10 Locations for Your Pacific Northwest Destination Wedding
Doesn’t the Pacific Northwest sound like a beautiful place for a destination wedding? Here are 10 of our favorite spots for your celebration! While Vancouver is certainly the larger and more modern city in British Columbia, Victoria offers unparalleled charm.
While Vancouver is certainly the larger and more modern city in British Columbia, Victoria offers unparalleled charm. You’ll find a staggering range of venues, from opulent hotels worthy of a celebrity wedding to quiet neighborhood pubs filled with cozy charm. Although it is a bit of a journey to get there (most take a ferry), once everyone has arrived, no one will lack for things to do. Explore tiny local shops, indulge in tea and scones, and walk along the harbor.
Everyone is familiar with this city’s skyline filled with mountains, skyscrapers, and fun attractions, like the Space Needle and new Seattle Great Wheel (pictured above). Seattle specializes in urban chic, so host your destination wedding at one of their many rooftop venues or industrial spaces. There are so many dynamic backdrops for photos in Seattle, that you should take a couple hours with your photographer to snap a few quick pics at Pike Place Market and the Queen Anne neighborhood.
People are moving to Portland for a reason. A small city with a terrific food scene and community atmosphere, it’s hard to find a cooler location for your wedding day. Portlanders love their modern with a quirky edge, so couples looking to plan an offbeat, unique event will find everything they need there. From mid-century modern tiki bars to a cliff overlooking the Columbia River Gorge, there are seemingly limitless places to exchange vows!
San Juan Islands
Located in between Canada and the U.S. (but considered a part of Washington) are the lovely San Juan Islands. A favorite getaway for Northwest locals, this collection of islands is easy accessible from both Seattle and Vancouver, B.C. Go in the summer, when the weather is more predictable, the evenings long, and the sunsets unmarred by clouds. After your ceremony, hop into a sea kayak and explore rocky coves, spotting plenty of marine life along the way!
This tiny little harbor town can be a breath of fresh air for city dwellers who want a relaxed wedding. The beaches are dotted with lighthouses and the downtown is lined with historic buildings. It’s the perfect location for a nautical wedding right on the water. There are plenty of interesting landmarks, shopping, coffee shops, and pubs to keep you and your guests busy for a weekend, despite this town’s small size. You can get here via ferry or a drive through the Olympic Peninsula. Both are gorgeous, so you can’t go wrong no matter which way you venture.
This Oregon beach town is less than two hours from Portland, but it feels like a world away. Save the warm, sunny beaches for Southern California. If you are a couple wanting a cool weather beach wedding, you’ve found your wedding paradise. There are several venues with beach views, as well as Ecola State Park (picture above) up on the hillside, for those that want an outdoor wedding in a stunning landscape. It should be noted that this town is super dog-friendly, so if your best man has four legs, bring him along!
With rolling hills and field beyond field, there will be moments you might think you are in Napa. While Oregon’s vineyards are spread throughout the state, we are partial to Yamhill County’s rural beauty. There are a series of small towns that run together along this route, including Newberg, Dundee, and McMinnville. Between the gorgeous vineyard and several resorts, you can have the rustic-chic event of your dreams, and all less than an hour from Portland.
Nestled in the Cascade Mountains, and less than three hours from Seattle, is the adorable town of Leavenworth. Built with a Bavarian village theme, it’s a destination for couples that want a fun, lighthearted event. Although you can certainly get married there year-round, the real magic of Leavenworth is during the winter holidays. With decorated trees and buildings, and local restaurants featuring outdoor fire pits to snuggle around, it’s certainly a romantic atmosphere. Understandably, December books up fast, so don’t procrastinate if you want to get married here.
Whether it’s on the shore of Trillium Lake during the summer or ensconced in the legendary Timberline Lodge in January, Mt. Hood is the perfect destination wedding location for outdoorsy couples who don’t need a side of chic with their rustic, thankyouverymuch. The vistas are incredible no matter what area of Mt. Hood you head to, and no matter the season (although fall is pretty magnificent). It’s always a little cooler, so make sure you bring a shrug over that wedding dress you’re planning on lugging up the mountain.
The rugged coast of Northern California is another location that nature lovers should consider. Whether you get married along the rocky beaches or underneath towering redwoods, you’re practically guaranteed a beautiful location. The only downside to Humboldt County is that it is fairly remote from any large city, although the trek there makes the drive worth the trouble.