chairs and altar on beach for beach wedding

Beach Wedding Ideas: 27 Breathtaking Options

Feb 17, 2020
By Wedding Spot

Looking for inspiring and creative beach wedding ideas? Not only are beach weddings gorgeous, they still offer a lot of flexibility in terms of possible venues, attire, and even catering, regardless of what you plan to spend! Here are over 25 suggestions that cover a range of key aspects for wedding planning. 

Explore our favorite beach wedding ideas:

5 classy yet casual beach wedding dresses and style ideas

As you decide what to wear, consider the time of day your ceremony will begin and your reception will end (especially if they’re both outdoors). The following suggestions typically require less material than traditional wedding dresses, which lowers the cost. Also, some of these ideas for dresses can be thrifted, borrowed, or even custom made in your local Garment District for a fraction of the cost.  

  1. Spaghetti strap and full lace dress. The straps bring in a sense of easy breezy casualness and the lace keeps things just formal enough for a wedding ceremony. 

  2. Boho cotton dress. You can find these in a variety of price points and styles. If you want a more upscale look, take a peek at these dreamy boho wedding dresses for more inspiration. 

  3. Two-piece crop and skirt wedding ensemble. Any one of these bridal separates would look perfect in front of the water. 

  4. Off-the-shoulder fringe. Look for a thrift or vintage wedding dress store that stocks this classic ‘70s look. 

  5. Wedding jumpsuit. Go with solid or off white to make it look more appropriate for your wedding. The good news is you can find white ladies jumpsuits at most major clothing stores! 

3 appropriate beach wedding shoes for any budget

  1. Upscale sandals. Jeweled, gladiator, and cork wedges all work well for ladies and the men can focus on finding a pair with high-quality materials. 

  2. Loafers and boat shoes. A great unisex look for those who want to keep their toes covered. Pair these with the no-show socks to keep it classy. 

  3. Barefoot sandals. These foot jewelry pieces are absolutely gorgeous and allow you to dig your feet into the sand whenever you want without sacrificing class or style. 

5 beach wedding guest dresses and attire ideas

Add these ideas to your wedding website or invitation so guests feel confident about what to wear. 

  1. Lightweight, flowy fabrics. Although it might be warm on your wedding day, beaches often have cool breezes, especially closer to sunset. Make sure you’re protected from the sun but comfortable with the weather. 

  2. Pair skirts that are knee-length or below with off-the-shoulder or sleeveless tops. You’ll be covered enough for the ceremony without overheating. 

  3. Statement accessories. Keep your hair back with a bright patterned scarf, throw on some statement earrings, or rock a chunky necklace. 

  4. Funky sunglasses. The right pair can elevate an otherwise casual look. Seek out designer sunglasses or go with a fun and funky pair to add a spark to your overall ensemble. 

  5. Pastels or bold tropical patterns. Both of these color schemes work well in this setting. Take your cues from the wedding theme or invitation colors. 

5 beach wedding cake toppers and dessert decoration ideas

One of the best ideas is to let your setting take centerstage. Additional decor isn’t necessarily needed when you have so much natural beauty to enjoy, which is why most couples like to have a bit of fun when it comes to their wedding cake toppers. Plus, they’re usually pretty cheap, help continue the wedding theme, and can be DIY’d, up-cycled, or even borrowed. 

Like most outdoor weddings, it’s best to start with a simple cake base (one color frosting, naked, or single layer all work well) and incorporate themed or natural elements into your wedding cake decorations. The base keeps the focus on the natural beauty of your environment and the topper complements your design with interesting little extras. 

  1. Matching beach chairs. Add your names or tiny bridal party accessories to them. 

  2. Palm tree with silhouettes. Have a kissing couple standing in front of it in shadow as well.  

  3. Surfboard backdrop. Make sure the surfboard stripes match your theme colors! 

  4. Starfish bride and groom. A tiny top hat and bridal veil look both adorable and amusing on top of them. 

  5. Seashell and pearls. This classic beach wedding cake combo adds a hint of elegance. 

Go from beach wedding ideas to beach wedding venues!

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9 gorgeous and budget-friendly beach wedding venues

The venues featured on this list all have beautiful beachfront properties, are located throughout the United States and Mexico, and can host your wedding for $5,000 (or less)!

1. Key Largo Lighthouse

Location: Key West, Florida 

Want a chef, decorator, and planner included with your beach wedding venue? Then this is the spot for you. 

2. O’ahu Wedding Villa

Location: Oahu, Hawaii

This award-winning venue has destination wedding packages available that include accommodations as well as practical ceremony and reception items you may not even realize you need (including mosquito treatments and a portable dance floor). 

3. Rumbling Bald Resort

Location: Lake Lure, North Carolina

Host your wedding ceremony in their Beachside Gazebo overlooking Lake Lure and flanked by mountains. 

4. Sandbridge Realty

Location: Virginia Beach, Virginia

Their beach house is perfect for your reception as well as a familymoon the whole week after. 

5. Bay Pointe

Location: Shelbyville, Michigan 

Perfect for warm summer beach weddings as well as cozy winter ones thanks to their impressive fireplace and flexible event venues space. 

6. Bahia Resort Hotel 

Location: San Diego, California

You’ll have a private beach and as many as four elegant ballrooms to choose from for your entire wedding celebration. 

7. Lake Mohawk Country Club 

Location: Sparta, New Jersey

This venue gives you four settings in one: a beach, a boardwalk, a country club, and a lakeside ceremony spot. 

8. Hollywood Beach Marriott

Location: Hollywood, Florida

This boutique seaside hotel is perfect for a cozy gathering with your closest friends and family. 

9. Melia Punta Cana Beach 

Location: Punta Cana, Dominican Republic

In addition to most other features listed by the beach wedding venues on this list, the Melia Punta Cana Beach also has a BBQ area for reception catering as well as an onsite spa. 

Use these beach wedding ideas and get started!

Head over to our post on how to plan affordable beach weddings for more inspiration.

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Wedding Spot

Wedding Spot

The Wedding Spot blog is designed to help couples navigate every step of the wedding planning journey. From before the engagement to after you say “I do,” our goal is to give you the tips, ideas, and inspiration to prepare for your big day — and all that comes with it.