Florida Wedding Venues:
Everything You Need to Know
Whether you and your partner have your hearts set on a lavish Miami wedding or are looking for anywhere to host your big day on the beach, finding the best Florida wedding venues can sometimes be a challenge. At Carats & Cake, our directory of real-life weddings can help you decide on the ideal Florida wedding venue for your special day.
This comprehensive guide will cover the best times to plan your Florida wedding, the types of Florida wedding venues available in the Sunshine State, where to find the state’s most trusted and talented vendors, and other information designed to help you make the best decisions for your upcoming events. Our team has compiled the answers to many of your most pressing questions about the best Florida wedding venues and the pros who can bring your vision to life.
When you have all of the inspiration and information you need about the best venues in Florida and more, it’ll be easier than ever to start imagining just how special your special day will be. We can also help you to decide on the Florida wedding destinations you want to visit while researching the top spots in the state. This guide is designed to make navigating your wedding journey easier and to ultimately help you create the Florida wedding of your dreams.
What's the best time of year for a Florida wedding?
When planning your Florida wedding, deciding on the best time of year for your ceremony and reception will help you make many of the other decisions regarding your event plans. Most of Florida is located within the subtropical zone, which features hot and humid summers combined with warm and temperate winters. High season for tourism usually occurs during the summer and winter and can result in added competition for some of the best Florida wedding venues, hotel rooms, and more.
Taking the weather into account is especially important if you plan to get married at one of the many outdoor wedding venues in Florida. The hot and humid weather common in this area during the summer can make outdoor wedding venues in Florida much less appealing for many couples too, and hurricane season (June through late November) can make planning your events even more challenging. So, selecting South Florida wedding venue alternatives (and anywhere else in the state, for that matter) that include indoor and outdoor options can make your planning process much easier. With a contingency plan in place for any potential weather concerns, you’ll rest easy leading up to your epic celebration.
Finding available dates to book wedding venues in Florida by the beach or in other high-demand areas can be challenging too. The most useful recommendations for scheduling your wedding at the best Florida wedding venues are to book early and be flexible when planning the date of your wedding. This can allow you and your partner to avoid the high season for weddings and tourism while securing the best wedding venues in Florida for your ceremony and reception.
What are the various types of Florida wedding venues?
One of the first decisions required when planning Florida weddings is the venue selection process. You can choose from indoor or outdoor wedding venues in Florida and can choose the type of venue that best suits you and your partner’s style and interests. Many of the small wedding venues in Florida can accommodate weddings of 50 people or fewer. And for larger gatherings, you will typically need to pick a Florida wedding venue that is designed with capacity for the number of guests you expect to attend.
When deciding on the top venues for Florida weddings, you can find many different options in this area. Some of the best Florida wedding venues offer views of the ocean, which can provide the backdrop for beautiful pictures by your North, Central, or South Florida wedding photographer. Here are some of the most popular Florida wedding venues to consider when planning your upcoming celebration:
- Estates: Many of the estate wedding venues in Florida offer elegant surroundings and may have historic significance, which can create added interest in your celebration. Plus, estates typically have all the facilities you will need, including running water, kitchen spaces, and bathrooms for you and your guests.
- Hotels: Hotels are among the most popular Florida wedding destinations. If you are looking to be pampered on your wedding day, hotel wedding venues in Florida could be the best all-around choice for you and your partner. Some hotels might also offer Florida wedding packages that could reduce the cost of your wedding at these types of venues.
- Beaches: You can find many beautiful and affordable wedding venues in Florida by the beach. With more than 1,350 miles of coastline in the Sunshine State, the best beach wedding locations in Florida are easy to find. Be sure to have a backup plan for an indoor venue, though, in case the weather does not cooperate with your celebration plans at one of the wedding venues in Florida by the beach. You can also plan to have your ceremony at one of the best beach wedding locations in Florida, and then head to a nearby reception venue afterward.
- Museums: A museum wedding can combine your love for art, science, and natural history with an elegant Florida wedding venue. These large or small wedding venues in Florida are located in all areas of the state and can provide you with a unique option that offers seriously beautiful backdrops for your big day.
- Libraries: Like museums, libraries sometimes offer spaces suitable for use for Florida weddings. Checking with your favorite library can sometimes allow you to find a special Florida wedding venue unlike any other.
- Private clubs: Scheduling your wedding at one of the numerous country club wedding venues in Florida can not only provide you with an elegant backdrop for photos by your South Florida wedding photographer but can also provide your guests with access to the amenities at these private establishments. Golfing, tennis, and other activities can also be included in the Florida wedding packages offered by these types of venues.
- Ballrooms: Formal ballrooms can create a fairy-tale environment for your upcoming wedding. These Florida wedding venues can be decorated to coordinate with your overall theme and color scheme and can provide you with a romantic setting for such an important day in your life.
- Gardens: Many of the most popular garden wedding venues in Florida offer indoor-outdoor flexibility for you and your partner. When choosing garden wedding venues in Florida, it is important to make sure that you will have access to the facilities and amenities you need for yourself and your guests. By checking off all of the necessary boxes, like whether the location has an on-site kitchen, can allow you to plan everything you need at these outdoor wedding venues in Florida.
- Parks: Public parks are among the most popular outdoor wedding venues in Florida. These Florida wedding venues tend to be more affordable options, too, but may require added rental equipment and other adjustments to make these spots more suitable for larger gatherings of people. If you are looking for a simpler alternative to the extensive preparations required for a public park wedding, opting for garden wedding venues in Florida could potentially provide a reasonable solution for you.
- Courthouses: If you are hoping for a more intimate setting for your special day, eloping to the courthouse can be the best option. These venues might also provide you with on-site wedding officiants for your ceremony too. If you are looking for a more affordable way to get married, courthouse wedding venues in Florida can help you say, “I do” in no time. Plus, you can plan a reception at a local restaurant or other type of reception venue to celebrate with friends and family afterward.
- Restaurants: Some restaurant wedding venues offer Florida wedding packages that include all elements of the reception, from catering to cleanup. These all inclusive wedding venues in Florida can provide some decor and plenty of space for dancing and dining with friends and family after your ceremony. In some cases, a number of these Florida wedding venues have enough space to host your wedding ceremony there as well.
- Churches and synagogues: Some of the most beautiful small wedding venues in Florida are located in religious buildings. If you want to be married in a church, synagogue, or other place of worship, be sure to check with these Florida wedding venues about requirements for couples who exchange their vows in these locations. There are some that can accommodate members only, and others might require preparation courses or counseling.
- Theme parks: Many of the theme parks in the Sunshine State can also serve as Florida wedding destinations that will delight your guests. Some of the best wedding venues in Florida are found at theme parks that include Busch Gardens, Universal Studios and, of course, the famous Walt Disney World. Whether you are looking for wedding venues in Florida by the beach or a fairy tale-style wedding, theme parks can appeal to those who love whimsy and romance.
Whether you are looking for elegant Naples, Florida wedding venues or a spot anywhere in the great state of Florida, our directory can help you narrow down your search. We offer photos and information about real-life weddings that can help you find the ideal Florida wedding destinations and venues that will make your wedding day truly special for you and your partner.
What are the different areas of Florida?
Florida is home to more than 21 million people, and there are so many different places to explore within the state. Whether you are planning a wedding on Jupiter Island or at any other popular Florida wedding destinations, knowing the basic regions of Florida can help you make the best decisions about your wedding day. Here are some of the fundamentals of the state’s geography for couples looking for the best wedding venues in Florida. We’ve broken it down by region, so you can get a better idea of this large state’s major areas.
- Northwest: Some of the most popular Florida wedding destinations can be found in the northwestern region of the state. If you are interested in Tallahassee or Destin, Florida wedding venues, Northwest Florida offers affordable options for you and your partner. For the most beautiful white sand beach ceremonies, Pensacola or Destin, Florida wedding venues offer ultra-dreamy spaces.
- North Central: Gainesville is the major city in North Central Florida and is a popular option for wedding venues in Florida. If you plan your wedding in this area, you can recommend that your guests visit the Florida Museum of Natural History if there’s any downtime. Because of this and the many other museums and centers in the area, the area is considered one of the most appealing Florida wedding destinations.
- Northeast: The sandy beaches and variety of parks in Jacksonville has made this city (and the Northeastern region, in general) a favorite for wedding venues in Florida. Further to the south in this area, St. Augustine is a popular option for Florida weddings and can provide a scenic backdrop for weddings by the sea.
- East Central: Couples planning an Orlando celebration can enjoy access to many of the most popular Florida wedding venues and attractions. For example, you can plan a Magic Kingdom wedding that will capture the magic of Walt Disney for you and your partner. Plus, Daytona Beach is also located in this area, which makes it a great choice for beach wedding venues in Florida.
- Tampa Bay: Some of the most popular Tampa, Florida wedding venues are located along Tampa Bay. St. Petersburg and Sarasota are other popular options for couples exploring Tampa, Florida wedding venues and offer the benefits of bay views and all of the sunshine the state is known for. If you are looking for Tampa, Florida wedding venues, plus spots in the general area, Tampa Bay is an ideal location to start your search (bonus points if you’re a Tampa Bay Buccaneers fan!).
- South Central: Nature lovers will enjoy the beauty of this area of the Sunshine State. As you head south Florida wedding venue options are available in Okeechobee and many of the other smaller communities in this agricultural area of Florida. For couples looking for the ideal South Florida wedding venue, South Central offers picturesque scenery unlike any other part of the state.
- Southwest: Whether you are looking for elegant Naples, Florida wedding venues or planning a Boca Grande wedding, you can find some of the best options in this region. South Florida wedding venues in the southwestern part of Florida are located in popular cities including Bonita Springs, Fort Myers, and Naples. If you are interested in a Bonita Springs wedding or a stylish ceremony at the top Naples, Florida wedding venues, you can find elegant and beautiful spaces for your celebration in this part of the state. And with our help, you find Naples, Florida wedding venues, vendors, and any inspiration you need to start planning your celebration in Southwest Florida and beyond.
- Southeast: Southeast Florida is the home of West Palm Beach, Miami, Key West, and Fort Lauderdale. Planning a Key Largo wedding at one of the numerous South Florida wedding venues in this area can allow you to take advantage of the sunshine-soaked warm weather and the scenic beaches in this region. Your South Florida wedding venue can also ensure easy access to the bright lights of the big cities in this area, providing that perfect blend between nature and big city living. The top South Florida wedding venues are often found at luxury hotels and resorts, museums, and other beachside properties that the area is famous for.
Whether you are planning to get married in Palm Beach or looking for the most beautiful Tampa, Florida wedding venues, among a variety of other options, the Sunshine State offers plenty of spots for elegant and memorable occasions. From top-rated Destin, Florida wedding venues to smaller venues that offer unique surroundings, you can find the best North, Central, or South Florida wedding venues by reviewing our directory.
How much do Florida weddings cost?
The average cost of a wedding in Florida was $15,936 in 2020, but that is not necessarily the standard cost of wedding venues in Florida and everything else needed for your celebration–especially in more metropolitan areas like Miami. You can expect to pay an average of $33,401 in the Miami-Fort Lauderdale area, but the cost is likely significantly higher at luxury resorts and other upscale wedding venues in Florida. For potentially better rates, there are all inclusive wedding venues in Florida that can sometimes reduce the overall cost of your wedding celebration. These Florida wedding packages may be available from hotels and other dedicated wedding venues in the Sunshine State.
Your Florida wedding venue (or venues) for your ceremony and reception usually make up the largest percentage of the costs of your wedding. Finding ways to cut the cost of your selection among wedding venues in Florida will often allow you to splurge in other areas. For example, some of the best wedding venues in Florida by the beach can be more affordable depending on the time of year and even the time of day. Hotels, resorts, and other luxury wedding venues in Florida, however, typically come with a premium price.
Whether you decide on one of the Florida wedding packages available through top venues or are considering wedding venues in Florida by the beach, you can cut costs in three basic ways:
- Reduce the number of guests you plan to invite. Small wedding venues in Florida generally cost significantly less than comparable larger venues, and fewer guests inevitably lower your catering, decor, and other expenses.
- Look for all inclusive wedding venues in Florida and take advantage of deals on these Florida wedding packages. This can make Florida weddings much more affordable and can reduce the need for some vendors you would otherwise need to hire.
- Get creative about your decor and what your venue will require. This is especially appropriate for outdoor wedding venues in Florida. Sometimes, the best beach wedding locations in Florida may cost less than other options. Just keep in mind that you may need to find indoor Florida wedding venues in case of weather or if you need a space for your reception.
These strategies can help you manage the cost of your Florida wedding more easily and can allow you to create the best possible event that meets your aesthetic and financial needs alike. For example, scheduling your South Florida wedding venue during an off-peak time is just one idea to plan the ultimate celebration that works with your budget.
How can you find Florida wedding vendors?
Once you have selected your choice among the many Florida wedding venues and have decided on the date of your celebration, you can start looking for the top vendors for your Florida wedding. If you choose one of the all inclusive wedding venues in Florida, that location might come with on-site vendors and take the guesswork out of the vendor team-building process. These Florida wedding packages may include the services of a South Florida wedding photographer, for example, plus catering, decor, and more.
It is usually a good idea to check with your Florida wedding venue to make sure that the vendors you want are accepted or recommended by your chosen venues. Some Florida wedding venues may have restrictions on what companies can operate at their locations. This can limit your options for catering or decor when scheduling your ceremony or reception at these wedding venues in Florida. Here are some of the most important vendors to keep in mind when planning Florida weddings:
- Planners: Trusted Florida wedding planners can provide you with help in finding the best beach wedding locations in Florida and can guide your selection of vendors to save you time and extra effort. These experts can provide guidance on the most beautiful garden wedding venues in Florida and any other Florida wedding destinations you’ll really love. By whittling down the list and offering expert advice, these pros help couples feel even more confident about every decision.
- Caterers: Delicious food can make your Florida wedding even more enjoyable. Your wedding caterers can provide plated meals for Florida weddings, buffet-style feasts, or even food truck options–a fun option for a reception or wedding venues in Florida by the beach. Whichever Florida wedding venue you decide on, knowing that the food will be delicious and plentiful will keep your guests happy and dancing all night long. You can also double-check with your prospective Florida wedding venues to see if they have on-site catering options or local recommendations.
- Photographers: Finding the right North, Central, or South Florida wedding photographer for your celebration involves a bit of research (and of course, help from your planner). If you’re curious about finding a talented South Florida wedding photographer or other trusted pro in the state, you can look at online images and see which ones match your vision and style. Perhaps you’re hoping for a moody and modern vibe that coordinates with your South Florida wedding venue, or maybe you’re interested in a bright beachside aesthetic? Reviewing these professionals’ work will inevitably lead you to your best pick.
- Florists: Talented and thoughtful wedding florists can completely transform and customize your Florida wedding venue to create the most ideal atmosphere for you and your partner. Choosing flowers that complement the look of your Florida wedding venues and that coordinate well with your overall theme can make a big impact, and it’s important to chat with these pros to see how they work and get a better idea about each person’s thought process.
- DJs and bands: Selecting the right wedding DJs or musicians for Florida wedding venues will help your guests to have a great time at your wedding. Especially if you want to include dancing as part of your reception at your Florida wedding venues, making sure that your band keeps the party going will make it even more fun and memorable. Work with these professionals to explain your favorite musical genres and songs to customize the evening for your and your partner.
- Cakes: The wedding cake is often the centerpiece for the dessert table at a Florida wedding venue. Your cake can reflect the overall look and feel of your Florida wedding venue or can be a unique work of art that is designed by you and your partner in conjunction with your favorite bakery.
- Dresses: Choosing the right wedding dresses and other attire will often depend on the Florida wedding venues you have selected. For instance, beach wedding venues in Florida will typically require shoes and fabrics that can stand up to sand and surf. Finding clothing that will work well with Florida wedding venues (on the beach or not) will allow you and your entire wedding party to stay comfortable and coordinate with the setting.
- Decor: Outdoor venues will typically require a lot of work to create the best possible atmosphere for your ceremony and reception. Companies that offer wedding decor often can provide you with expert suggestions on what you will need for your indoor or outdoor Florida wedding venue and will deliver these items to your location to make it simple for you and your partner to prepare for your wedding. Your wedding planner can often suggest companies that rent out decor and other necessities for your upcoming celebration, which can provide you with some much-needed peace of mind during the lead-up to your big day.
Building your team of vendors is just as important as selecting the best Florida wedding venues for your wedding day. From there, you can start crafting and executing your vision, while also getting excited for your epic celebration.
What are some things for guests to do in Florida?
As a popular vacation destination, the state of Florida offers plenty to see and do for you and your guests. Along with the numerous Florida wedding venues and hotels, there are many other things to do in Florida that can make the trip to the Sunshine State even more enjoyable for you and your guests. Including information about the attractions located close to your Florida wedding venue on your wedding website can allow your guests to plan an unforgettable trip centered around your upcoming celebration. Here are some of the top attractions for guests attending Florida weddings:
- Theme and amusement parks: Depending on the location of your wedding venues in Florida, your guests can choose from among Walt Disney World, Busch Gardens Tampa Bay, Universal Studios Orlando, and many other options that offer hours of family-friendly fun. Harry Potter enthusiasts will enjoy the unique atmosphere of The Wizarding World of Harry Potter, which is located inside Universal Studios, and kid-friendly spots like Legoland are perfect destinations near wedding venues in Florida.
- Art museums: The Wynwood Walls Museum is a world-renowned collection of graffiti art that offers insights into this vibrant and kinetic art form. For a more abstract look at art, The Dalí Museum features an unmatched collection of the surrealist works of Salvador Dalí. With numerous art museums located in metropolitan areas throughout the state, most Florida wedding venue options are within driving distance of one of these unique attractions.
- Historic sites: The Vizcaya Museum & Gardens is a 1916 waterfront estate that's been deemed a National Historic Landmark and is full of 10 acres of formal gardens to explore. (Not to mention, it’s one of the most gorgeous garden wedding venues in Florida too.)
- Natural wonders: The swampland of the Everglades offers your wedding guests the opportunity to see this unspoiled area. Florida also boasts 175 state parks, which can allow you and your guests to get back to nature and enjoy hiking and other outdoor activities close to your chosen Florida wedding venues.
- Fun in the sun and on the beach: Most trips to Florida would not be complete without a visit to the beach to soak up the sun and to feel the sand between your toes. You can choose a Florida wedding venue that is actually on the beach or a spot close to the sea or other body of water. By incorporating a little of Florida's famous sun and sand into your wedding day plans, you can make the most of your celebration in the Sunshine State. More adventurous guests may even want to take a boat tour of the area near the top Florida wedding venues.
- Science and space: The NASA Kennedy Space Center Visitor Complex at Cape Canaveral is a popular destination for fans of aeronautics and astronautics and features close-up looks at the Space Shuttle Atlantis and other elements of the space program. Along with the Epcot Center Theme Park, other science and space museums in the state include the Marine Science Center at Ponce Inlet, the IMAG History & Science Center in Fort Myers, and the Orlando Science Center. Adults and children alike will enjoy a trip to these educational museums, most of which offer hands-on experiences with their designated subject matter.
- Golf and other sports: Florida is rightly famous for its many world-class golf courses. If you have dedicated golfers on your guest list, letting them know about the local golf options can make a big difference in their overall experience at many Florida wedding destinations. Professional sports teams in Florida include the Miami Dolphins, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and Jacksonville Jaguars for the NFL, Orlando Magic and Miami Heat for the NBA, and Tampa Bay Devil Rays and Florida Marlins competing in Major League Baseball.
Adding a list of the best things to do in Florida to your wedding website can make it much easier for guests to plan their trip to attend your wedding. You and your partner can add any information you think would help your invited guests to enjoy the best possible experience when traveling to Florida wedding venues.
Where do celebrities get married in Florida?
Choosing a Florida wedding venue can feel overwhelming, since there are just so many options. Looking at where the stars have gotten married can sometimes provide insight into the best Florida wedding venues for you. Celebrities like television stars Sofia Vergara and Joe Manganiello tied the knot at a popular South Florida wedding venue, as did sports legend Michael Jordan and his wife Yvette Prieto. Plus, Brooklyn Beckham and Nicola Peltz were married at her family’s Florida estate. Whether you are a celebrity or simply want to get married like one, you can find some of the most luxurious wedding venues in Florida in the Miami area, in particular.
How do you get to Florida?
Reaching Florida wedding destinations is usually accomplished through air travel, unless you’re located within driving distance. While train and bus services are also available throughout the Sunshine State, guests attending Florida weddings typically get there by car or plane. Here are some of the nearby airports to consider as you plan out your travel plans:
- The Orlando International Airport (MCO), as its name suggests, is located just six miles southeast of downtown Orlando. It serves over 40.3 million passengers annually and is currently the busiest airport in the Sunshine State. For guests heading to a South Florida wedding venue, Orlando International Airport this is one of the most convenient places to travel through for a Florida wedding.
- Miami International Airport (MIA) is a great option for reaching South Florida wedding venues easily too. Conveniently located inside Miami city limits and serving more than 17 million passengers each year, MIA offers easy access to many Florida wedding venues. If your guests are traveling from around the world to your wedding venues in Florida, Miami International Airport could be the best solution for their travel needs.
- Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International Airport (FLL) can make it easier for your wedding guests to reach your Miami or Fort Lauderdale, Florida wedding venues. Located within easy driving distance of many of the most popular wedding venues in Florida, FLL serves more than 28 million passengers each year. If your Florida wedding venue is located close to Fort Lauderdale, Hollywood, or Miami, FLL is a great option for air travel into the state.
- For those traveling into Tampa International Airport (TPA), it’s quite close to many popular Florida wedding venues. TPA serves more than 21 million passengers each year, many of whom are heading to popular attractions or wedding venues in Florida.
- Also known as Southwest Florida International Airport, the Fort Myers Airport (RSW) serves roughly 10 million passengers annually and offers access to some of the most historic areas of the Sunshine State–not to mention, plenty of Naples, Florida wedding venues too. Some of the most elegant and popular wedding venues in Florida are located within easy driving distance of Fort Myers Airport, which makes it a popular option for guests flying in to attend celebrations in the state’s southwestern region.
Your wedding website is the perfect place to provide this information, plus anything else people should know about your Florida wedding venues and navigating there. By adding information about your Florida wedding venue and other plans for the weekend to your website, you can help your guests to plan their trip to Florida much more easily. All in all, many of the most popular wedding venues in Florida are within easy driving distance of one of the major airports in this area. By including directions to your Florida wedding venue and info about accommodations and transportation options on your website, it’ll be easier than ever to reach your event and start celebrating your love.
How do you start looking for your Florida wedding venue?
If you are looking for the best Florida wedding venues or need a little inspiration for your Florida wedding, we are here to help with directories chock-full of information. We offer photos from and information about real-life weddings, which can connect you with top Florida wedding venues and vendors who made these magical events happen. To learn more about Florida wedding venues, vendors, and more, visit our website and start imagining your dream day ASAP.