Updated: Nov 13
STEP BY STEP GUIDE ON HOW TO ELOPE IN ZION NATIONAL PARK | ZION NATIONAL PARK WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHERS
If you're dreaming of saying "I do" surrounded by towering red rock formations and majestic canyons, you've come to the right place. In this guide, we'll walk you through everything you need to know to plan your special day within the iconic vistas of Zion National Park, ensuring it's not only memorable but also in harmony with the park's guidelines. Let the adventure begin!
Where is Zion National Park located?
Zion National Park is located in the southwestern part of the United States, in the state of Utah. It's renowned for its awe-inspiring landscapes, red rock formations, and stunning canyons. The park is situated near the town of Springdale, making it easily accessible for those seeking a remarkable elopement experience in the heart of nature.
How to get to Zion National Park?
There are a few options available. These are the closest airports to Zion National Park along with travel information:
Las Vegas International Airport (LAS):
- Distance to Zion: Approximately 168 miles.
- Travel time: Around 2.5 to 3 hours by car from the airport.
- Directions: Take I-15 N from McCarran Airport Connector. Follow I-15 N to Utah. Take exit 16 from I-15 N, leading to State Route 9 in Springdale, the main entrance of Zion.
Salt Lake City Airport (SLC):
- Distance to Zion: About 308 miles.
- Travel time: Approximately 4.5 to 5 hours by car.
- Directions: Head south on I-15 from the airport, following the route to State Route 9 in Springdale, the main entrance of Zion.
St. George Regional Airport (SGU):
- Distance to Zion: Roughly 47 miles.
- Travel time: Approximately 50 minutes to an hour by car.
- This is a small airport, so if you are planning this route make sure you rent a car in advance.
- Directions: Take the I-15 N route to State Route 9 in Springdale, the main entrance of Zion.
Each airport has its car rental services available for the drive. Various shuttle services and private transportation options are also available from these airports to Zion National Park. But we definitely recommend renting a car.
Where to stay for my wedding in Zion National ParK?
Here's a list of towns near Zion National Park:
- Distance to Park: Right at the park's southern entrance.
- Lodging: Various hotels, lodges, inns, and campgrounds.
- Pros: Close proximity to the park, shuttle services, dining options, and various accommodations.
2. St. George:
- Distance to Park: Approximately 40 miles.
- Lodging: Multiple hotel options, vacation rentals, and resorts.
- Pros: Close to other attractions, more affordable lodging, and a variety of dining options.
- Cons: Further away from the park, a longer drive.
- Distance to Park: About 30 miles.
- Lodging: Range of hotels, inns, motels, and RV parks.
- Pros: Quaint town, cheaper lodging, and proximity to other national parks.
- Cons: Can be a bit of a drive, fewer dining options.
4. Zion National Park Limits:
- Lodging: Zion National Park Lodge
- Pros: Close to the park, scenic surroundings, campsites available.
We strongly suggest staying either within the National Park or in Springdale. We've assembled a shortlist of our top accommodation choices:
Zion Wildflower Resort - Glamping Zion National Park: Zion Wildflower Resort offers a new glamping experience just minutes from Zion National Park's entrance. Don't let the term "camping" deter you! its a cool experience.
Under Canvas Zion: For a unique glamping experience, Under Canvas offers luxury tents with all the comforts, creating an upscale camping vibe.
The Dwellings: Nestled in a small town, a mere 25-minute drive from Zion National Park, lies a contemporary tiny home community perched on the Virgin River rim. From this picturesque spot, you'll overlook a stunning 344-acre park. The view is breathtaking, with the emerald-hued river contrasting against the backdrop of lava rock cliffs and offering panoramic vistas of Pine Valley Mountain.
Zion Tiny Oasis: Zion's Tiny Oasis, located in the town of Virgin just outside Zion National Park, features delightful tiny houses available for rent during your trip. These cozy accommodations accommodate groups of three to six individuals. Each unit includes a private bathroom, hot tub, patio, outdoor area, and offers stunning scenic views.
Driftwood Lodge: Providing a blend of modern amenities and rustic charm, this lodge offers riverfront views and a convenient location.
Open Sky: modern glamping experience.
Is it permitted to hold a wedding ceremony in Zion National Park?
Absolutely, you can have weddings in Zion National Park, but there are some rules. Keep it simple – no fancy setups are allowed. The ceremony needs to be in a designated location rather than anywhere in the park. Here are the areas where you can get married in Zion National Park:
Temple of Sinawava [Maximum of 35 people]
Menu Falls [Maximum of 10 people]
Zion Lodge Lawn [Maximum of 75 people]
Nature Center North Lawn [Maximum of 50 people] Available November-early April only
South Campground Amphitheater [Maximum of 100 people]
Timber Creek Overlook [Maximum of 20 people, 4 cars]
Do I need a permit to get married in Zion National Park?
Yes, you'll need a Special Use Permit (SUP) for any ceremony in the park. For a basic ceremony in a pre-approved spot, your application and the $100 fee need to be received at least three weeks before the date you want. Until the Special Use Permit is approved and given, the date and location can't be guaranteed.
This permit doesn't ensure exclusive use of the area. The site will remain accessible to the public during park hours. Permit activities won't unreasonably disrupt other visitors' park experiences. Observers will be allowed to witness the ceremony and related activities. For more information please check the National Park Wedding Guide
When is the best time to get married in Zion National Park? The best time to elope in Zion National Park in our opinion is during Spring and Fall. You get mild temperatures, making it a lovely time for a Zion National Park wedding and fewer crowds.
Winter: If you love a snow-covered landscape, Winter can be stunning at Zion National Park for a wedding. Snow-capped red rocks and fewer crowds can make for a peaceful wedding. However, snow and cold temperatures can present challenges, and some trails might be closed due to snow or ice.
Spring: Spring brings life back to the park with wildflowers and mild temperatures, making it a lovely time for a Zion National Park wedding due to the blossoming colors and pleasant weather. The downside could be higher visitation as it's a popular time, and there might be occasional rain showers.
Summer: Long days and warmer weather make Summer a favorite time for Zion National Park weddings. Clear trails and open roads allow for easy exploration. However, this is the busiest season in the park. The high temperatures can be scorching, and midday heat might be challenging for outdoor ceremonies.
Fall: Fall in Zion is stunning, with the landscape turning golden. The cooler temperatures make hiking more comfortable, and the crowds begin to thin out, offering more privacy for a Zion National Park wedding. However, this is the time when some services and facilities might start closing for the season. How much it cost to get married in Zion National Park? Elopement expenses can vary greatly, reflecting the individual vision of each couple. Some ceremonies lean towards simplicity, centering solely on the couple's intimate moment, while others entail detailed plans with various decorations and itineraries. Overall, choosing to elope in Zion usually presents a more cost-effective option compared to hosting a traditional wedding with a larger guest count. Factors such as additional services, vendors, and specific decor play a significant role in determining the overall cost, with a general budget range between $5,000 and $20,000 for a Zion elopement.
GETTING MARRIED OUTSIDE ZION NATIONAL PARK
An alternative approach for couples considering a Zion National Park elopement involves hosting the ceremony at a nearby wedding venue like Zion Red Rock and venturing into Zion for portraits, which doesn’t necessitate a permit.
By arranging the ceremony at a separate venue outside the park, couples can bypass the need for a specific permit for their Zion portraits. This approach offers the flexibility to capture stunning photos within Zion without the requirement for a specific permit. Whether taking portraits against the iconic Zion backdrops or seeking memorable shots, this method allows the freedom to create those special moments within the park without the constraints of wedding permit requirements.
CONCLUSION Concluding a guide on Zion National Park weddings, it's evident that this natural haven offers an exquisite backdrop for a memorable ceremony. Whether you opt for the peaceful settings within the park or explore the charming locations around its limits, a Zion National Park wedding promises a remarkable experience. With the majestic landscapes and a serene environment, couples can cherish intimate moments, exchange vows, and craft their dream ceremony, making each wedding a unique reflection of love amidst nature's wonders. The flexibility, affordability, and the myriad of breathtaking sceneries make Zion a standout choice for couples seeking an enchanting setting to celebrate their special day.
Zion National Park Elopement Photographers
Reach out to us! We would love to guide you through all the procedures, share more about our beautiful state and document your special day. We are more than just your photographers. We will help you craft a day that reflects you and your partner. We want to create an experience that you will remember for the rest of your life. Let's get Adventurous!
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