding ceremony locations, but there are areas within the first 3 miles of the park that you could choose from. These locations are:

  • Riley Creek Amphitheater 
  • Riley Creek Day Use Picnic Area
  • Savage River Campground Amphitheater

DNP is one of the few parks that actually encourages off-trail exploration, so truly as long as you have a permit, you can have your ceremony anywhere. To apply for your Special Use Permit, click here.

When should you elope at Denali National Park?

Summertime is by far the most popular time to visit Denali, but it is also the most popular time for mosquitoes. If you choose to elope in the summer, be sure to bring lots of bug spray! Snowfall can start as early as September, but the fall colors provide such a stunning contrast against the white of the snow. Wintertime at Denali can yield temperatures as low as -40 degrees Fahrenheit, and highs of around 20 degrees. June-August are the months with the most rainfall, so most avoid eloping during that time! 

Best National Parks To Elope in 2022

Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore – Indiana 

Indiana Dunes National Park hugs 15 miles of the southern shore of Lake Michigan, offering miraculous views and of course, water! If you’re planning a sunset/sunrise elopement and want views of Lake Michigan, the Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore might be the perfect place for you. There are 10 different pre-approved ceremony locations to choose from, which are: 

  • West Beach
  • Portage Lakefront Awning 
  • Portage Lakefront Overlook
  • Portage Lakefront Beach
  • Portage Lakefront Classroom
  • Porter Beach Area
  • Kemil Beach Area
  • Dunbar Beach Area
  • Lake View Area
  • Chellberg Farm

There are summer permit hours and off-season permit hours, so be sure to consult for the specifics on what time of day you’re able to hold your ceremony at these locations. To apply for your permit, you can click here

When should you elope at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore?

PSA: The weather at Indiana Dunes National Lakeshore is greatly affected by Lake Michigan and can quickly & unexpectedly change. Summers are usually pretty warm (and humid!) with temps ranging between 80 degrees Fahrenheit and 60 degrees Fahrenheit. Winters tend to be pretty cloudy, but there are about 15 days out of the year where the temperatures drop below 0. 

Best National Parks To Elope in 2022

Grand Canyon National Park – Arizona

Last but certainly not least, why not elope at Grand Canyon National Park? Being one of the (in my opinion) most grand locations in the US, no one can deny that eloping here would be an epic experience. On the flipside of that, the Grand Canyon can get extremely busy, so plan your elopement with that in mind. Here are all the pre-approves ceremony locations to choose from:

Outdoor Locations: South Rim

  • Pima Point
  • Rim Worship Site
  • Grandeur Point
  • Shoshone Point
  • Moran Point
  • Lipan Point

Outdoor Locations: North Rim

  • Cape Royal Amphitheater
  • Point Imperial Viewpoint

Indoor Locations: South Rim

  • Shrine of the Ages
  • Park Lodges (don’t require special use permits)

Keep in mind that flowers and archways (along with other items) are strictly prohibited for the outdoor ceremony locations. Click here to apply for your Special Use permit!

When should you elope at Grand Canyon National Park?

If privacy is your main concern when eloping at GCNP, the wintertime would be best for you. Although it’s mighty cold, there’s the least amount of traffic in the winter months. The blazing hot summer temperatures don’t start going down until November, where mid-high 60’s are the norm. If you want to plan a spring elopement, the months between April and June have the least amount of rainfall but aren’t unbearably hot quite yet.

Best National Parks To Elope in 2022
Best National Parks To Elope in 2022

In my professional opinion, those are the best national parks to elope in 2022! As an adventure elopement photographer, I’m always up for an experience with my couples, no matter where they choose to tie the knot. If you’d like to get in touch with me about tagging along for your elopement, you can fill out my contact form! I’ll get back to you as soon as I can. In the meantime, check out my blog talking all about how you can still incorporate your friends & family in your elopement