This Utah elopement guide is here to provide you with some gorgeous Utah elopement locations, explain how to elope in Utah, as well as answer the top questions surrounding planning an elopement in this beautiful state.

Utah truly has something for everyone, from desert, alpine lakes, greenery and wildflowers, to red rocks and waterfalls, this state does not disappoint. There are many locations here that have become well-know and iconic and can attract crowds. However, as an elopement photographer who helps couples plan, I create customized location guides for all of my eloping couples. Here are some of the top Utah elopement locations to get you brain storming!

Elopement Locations in Utah

As previously mentioned, there are endless options for Utah elopement locations. I’m going to list out some of the major parks, National Forests, and some of my other favorite parks around the state.

Lake Powell

Lake Powell is one of my favorite Utah elopement locations. It’s incredibly unique, and absolutely stunning. Not only can you hike to a beautiful view like this, but you can also rent a house boat and explore the whole lake, and have your elopement on the water! Here’s my thorough guide on how to elope at Lake Powell

Arches National Park

Arches National Park is a super popular elopement location in Utah. It’s wildly stunning and filled with red rock natural arches. There is a list of pre-determined elopement locations within the park. However, once your ceremony is over you can explore and take photos anywhere you’d like. You can read my entire guide on eloping in Arch National Park here.

Canyonlands National Park

This stunning Utah elopement location is a massive amount of desert canyons carved out by the Colorado River. It’s less popular than Arches National Park, so you’ll actually deal with less crowds here.

The Salt Flats

There’s only a few places in the world that resemble the Salt Flats. This is a stunning location made out of salt deposits in the earth, with gorgeous mountains in the background. Sunset here is like nothing I’ve ever seen before. And unlike the National Parks, you’re actually allowed to bring seating and decor here. It’s popular, but since you can drive on the salt flats, you can drive as far away from other people as you’d like. This is one of my favorite Utah elopement locations.


Moab is in the Southern Part of Utah, incredibly close to both Arches National Park and Canyonlands National Park. However, the land in and around Moab some of its own incredible elopement locations. The one pictured here in Corona-arch. So much less popular than Arches Park, and absolutely STUNNING. You can read my entire guide on eloping in Moab here.

High Uintas

This high Uintas Wilderness isn’t what you’d expect when you think of the desert. Not only is it filled with alpine lakes, snowy peaks, and wildflowers, but it can actually get quite cold here. You have to wait until early summer to be able to access this location. This is a great Utah elopement location for couples who love the mountains and lake.

Ashley National Forest

The Ashley National forest is another Utah elopement location that doesn’t appear to be in the desert at all. It’s filled with mountains and alpine lakes. The elevation ranges from 6000, -13,000 feet!

Goblin Valley State Park

Utah elopement locations

Goblin Valley State Park is a beautiful Utah elopement location made up of thousands of these mushroom shaped rocks, referred to as “goblins.” This is a unique elopement location where you can easily avoid crowds. Plus, it allows dogs!

Antelope Island

Utah elopement locations

Antelope Island is one of the islands within the Great Salt Lake. This island is the biggest one. This Utah elopement location is great if you love being around water, and want to possibly see some wildlife!

Coral Pink Sand Dunes

Utah elopement locations

The Coral Pink Sand Dunes are a beautiful Utah elopement location, surrounded by steep red canyon walls, and many sand dunes to explore. There are only sand dunes in a few part of the county, however, these ones are actually pink and glow red during sunset.

Zion National Park

Utah elopement locations

Zion National Park is another park with a list of pre-determined elopement locations within the park. But don’t let that deter you, the pre-approved locations are BEYOND stunning. You can read my full guide on eloping in Zion National Park here!

Capital Reef National Park

Utah elopement locations

I am obsessed with this Utah elopement location. There are quite a few famous landmarks here. Capital Reef National Park is vast, with a ton of unique and striking structures including more natural arches.

Bryce Canyon National Park

Bryce Canyon has an array of incredible hiking trails, and beautiful Utah elopement locations within it. The park is known for its crimson colored hoodoos. Truthfully, this is a place that doesn’t even look like it’s on earth, and is wildly unique.

Amangiri Resort

If you’re looking for a bit of luxury, Camp Sarika is a beautiful destination within Amangiri Resort. You’re able to rent out all entire camp for weddings and elopements. And this place is stunning, with a back to nature feel that’s fully luxurious. This is more of a “real” venue and is quite expensive.

Utah Elopement Lodging Options

There is an array of lodging options for a Utah elopement. You’re going to want something that caters to your needs. For example, if you’re more adventurous, maybe you want to stay in a treehouse. You can glamp in the desert under the stars, stay in a fancy resort, rent a quaint Airbnb in the desert, or even rent a large home in a stunning natural area where you could have an intimate reception with friends and family.

There have been a lot of couples that I’ve helped find vacation rental homes that are in such beautiful areas that they stay local to where their lodging. So long as the owner of the home agrees to it, you’re even able to get rentals for ceremony seating or have a private chef cater a meal to you. Here is a list of amazing lodging options in Utah:

How to Elope in Utah: The Steps

Step 1: Choose a Date for Your Elopement

Here, we’re going to go over the major planning steps in the Utah Elopement Guide. Number 1. Getting an idea of your elopement date is important. You can choose a date that’s meaningful to you. Secondly, this will help you be able to secure a photographer and lodging when you’re ready. I’d consider what season will be best for you as well!

Step 2: Pick Your Elopement Photographer and Utah Elopement Package

Choosing an elopement photographer is a crucial element to planning out your day. Not only do they help you pick your location, but they help you figure out what package would be best for you. Maybe you want a short half day elopement exploring the red rocks. Maybe you want a multi-day elopement where you have a day just for you two, and then a day to explore and celebrate with your loved ones.

Most elopement photographers help with various steps of the planning process, and we’re pros at it. Personally, I include: sending a planning checklist, location selection, vendor referrals, timeline design, help finding ideal lodging, obtaining permits, and more. This is a great step to help you get guidance on planning your big day.

Step 3: Choose Your Utah Elopement Location

With the help of your elopement photographer, you should have a ton of ideal locations to choose from. I send my clients a list of about 4-8 locations that fit all of their needs and specifications. From here, you can pick one or multiple locations for your day. Remember! You can have different locations for different activities.

This is a huge step, and once you finish, everything starts to fall into place with ease.

Step 4: Pick Any Activities to Include in Your Elopement

When I say “activities” I mean things you want to include in your wedding day that will be a special and memorable experience for you. This includes the regular events such as getting ready and the ceremony, but can also include anything that is important to you.

Having an intimate celebration, hiking, picnicking, there are so many different options. You elopement day certainly doesn’t need to only include a ceremony and taking photos. Make it a day that you would want to re-live over and over by including these special activities that are important to you and your partner.

Step 5: Hire Any Required Vendors

Once you’ve decided on your activities, you’ll know what vendors you need. Maybe you’d like a 3 course meal at your Airbnb and want to hire a private chef. Maybe you want a florist to decorate an arch for your ceremony location. This is the time to book any remaining vendors and get them locked down.

Step 6: Finalize Timeline, Obtain Permits, Apply for Marriage License

Once you’re about two months away from your Utah elopement, it’s time to finish up your last major step. Go over your timeline with your elopement photographer, and confirm start and end times with all other vendors. Also make sure any guests that are invited are aware of the timeline for your day.

Finally, you will need to get permits for any public locations that might be involved in your day. I hope my eloping couples with this step, but if you’re doing it on your own you will need to reach out to the national forest service and figure out where to apply for your permit. Last but not least, apply for a marriage license through the county you’ll be getting married in! If you want more detailed steps about how this all works outside of the Utah Elopement guide, we can chat here! I’m here to help.

Utah elopement

Do I Need a Permit to Elope in Utah?

It depends, but usually, yes. In National Parks, you need to get a special use permit through the park on their website. A lot of parks will actually have pre-determined elopement locations that you choose from. National Parks have the strictest rules and regulations when it comes to eloping. However, if you plan on having a smaller group and don’t need things such as decorations, the rules are fairly easy to comply by!

The same stands for State Parks, you’ll need to get a special use permit for them as well. For the National Forest and BLM land, you’ll reach out to whoever is in charge of those areas. Normally, if you’re having less than 75 people, they won’t make you get a permit. But it always depends, and it’s important to check. This is all work that I do for my eloping couples!

How to Get a Marriage License in Utah

Getting a marriage license in Utah is actually pretty easy and straight forward. You will need to eventually pick up your marriage license in person, so make sure to pick a clerks county office that is the closest to your elopement location.

Once you’ve determined which office is closest to your location, you will go to their website and apply for a marriage license online, and pay the fee. In Utah, they’re typically around $50.00. Finally, you’ll finish applying in person. You both need to appear with valid ID. After that, you’re given you’re marriage license and you’re set to go! I help my couples with this process as well.

Do I Need an Officiant and Witnesses to Elope in Utah?

In the state of Utah, you need both two witnesses and an officiant to get legally married. However, you’re able to have a friend or family member easily get ordained online to officiate for you. You’re also able to hire a local officiant. As for your witnesses, you’re able to have any guests join, or you can have your vendors sign if you don’t plan on having guests.

Utah elopement

When is the Best Season to Elope in Utah?

The best season to elope in Utah is either the Spring or Fall! Spring is my favorite season. However, it’s important to know which each season brings, and then decide what kind of weather you want to be in. This will help you and your partner choose the best time of the year for your elopement.


Summer is a pretty intense season in Utah. Not only is it excessively hot, but it still gets a lot of crowds this time of year. Personally, I think elopements in places like Zion, Arches, and Moab, are too hot and can be possibly dangerous. However, the summer in the High Uintas and Ashley National forest are incredible. It’s a lot cooler in the elevation, and all the snow is gone, giving full access to the trails, and a new bloom of stunning wildflowers.


Fall is an amazing time of year to elope in Utah. Some Utah elopement locations like Zion actually receive the changing colors of Autumn. Crowds are dying down, and the temps are so much more mild and enjoyable. There’s also still full access to all of the locations in mountains prior to new snowfall.


Winter is a much slower time of the year in Utah. Most places are pretty cold. It can even snow in some areas. Arches and Zion are both absolutely gorgeous with the snow. If you’re okay with chillier weather, this is an awesome time to elope in Utah because you’ll get entire locations to yourself.


Spring is one of my favorite times for a Utah elopement. In many areas of Utah, this is when things are coming to life. The new warmth brings a bloom of flowers, and greenery. This is the time of the year where things are actually lush in green, which is absolutely gorgeous. Temps are also mild, usually within the 60’s and 70’s. Places like Moab will be hotter, and will still have some early tourism.

Utah elopement

Can I have guests at My Utah Elopement?

Yes! Many locations in the National Forest allow up to 75 guests. National Parks have pre-determined locations that allow certain guest counts. Sometimes they even have spots that can allow up to 100 guests. Most elopements are under 25 people, and there is a lot of locations that can easily fit that many guests.

How Much Does Utah Elopement Photography Cost

The cost of elopement photography in Utah can vary based on if your photographer is traveling, what’s included in their package, and their skill level. You can expect most experienced elopement photographers to start at $5500-$7500.

Many elopement photographers offering some kind of planning or location scouting in their packages. To read more about what elopement photography costs and what’s included, click here!

Activity Ideas for Eloping in Utah

The way elopements are so uniquely different from traditional wedding days is that elopements are primarily about have an experience. And a unique one, at that. Many couples don’t want to simply have a ceremony and call it a day. One of my favorite things about photographing elopements is that it’s not an all day photoshoot or performance.

I’m often capturing couples doing things together that they enjoy the most. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Seeing natural arches
  • Beach bonfire
  • Hot air balloon ride
  • Scenic helicopter tour
  • Hiking in one of Utah’s many National Forests
  • Ziplining
  • Having a picnic in a meadow of wildflowers
  • Cliffjumping
  • Swimming in the ocean
  • Exploring waterfalls
  • Stargazing in the desert
  • Hammocking in the forest
  • Rock climbing
  • Cafe hopping and trying various food and drinks
  • Going on a boat ride
  • Wine tasting
  • Seeing hot springs

These are just ideas, you can include anything, and I mean anything that sounds fun, cozy, or memorable to you in your elopement day.

Utah elopement

Utah Elopement Packages

Utah elopement photography by Emilee Setting Photo, and everything included in my packages:

  • Explore anywhere within Utah, all travel fees included in the price!
  • Packages from half day elopements to multi-day elopements
  • Receive a customized location list
  • Help finding lodging that suits your needs if you’re having an intimate reception
  • Included comprehensive timeline design
  • Help obtaining your permits
  • Help obtaining your marriage license
  • A planning checklist
  • Unlimited planning and guidance calls 
  • All of your stunning photos delivered under three months
  • Day of polaroid sneak peeks

Elopement packages in Utah starting at $6800. Want more information on my pricing and what’s included? Click here

How Much Does it Cost to Elope in Utah?

Eloping in Utah typically costs couples anywhere from $5,000 to $20,000. This budget includes various expenses such as accommodation, permits, decorations, vendor services, catering, transportation, attire, and all the essentials for crafting your desired experience. The extent of your budget depends on the level of extravagance or simplicity you envision for your special day!

Everything listed in the Utah elopement guide is under that 20k budget. Even getting first class flight tickets and luxury lodging is much cheaper than spending $20,000 on a venue alone, so go wild!

Utah elopement

Ready to Elope in Utah?

This Utah elopement guide is a way to get you excited about all the possibilities of what your day could look like. Although, this amount of information can be overwhelming. I’m here to help. I can answer any and all questions you have on a complimentary low pressure consultation call. If you then choose you’d like to work together, I’ll do all of this planning right by your said to alleviate any stress, and bring your Utah elopement vision to life. We can chat here!

Don't forget your free elopement planning checklist


You see a stranger’s puppy & it takes everything in you not to run up & cuddle it.

Your dress gets dirt on it, and you shrug.

You think ice cream & wine is always an acceptable dinner option. Always.

You LIVE for the feeling of sunshine on your skin & wind in your hair.

You’re already screaming YASSSS WHERE DO I BOOK YOU?

I'm Emilee

I'm an elopement photographer who specializes in planning, crafting, and documenting untraditional weddings. I believe a wedding day should be filled with traditions that resonate with you. I'm here from start to finish to make that happen. Want to chat about your plans? Click below to set up a free consultation! 

You see a stranger’s puppy & it takes everything in you not to run up & cuddle it.

Your dress gets dirt on it, and you shrug.

You think ice cream & wine is always an acceptable dinner option. Always.

You LIVE for the feeling of sunshine on your skin & wind in your hair.

You’re already screaming YASSSS WHERE DO I BOOK YOU?

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