San Diego is one of the most popular locations in California among tourists, but it’s also one of the best elopement locations in California. San Diego is right at the bottom of California near the border of Mexico, and it lies right on the the breathtaking coast of the Pacific Ocean. With dramatic cliffs, fun activities, amazing hikes, and great food, San Diego makes for one heck of an elopement location. Whether you’re looking for elopement packages in San Diego, or a comprehensive guide all about eloping in San Diego, you’ve come to the right place.

San Diego Elopement Locations

Beaches, indoor studios, and outdoor gardens are just a few different elopement locations you can choose from in San Diego. If you’re wanting to view an entire list, check out this blog post filled with a ton of trendy, versatile, and modern wedding and elopement venues in San Diego.

A bride and groom kissing at Sunset Cliffs in San Diego, California for their sunrise elopement, one of the best places to elope in California.

Sunset Cliffs

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Max capacity: 50

Sunset Cliffs is my favorite place to elope in San Diego. I personally love the beauty and simplicity of this area. It’s peaceful, quiet during sunrise, and the perfect backdrop for any ceremony or photo. I would caution against a sunset elopement here though, as this place is packed with people!

Mount Laguna

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Max capacity: 25

Mount Laguna is the perfect elopement location for the couple who wants to have a forest-like elopement. This area doesn’t require any hiking to see some of the best views of San Diego. It’s also one of the lesser known places to tie the knot, making it easy to find an area for an intimate ceremony.

Anza-Borrego Desert State Park

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Max capacity: 15

If you’re a fan of the desert, then you should definitely consider this state park for your elopement. With over 500,000 acres, you’re guaranteed to find a secluded spot for your ceremony. Anza-Borrego is known for its wildflowers. It’s similar to Joshua Tree without the drive!

The Condors Ranch Nest, an outdoor wedding venue in San Diego.

The Condor’s Nest Ranch

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Max capacity: 300

The Condor’s Nest Ranch is one of the most breathtaking outdoor elopement locations in San Diego. Not only does it offer incredible views of Palomar Mountain, but it also includes a garden, greenhouse, and lodging on site. It’s off the grid and is a perfect spot to tie the knot if you’re wanting something secluded and outdoors.

The Wedding Bowl

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Max capacity: 40

The Wedding Bowl is another one of my favorite elopement locations in San Diego. It’s very unique and  reminds me of Big Sur! It’s quiet and gives you the perfect view of the coast. It’s a secluded and perfectly sized area, especially for elopements with a few guests.

Flora

See more: Flora

Max capacity: 200

Flora is an indoor elopement location for the plant-lover. It’s simple, modern, and minimalistic. You can look back on your photos from this venue in 50 years, and they’ll still look timeless. I highly recommend this venue if you want something more simple.

San Diego Permit Information

Depending on where you decide to elope in San Diego, you may need a permit for your special day. For example, state parks like Anza-Borrego and Sunset Cliffs require permits, but indoor venues such as Flora don’t. Always be sure to check with the venue coordinator to see whether or not you’ll need to obtain a permit. If you do, send it in as early as possible to avoid late processing and extra fees!

The Best Time of Year for Your San Diego Elopement

Fall and spring are the best times to elope in San Diego, specifically the months of October, November, March, and April. During the fall, the temperatures are in the low 70s, there are a low amount of tourists, and they also have quite a few festivals. In the spring, the temperatures are in the mid 60s and it’s the best time to see the wildflowers and beautiful greenery.

If you can, avoid the winter and summer season. This is peak travel season, meaning prices are much higher and there are a ton more people visiting the area.

A bride and groom exchanging vows at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park in San Diego, California during their sunrise elopement.

San Diego Elopement Package Budget Examples

High-End San Diego Elopement

  • $500 – plane tickets for 2
  • $100 – marriage license fees
  • $100 – location permit
  • $2,000 – three nights at a luxury hotel
  • $6,500 – photographer
  • $700 – florist for bouquet and decor
  • $3,000 – dress, accessories, and shoes
  • $300 – hair and makeup
  • $800 – suit, accessories, and shoes
  • $900 – private yacht rental
  • $500 – private chef
  • TOTAL: $15,400

Mid-End San Diego Elopement

  • $500 – plane tickets for 2
  • $100 – marriage license fees
  • $100 – location permit
  • $1,000 – three nights at a 3-star hotel
  • $4,500 – photographer
  • $400 – florist for bouquet and light decor
  • $1,500 – dress, accessories, and shoes
  • $200 – hair and makeup
  • $500 – suit, accessories, and shoes
  • $200 – wine tasting
  • TOTAL: $9,000

Low-End San Diego Elopement

  • $500 – plane tickets for 2
  • $100 – marriage license fees
  • $100 – location permit
  • $500 – three nights at a simple hotel/airbnb
  • $2,500 – photographer
  • $200 – florist for bouquet
  • $700 – dress, accessories, and shoes
  • $100 – hair and makeup (or free if done yourself)
  • $300 – suit (rented)
  • TOTAL: $5,000
A couple snuggling at Sunset Cliffs for their elopement in San Diego.

The Best Places to Stay in San Diego for Your Elopement

San Diego and the surrounding area has a variety of different lodging options you can choose from for your elopement. From 5-star hotels to camping, you’re sure to find something that suits you. If you’re wanting to stay in a nice hotel, I recommend checking out Hotel Fairmont Grand Del Mar, Rancho Valencia Resort & Spa, and The Lodge at Torrey Pines.

If you prefer an Airbnb, I highly recommend checking out Room D at The Dutra Inn, The Craftsman House, The Wave Watcher, and The Mountain View Retreat! Click on the map icons to see more pictures and locations of each of these Airbnbs.

San Diego Elopement Activities

There is nothing short of fun activities to do around San Diego. If you’re looking for some unique ideas or food places to try, check out this epic list below!

A bride and groom hugging at Sunset Cliffs Natural Park in San Diego, California during their sunrise elopement.

San Diego Elopement Packages

I offer elopement packages in San Diego that include elopement scouting, timeline planning, vendor referrals, and much more! To view my California elopement packages and other packages, click here.

San Diego Elopement Package Pricing:

  • 4 hours – 1.5 days of elopement coverage
  • A hands-on San Diego elopement planning experience with unlimited assistance
    • personalized San Diego elopement locations
    • vendor recommendations
    • permit assistance
    • customized elopement timeline
  • Online gallery with full resolution and printing rights
  • 24-48 hour sneak peaks 
  • Travel fees to anywhere in California already included
  • Starting at $4,000

Want to see a real San Diego elopement? Check out Lexi and Daniel’s sunset cliffs elopement here!

FAQ

Where can I elope in San Diego?

You can elope anywhere you want in San Diego. The most popular San Diego elopement locations include Sunset Cliffs, Coronado Beach, and Balboa Park.

Can you get married in Balboa Park?

Yes, you can get married in Balboa Park. Balboa Park has a variety of indoor and outdoor wedding venues.

What is the average cost of a wedding in San Diego?

The average cost of a wedding in San Diego is $38,000.

NEED HELP PLANNING YOUR DREAM ELOPEMENT?

Snag your FREE elopement guide to help you plan your dream elopement in California, Alaska, or even Spain! Learn everything you need to know about how to plan a “just us” experience.

A free guide all about how to elope, created by a California elopement photographer.
A girl holding a camera and smiling.

ARE YOU READY FOR AN ELOPEMENT EXPERIENCE LIKE NO OTHER?

I’m Brianna, a California elopement photographer who inspires, encourages, and empowers couples to push traditional boundaries and create experiences they’ll remember forever.

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