June 25, 2021
Sedona’s red-rock cathedral is the perfect backdrop for an elopement. A Sedona elopement can give couples an opportunity to celebrate and honor their love in a truly special way. Sedona’s landscape is always magical. But if you want your ceremony and photos to reflect that, then having guidance from an experienced local is your best bet.
Hi, I’m Hailey & I’ve been photographing couples in Sedona for 10 years…
I’ve photographed hundreds of couples in Sedona for their elopement. Over the years, I’ve developed some tips and tricks that help make a Sedona elopement the best it can be. I’m really passionate about being an elopement photographer because of everything that an elopement offers. There’s so much that is magical about eloping, but the most amazing part is that the couple can focus on what’s the most important:
marrying their person
That’s why I want to share with you how to make your elopement in Sedona the best it can be. So, here are my best tips:
Elope on a Weekday
Sedona can get extremely busy. Who wants to deal with a bunch of hikers or battle crowds of people? No one! Especially on their wedding day. If you elope on a weekday, then the odds are in your favor. You’re more likely to have the intimate ceremony that you’ve been dreaming of.
There’s already so many emotions that come along with this day. You don’t want stress to be one of them! If you avoid Saturday and Sunday, then you can just focus on all the happy feels.
PS… As if this wasn’t reason enough, having your special day fall on a weekday increases the chances that vendors will be available. Speaking of vendors, let’s move on to the next pro tip!
Choose Local Vendors
Local vendors will know the ins and outs of the area. Choosing an experienced local photographer means that they already know how the best spots, places to avoid, how to navigate the land, traffic patterns, and how to get that magic lighting that’ll make your heart explode (in the best way).
This expertise also comes in handy if things don’t go as planned. Let’s say that there’s unexpected weather, a local will know what to do without sacrificing the quality of your photos.
As a photographer with an intimate understanding of Sedona, I offer my couples a massive elopement guide that’s filled with recommendations for local florists, hair and makeup gurus, the tastiest restaurants, and other locals who will make your elopement and stay in Sedona the best it can be.
Plan & Book Ahead
Let’s face it, with a place as amazing as Sedona, things are going to book up quickly. Some of my favorite restaurants that I always refer my couples to are exclusive (for good reason!) and easily are booked one month ahead of time. So if you know where you want to go, make that reservation ASAP!
Choose Your Location & Accommodations Wisely
Ask yourself if you want to be in the middle of everything or be more secluded and close to trails? You gotta weigh the pros and cons because there’s different areas of Sedona that will give you a different experience.
I’d recommend staying in West Sedona because it’s the hotspot for a reason. West Sedona has all the restaurants, stores, and trails. Oak Creek Canyon is nice if you want to be a bit more secluded and surrounded by trees and rivers. This spot doesn’t have any red rocks, though!
I go more in depth about this in my elopement guide, including good places to stay in different parts of Sedona.
Consider the Season
Sedona is stunning year round. But, July & August are SCORCHING HOT. I’m still down to take your pictures during this time, just be aware that it’s going to be HOT! 🔥🥵
If you do choose to get married during July or August, the time of your ceremony can make a big difference in your experience. Speaking of… keep scrolling for a breakdown of the pros and cons for sunset vs sunrise ceremonies in Sedona… 👇🏻
The Time of Day Matters! Choose A Ceremony Time Based on What Type of Pictures & Experience You Want
The time of day matters! Not just for your experience, but for the quality of your pictures, too! There’s different pros and cons to sunrise or sunset ceremonies. Here’s the deets:
Sunrise ceremonies are best in hotter months. The sun hits the rocks differently during different parts of the day, so the best spots are going to be different at sunrise than at sunset. Other than escaping the heat, sunrise also tends to be better for having popular sites to yourself and you won’t have to fight traffic or struggle to find a good parking spot.
Sunset gives the rocks that stunning bright red glow and dreamy lighting. This also means that during busier times of year, it’s just going to be busier.
Stay At Least Four Days
The best itinerary for a destination elopement would be:
Day 1: Arrival. Use this day for traveling, settling in to your hotel or Airbnb, and getting through any last minute wedding things. If you come two days before, then you don’t spend the day before your ceremony traveling.
Day 2: Relax and settle in!
Day 3: Elopement Day! ✨ 💍
Day 4: Rest & enjoy your first day as newlyweds soaking up all that Sedona has to offer!
I’m here for you. Not only can I promise you that I will get the best shots possible so you have a stunning gallery to show your friends and family, but I will help you design a day that is uniquely authentic to you and your partner.
Hailey is a Sedona wedding & elopement photographer that captures the essence of your adventurous love story all over Arizona! From the mountains to the deserts to the red rocks, she will join you wherever your heart desires!