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  • Writer's pictureMia

Plan a Dreamy California Beach Elopement in 5 Easy Steps (real beach wedding photos in Windansea)

Updated: Nov 19, 2023

If you are looking for a beautiful and affordable destination for your wedding, San Diego is the perfect place to consider. Whether you are dreaming of a casual beach wedding or an elaborate ceremony with all the frills, San Diego offers something for everyone. Here are some tips on how to plan an affordable beach wedding in San Diego:

1. Choose a public beach

San Diego boasts some of the most beautiful beaches in the country, but not all of them are equally priced. Some beaches require a permit, have limited parking, or only allow a certain number of people. However, there are many public beaches where you can have a simple ceremony without breaking the bank. Some popular public beaches for weddings include Windansea Beach, Coronado Beach, Sunset Cliffs, and Mission Beach. There really is no bad choice when it comes to selecting a beach. It's all preference, Coronado with its gentle dunes is more family friendly whereas Sunset Cliffs provides a stunning dramatic cliffside backdrop.

Have no idea of beaches in San Diego? Click this link to find some inspirations (5 Best Beaches in San Diego for Your Engagement / Elopement / Wedding / Family Photography) :

2. Opt for an off-season wedding

The peak season for weddings in San Diego is from May to October, which means prices for venues and vendors can be higher during this time. Booking your wedding during the off-season can save you a lot of money. Consider having your wedding in early spring or late fall when the weather is still mild but the crowds are thinner. The weather is still beautiful and oftentimes more dramatic which leads to more captivating photos. Any time is a good time for a wedding in San Diego but you can definitely take advantage of these slower times.

3. Rent a vacation rental

Renting a vacation rental near the beach is a great option for couples who want to have a more intimate wedding. Many rentals offer outdoor space, such as a You can even rent out multiple houses if you want to have a larger wedding party. Do you like the hospitality of a hotel more,, book a boutique hotel close by the water. San Diego has lots of affordable chic boutique hotels on the water or a stone's throw away. Most of them will allow you to book blocks of rooms too for larger groups.

4. Keep the decor simple

The beach is already a beautiful backdrop for your wedding, so you do not need to spend a lot of money on decorations. Consider using natural elements like seashells, driftwood, and flowers to enhance the beauty of the beach. Also, opt for simple furniture such as bamboo chairs or benches instead of renting more expensive pieces. You can do a lot with a little decor when it comes to beach weddings as the venue has already been decorated by nature. Yes it is a little more adventurous, but as soon as the ceremony and photos are through, head to the great indoors. San Diego boasts some of the best restaurants and bars in the country to host your post-ceremony reception.

5. Cheers and Congratulations as you plan your wedding day!

If you are coming from out of states, or looking for a beautifully simple and stress-free beach elopement ceremony, PKA Photography is your premier vendor in helping perfect your dream wedding that doesn’t break the bank.

We have a variety of wedding packages to suit any needs, you'll find your photographer, videographer, florist, wedding officiant and DJ under the same banner!

We provide a stress free environment so you can focus on having your best day ever!


On February 12, 2023 we married Christian and Mili at Windansea Beach in picturesque La Jolla, California. It was a day they will forever remember and the simple and elegant elopement included some of their closest friends- and fur baby.

Of course they love their wedding experience with PKA so much, Mili said :

"We organized our wedding in a week as we chose to do it at the last minute and we couldn't be more fortunate to find Mia and LaRon! They added color to our ceremony with their great energy, excellent and professional work.

Through several text chat and zoom conversations, Mia and LaRon worked with us and our budget to provide us with wonderful memories of our special day. They gave us so many location options with photo examples, explain all the advantages and flaws of the locations, guided us to apply permit to keep this popular location. They even helped me to find a florist who speaks my language at the last minute.

We hired a wedding photographer, and feel like got a wedding planner too!

Before my ceremony , I had a problem with my dress, Mia and LaRon was very flexible to understand and wait for me.

And we got ALL our raw images on the day of our wedding!!! So we may choose which photos we love to get retouched for our wedding album. It's incredible!

We will definitely choose her again for our next event. Thank you PKA Photography!"

Reach out today and we can help you to start wherever you are in the process, a quick consultation over the phone, email, or via text will allow us to help you now! Let's plan your wedding together!

Photo by PKA Photography

Instagram: @pka_photo

Phone number: +1 (619) 948-2826


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