Top Washington DC Elopement Locations

Elopements are a great alternative to grandiose, modern weddings. Elopements are often cost-effective, allow couples more freedom with their venue choices, and are small, intimate celebrations with close family and friends. Or even just the bride and groom themselves! Washington, DC, is a popular elopement destination due to its many beautiful landmarks and natural scenery. In this blog post, I will be highlighting The Tidal Basin and The National Arboretum for a Washington DC elopement with fantastic photo opportunities! 

Best Places to Have A Washington DC Elopement

The Tidal Basin in Washington, DC, is a part of West Potomac Park and is surrounded by the Jefferson Memorial, Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial, the FDR Memorial, the George Mason Memorial, the Floral Library, the Japanese Pagoda, and the site of the First Cherry Tree Planting. The meandering Tidal Basin Loop Trail is a great way to see these famous landmarks. This location is also the site of the gorgeous Cherry Blossom Festival each spring. 

Constructed from the 1800s to the 1940s, the 107-acre Tidal Basin harnesses the power of the Potomac River tides. Twice a day at high tide, 250 million gallons of water enter the Tidal Basin through inlet gates. It is a beautiful spot for a DC elopement and photos. 

The U.S. National Arboretum in Washington, DC, was established in 1927 by an Act of Congress administered by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service. It is accessible through entrances on New York Avenue and R Street. When you visit the National Arboretum, you can enjoy lovely azaleas, dogwoods, ferns, koi ponds, aquatic plants, magnolias, perennials, and much more. 

Fees and Permits

The U.S. National Arboretum can host weddings and elopements, but the facility must approve size ahead of time. Pop-up weddings are not permitted. Professional photo and video shoots require permits. Photographers can request a permit to take photos in the gardens’ unique sites and facilities. Photoshoot permits are $105.

Photography Opportunities

There are many photo opportunities on the Tidal Basin Loop Trail, including the Japanese Lantern, 1912 Plantings, FDR Memorial, Japanese Pagoda, Inlet Bridge, Thomas Jefferson Memorial, crab apple trees, Outlet Bridge, cherry trees, Floral Library, and Kutz Memorial Bridge. Constructed in the 1600s, the Japanese Pagoda is a beautiful location for photos. Crab apple trees have beautiful flowers that look similar to roses. Cherry trees create a cloudlike effect and make a gorgeous backdrop for photos. 

The U.S. National Arboretum is also a picturesque location to take elopement photos. The gardens and plant collections are the perfect backdrop for stunning, vibrant photography. The Arboretum has one-of-a-kind historic structures, exotic gardens and collections, and many areas filled with rare and beautiful trees, shrubs, and flowers. The National Capitol Columns are another popular location for photos. The 22 Corinthian columns sit gracefully over the sweep of space and are an elegant and unique backdrops for event photos. 

Washington DC Elopement

These two Washington DC elopement locations are beautiful. With vibrant blooms, historic buildings, garden collections, expansive trails, and amazing views of some of DC’s most famous landmarks and monuments, the Tidal Basin and the U.S. National Arboretum are perfect destinations for Washington DC elopement photography. 

For more DC area wedding content, click on the blog links below. Don’t forget to head to my contact page while you’re here so we can chat about your dream Washington DC elopement!

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