Moab, Utah is a popular destination for adventure seekers and nature enthusiasts, but it’s also the perfect place for couples looking to elope. With its breathtaking red rock landscapes, intimate outdoor settings, and endless opportunities for adventure, Moab offers everything you need for a romantic and unforgettable elopement. Whether you’re dreaming of a simple ceremony on a mountain top or a more elaborate celebration in the great outdoors, this guide will help you plan and capture the perfect elopement in Moab.
You can’t picture Utah without envisioning those red rock mountains, endless adventures, and breathtaking sunsets! No matter how far I travel, Moab will always have my heart – and as an elopement photographer, I know that tying the knot with a Moab elopement is perfect for any adventurous couple who wants a wedding day that’s true to them, authentic, and truly one of a kind.
To get married in Moab, you’ll need an officiant (fun fact, I’m ordained), 2 witnesses (these can be elopement guests, an elopement vendor, or any friendly person you meet throughout the day), and a marriage license from the state of Utah. But there’s so much more to your elopement than the legal stuff, so this guide will tell you all about how to plan your epic adventure and everything you need to elope in Moab.
Here’s what you’ll find in this Moab elopement guide:
To legally elope in Moab, you need a marriage license. For Utah residents, applicants must appear in person at the county clerk’s office and present identification, such as a passport. B. Driver’s License or Passport. Non-residents can marry in-state as long as one of the applicant’s girlfriends is from Utah. You will also need to provide documentation proving that your previous marriage was legally dissolved.
Moab is the adventure capital of the Southwest, so plan some exciting activities for your elopement! ATV rides along the sandstone canyons of Red Rock Canyon, hot air balloon rides over Arches National Park, A scenic flight over Dead Horse Point, canyon rappelling and slot canyon exploration are the best ways to experience the incredible beauty and endless outdoor adventures of Southern Utah. . Hire a professional photographer for your special day.
Hire a professional photographer to ensure your Moab elopement is a memorable event! You can capture the scenery and create memories that will last a lifetime. They can even take pictures of you abseiling or riding so you can remember the occasion for years!
Whether it’s camping, hiking, biking, boating, rappelling, or simply enjoying the spectacular views of the Red Rock Canyonlands, Moab has something for everyone. Explore the world’s best-kept secrets and experience unforgettable natural beauty from remote natural locations. Enjoy a romantic sunrise or sunset together, followed by a traditional picnic lunch under the breathtaking sky. Whatever your plans, Moab offers the ideal setting for your special day.
Moab is about four hours from Salt Lake City, Utah. Driving up, it can get pretty backed up with traffic! I recommend leaving in the morning to avoid delays and leaving at least two hours earlier than you think you need to, just in case you get stuck in traffic.
BY AIRPLANE If you’re traveling to Moab by plane, there are two options for airports nearby.
The Grand Junction Regional Airport (GJT) is small, and I only recommend it if you fly with American Airlines or United. The airport is in Grand Junction, Colorado, about a 1.5-hour drive from Moab.
The Salt Lake City International Airport (SLC) is usually a better option, with more flights! It’s serviced by all the major airlines and is much bigger than the tiny local airport. From here, it takes about 4 hours to drive to Moab, but traffic conditions can vary.
No matter what time of year you elope in Moab, I recommend planning your ceremony for a weekday. You’ll miss the weekend crowds, and ensure a little more privacy for your day!
I don’t recommend the summer months for your Moab elopement. The Utah heat can be pretty brutal from June through August, especially in the desert. You probably don’t want to be sweating on the big day – but, if you elope during sunrise or sunset, you can beat the heat! As a bonus, the sun setting over the red rocks is an incredible sight.
Fall is a great time for a Utah elopement, because from mid-September through November, the weather is much milder, and the tourist season is over, which means fewer crowds, and better deals on lodging!
Winter is the best time to elope in Moab if you want to avoid crowds. You’ll want to wear layers, especially in the mornings and evenings, but the chilly temperatures mean fewer people out and about, and you can get a unique view of the red rock desert with the occasional dusting of snow!
In the spring, Moab comes to life with blooming wildflowers. Starting in
Arches National Park – Arches National Park is home to over 2,000 natural sandstone arches, making it a stunning location for an elopement. The park offers a variety of landscapes to choose from, including towering red rock cliffs, delicate arches, and winding canyons. With its unique geological features and rugged beauty, Arches National Park is a one-of-a-kind location for outdoor elopement.
Dead Horse Point State Park – Dead Horse Point State Park offers breathtaking views of the Colorado River and the surrounding canyon landscape. The park is known for its iconic views of the river winding through the red rock canyon, making it a perfect location for an intimate elopement ceremony.
La Sal Mountains – The La Sal Mountains offer a more rustic and secluded setting for your elopement. The mountain range is located just a short drive from Moab and offers stunning views of the surrounding landscape.
Canyonlands National Park – Canyonlands National Park is a vast and varied landscape, offering a range of locations for your elopement. The park is home to deep canyons, towering rock formations, and winding rivers, making it a perfect setting for an outdoor ceremony.
Airbnb – Is always a great staple for a place to stay that feels like coming. There are a number of them around Moab.
Moab Under Canvas – Moab Under Canvas is a luxury glamping resort located just a short drive from Arches National Park. The resort offers a variety of accommodation options, including safari tents and teepees, making it a unique and stylish option for your elopement.
Moab Springs Ranch – Moab Springs Ranch is a rustic and charming guest ranch located just outside of Moab. The ranch offers a variety of accommodation options, including cabins, tents, and even yurts, making it a great option for couples looking for a more natural and laid-back atmosphere.
Red Cliffs Lodge – Red Cliffs Lodge is a rustic and charming hotel located on the banks of the Colorado River. The lodge offers a variety of accommodation options, including cabin rentals, hotel rooms, and even a campsite, making it a great option for couples looking for a range of options.
Sorrel River Ranch – Sorrel River Ranch is a luxurious and secluded resort located just outside of Moab. The resort offers a variety of accommodation options, including private cabins and suites, making it a perfect option for couples looking for a more intimate and upscale experience.
Canyon Pizza Co. is my favorite place to grab a slice of pizza. The restaurant has a cozy and laid-back atmosphere, making it a great place to relax and fuel up before or after your elopement.
Moab Brewery is a local microbrewery and restaurant, known for its handcrafted beers and hearty pub fare. The brewery has a laid-back atmosphere and outdoor patio seating, making it a great spot for a casual pre-elopement meal.
Pasta Jay’s is a popular Italian restaurant in Moab, known for their delicious pasta dishes and wood-fired pizzas. The restaurant has a cozy and intimate atmosphere, making it a great spot for a romantic pre-elopement dinner.
The Desert Bistro is a fine dining restaurant in Moab, known for its delicious and creative dishes. The restaurant has a stylish and upscale atmosphere, making it a great spot for a special pre-elopement dinner.
Plan ahead – Eloping in Moab requires some planning, especially if you’re planning to have a small ceremony with just a few people. Make sure to book any necessary vendors or services, such as an officiant or photographer, well in advance to ensure everything goes smoothly on the day of your elopement.
Consider the weather – Moab can experience extreme temperatures, with hot summers and cold winters. Make sure to plan your elopement accordingly and dress appropriately for the weather.
Pack plenty of water – Moab is located in a desert region, so it’s important to stay hydrated. Make sure to bring plenty of water with you on your elopement day, especially if you’re planning to be outdoors for an extended period.
Consider a permit – If you’re planning to elope in a public area, such as a national park, you may need to obtain a permit. Make sure to check with the relevant authorities and obtain any necessary permits before your elopement.
Choose a location that reflects your personality – Moab has a wide range of landscapes and settings to choose from, so make sure to select a location that reflects your personality and interests.
Plan for unexpected delays – While you may have a clear plan for your elopement day, it’s always a good idea to allow for some flexibility in case of unexpected delays or unforeseen circumstances.
Hire a local professional – Consider hiring a local wedding planner or photographer to help plan and capture your elopement. They will be able to offer valuable insights and recommendations. I can help ensure that everything goes smoothly on your special day.
Have you fallen in love with the stunning landscapes of Moab? If so, let’s start planning your epic adventure, and get you married! As an elopement photographer, I’m ready to help you plan a personalized, totally custom day.
Here’s what you’ll find in my Moab elopement packages, starting at $3,500:
Contact me to learn more, and let’s start planning your Moab elopement today!