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Best Places to Elope in San Francisco

Eloping and curious about the best places to elope in San Francisco? Want to say your vows in the outdoors but don’t want to drive too far away from the City? Elopement locations in San Francisco range from redwoods to rooftops, and choosing a venue setting can be just as varied.

While everyone raves about Yosemite or Lake Tahoe (with good reason), the reality is we don’t always have the time or desire to drive several hours one way to get married. This being said, I created this list to help those who still desire an intimate and beautiful outdoor location in the San Francisco Bay Area for their elopement wedding. If you would like to see what an elopement might look like, check out this Hastings House Garden Weddings Elopement

Palace of Fine Arts

3601 Lyon St, San Francisco, CA 94123

One of the most recognizable landmarks in San Francisco, the Palace of Fine Arts is known for its rotunda and architecture in the heart of San Francisco.  For such a popular and ornate location, just having your ceremony is surprisingly affordable since it belongs to SF Park and Rec.

Shakespeare Garden 

335 Martin Luther King Jr Dr, San Francisco, CA 94118

One of the best places to elope in San Francisco, this small garden in Golden Gate Park allows a great setting for an intimate place to say your vows. Because of its size and isolation from the other more popular gardens, this is a preferred setting for those wanting a more natural background with less natural foot traffic compared to the Botanical Gardens. 

Muir Woods Knockoff

secret address in Golden Gate Park

Muir Woods too far? No problem! I have this secret spot that I call the “Ghetto Muir Woods” since it is full of redwoods, just at a much smaller scale compared to the more famous counterpart across the Bridge. Located in Golden Gate Park, it is only walked through by dog walkers and joggers and often passed by because there are no discernible signs pointing it out.

Stern Grove

19th Avenue and, Sloat Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94132

Locals will know this location for its free summer concerts, but for most of the year it is a quiet park that occasionally holds smaller weddings. This park sits near the edge of the City and offers a small redwood grove meant for intimate weddings. The Trocadero Clubhouse can also be rented out if you want to host a little reception as well, since it’s not the most centrally located SF venue on this list.

Fay Park

2366 Leavenworth St, San Francisco, CA 94133

Located in Russian Hill, this small park in the middle of SF has a cute gazebo to act as the backdrop for your elopement. Blocks away from North Beach and the Marina districts, it is conveniently located in between two of San Francisco’s more popular areas for food and nightlife. 

San Francisco City Hall

1 Dr Carlton B Goodlett Pl, San Francisco, CA 94102

If you want to keep things as simple as possible, let San Francisco City Hall do it all for you! They will provide the officiant, standard vows, and your ceremony will be done in less than 5 minutes. This is easily the most popular elopement location in San Francisco, and I always strive to give you images that aren’t so cookie cutter and like anyone else’s.

Sunnyside Conservatory

236 Monterey Blvd, San Francisco, CA 94131

This site is a hidden venue in San Francisco and has a beautiful rustic conservatory for your elopement. I’m a native San Franciscan and only found out about this location a few years ago! With ample street parking and a very seldom used garden, you can be sure to have a very intimate ceremony at this location.

Hotel Adagio

550 Geary St, San Francisco, CA 94102

Hotel Adagio offers a unique rooftop view overlooking the SF Bay and the Embarcadero. One of the few locations in the City with rooftop access, you will have a great panoramic vantage point of downtown SF, while having a room walking distance from several of the best restaurants in SF. They offer multiple elopement packages to suit your needs.

Elopement Locations Outside of San Francisco

The Mountain Terrace (Woodside)

17285 Skyline Blvd, Woodside, CA 94062

With decades-old trees acting as a wedding ceremony backdrop, The Mountain Terrace is the ideal setting for anyone who appreciates natural beauty and basking in the sun and fresh air. 

Read more about The Mountain Terrace with my walkthrough

Hastings House Garden Weddings (Half Moon Bay)

347 Mirada Rd, Half Moon Bay, CA 94019

If you are looking for a secluded “secret” garden look no further than the Hastings House Garden Weddings for your elopement!

Read more about Hastings House Garden Weddings with my walkthrough

Hastings House + Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay Wedding Elopement Photos - Court and Ash - 8.4.19_42 (1) web (1)

Shelldance Orchid Gardens (Pacifica)

2000 CA-1, Pacifica, CA 94044

With a setting seemingly straight from a movie, Shelldance Orchid Gardens is truly a one of a kind elopement setting and one of my favorite locations.

Read more about Shelldance Orchid Gardens with my walkthrough 

Muir Woods (Mill Valley)

Mill Valley, CA 94941

This popular elopement destination offers the perfect escape to nature by surrounding you with redwood groves all around. In addition, it is next to another option in Mount Tamalpais. If you are looking to spend your elopement with you and your partner, this is the perfect spot. The park also offers great camping options if you are looking to spend your elopement night in adventurous surroundings.

Marin Headlands (Marin)

Sausalito, CA 94965

The Marin Headlands offer one of the best views of San Francisco and the Golden Gate Bridge and is magnificent at sunset/sunrise. If you are a sunrise type of Couple, this is the best location to go to for the impressive chance of seeing the Bridge half covered in fog, making for some very unique “only in SF” type images. One thing to note it can be a bit windy and chilly, so keep this in mind.

Marin Headlands Elopement Location (1)
Marin Headlands Elopement Location 1 (1)

Old Mill Park (Mill Valley)

64 Cascade Dr, Mill Valley, CA 94941

Outdoor seating and a raised stage at this quiet redwood park allows for a small gathering for your elopement under the trees. It is one of the few locations I know that offer seating, so this is a perfect choice when considering other guests. The seating is roughly 25 feet away, so having a mic would be helpful if the guests are going to be seated.

Mount Tamalpais State Park

Mount Tam offers 40 miles of trails in Marin County, offering popular hike options after your ceremony and panoramic views of the North Bay. Conveniently located by Muir Woods, popular itineraries include a ceremony in Muir Woods and then an adventure session and summit on Mt. Tam. I suggest having a post ceremony picnic or your actual ceremony here as a way of celebrating being “on top of the world.” 

Redwood Regional Park (Oakland)

7867 Redwood Rd, Oakland, CA 94619

The great outdoors in the middle of Oakland, Reinhardt Redwood Regional Park is a popular location to hike, camp, and elope. This location has all the ingredients for a beautiful and intimate wedding ceremony while saying your vows in the perfect weather that Oakland typically has.

Marin Art and Garden Center (Ross)

30 Sir Francis Drake Blvd, Ross, CA 94957

This well maintained 11 acre garden has enough space to cater to 300 guests, but also serves intimate weddings and has multiple locations to marry. It is run by a non profit organization, so this location potentially has a lower rental rate than other similar venues.

Cavallo Point Lodge (Mill Valley)

601 Murray Cir, Sausalito, CA 94965

Cavallo Point is located across the Golden Gate Bridge, and offers scenic views of the infamous Bridge for your elopement ceremony.

Wineries (Napa Valley)

Virtually every winery in Napa Valley will be stunning for your special wedding ceremony. The natural backdrop of the vineyards and rolling hills serve as the perfect landscape for a place to say your vows, and because of Napa Valley’s popularity in the wedding industry, you can rest assured that whichever winery you choose will cater to all your needs with care. If you want my absolute favorite locations, please contact me below and I’ll be happy to discuss them with you!

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415 756 9335
ianchinphotography@gmail.com
762 10th Ave San Francisco, CA 94118
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