A lot of people ask me, “why elope in Washington State?”
When thinking of your adventurous elopement, what comes to mind? Rocky, moody beaches? Roaring waterfalls? Epic mountain hikes? Ancient rainforests? Imagine that you can find all those options in one state. Well, you can! Washington state offers all the adventurous elopement options you can think of. America’s hidden gem, the PNW is a mysterious and romantic corner of the country that not enough of us are talking about! Couples that elope in Washington state have endless options when it comes to location, style and activity levels. From romantic pull-offs right off the side of the road to overnight hikes to epic mountain views, Washington State has it all.
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Tips for planning a Washington Elopement
Check the Weather
Adventurous elopements can be tough to plan in a state with pretty unpredictable weather. Our best advice is to be prepared for anything, and don’t get discouraged. A rainy day can come out of nowhere, and depending on your elevation, so can snow, or just chilly temperatures. Be prepared with footwear and umbrellas, and don’t let a little bad weather keep you too far from your plans. If it’s a big concern, plan for a backup location, or, just go for nit! Washington is beautiful even in ugly weather, and you have no idea when it can change. Just make sure you’re staying safe!
Check for Permits
If you are eloping or having an intimate wedding in a national park or state park, a lot of them require permits. And trust me, they will stop you. Make sure you are following their permit requirements and looking up if there are designated spots for certain size weddings.
Stay on the Trail
This is a BIG one. Over the past few years, park employees have gotten more strict about making sure people are staying on the trails. Since the parks have gotten more crowded over the years, and wildlife is more sensitive, it’s important that we help protect these parks by staying where humans are supposed to be. It’s the least we can do to keep these parks preserved and beautiful. We strongly encourage you to follow LNT best practices (leave no trace).
Plan around sunset or sunrise
This is one we recommend for all couples planning any wedding, but the position of the sun has a big impact on your photos. We always recommend that couples try to plan out their elopements based on when the sun is rising or setting, for ideal photo goodness. If hiking is involved, be prepared with headlamps so you can see where you’re going.
Best Places to Elope in Washington State
Mount Rainier National Park
Mount Rainier National park is Seattle’s crowned jewel and makes for the perfect place to elope in Washington State. A towering, 14,000 foot tall, active volcano, Mount Rainier is the icon of Seattle and surrounding areas. Mount Rainier National Park is 369 square foot pristine park surrounded by mountain towns with cozy a-frame cabins, the perfect mountain elopement getaway. The highest road in the park is Sunrise, which opens from mid-June until early October, making summer the best time for a Mount Rainier elopement.
Some of our favorite elopement spots include
- Paradise Visitor Center
- Sunrise Visitor Center
- Tipsoo Lake
Where to stay for Mount Rainier elopement
North Cascades National Park
If you are looking for a true mountain elopement in Washington State, then North Cascades National Park is the place for you. A lot of couples looking to elope in Washington state gravitate toward this park. The North Cascades are also known as the sea of peaks, because the mountain range from a high up view, resembles a tumultuous ocean. We love this park for a Washington elopement because there are endless options for couples of all elopement sizes, activity levels, and styles. The park is free to get in and dog-friendly, but you still need to get in contact with them about wedding permits.
Just a few amazing North Cascades elopement spots
- Artist Point
- Diablo Lake
- Washington Pass
These are just a few spots the North Cascades offer, among so many others. This makes North Cascades one of the best places to elope in Washington State
Where to Stay for a North Cascades Elopement
Mount Baker is in the northern part of Washington, bordering Canada and perfect for the super adventurous couples looking to elope in Washington. It is the most visited national forest in the country, and so full of adventurous hiking trails that lead to epic views. Stay in one of the little mountain towns, in an A-frame Airbnb, and gear up for the most spectacular mountain elopement ever.
Olympic National Park
Olympic National Park sits on the far western side of Washington and it is HUGE. So many options await you in this park, whether you’re looking for those beautiful evergreens, or a gorgeous mountain-scape, you are going to be overwhelmed with places to choose from. Its diverse landscape and endless options make Olympic National Park one of the best places to elope in Washington.
Just a few awesome spots for Olympic National Park elopements:
- La Push Beach
- Hurricane Ridge
- Hoh Rainforest
Where to stay for an Olympic National Park elopement:
- Port Angeles
Snoqualmie is located just about 45 minutes outside Seattle, making it the perfect place to elope in Washington if you are wanting to stay in the city! We love this area for its accessibility and its endless options for an elopement. It’s home to the world-famous, Snoqualmie falls, Rattlesnake ledge and more, the options for people looking for a perfect PNW elopement are endless.
Just a few awesome spots to elope in Snoqualmie
- Snoqualmie Falls
- Gold Creek Pond
- Franklin Falls
- Rattlesnake Ledge
Where to stay for a Snoqualmie elopement
- Cle Elum
Not sold on Washington? Check out our post on all the best places to elope!