If you and your bride or groom-to-be love the outdoors, then it is a great idea to plan an outdoor wedding! If you're going to get married outside, though, you should carefully think through where to go. These ten locations are some of the best and most beautiful outdoor wedding venues in the entire United States. (We also put together a list of our favorites in Hawaii!) Everyone will remember how beautiful your wedding was, and your photos are sure to be ten out of ten.
10 Best Outdoor Wedding Destinations Across The U.S.
10. Nasher Sculpture Garden – Dallas, Texas
It’s located just minutes from downtown Dallas, but with the cozy atmosphere, you’d swear you were miles away from the city. The sculpture center was voted one of Bride Magazine’s Best Wedding Venues in 2015, and it may have something to do with the novelty of the venue. Couples can get married alongside sculptures created by some of the greatest artists of modern history. This vintage garden wedding takes place completely outdoors under strung lights. It can’t get much more refined than that. Plus, guests get the added bonus of going to a wedding and visiting a sculpture center all at once.
9. Beaulieu Garden – Rutherford, California
Located just 14 miles from Napa, Rutherford is home to some big names in the wine business. Beaulieu Vineyards is among those, and its outdoor wedding venue is right on par with the allure of wine country. Ivy growing up walls, chandeliers hanging from outdoor canopies, and a pool surrounded by lanterns and candles are all just the beginning of this beautiful venue. Guests will enter the vineyard through the tree-lined driveway that cuts through rows upon rows of vines. They can cross a creek on a white, almost picket-fence style bridge and enter the intimate setting of the ceremony. The reception can take place under a canopy of trees strung with lights in preparation for the night’s events. This secluded atmosphere will be memorable not only to guests but to the newlyweds, as well.
8. Dunton Hot Springs – Dolores, Colorado
Dunton Hot Springs brings something unique to the list of outdoor wedding venues, something that no other venue could offer: It’s a restored ghost town. What’s more is that you can rent the entire town for your big day. For the outdoor enthusiast, this venue provides complete access to the San Juan National Forest. Sure, you and your guests can stay indoors and get pampered at the on-site spa, go to a yoga class, or hit the gym for a fitness boxing class, but you can also explore the great outdoors and hike the West Fork of the 241-mile long Dolores River. For the big day, guests and the couple will enjoy a serenely intimate setting of a handmade, wood-framed alter and rows of chairs facing the pine trees of the San Juan Forest. The rustic feel to this wedding is only added to, as guests can be invited to stay up to 5 days leading up to the ceremony and enjoy heliskiing, mountain biking, snowshoeing, snowmobiling, and the list goes on. The venue takes care of everything, so you can sit back and relax, no matter if you’re in the wedding or just along for the ride.
7. Barnsley Garden Resort – Adairsville, Georgia
Perhaps the most exciting feature of this venue is the actual architecture and construction of it. Godfrey Barnsley originally began building the resort as an Italianate villa in the 1840s for his wife, Julia. When she got sick and passed away, construction on the villa ceased, but was eventually picked back up a year later when Barnsley decided to finish it. In 1906, a tornado tore the roof off of the villa, and that is how it remains today. A wedding in the gorgeous gothic revival-style villa is the perfect setting for a fairytale wedding. The resort’s well-manicured grounds and garden upon entering are indicators of what is to come. This venue is ideal for that authentic Southern wedding.
6. Franklin Park Conservatory – Columbus, Ohio
While it’s technically indoors, this venue made the cut for the Brides Magazine Best Wedding Venues of 2015 and with good reason. The actual ceremony can take place in a variety of place, the Victorian-era John F. Wolfe Palm House greenhouse included! Take a double grand staircase up to the greenhouse and enter a tropical garden complete with a Venetian-style fountain as you get ready to say “I do”. Then head out to the West Terrace where a striking brick veranda provides a gorgeous view of the botanical gardens on the grounds. When the sun sets, the house is illuminated and light artist James Turrell’s LED installation presents itself.
5. Herban Feast – Seattle, Washington
Seattle’s Herban Feast offers not one but two outdoor wedding venues. Froggsong Garden on Vashon Island is an enchanting escape from the bustle of Seattle. It features 16-acres of gardens inspired by English estates and a recirculating stream that runs through 150 feet of the grounds. The venue features natural, lush gardens and an elegant setting that makes for the perfect outdoor wedding. The second venue option is The Lodge, located in Fall City, Washington. The Lodge is a 3-acre outdoor farm situated in the foothills of the Cascades. The 5,000 square-foot lodge is perfect for those who want to step inside and out the rain or heat, and is surrounded by an expansive green lawn. Both venues are exceptional places to have an outdoor wedding in the Seattle area.
4. Forest House Lodge – Foresthill, California
With an outdoor ceremony site that might just take your breath away, Forest House Lodge gives guests a view of much more than the two lovebirds. White chairs sit perched a grassy area surrounded by trees and a cobblestone path leading down the aisle, but the main attraction is what drapes behind of the alter: The Sierra Nevada Mountain Range. Huge, pine tree-dotted mountains create a picturesque backdrop for the ceremony, and it’s even more gorgeous at sunset if the couple decides to have the ceremony then. After the ceremony, head back to the lodge and you’ll enter a bar stacked with a variety of hats for guests to wear and start the party. The outdoor patio in the back of the lodge usually hosts an appetizer and drinks hour, and there’s ample space for everyone to enjoy the outdoor portion of this beautifully restored lodge. After dinner, guests are welcome to jump on the dance floor or, although not outdoors, go down to the incredibly spacious basement-level dance floor and game room. The game room is stocked with game systems, like Wii and X-Box, and foosball and pool tables, too. The best part? The party can go almost all night long, as guests can choose to stay upstairs in the lodge’s guestrooms. The newlyweds will stay in the honeymoon suite and can top the night off with champagne and a slice of cake brought directly to the suite before the couple hits the hay. This is truly an all-around great outdoor wedding venue.
3. Haiku Sugar Mill – Maui, Hawaii
Sandy beaches and palm trees are great backdrops for a beautiful wedding in Hawaii. But what if you want something a little more inland without sacrificing the authentic Hawaiian feel? Haiku Mill claims they are “unlike anything you’ve ever seen before”, and they sure are right. The mill’s history goes back 150 years when it was first constructed to produce cane sugar. Over the years, the mill has closed, but that hasn’t stopped it from maintaining its rich history and being placed on the National Register of Historic Places. The rustic charm and European-inspired architecture make this place a wonderful place to celebrate the making of new history.
2. Laguna Gloria – Austin, Texas
Recently named the Best Wedding Venue in Austin by The Knot, the Laguna Gloria at The Contemporary in Austin gives off the Italian-villa vibe. Its extensive, sloping green lawn and gardens offer guests beautiful grounds to celebrate on. A jaw-dropping view of the Colorado River can be seen from anywhere in the villa, as the river snakes through the city and butts up right next the the Contemporary. After sunset, the building is illuminated in different colors, providing another artistic touch to the venue. This venue is a crowd pleaser.
1. Bar SZ Ranch – San Benito, California
Scour a map for California’s Pinnacles National Park and you’ll see that it’s kind of out in the middle of nowhere, for California at least. This is what makes Bar SZ Ranch in San Benito County, located just minutes from Pinnacles, such a wonderful place to host a wedding. The venue is actually a working ranch, with knowledgeable ranch hosts and the farm animals to prove it. The rustic scenery alone makes this place a great place to tie the knot, but it has much more to offer. For a small cost, wedding guests can choose to go skeet shooting, horseback riding or shoot archery before the wedding. Hay rides and feeding farm animals are also options, especially for kids who can’t quite seem to sit still. By the time the wedding actually starts, guests have already had a day of activities (or relaxation if they so choose), but then the real fun starts. Outdoor tables, strung lights, and hay bales transform the evening into a unique country experience. An outdoor pool hall and board games keep guests entertained throughout the night, while a dance floor provides guests a place to let their dance moves fly. Guests can even camp overnight at the ranch, so don’t forget to bring your tent! Bar SZ Ranch does an outstanding job of treating its guests like family and providing a memorable country-style wedding.
This article was written by Julianne Aiello.