Many couples now choose to combine the romance of an overseas wedding with their honeymoon, or a memorable trip for family and friends – the Sunshine State has lasting holiday appeal. It’s essential to look into the practicalities as well as making those fun decisions on location and venues, so with this in mind, here are some tips for those thinking about getting married in Florida.
When you’re looking to plan the perfect wedding abroad, Florida boasts enough blissful beaches, sculpted gardens and painted sunsets to spark plenty of ideas for the big day. There’s a good chance that if you’ve picked Florida as your dream destination, you might have your heart set on a beach ceremony. With naturally stunning shores, twinkling waters and historic coastal estates, you can have a wedding in any style – from simple elegance to a yacht-based extravaganza. Try Fort Clinch State Park on Amelia Island with the evocative 19th century fort looking out on the Atlantic, or marry to the sound of the waves and soak up the reliably warm weather on Naples Beach.
If you fancy an inland alternative, Orlando may surprise you with its diversity. Known the world-over for its thrill rides and magical resorts, you can grab a little of this excitement for your own special day and marry at the Royal Plaza at Disney World, or make sure you keep even the youngest guests happy at Clarion Waterpark. Those looking for a quieter romance will be enamoured of fragrant botanical venues like Leu Gardens, or the cocktail elegance of 1920s manor and grounds of Cypress Grove.
Location aside, it’s important to look into the legal side in advance to make sure everything goes ahead without a glitch. It’s fairly straightforward to get married in Florida: for most, marriage certificates can be claimed from the local courthouse by non-residents, the standard photo ID is needed and there is a waiting period of just three days before the actual ceremony can take place. However, it might be an idea to employ a wedding planner in Florida, to get further advice about time-frames, requirements and destination-specific information.
As far as general guidance goes, it’s usually advisable to arrange a beach ceremony later in the day or in the evening to avoid the really high temperatures that Florida can experience in the early summer.
Think about the weather when you’re choosing types of cake and also whether your hair and make-up will be affected by the humidity. The weather is unfortunately always one factor you can’t predict, so it’s wise to research weather patterns, as Florida is a tropical state. Formulate an indoor back-up plan for outdoor weddings here, especially during the rainy season (roughly from June to October).
If you’re travelling with a package company, you can opt for various levels of service and extras, or put in a bit more research and go it alone. When planning your budget, you might also want to organise group activities for your guests during their stay, as well as any pre-wedding dinners or parties. But whether you want to get hitched on the Emerald Coast or say your vows in the shadow of the Cinderella Castle, keep that balance of desirable location and practical considerations, and your big day will blossom just the way you want it to.
As far as fun in the sun locations go, Florida is one of the world’s top destinations for a perfect wedding abroad.
We have lots of great weddings abroad advice on Confetti!