Ultimate Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Ultimate Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Ultimate Zion National Park Elopement Guide – Thinking of eloping in Zion National Park and wanting to know how?

Our in-depth guide will give you all the information you need and the best tips and location ideas for the best elopement experience you could wish for!

(Tip: Click the links below to go directly to that section in the guide) –

In this guide we cover all the major attractions at Zion but also reveal where you can find true hidden gems in the park. So no matter if you are looking for a quiet location all to yourselves or if you are happy to declare your love in front of everyone, we’ve got you covered!

How To Elope in Zion National Park

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Do we need a Wedding permit ?

If you are planning to have your ceremony in the park then a wedding permit is required. If you are having your ceremony somewhere else and just looking to get have a photo session done in the park then you don’t need to apply for a wedding permit.

How many guests can we have at our Zion National Park elopement wedding?

It depends on where in Zion your ceremony will be held. The South Campground Amphitheater can hold a maximum of 100 guests, for example, but then there are other locations like Menu Falls where only a maximum of 10 people are permitted – including bride, groom, vendors, etc. An important thing to note is an event monitor may be required for your ceremony in the park…

An event monitor is a Zion National Park member of staff who oversees the event to ensure everyone is safe and there is a charge of $50 per hour for this.

Normally an event monitor is required if the ceremony group size is large or the ceremony itself is complex in nature. If you are eloping and your day is intimate and simple, you most likely will not need an event monitor for your event.

Wedding Permits

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

How To Apply For A Wedding Permit

To elope and have your ceremony in Zion National Park, you’ll have to fill out a Special Use/Wedding Permit application and email it to :

Email Address: [email protected]

How much does a Zion National Park Wedding Permit cost?

Along with the form you are required to pay a $100 (price as of 18/08/21) non-refundable processing fee.

What about a park entrance fee, have we to pay that on top of our wedding permit fee?

The park entrance fee is not included in the wedding permit you receive, the entrance fee is approx. $35.00 per vehicle and is valid for 7 consecutive days.

When should we apply for a Wedding Permit?

There are only 6 locations you can hold your ceremony in Zion National Park so we recommend sending your application as early as possible to secure your preferred date and spot.

The National Park Service states an application for a wedding permit must be sent more than 21 business days before, so in other words, 3 weeks prior is the latest you can apply.

Is there anything else we should know?

Zion Canyon Scenic Drive is closed to vehicles from March through to November. So the only way to access it is via a shuttle bus – which is free and on a first-come, first-served basis.

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

When To Elope in Zion

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

What’s the best time of year to elope in Zion National Park?

It completely depends on what you are looking for and what is most important to you. So it’s best to consider what factors are most important to you as a couple.

For example, does the weather and temperature on your wedding day mean more to you than how busy the park is? Would you rather it be colder but quieter or warmer but busier? Tricky one isn’t it!

It’s also important to choose a good time of day so if you are looking to have a more private intimate ceremony away from other visitors to the park, we recommend eloping at sunrise.

Or at least having your photo session at sunrise because this is the best time of day for photographs due to the lighting – and it also means less visitors are likely to be around you. We’d recommend eloping on a weekday too as these days are quieter.

Another thing to take into account is what you plan to do once you are there. Are you planning to hike a few miles? As the time of year can really make a difference. Summer in Zion can be uncomfortably hot so going on a strenuous hike in the middle of the day might not be the best idea!

The temperature can vary by 30 degrees Fahrenheit or more in one day in Zion National Park! This is most likely to happen in Spring and Fall though.

Summer – It is pretty normal for the temperature around the park in July to be 70 degrees Fahrenheit at a minimum (during the night). So if you plan to elope at this time of year…prepare for the heat! Bring lots of water or at least a refillable bottle with you which you can fill up at designated water bottle filling stations around the park.

And as we’ve said already, prepare for lots of other visitors around you. With all of this in mind, you may decide a different time of year might suit you both and your private elopement ceremony better.

Spring – Spring is a good time of year to elope in the park as it’s not as busy as the Summer months.

Most of the park is open by this point too but it is important to note that although the days are getting warmer, the evening and nighttime temperatures can get really low – so make sure you pack layers.

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Fall – If you’d like to enjoy the great views Zion provides without the huge crowds then the Fall is a great time of year to elope in Zion.

The park is still very much open and although the temperature is cooling, the daily highs are still pleasant – but make sure to pack layers because it gets cold quick in the evening. So if privacy is important to you then the Fall will provide a much more intimate experience at the park.

Winter – You will most likely be restricted on where you can go for a winter elopement in Zion. With freezing night temperatures bringing ice and snow.

And although the roads are plowed regularly, the trails aren’t, so many of them might be closed due to hazardous conditions.

Can we elope during the Peak season at Zion National Park?

Peak season is between April and September in Zion National Park and more than 70% of the parks visitors come during these months.

If you wish to have your wedding ceremony in the park during peak season, then our advice is to apply for a wedding permit as early as possible to secure your spot.

Where To Elope in Zion

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

There are only 6 locations in Zion National Park that can hold your wedding ceremony. However, you can go wherever you like to get photos taken in your wedding gear.

Since it is your wedding day you might be looking to find hidden gems and great backdrops in Zion that are away from the crowds and to achieve this we recommend to book a photographer who knows the park well – we couldn’t recommend this more!

When you apply for your wedding permit, you will need to specify the location you’d like to have your wedding ceremony. This is so that no one else can use that location for a wedding ceremony at the same time as you.

To help you decide where to elope in Zion, we’ve made a list of some great elopement locations below:

Zion Overlook

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

– Zion Canyon Overlook

This 1 mile hike is ideal for your elopement day…Why? Because it doesn’t take that long to hike up and yet it offers stunning views of the canyon.

This viewpoint is ideal if you don’t want to spend the whole day hiking and want a chance to chill and enjoy your day. Or maybe you wish to visit a few places in the park in the one day and you don’t have time for a long hike.

On the other hand, be prepared for a lot of other visitors on this trail. The down side to the hike being short means it’s a really busy trail. Ways to counteract this are doing it at sunrise and choosing a weekday instead of a weekend.

NOTE: Unfortunately you are not permitted to hold your ceremony here, you can only have your photos taken at this location. Please see our other options for holding your ceremony at.

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Zion Observation Point

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

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Zion National Park Elopement | Photo By Allison Slater

Zion Observation Point

If you are looking for a much more challenging hike on your elopement day, Zion’s Observation Point is one to consider.

This hike is approx. 7 miles long (in total = out and back) and rewards you with epic views of the canyon. And when we say epic views, we mean EPIC because you are so high up you can see EVERYTHING from here.

To put that into perspective, Angels Landing is 700ft below you so yes, you are actually looking down on Angels Landing. Pretty cool huh?!

So if you are looking to go up high, are seeking jaw-dropping views… and don’t mind hiking a good few hours then this could be for you.

NOTE: Unfortunately, you are not permitted to hold your ceremony here, you can only have your photos taken at this location. Please see our other options for holding your ceremony at.

Zion Lodge Lawn

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

– Zion Lodge Lawn

Zion Lodge is the only place you can stay in the park unless you are camping – the rest are just outside the park’s boundaries. It is a beautiful spot to get married because you are surrounded by towering sandstone walls, some as high as 3,800 feet!

The lodge lawn is a great option if you want to drive right to your location spot without having to walk or hike anywhere.

It is also a good option if you are inviting some guests to your wedding (you can have up to 75 guests on the lawn). So everyone can sit back and enjoy the view surrounding them.

Zion Lodge is a great place to stay especially if you are looking for a base when visiting the big attractions like Angels Landing, Zion’s Observation Point and The Narrows – as they are all close by.

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Zion Canyon Slot

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

– Zion Slot Canyon

The Narrows is a very famous slot canyon in Zion National Park and many visitors travel to the park, just to do this hike. It is called The Narrows because it is the narrowest part of the Zion Canyon.

The whole hike is approx. 17 miles long but most people don’t go the whole way as it can take as long as 12 hours (one way!).

Due to the canyon floor having a stream running through it (and at other points a river), this makes the hike a lot more difficult.

But you’ll be glad to know there are other options in and around the park if you are looking for a slot canyon backdrop for your wedding photos.

It’s important to note when looking to visit a slot canyon though, that the rain could change your plans completely.

Slot canyons are known to cause flash floods as the rain can build up quickly between the high walls so be prepared to have to cancel your visit to a slot canyon at any moment.

With this in mind, you are best to have multiple location options for your day planned just incase. NOTE: Unfortunately, you are not permitted to hold your ceremony here, you can only have your photos taken at this location. Please see our other options for holding your ceremony at.

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Timber Creek Overlook

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

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Ultimate Zion National Park Elopement Guide

– Timber Creek Overlook

Away from all the major attractions, on the north western edge of the Zion National Park, is where you’ll find this short trail and viewpoint.

Timber Creek offers fantastic views of the Kolob Canyons from a big platform that will certainly look the part on your wedding day.

You are permitted to have up to 20 guests at this location for your ceremony and it’s just a 10 minute walk from where you can park the car. A good choice for couples looking for easily accessible spots with great views.

Temple of Sinawava

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

– Temple of Sinawava

Many people know this area for being the trailhead for the Narrows hike – a popular trail that takes you upstream between the narrow canyon walls.

As you stand looking up at the towering sandstone walls surrounding you, the atmosphere feels pretty mystical which is why we think it has the word “Temple” in its name.

The red rock sandstone walls create a natural amphitheater which makes it a perfect location for something as special as your elopement ceremony.

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

– Menu Falls

This hidden location is a little paradise for people who want to get away from the crowd and have their ceremony in private. The trickling waterfall and rich vegetation offers a tranquil experience you’ll find nowhere else in the park.

You can find this location between 2 shuttle bus stops and if you are coming here between March and October you’ll need to get off the shuttle bus at one of these stops and walk the rest of the way. But like many have said – it is worth it!

If you are wishing to have your elopement ceremony here, you can have up to 10 guests in total.

Did you know? This beautiful part of Zion gets its name “Menu” Falls because it featured on the original cover of the Zion Lodge restaurant menu.

South Campground Amphitheater

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

– South Campground Amphitheater

Built in 1936, this beautiful rustic amphitheater can hold up to 100 guests for a wedding.

With fixed seating and a raised stage, it offers a great alternative to a traditional wedding – especially for couples who wish to invite more than a few guests.

It is actually the only place in the park you can have a large guest list like this and the backdrop of red sandstone rocks are a wonderful sight.

The amphitheater is located near the entrance to the park and just off of Route 9. A large camping area is located here too so expect a lot of cars and people.

Angels Landing

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Angels-landing-joshua-gresham-destination-elopement-in-Zion-National-Park-adventure-outdoor-bride-groom-wedding-utah-love
Ultimate Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Angels Landing

One of the top attractions in Zion National Park and probably the most riskiest! Angels Landing is not for the faint hearted…think steep drops, rocky cliff edges and lots of people. This one is for the ultimate thrill seekers.

Angels Landing is 1500 feet high with steep cliffs on either side and just enough rock space to place your feet on.

No, we are not even kidding! This is so steep and dangerous on its own but then when you add the traffic of a thousand people travelling up and down it each day – it sounds even crazier.

Your wedding dress will definitely not suitable to wear for this risky climb! Zion National Park have realized the danger and are now implementing a ticketed system to manage the amount of people climbing.

The ticket system will offer a chance for you to book your place in advance and will release tickets 4 times a year in a lottery format. Although some tickets will be kept for releasing a day before.

Best Places To Elope in Zion National Park

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

The true meaning of the name “Zion” is a place of refuge and peace. Looking at these photos you can see why that might be and even more so when you see this magical place in person.

So now that we’ve covered all the places you can have your ceremony in Zion as well as recommendations for having your photo session, here’s a list of our Best Places To Elope in Zion National Park – (Tip: If you want to know more about a location just click it to read the details)

  1. Zion Observation Point
  2. Zion Overlook
  3. Timber Creek Overlook
  4. Zion Canyon Slot
  5. Menu Falls
  6. Zion Lodge Lawn
  7. Temple of Sinawava
  8. South Campground Amphitheater
  9. Angels Landing

Elopement Vendors near Zion

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Like the images featured in this post? We are proud to say they were taken by our very own Elopement Wedding Planner members. Click on the images to view their photography pages – you can contact them from there too!

Tips For Eloping in Zion National Park

  1. Apply for your wedding permit as early as possible to avoid disappointment!
  2. If eloping in the Summer, consider getting married on a weekday when it is less busy.
  3. Also consider getting to Zion National Park for sunrise in any season – This not only means the park will be quieter but also means you can get great photos as the sun rises.
  4. Prepare for your trip wisely and bring the right clothing and footwear for the activities you plan on doing – pack plenty of water too.
  5. A free daily shuttle service runs through Zion National Park and Springdale from March through December.
  6. When the sun sets, it gets dark quick so make sure you leave enough time for your return trip.
  7. Keep up to date with any alerts, road closures and weather conditions about Zion National Park in the lead up to your elopement day by visiting the National Park Service website here.
  8. Be mindful of the Leave No Trace principles when in Zion National Park – You can view information about this by clicking here

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

Ready to Start Planning your Elopement in Zion National Park?

So now you have everything you need to start planning your elopement in Zion, how exciting! What locations did you like the best?

Get in touch with us if you have any questions about the areas we’ve covered in this post. Or if you want to ask about a location we haven’t touched on… Click the button below to reach us –

And if you weren’t able to digest EVERYTHING we covered then why not bookmark this guide for later?

Zion National Park Elopement Guide

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Zion National Park Elopement Guide