Cathedral Rock Elopement location & planning tips- Sedona, Arizona
Updated for 2023
A Cathedral Rock wedding is THE most requested place to elope in Sedona, and with good reason. The larger-than-life views, dynamic landscape, and monumental red rock spires are guaranteed to take your breath away both in person, and looking back on images of your Cathedral Rock elopement for years to come.
The dramatic views from the mid and top sections of Cathedral Rock are a photographer’s absolute dream. This is why you will see many Sedona elopement photographers try it at least once. But be forewarned, this location is not for everyone.
Eloping at Cathedral Rock can be a beautiful and romantic experience, but there are a few things to consider before making your plans. Below are considerations to help you decide whether you want to say your vows at the top of the Cathedral Rock Trail during your Sedona elopement adventure.
Still looking for ideas and tips on eloping in Sedona? Check out the 11 Step Guide to Planning Your Sedona Elopement to help you plan your unforgettable wedding adventure!
3 Reasons to choose a Cathedral Rock elopement
3 Reasons not to choose a Cathedral Rock wedding
Cathedral Rock Elopement Quick faq’s
Real Talk- Should I have my Elopement at Cathedral Rock
Cathedral Rock trail is one of the most popular hiking trails in Sedona, so it is an almost certainty it will be busy. The whole top of the trail is a U shaped ledge area with limited space to get by people. This means there is no way to have a private moment away from the crowds for any length of time. You will have people cheering. You will have people congratulating you. It also means that other hikers’ experience will be obstructed if you attempt to take over one of the main ledge viewing areas for longer than a couple minutes at a time. Being respectful of everyone’s enjoyment in shared spaces is an important aspect of “Leave no Trace Principles” of outdoor recreation.
You may be asking yourself at this point- “Should I have my elopement ceremony at Cathedral Rock?” While the top ledge area of Cathedral is one of my all time favorite locations for wedding portraits, I *generally* steer couples towards saying their vows at the middle platform where the trail intersects with Templeton Trail, or at a separate location altogether. Afterwards, we can hike up to the very tippity top for elopement photographs of just the two of you. This gives the best of both worlds! You get a ceremony with more privacy, space for others to walk around, and great views. You also get those once in a lifetime portraits nestled between magnificent red rock spires reaching towards the sky! Win-win!
Alternatives to hiking up Cathedral Rock for your elopement
Are there alternatives to the main Cathedral Rock hike that still have the red rock formation in the background?
Yes! There are several gorgeous, less traveled locations nearby where you will still have Cathedral Rock in the background without the steep hike. Consider hiring a Local Sedona Elopement Photographer to help you find the perfect spot.
Are you interested in a Cathedral Rock elopement or wedding portraits?
Hi! I’m Shannon Durazo, and I would love to be your Sedona Elopement Photographer and planning consultant!
I will hike that mountain, drive those bumpy 4×4 roads, ride behind you on a trail ride, gear up to either meet you at the take off and landing location for those balloon or helicopter tours, or ride with you if you want the whole flight documented. Basically, no matter what activity you choose to add to your day, consider me your sidekick and adventure elopement documenter extraordinaire.
Contact me to begin planning your Couple’s Sedona Adventure Session today!
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