Australia’s Top Beach Wedding Venues
Are you planning to walk down the aisle sometime soon? Nothing beats the allure of reciting your vows against the backdrop of sparkling turquoise waters and majestic sandstone cliffs. All this whilst enjoying the cool coastal Sydney breeze as your loved ones watch in awe. A Sydney beach wedding is unquestionably a perfect alternative to a conventional church wedding.
Sydney offers hundreds of stunning beach wedding venues where you can entertain guests with a relaxed and memorable celebration. With kilometres of unending Sydney coastline and numerous white sandy beaches, you can easily get overwhelmed by the variety of options to choose from for your wedding day. So – to get you started, here are some of the most gorgeous Sydney beach destinations to say “I Do” in the Land Down Under!
What to Consider When Planning a Beach Wedding
A dream beach wedding will only be realised after many hours of meticulous planning. If you’re planning to exchange vows at the beach, there are certain things you have to put in consideration. We detail them below.
Public or Private Beach Wedding Reception
Do you want to host your Sydney wedding on a public or private beach? Weddings by the beach have become extremely popular. Given that most beaches are public land, anyone can get married on the ocean front. This means that other beach goers are free to access the venue, thus you may end up jostling for the most premium space. In order to get the best venue and experience, you might want to book a day when typically not many people will visit the location. If you however want zero interruptions at your event, you should choose a private beach ensuring your weddings privacy and exclusivity.
Special Permits for a Wedding at the Beach
Some municipalities throughout Sydney require a special permit for weddings, regardless of whether it’s a public or private beach. Therefore it’s crucial that you check with the authorities in your area in advance before choosing your beach wedding location. Furthermore, some Sydney beaches may have regulations on things such as the number of guests allowed at the venue, the level of noise permitted when playing music, the amounts of alcohol one can drink, etc. All of these points should be made clear to you by the city officials in your jurisdiction. It’s prudent to know the approval process and fees needed to acquire relevant permits. Checking if the Sydney Harbour venue has liability insurance will come in handy just in case something goes awry during the event.
Availability of Beach Wedding Locations
The most popular Sydney beachside wedding venues usually book up years in advance. Couples looking for a romantic setting to host their special day will need to plan ahead. Chances are there are many other brides eyeing your chosen wedding venue, so you’ll need to be proactive in securing the location well in advance. If you’ve made the decision to exchange vows at a private Sydney beach, book the wedding venue well in advance as soon as you decide your wedding date. The last thing you want is to complete all your plans and send invitations, only to find out that the destination wedding venue of your dreams is fully booked.
Weather Concerns With Beach Wedding Venues
Most beach weddings are held during the summer, so you want to ensure that the sweltering heat won’t spoil your special occasion. To prevent this, check the weather forecast for your chosen day. If you feel the weather will be unbearably hot for your guests, schedule your wedding earlier in the morning or later in the afternoon. This way, the weather will be more accommodating. Be sure to plan for sufficient shade, especially if you’re expecting a crowd of elderly people and children. It always helps to have a plan B for outdoor weddings so that adverse weather does not mess up your big day.
Wind and Noise
The calming sounds of gentle waves and the refreshing Sydney sea breeze can create the perfect backdrop for exchanging vows with your significant other. However, the ocean can be rough at times, with crushing waves and high winds, which can mute your vows. You should visit your chosen wedding venues location ahead of time to assess if the waves and winds will overwhelm your ceremony. If you plan to use a microphone, try to get a windscreen, so that the breeze won’t interrupt the sound output. Hiring a professional sound system will make it much easier for your wedding guests to hear what is being said.
Accessibility to the Wedding Venues
Make sure the site you choose for your beach front altar is a short stroll from the main road. You don’t want it to be too far that your guests end up trekking for miles on the loose sand. When searching for your perfect wedding venue, remember to consider your younger and older guests to ensure that they’ll be comfortable. It should also be convenient for your wedding planner to set up the chairs and tables, as well as other supplies that will be needed for the occasion.
Alongside the cake, the food served is usually the crowning moment of any successful wedding ceremony. It is one of the things your guests will be talking about once the ceremony comes to a close. As such, you want to get everything right when it comes to food. If you’re not holding your wedding at a private venue, make sure that your culinary treats are well-preserved. Some beach side temperatures may not be ideal for food preservation, and this is a consideration you’ll need to make. Your wedding planner and caterer will need to designate a suitable storage area where your caterer can keep the wedding cake and other food items in a temperate controlled environment for people to enjoy fresh treats.
Dress Code for Beach Weddings
Your wedding ceremony will be the most memorable day of your life. Dressing up for the occasion makes the memories more meaningful. But you also need to be comfortable during the proceedings. Many brides and grooms end up going barefoot on the beach. Mentioning to your guests that your wedding will be held on the beach is vitally important. Beach weddings dress code is often more laid-back and minimalist to match the relaxed setting than a formal church wedding.
The Best Beach Wedding Venues in Sydney
This historic spot is one of the most sought-after wedding venues in the Sydney region. Located in luxurious Watson’s Bay, the Sydney Harbour setting offers a unique atmosphere that is sure to make your wedding stand out. Dunbar House can comfortably accommodate 120 guests for your wedding ceremony. Your wedding guests will enjoy panoramic views of Sydney Harbour on the western side, while the city’s skyline and Opera House look irresistible from the eastern side of the venues pristine location.
The Garden Area is a dreamy spot for any wedding. It provides various shade options to keep guests cool and sheltered from the sun. This also makes it easy to set up all the wedding décor with protection from the ocean breeze. Meanwhile, a heritage mansion built in the 1830s has a pristine on-site café serving fresh locally sourced cuisine that can cater for your wedding reception needs. The rustic feel of this wedding venues elevated site adds to the whole wedding day experience. Dunbar House gives your guests a trip down memory lane in one of the oldest buildings in the Sydney area.
Another thing you’ll like about Dunbar House is its proximity to the city, making it easy for all your invitees to access the venue. Overall, this majestic waterfront venue with scenic views of Sydney Harbour has all the markings of an unforgettable wedding celebration.
Little Pearl Beach Suites, Manly
This exquisite waterfront wedding venue, sitting pretty across from one of Sydney’s most famous beaches, offers an easy-going, coastal Hamptons vibe that is just right for an intimate union and great wedding photos. The venues location suites feature stylish modern interiors with picturesque views of the golden sands and sparkling blue waters of the ever popular Manly Beach. You’ll fall in love with the open-plan layout of the venue, as well as the alfresco courtyard, making this the ideal setting to host an intimate wedding party. The main event area boasts expansive glass doors that allow ample natural light to flood in, which can be opened to connect to the alfresco courtyard.
You can hold your wedding ceremony in the stunning alfresco courtyard, taking advantage of the luxurious outdoor-indoor space created by adjoining the main indoor event area. Exchange vows under the warm morning sun while standing on wooden floorboards surrounded by lush tropical greenery. For a stress-free cocktail reception with up to 250 guests, Little Pearl Beach Suites serves a rich variety of delicious canapés, handmade sushi, fresh oysters, and other delicious treats. These can be accompanied by an array of your favourite wines and beers, depending on your preferences.
Your wedding guests can dance the night away with the help of a live DJ. This will mark the conclusion of a successful wedding party. There are several adjacent beach wedding photo locations, with the most popular being Manly Beach and Shelly Headland Upper Lookout.
Gunner Barracks is a sparkling hidden gem on Sydney’s North Shore that allows you to escape for a day and live all your wedding fantasies. This historic venue comes with a unique romantic charm with irresistible views of the sea and Sydney’s city skyline, making for a one-of-a-kind setting for weddings.
Nestled within George Heights Bushland, the historic 142-year-old sandstone building offers three exceptional spaces that can be customised to host both the wedding ceremony as well as the reception. Aside from the breathtaking views of Sydney Harbour, your guests will appreciate the expert planning and sumptuous food and wine served during your wedding celebration. The professional wait staff are a joy to be around, ensuring each of your wedding guests receive five-star treatment. Gunner Barracks offers an inviting sense of ambience that you won’t find anywhere else in the Sydney region. This Sydney wedding venue is a luxurious location for your wedding by the beach, surrounded by friends and family on this most special occasion.
This elegant restaurant boasting floor to ceiling windows is located right on Balmoral Beach, and is one of Sydney’s most popular wedding venues. Offering intimate views of clear blue waters with boats coming into and out of the harbour. Bathers Pavilion makes for the prettiest beachside wedding reception spot – with white table settings, romantic florals, and exquisite lighting for a magical day by the sea. Guests celebrate weddings here in style.
Bathers Pavilion is a distinct heritage building that accommodates up to 100 guests for a reception, or 170 for cocktail style weddings. The surrounding flora and fauna offers a stunning backdrop similar to a tropical island, allowing for the ideal photo opportunities for newly weds and their treasured guests. What a wonderful way to document special memories of one of the best days of your life – at Bathers Pavilion wedding venue.
Watsons Bay Hotel
This exquisite wedding venue sits right on the sandy shoreline of iconic Watson’s Bay. This waterfront location offers postcard views of Sydney Harbour, with an electric atmosphere suitable for the most significant day of your life. Watsons Bay Hotel is the perfect location to exchange your vows, especially when you consider the nearby parks and public beaches. This will give you loads of options for the ideal beach front wedding location. For your reception venue, you can choose between the function room and the rooftop deck, both of which are perfect to host your wedding celebration.
The function room is a Hamptons-style space highlighted by grey timber floors and paired with pristine white interiors. There is your own private bar to quench your guests thirst. In addition, the balcony area can accommodate 150 seated guests or as many as 350 if you prefer a cocktail reception. Alternatively, you may opt for the rooftop deck, which provides a more open setting that comes with a retractable roof in case Mother Nature has other ideas.
With 32 luxury hotel rooms, the Watsons Bay Hotel can accommodate guests who celebrate late into the night. This wedding venues proximity to the beach ensures that your wedding guests can wake up ready for a refreshing dip in the warm ocean waters to recover.
Coogee Bay Hotel
The Coogee Bay Hotel is a stylish getaway just outside of Sydney, offering a relaxed atmosphere with scenic coastal views perfect for lovebirds. This go-to destination plays host to a range of social events and functions, but its chilled setting makes it a suitable choice for a wedding ceremony. There is nothing more soothing than saying your “I dos” against the backdrop of gentle waves while overlooking the clear turquoise waters on the silky smooth beach sand.
Arriving at the Coogee Bay Hotel wedding venue, your guests will be welcomed by the cool ocean breeze and majestic views of the crashing waves. The venue makes the most of its prime coastal location with a spacious balcony, as well as high windows that expose magnificent views to the beach beyond. The expansive balcony area is a welcoming space for an indoor wedding reception overlooking the beach, especially if you want your guests to have a relaxed but intimate experience. The 4-star accommodation offered ensures that wedding guests can enjoy themselves into the wee hours of the morning without worries.
The rooms are luxuriously spacious, with large windows that allow in ample natural light. You also get to sample a range of luscious cuisines, both Australian and internationally inspired, including canapés and other mouthwatering desserts. These will be paired with a long list of wine options to cater for all dietary requirements. With so much to offer, the Coogee Bay Hotel is a magical beach wedding location, and is sure to make your wedding fantasy become a reality.
Jonah’s Whale Beach
This dramatic hilltop getaway sits above scenic Whale Beach. Jonah’s offers the most idyllic escape from the busy city for those who want to recite their vows in a private location surrounded by loved ones. Located about an hour’s drive from Sydney, the hotel has a history dating back to 1929, but offers a modern ambience that will impress all invitees. It features 11 boutique hotel rooms that overlook picturesque Whale Beach, exposing you to the elegance of the Northern Beaches.
The site has a capacity of 122 and is reputed for being amongst the most exclusive wedding venues in the city. You can choose to hold your wedding ceremony on the cliff top lawn of the hotel, which is an appealing spot with limitless views of the ocean below. For your reception, select from the terrace, balcony, or the hotel’s bar and restaurant, all of which enjoy the same amazing coastal outlook. After the ceremony, your guests can indulge in sumptuous Australian cuisine accompanied by international wines.
World-class service sets Jonah’s apart from the rest, with facilities such as a gym, spa, massage treatments, and an infinity swimming pool being part of the luxury accommodation package. Whether you’re planning a wedding ceremony or reception, there’s no better escape than the picture perfect beach wedding venue – Jonah’s Whale Beach.
Public Dining Room
The Public Dining Room is a fine dining restaurant that makes for the ideal Balmoral Beach wedding. Situated close to the renowned Balmoral Baths, the spot offers unadulterated views of the Middle Harbour across North Head. This provides wedding guests with a unique taste of Sydney’s beach culture. Exchanging vows in the Public Dining Room means that you get exciting photo opportunities, especially with the iconic Balmoral Baths in the background.
The adjoining terrace makes for one of the most stunning wedding venues to host your wedding. With a seating capacity of up to 110 guests, it overlooks the glimmering Balmoral Beach. Your reception celebration can be held in the restaurant, which can accommodate 135 guests at a cocktail-style reception. Offering a private dining room for smaller weddings, a dance floor can also be set up upon request.
The Public Dining Room serves sumptuous Mediterranean-influenced cuisine with locally sourced ingredients that are sure to impress you and your wedding guests. These are paired with exotic wines for a wholesome culinary experience. The professional wait staff are welcoming, going the extra mile to ensure that your special day brings forth unforgettable memories.
Bradley’s Head Amphitheatre
This amazing luxury wedding venue sits within Sydney Harbour National Park, making for the perfect setting to hold special occasions like weddings. Boasting a terrace with stunning views of the bay, couples can hold different kinds of wedding receptions, from buffet-style dinners to more formal seated celebrations. Guests will catch a glimpse of the famous Barrenjoey and Brooklyn headlands from this stunning wedding venue location, as well as the wonderful Hawkesbury River.
Bradleys Head Amphitheatre hosts up to 300 guests, being ideal for couples wanting a sizeable crowd. A hit with wedding photographers, this impressive venue features an expansive opening surrounded by natural bushland and lush greenery. This is an ideal setting for intimately sharing your vows and promises in front your guests.
Whether you choose to host your wedding in the Amphitheatre or beside the dock, your wedding guests will cherish the memories. When you consider the sweeping views of iconic city landmarks like the famous Sydney Opera House and the Sydney Harbour Bridge from this wedding location, it’s no surprise that Bradley’s Head Amphitheatre is one of the city’s most authentic wedding venues!
Zest Waterfront Venues Beach House
If you’ve been searching for a waterfront wedding venue with a luxurious sense of ambience, look no further than Zest Waterfront Venues. This seafront nirvana sits within the Royal Motor Yacht Club, offering amazing harbour views for couples looking for an unforgettable wedding day by the sea. Rose Bay is a suburb in eastern Sydney known for its high-end lifestyle with colourful restaurants, stunning harbour views, fun bars, and excellent shopping opportunities.
This prime wedding venue matches well with the scenic surroundings, offering two elegant spaces where couples can host their ceremony. The Pacific Room is a large area with a relaxed atmosphere that is perfect for larger crowds of up to 200 guests. With rustic wooden tables, woven furniture, and an oyster-shell feature wall, you’ll find a unique setting to celebrate love with your guests. The Commodores Room is the second event space with a more sophisticated feel highlighted by mahogany walls, elegant armchairs, wooden bookcases, as well as mood lighting.
The Commodores Room is a more contemporary alternative to the Pacific Room – with a charming feel to ensure a romantic wedding atmosphere. It is a suitable choice if you want a smaller and more intimate wedding with just a few friends and family to witness your union. Overall, the Zest Waterfront Beach house is a proximal venue for wedding ceremonies that is easily accessible and offers all the luxuries to guarantee you have a once-in-a-lifetime wedding experience.
FAQs About Beach Wedding Locations
Should I Have a Beach Wedding?
There are many benefits to exchanging vows on the beach. The most obvious is that you get a romantic, natural setting with a soothing sea breeze and the delightful sound of ocean waves breaking on the shore. This is also convenient for friends and family to gather for your special day, especially if you’re planning a small affair. Beach weddings are affordable for couples on a budget. The beach side wedding venue provides a cost-effective way for you to have the wedding of your dreams without breaking the bank.
How Much Will I Pay For a Romantic Beach Wedding?
Depending on the location you choose and the scale of your wedding, the pricing will always vary. However, you can expect to spend an average of 50 dollars per head for a relatively cost effective wedding by the sea. Remember that some of these wedding venues offer DIY and BYO opportunities for decorations and catering, meaning you don’t necessarily need to hire professionals for that. Furthermore, you can also opt to have your wedding ceremony and reception on the same site.
Beach Weddings – Coastal, River or Harbourside
Beach weddings are an intimate affair that allow couples to recite their vows in an ambient and relaxed setting surrounded by loved ones. Beach side weddings prove to be an exciting alternative for those who do not want traditional church weddings, especially when you want to save money on expenses such as décor. Sydney has an abundance of glorious beaches and waterways, offering couples endless beach wedding locations and venues for the romantic union by the sea. Whether you’re looking to tie the knot on a coastal beach, harbour side, or by a river, be sure to check out the wedding venues reviewed above. Just remember to book in advance to avoid missing out.
May the sea breeze blow softly by as you commit and celebrate your love to each other with your family and friends!