Best California Wedding Venues

Best California Wedding Venues

I’ve been to a lot of weddings over the years and by far one of my favorite place to shoot is in California. It has almost every type of terrain and scenery you could ask for AND some of the most stunning venues I’ve seen. So here are the Best California Wedding Venues that I’ve found so far.

Calamigos Ranch

It was a dream of mine to do a wedding at Calamigos Ranch long before I was able to. They have several different “rooms” or areas you can rent for your wedding and all are beautiful. I was lucky enough to do a wedding in the Birchwood Room which has one of the most beautiful trees I’ve ever seen. It also has the carousel.

Venue: Calamigos Ranch

Location: Malibu


Saratoga Springs

One of my favorite venues I’ve photographed at, ever, is Saratoga Springs. It’s this beautiful little venue nestled amongst a redwood forest about an hour and a half south of San Francisco. It also has several different “rooms” or areas to choose from when you get married there, and of course, all are beautiful.

Venue: Saratoga Springs

Location: Saratoga Springs, CA

California Wedding PhotographerLos Angeles Wedding PhotographerRedwood Wedding Photography

Joshua Tree National Park

If you’re into the desert and want to have a small wedding or elope, definitely check out Joshua Tree National Park. I’ve photographed a few ceremonies and engagement sessions in the park, and I always walk away in complete awe. Joshua Tree is definitely a highlight of southern California and even if you choose not to host your ceremony there, you should definitely visit.

Venue: Joshua Tree National Park

Location: Between Joshua Tree and Twenty Nine Palms

Joshua Tree WeddingJoshua Tree WeddingJoshua Tree Wedding Photographer


Ace Hotel Palm Springs

To be fair, I’ve only ever photographed a reception and prep at the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs BUT I know that the full weddings hosted there are beautiful as well. The best part is that your guests can stay there and be a short walk away from their rooms instead of having to drive or shuttle somewhere else. It’s convenient and pretty.

Venue: Ace Hotel in Palm Springs

Location: Palm Springs

Desert Wedding in Joshua Tree and the Ace HotelPalm Springs Ace Hotel WeddingPalm Springs Ace Hotel Wedding

Druids Hall & Sir and Stir

Although, I believe they are currently closed for renovations – Druids Hall and Sir and Stir are worth the drive. They are owned by the same company and literally a stones throw away from one another. Both have rooms that you can rent and stay in – but Sir and Stir has some of the best food I’ve ever tasted at a wedding.

Venue: Druids Hall and Sir and Stir

Location: Olema (north of San Francisco)

Sanborn Park

Sanborn Park is beautiful and it’s also right across the road from Saratoga Springs. It’s definitely a beautiful spot to host an outdoorsy/picnic themed wedding, and you won’t be disappointed by the openness. The vibe is perfect for a more casual affair.

Venue: Sanborn Park

Location: Saratoga

Big Sur

There are so many options when it comes to Big Sur, but I’m going to mention the two obvious: Cliffs or Forest. Big Sur is the PERFECT place to elope, and while I’m not familiar with any of the actual venues there I have photographed an elopement in a redwood grove and then an engagement (she was wearing a veil so we’ll use it) on a trail with cliffs. It’s beautiful, it’s different, and if you don’t mind not having cell service for a few hours, it’s perfect.

Venue and Location: Big Sur

Big Sur Elopement Big Sur Elopement Best Big Sur Elopement Photographer

Light and Space Yoga Studio

If you’re having a small intimate wedding and you want something truly unique, try the Light and Space Yoga Studio. It’s a converted gas station that is so unique you’ll forget you’re inside, well a gas station. It’s bright and open and the back is even set up for small receptions.

Venue: Light and Space Yoga Studio

Location: Ojai

California Wedding PhotographerKentucky PhotographerBest Louisville Wedding Photographer

Share this story