As a San Diego elopement photographer, I usually get requests for beach elopements. Meaning toes in the sand. However, in this Torrey Pines State Park Elopement Photos | E + J, we were toes on the cliffs. It felt MAGICAL! You felt you were flying in the sky! Of course it helped that we had the perfect weather! It was two days before a tropical storm! The timing couldn’t have been better. Being surrounded by all the beautiful greenery, cliffs, blue ocean just felt like a dream! This is why people rave about La Jolla, the beauty of its nature is just breath taking! If you are looking for a nature inspired wedding or elopement ceremony in La Jolla, look no further than Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve!
We began at Estancia Hotel in La Jolla, where the couple was staying. The hotel was very kind and let us take photos around the hotel before we headed out for the ceremony. There are so many beautiful locations at the hotel, I felt complete before I even had a chance to get photos at Torrey Pines. Between the architecture and landscaping, you have endless options there! Tip- always ask in advance if there are any other events going on when you plan on taking photos. You don’t want to be surprised that a spot you had wanted to take photos at is no longer available. So be prepared and ask ahead.
We had done a walk thru together the day before. This helped the day run smoothly as we knew exactly where we wanted to take photos. When we did the walk thru, it was overcast. On the actual day of the wedding, it was sunny! Yay! But that meant some of the locations I had previously decided on, I discarded. I favored others to get the best lighting. Lighting is super important and should usually take priority over anything else.
I would like to point out that I did a lot of photoshopping in the ceremony photos and surrounding photos. There are thin wires that enclose the area, for obvious safety reasons. I don’t want to mislead anyone into thinking it’s open space. It is not. I will put a photo below of what it really looks like.
So don’t want any unwanted surprises when you go there. This is why scouting is very important! To get a wedding permit for Torrey Pines Natural Reserve, you need to visit this site. Keep in mind that elopement dates are only available on a weekday. When you reach out, I would suggest having some dates in mind and seeing if those are available. The permit allots you four hours there, plenty of time for ceremony and photos! They had a reception at a restaurant afterwards. Their guests went on ahead of them while we took couple portraits. I can’t recommend this beautiful La Jolla beach backdrop wedding venue enough!