November 24, 2020

Big Sur Pfeiffer Beach Elopement Guide

Pfeiffer Beach Elopement Guide

So you’re planning a Pfeiffer Beach elopement in Big Sur? Here’s everything you need to know about planning and making your Big Sur elopement happen.

Pfeiffer Beach keyhole

  • Can you elope at Pfeiffer Beach in Big Sur?

YES! You can elope at Pfeiffer Beach day-use area.

  • How much does it cost to elope at Pfeiffer Beach?

It’s free! There are no permits required at the day use area but you will have to pay a small $12 fee for parking, but otherwise, there are no required fees.

  • Is there hiking involved?

Accessing the beach does not require any hiking and is an easily accessible path that anyone can walk down to get to the beach. The only required hiking is if you want to make it to the top of the cliff. It’s a very steep hike and could be challenging for some, but 100% worth it.

Pfeiffer Beach Ceremony spot  Big Sur Cypress trees

Ceremony Locations at Pfeiffer Beach

The cliffside and the beach itself can be a bit breezy so I recommend reading your vows or performing you ceremony in the cypress tree grove. Once you park in the day use lot, you’ll see the path through the cypress trees that leads you to the beach. Along this path you can stop and find a spot where the light peaks through and it’s the perfect area to read your vows and not be distributed. If you chose the cliffside for your vows, be prepared for potential wind.


  • Arrive early and expect there to be up to a 30-minute wait to park. Parking is very limited and the park only allows a certain amount of cars. You might be stuck waiting for cars to leave to be able to park. Carpooling is the best option!

  • Bring extra shoes because the terrain is sandy. Heels are not recommended, but if you hike to the top of the cliff, you can wear a cute pair of heels. Bring other shoes for the sand and the hike!

  • Pack a sweater or jacket. It gets a little chilly especially if you’re planning to hike to the top.

    Big Sur purple sand
    …and yes, the sand is purple!

    A couple at Pfeiffer Beach Big Sur
    Pfeiffer Beach Big Sur
    Other locations to check out (special use permit may be required):

    McWay Falls

    Mcway falls

    Garrapata State Park

    Pfeiffer Beach Big Sur

    Point Lobo State Natural Preserve

    Pfeiffer Beach Big Sur

    If you want more information about planning an elopement check out my elopement planning blog post here

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