Thinking about eloping in Utah? You needdd to consider Bryce Canyon National Park for your desert wedding or Utah elopement/Utah wedding! Here’s what I’m going to go through in this post about how to elope in Bryce Canyon:
Distances from airports/nearby destinations
- How to get to Bryce Canyon
- The basics to know + logistics
- Why choose Bryce Canyon vs. other UT national parks for a desert wedding?
- The fun elopement idea I’ve got for you
- Bryce Canyon desert wedding inspiration
- Utah wedding vendors
Bryce Canyon: the location
First, let’s go through some FAQ’s about the national park and the logistics of the location itself.
How far is Bryce Canyon National Park from Zion National Park?
Bryce Canyon is about 1.5 hours from Zion.
How far is Bryce Canyon from the St. George Regional Airport?
Bryce Canyon is approximately 2.5 hours away from the St. George Regional Airport.
How far is Bryce Canyon from Salt Lake City?
Bryce Canyon is about 4.5 hours from SLC.
What is the best time of year to visit Bryce Canyon National Park for your desert wedding?
According to this article by US News,
“The best time to visit Bryce National Park is May through September. Not only does this period offer the warmest weather of the year, but it also yields plenty of ranger activities. October through April offers its own charms, too. There are fewer people, cooler temperatures, and the fall foliage and wildflowers can be stunning.
In the winter, the park is transformed by snow and visitors can go cross-country skiing and snowshoeing. But remember: Because of its high elevation, the weather at Bryce Canyon in the fall, winter, and spring can be quite variable.
Bryce National Park is open 24 hours a day, year-round, but from October through May, some roads, campgrounds, and other visitor facilities are closed or operate on reduced hours. It’s a good idea to check the current conditions on the National Weather Service website before your visit.”
Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce, Utah 84764
If you’re flying in to get to Bryce Canyon, the closest large airports are in Las Vegas and Salt Lake City.
If you’re driving, here are the directions that the national park’s website gives:
“From the North:
Take I-15 south to UT-20 (exit 95). Travel east on UT-20 to US-89. Follow US-89 south to UT-12. Travel east on UT-12 to UT-63. Take UT-63 south to Bryce Canyon National Park. The visitor center sits 1 mile inside the park boundary.
From the South through Zion National Park:Take I-15 north to UT-9 (exit 16). Follow UT-9 east through Zion National Park to US-89. Travel north on US-89 to UT-12. Go east on UT-12 to UT-63. Take UT-63 south to Bryce Canyon National Park. The visitor center sits 1 mile inside the park boundary.
Take I-15 north to exit 59. Go east on 200 north, then south on Main Street to Center Street/UT-14. Travel east on UT-14 to US-89. Go north on US-89 to UT-12. Follow UT-12 east to UT-63. Take UT-63 south to Bryce Canyon National Park. The visitor center sits 1 mile inside the park boundary. This is a very scenic route during the summer months and early fall.
From the South through Bear (Dog) Valley:
Take I-15 north to UT-20 (exit 95). Go east on UT-20 to US-89. Follow US-89 south to UT-12. Travel east on UT-12 to UT-63. Take UT-63 south to Bryce Canyon National Park. The visitor center sits 1 mile inside the park boundary.
Public transportation to the park is not available.”
What to know about Bryce Canyon National Park
Bryce Canyon National Park is currently open to all visitors with precautions in place, including a mask mandate. The park’s shuttle is still running for visitors to use, just with limited capacity.
The weather at Bryce Canyon can be pretty variable because of its high elevation, and it obviously depends on what time of year you visit.
The national park’s website has plenty of information about weather, and you can always check out the National Weather Service’s forecast. Be sure to take a look at the forecast and plan ahead accordingly – but also be prepared for any kind of weather and for the unexpected.
Here are the requirements of getting married at Bryce Canyon, according to the park’s website for your desert wedding:
“To be married in Bryce Canyon National Park you must:
- Obtain a Utah state marriage license. The fee is $40 with no waiting period; both parties must be present to obtain the license. Contact a courthouse in Utah for further information on marriage licenses and who can perform ceremonies. Garfield County Courthouse – (435) 676-1100
- Obtain a special use permit from the National Park Service (see below). Requests must be made in advance and take two to four weeks to process.
- Arrange for someone to perform the ceremony — a Justice of the Peace, Municipal Judge, Mayors, or an ordained pastor, priest, or bishop. (See the list below for some possible options)”
You need to make sure you obtain the correct permits and passes correctly when you plan your wedding at Bryce Canyon. We don’t want you to be trespassing or destroying land that’s well taken care of.
Here’s what you need to know about the Special Use Permit you’ll need to get:
- There are two ceremony sites you’ll be able to choose from
- Max guest count = 30
- No music, chairs, decorations, or other props are allowed
- Receptions are not permitted
- The permit costs $100
Head to the park’s website to get the specific + to apply for your special use permit.
Why Bryce Canyon vs. other Utah national parks for your Desert Wedding?
Unique rock formations
Bryce Canyon’s rock formations are truly unique to every other national park in Utah. You drive to the overview spots, and then hike into the canyon to see these amazing land formations, a perfect location for a desert wedding!
Stunning shades of orange
Bryce Canyon National Park also has such a different & unique color of rocks compared to all the other parks in Utah or Arizona. It’s more of a light, orangescicle color than a burnt orange.
- If you want to check out some other places to elope in Utah check out this blog that I wrote!
A fun Bryce Canyon elopement idea: hiking
Note to self: always wear hiking shoes when adventuring to these destinations for your desert wedding! We didn’t think our hike down was going to be as long, but to find these epic locations… we had to hike in further than we thought 🤣
Here’s a guide to the best hikes in Bryce Canyon for you to go on during your trip to the national park!
Bryce Canyon wedding inspiration
Now that I’ve gone through all the basic info, enjoy this beautiful gallery full of Bryce Canyon desert wedding inspiration! The boho fringe dress, the unique bouquet, and the beige/neutral color palette = a dreammmm at Bryce Canyon.
Utah desert wedding vendors
Host: The Shootout Society
Planning & Design: Britt Warnick Designs
Assistant planner: @aspfoxbwd
Rentals: Alpine Event Co.
Dress: Off White Bride