Saying your vows surrounded by the snowy beauty of Lake Tahoe in the winter is truly a dream! As elopement photographers and videographers based in California, we’ve got to say, Lake Tahoe in the winter is something extra special. The air is crisp, the mountains are dusted with snow, and the lake is guaranteed to be a gorgeous backdrop for your elopement photos.
If you’re planning a winter Tahoe elopement, we’ll be here to make sure your day is downright awesome. Keep reading to see our best tips for planning your elopement!
Here’s our insider’s tip: Tahoe in winter is an exceptional choice for your elopement!
Firstly, the crowd factor? Virtually non-existent, giving you an exclusive winter wonderland experience. Now, onto the additional perks — think of activities like skiing and snowshoeing, fireside coziness, and maybe even a spontaneous snowball fight with your new spouse. The possibilities are endless in Lake Tahoe!
Plus, when it comes to elopement attire you can forget the standard go-tos. Tahoe’s winter backdrop invites some stylish and creative choices. From fabulous fur coats to long-sleeved wedding gowns to cozy winter boots, you can choose something unique for your winter Tahoe elopement.
As your go-to Tahoe elopement photographer, videographer, and planner, we’ll be here for both the stunning shots and the nitty gritty planning. With countless winter Tahoe elopements under our belts, we’re able to help you create an unforgettable, relaxed, and entirely personalized day.
From sorting out elopement day logistics to finding that dream spot to exchange vows and celebrate, and not forgetting a cozy post-elopement retreat for you as a couple, let’s dive into things to consider when planning your winter Tahoe elopement.
When it comes to the logistics of your winter elopement in Lake Tahoe, foresight is your best friend. Winter weather can bring some tricky logistics, so it’s important to make all of your plans in advance.
You’ll want to consider scheduling extra days around your celebration to account for any travel delays, especially if you’ll be navigating mountain passes that might be prone to closures due to snow. Here’s our pro tip: check the weather forecast like a hawk and be prepared to adjust your plans accordingly.
Rental cars might need a little extra TLC in winter, so make sure you’re well-versed in the possibility of needing chains and have all the necessary information at your fingertips.
Now, for a silver lining: the bonus of a winter elopement in Tahoe is the lack of crowds. You’ll be able to fully embrace the exclusivity of your elopement location without the tourists. That’s our favorite part of winter elopements!
When it comes to choosing the perfect winter elopement location in Lake Tahoe, we’re here to help! We love it when couples opt for an outdoor ceremony with a phenomenal winter backdrop, but we always recommend finding a cozy indoor space like a restaurant, brewery, or Airbnb for the post-ceremony celebration.
With Lake Tahoe’s abundance of easily accessible locations, you can exchange vows surrounded by snowy landscapes without the need for any strenuous hikes. This way, you and any elopement guests you have can enjoy Tahoe’s winter charm without compromising on comfort and warmth.
Here are a few of our favorite locations for your winter Tahoe elopement.
Sand Harbor is just perfect for a winter elopement! With its snowy shores and clear lake waters, it’s a magical spot for saying ‘I do.’ If you’re after a simple and beautiful celebration, Sand Harbor’s natural charm makes it an awesome spot for your Lake Tahoe elopement.
There’s a sliver of beach that’s great for saying your vows, and we can wander the beach to capture photos in all the fantastic spots either before or after the ceremony. A permit is required for your ceremony, and for a larger elopement ceremony of up to 100 guests, can reserve the Ramada for $400.
Logan Shoals Vista Point
Logan Shoals Vista Point is another breathtaking location for a winter elopement in Lake Tahoe! It offers panoramic views of the lake and surrounding snow-covered mountains. We love the expansive view and privacy it offers. Plus, it’s easily accessible, even in the winter months, so it’s convenient for you and your guests.
Zephyr Cove Day Use Area
Zephyr Cove is an impressive lakeside setting for a winter elopement. The snow-covered beach and clear waters of Lake Tahoe are sure to wow you. We love the way the beach turns into a snowy wonderland in the winter months!
Whether you prefer a ceremony directly on the beach or nestled among the snow-draped trees, there are a variety of options to choose from at Zephyr Cove.
Skylandia Park is a charming and lesser-known gem for a winter elopement in Lake Tahoe! It’s a lakefront location with unobstructed views of the water and surrounding landscape. There are trails with snow-covered pine trees, a historic cabin within the park, and a gorgeous lakeshore.
You can rent the group picnic area for up to 140 guests (and you can have dogs on a leash in this area), but the beach area isn’t available to reserve and doesn’t allow dogs.
These are just a few of your endless options in Lake Tahoe! Each location offers a unique blend of winter magic and breathtaking scenery for an unforgettable elopement experience. We save our best elopement location ideas for our own couples, so be sure to get in touch with us for our personalized recommendations and planning tips.
For your winter elopement in Lake Tahoe, you can keep it real and cozy with your attire. We’ve found that the best thing you can do is embrace the winter vibes with attire that’s both stylish and practical!
We love it when couples play into the winter theme and pack things like snow boots, flannel jackets, and fur coats for warmth and style. Winter also lends itself to long-sleeve wedding dresses and wool suits. No matter what style you choose, layering is a must in order to be comfortable in the chilly mountain air!
When it comes to accommodations for your winter elopement in Lake Tahoe, you can really make your stay as memorable as your celebration.
We recommend opting for a charming cabin rental or Airbnb where you and your loved ones can enjoy the coziness of getting ready together in a more intimate setting. We always suggest looking for places with cozy fireplaces and hot tubs to add a touch of warmth to the chilly winter evenings. A cozy Airbnb will ensure you’re comfortable and relaxed leading up to and after your big day!
One of our favorite Lake Tahoe Airbnbs doubles as a venue and lodging! Tahoe Blue Estate offers an extraordinary elopement backdrop and ample space to celebrate together. Here’s a peek at Madelyn and Akmal’s Tahoe Blue Estate wedding!
For a winter elopement in Lake Tahoe, there are endless options for activities for you and any guests you have!
On your elopement day, you can add an extra layer of adventure by hitting the slopes for some skiing or snowboarding. If those aren’t your vibe, you can take a romantic gondola ride for spectacular views of the snow-covered landscape. No matter which is most appealing to you, incorporating activities like these into your elopement day can add an extra touch of excitement!
For your guests or if you’re in Lake Tahoe for an extended period, here are more of our favorite winter activities!
For an adrenaline-packed adventure, recommend snowmobiling excursions. You can zip through snow-covered trails, take in the breathtaking winter landscapes, and enjoy the exhilaration of this high-speed winter activity.
Ice skating is a quintessential winter treat! You’ll find many resorts and outdoor rinks around Lake Tahoe. Here’s a list of where you can find ice skating in Lake Tahoe!
Skiing and Snowboarding:
Lake Tahoe is home to world-class skiing and snowboarding opportunities! Whether you and your guests are beginners or seasoned pros, the various resorts around Lake Tahoe cater to all skill levels. Heavenly, Kirkwood, and Palisades are some of our favorites, but you can see a full list here.
As a California elopement photographer and videographer duo, we’ve roamed just about every inch of Lake Tahoe! We love guiding our couples to the best Tahoe elopement locations!
We specialize in adventure elopements, and our services extend beyond photography! We offer music, officiating, and tailored suggestions for offbeat locations. If you’re thinking about planning your own Lake Tahoe elopement, reach out to us to begin the planning process today! We can’t wait to hear from you.
If you're thinking about eloping or getting married in NorCal, our blog is an excellent resource for inspiration. We've got sneak peeks of recent weddings, tips for eloping in Northern California, and more. Let The Adventure Begin is the perfect place to start planning.
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