Oregon is one of the most diverse locations in the United States. Known for its dramatic forests, epic coastlines, snow-covered mountains and colorful deserts, this one-of-a-kind state is perfect for an elopement for almost any couple out there. You can find some of the best night-life activities and restaurants on the west coast, all thanks to Portland. Oh, and don’t forget all the amazing airbnbs, adventurous activities, and art the entire state has to offer.

If you’re looking to plan an Oregon elopement, look no further. This guide covers everything you would ever need to know about how to elope in this beautiful area. Whether you’re looking for the best places to elope in Oregon, marriage license information, or Oregon elopement packages, I’ve got you covered.

The Ultimate Oregon Elopement Checklist

  1. Choose the best place to elope in Oregon
  2. Choose what season to elope
  3. Hire your elopement vendors
  4. Apply for a marriage license
  5. Apply for a special use permit
  6. Book your lodging
  7. Schedule your activities
  8. Oregon Elopement Packages

The 18 Best Places to Elope in Oregon

The Oregon Coast

The Oregon Coast is famous for being one of the most breathtaking coastal lines in the U.S. There are a variety of different elopement locations from Southern to Northern Oregon, all of which are unique in their own way. A majority of couples looking to elope here tend to gravitate towards an elopement along the rocky beaches.

God’s Thumb

God’s Thumb has grown in popularity over the years but continues to be one of the most breathtaking places along the coast. The 4.3 roundtrip mile hike isn’t for the faint of heart, but the views make it well worth it. Due to the small trail, elopements with over 2 people are not recommended.

A couple looking at the camera on their wedding day in Oregon.

Cape Kiwanda

Cape Kiwanda is one of the best beaches for an Oregon elopement to watch the waves crash and have a bonfire. There is a huge sand dune you can climb up to get a beautiful view of the ocean and rock formations. The beach is usually fairly busy, but even if you don’t choose this spot for your elopement, it’s well worth the visit.

A couple at Ecola State Park on their elopement day in Oregon.

Ecola State Park

Ecola State Park has a plethora of different beaches and lookout points. There are numerous hiking trails within the park that are perfect for couples wanting an adventure on their special day. Certain areas of the park are busier than others, but with over 9 miles to explore, it’s easy to find a more secluded spot for your elopement.

Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor

Located in Southern Oregon, Samuel H. Boardman State Scenic Corridor is 12 miles of pure cliffsides. There are incredible rock formations and outlooks in the area, some of which require a bit of hiking. It’s also very close to the redwoods, perfect for couples looking to experience multiple locations on their wedding day.

Cannon Beach

The iconic Haystack Rock pictured to the left can be found at the popular Cannon Beach, one of the best places to elope in Oregon. The beach itself is very large but tends to get crowded near the rock. However, there are a variety of “secret” beaches nearby that would be great options if you’re looking for something less crowded. Pro tip: I create personalized location lists for all my couples filled with hidden gem locations!

Columbia River Gorge

Columbia River Gorge is a popular destination near Portland known for its variety of waterfalls, hiking trails, and outdoor activities. This area can get quite busy during the summer months, but don’t let that deter you from choosing one of these jaw-dropping locations.

Wahclella Falls

One of the most stunning waterfalls in Oregon, Wahclella Falls, is perfect for couples looking to incorporate a waterfall on their wedding day. The 2-mile roundtrip hike is easy and accessible. This location is very popular on the weekends though, so keep that in mind.

Latourell Falls

Latourell Falls is a small waterfall located just an hour from Portland. Known to be a very photogenic waterfall, this location is fairly popular amongst photographers and couples. There are many areas along the 3-mile trail that are perfect for photos.

Rowena Crest

Especially beautiful during the spring and fall months, Rowena Crest has one of the most beautiful views of Columbia River Gorge. The nearby trail is easy to complete and offers multiple areas for photos. It’s not an extremely popular area, making it ideal for that intimate elopement.

Mount Hood in Oregon.

Mount Hood

Oregon’s famous mountain, Mount Hood, is the perfect location for couples wanting a dramatic backdrop. Multiple hiking trails, Airbnbs, and activities make this one of the best places to elope in Oregon. This is another super busy location, especially in the summer, so be sure to plan accordingly.

Check out how to plan a mountain elopement here!

Check out my Mt. Hood elopement guide here!


One of America’s best cities has some of the most beautiful locations, all close to the downtown area. Enjoy a nature-filled elopement ceremony by day and a delicious burger at the local pub by night.

Hoyt Arboretum

One of my all-time favorite places to elope in Oregon is located in Washington Park. The Hoyt Arboretum has four different ceremony locations all filled with extravagant redwood, sequoia, and Douglas fir trees. My favorite location is the Redwood Deck.

Cathedral Park

Located under St. Johns Bridge, Cathedral Park is equipped with a beautiful ceremony space right next to a nearby river. There are acres of trees that line the area. It’s perfect for couples wanting something grand, yet quiet.

Washington Park in Oregon.

Washington Park

Washington Park has everything you’re looking for. Redwood and Douglas fir trees, hiking trails, a zoo, picnic areas, and even museums. This elopement location is one of the most diverse and best places to elope in Oregon.

Mt. Tabor Park in Oregon.

Mt. Tabor Park

Mt. Tabor Park is a very casual park known for its walking trails, views of Portland, and water reservoirs. This elopement location is great for couples wanting to stay close to the city, though it doesn’t offer the most privacy. Regardless, it’s a great location if you have guests who aren’t interested in hiking.

Central + Eastern Oregon

Very different from other areas of Oregon, Central and Eastern Oregon have a variety of beautiful lakes, waterfalls, and desert-like locations. This area of Oregon is also known to be much more hiker-focused.

Crater Lake National Park

Crater Lake National Park is not only Oregon’s only national park, but it’s also one of the most famous, specifically for its beautiful deep blue water. There are a few hiking trails around the area for couples looking for a more intimate experience in a semi-crowded park.

Sahalie Falls

One of my favorite waterfalls in Oregon, Sahalie Falls, is located on a 2.6 mile loop that features another waterfall, Koosah Falls. This unique area is one of the best places to elope in Oregon! Located close to Bend, this is just one of the many different landscapes you can experience near the well-known town.

Sparks Lake

Sparks Lake is a calm and relaxing lake located near Bend. The lake is known for its beautiful reflections, mountain backdrops, and small forests. It’s popular during the summer, but is also a great place to do some kayaking, paddle-boarding, and more for your elopement.

Smith Rock State Park

Smith Rock Smith Park is a famous spot for climbers, hikers, and mountain bikers. These unique rock formations make the perfect backdrop in any photo. If you love the desert, this is one of the most popular and best places to elope in Oregon. I personally love this area in the winter months when there’s a light coating of snow on the peaks.

Painted Hills

If you love unique and one-of-a-kind locations, Painted Hills is the spot for you. The natural colors of red, gold, and black are unlike anything you’ve ever seen before. There’s truly nothing out there like this natural wonder. You may have seen a specific spot of this location on Instagram, but there are so many more hidden gems around this location.

When Is the Best Time of Year to Elope in Oregon?


If you’re wanting both great weather and smaller crowds, fall is the best time to elope in Oregon. Due to the different climates and terrain of Oregon, each area of the state will have drastically different weather during each season. However, you’re pretty safe going with a fall date no matter where you go.


While some locations are inaccessible in the winter months, such as Mount Hood or Crater Lake, winter is a great time for coastal elopements. While there is a much higher chance of rain, you won’t experience the summer crowds (or prices). I personally love rainy elopements because not only does it make the lighting even, but it really makes those colors pop!


I also recommend the spring, as this is another time when the crowds are nonexistent. Not only are crowds and prices lower, but the scenery is incredible. Greens pop more than ever and the waterfalls are at their peak. There is a higher chance of rain during this time, but I promise it’s worth it!


I usually don’t recommend elopements in Oregon during the summer, as this is the peak travel time. While you’ll have great weather, your elopement will not be as private as it could be. If you’re set on a summer date, consider having your ceremony during a weekday as opposed to a weekend, and plan around the peak times of day.

A couple eloping under a waterfall in Oregon.

Oregon Elopement Vendors

Oregon has some incredible vendors who specialize in adventurous and outdoor elopements. Below are just a few of my favorites in the state. As an elopement photographer, I help my couples plan their dream wedding days by providing customized vendor recommendations.


Planners and Stylists

Hair and Makeup Artists




Me! I’m Brianna and I specialize in outdoor and adventure elopements along the Pacific Northwest. I help my couples plan their elopements by providing personalized location lists, vendor recommendations, timelines, and more. If you’re looking for a completely personalized and adventurous experience, I’m your girl!

A couple climbing up God's Thumb in Oregon on their elopement day.

How to Get a Marriage License in Oregon

A marriage license is very easy to obtain to Oregon. The marriage license has a 3 day waiting period, meaning you can’t elope until 3 days have passed after picking up your license. The marriage license expires in 60 days.

*Note: I am using Multnomah County (Portland) in this example. Each county has their own process for obtaining a marriage license. You do not need to get a marriage license from the county you’ll be getting married in, but it does need to be returned to the same county you acquired it from after your elopement.


  1. Fill out the online marriage license application.
  2. Pick up your marriage license at least 3 days before your elopement. You can walk-in or make an appointment online. Be sure to bring your ID and $60 to pay for the license. Currently, you can walk in Monday-Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm.
  3. After your elopement, you must drop off the signed marriage license at the same office.


The mail-in option should be done 4-8 weeks before your ceremony.

  1. Fill out the online marriage license application.
  2. Print off the completed application along with a copy of the confirmation page with the submission ID listed.
  3. Mail those two documents, along with a copy of your photo ID and a $60 cashiers check or money order made out to “Multnomah County Marriage Licenses.” to the address below.
  • Multnomah County Marriage License Office
  • Attn: Marriage Licenses
  • PO Box 2716
  • Portland OR 97208-2716

4. After your elopement, the officiant must drop off the signed marriage license to be processed.

To see step-by-step intructions for Multnomah County, check out their official website here.

A couple at Indian Beach in Oregon on their elopement day.

Do You Need an Officiant and Witness to Elope in Oregon?

Yes. You will need an officiant and two witnesses to elope in Oregon.

Friendly tip: A friend or family member can officiate your ceremony for free! All they need to do is fill out the application on the Universal Life Church website to become an ordained officiant. The application takes less less than 5 minutes. I’m also ordained and officiate ceremonies for free!

Do You Need a Permit to Elope in Oregon?

Depending on your chosen elopement location, you may need a special use permit. However, most locations in Oregon, particularly elopement locations along the coast, don’t require one if you have less than 75 people. That being said, always be sure to ask your photographer. They will know where to send you if you need one. Failure to obtain a permit will result in hefty fines.

Pro tip: At many of the locations and trailheads in Oregon, you’ll also need a parking pass!

A couple in the forest in Oregon on their wedding day.

Best Airbnbs in Oregon

Oregon has some of the most beautiful Airbnbs, especially near the coast and mountainous areas. Below are some of my favorites in each area.

Oregon Beach Airbnbs

Columbia River Gorge Airbnbs

Portland Airbnbs

Central + Eastern Oregon Airbnbs

A couple facing each other at the top of God's Thumb during their elopement.

Best Oregon Elopement Activities

Oregon has some of the best restaurants, hiking trails, and indoor activities you can incorporate into your elopement day, whether you’re eloping on the coast or in the city. Below are just a few ideas to help get you started.

  • Try a famous doughnut from Voodoo Doughnuts
  • Soak in the hot tub after a long hike
  • Pick up some new books at Powell’s City of Books
  • Take a private waterfall tour
  • Listen to the Sea Lions at Sea Lion Caves
  • Ride horses along the coastline
  • Go paddleboarding on Devil’s Lake
  • Take a challenging hike on South Sister
  • Roast hot dogs and s’mores around a campfire
  • Have your first dance under the moonlight at the sand dunes
  • Go wine tasting
  • Try skiing or snowboarding at Mt. Hood
  • Find a hidden hot springs in the mountains
A couple running on the beach in Oregon on their elopement day.

Oregon Elopement Packages

I’m Brianna, an Oregon elopement photographer who specializes in planning and photographing outdoor elopements with under 15 guests along the Pacific Northwest. I have a few different packages to choose from and love helping my couples experience wedding days in epic places.

Oregon Elopement Package Pricing

  • 4 hours – 1.5 days of elopement coverage anywhere in Oregon
  • A personalized elopement planning experience with unlimited assistance
    • Personalized elopement location recommendations
    • Vendor, lodging, and activity recommendations
    • Assistance and information to help you with permits, licenses, etc.
    • 90+ page elopement planning guide filled with tips and tricks
    • Customized elopement timelines
    • Optional complimentary officiant services
  • Online gallery with full resolution images and printing rights
  • 24-48 hour sneak peeks to share with the world
  • Travel fees to anywhere in Oregon are already included
  • Starting at $5,500

Want more elopement inspiration? Check out my Washington State Elopement Guide, Olympic National Park Wedding Guide, and Mountain Elopement Guide.

How can I legally elope in Oregon?

You can legally elope in Oregon by applying for a marriage license. You must have an officiant and two witnesses to elope in Oregon.

Where can you elope on the Oregon Coast?

You can elope anywhere along the coast. A few well-known locations include Cannon Beach, Ecola State Park, and Cape Kiwanda.

Where can I elope at the Columbia River Gorge?

You can elope anywhere in the Columbia River Gorge area. A few well-known areas include Latourell Falls, Wahclella Falls, and Mount Hood.

How much does it cost to elope in Oregon?

It costs $60 to elope in Oregon. This fee comes from the marriage license. If you’re wanting more vendors, expect to spend up to $10,000 for your elopement.


For all things elopement planning. Whether you’re hoping to hike through the mountains of Washington or sip a margarita on the beaches of California, this all-in-one elopement guide has everything you need to know about how to plan the perfect elopement.

A girl holding a camera and smiling.


I’m Brianna, a California elopement photographer who inspires, encourages, and empowers couples to push traditional boundaries and create experiences they’ll remember forever. I help couples all around the world plan unique elopement days by providing personalized location lists, vendor recommendations, permits, guides, and so much more.

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