Everything you need to know about having a wedding on and off the beach.
If you’re looking for the perfect beach wedding destination, you’ve found it. Whether you choose to host your ceremony on our sugar-white sand or to admire it as the backdrop to your romantic wedding weekend, South Walton is a perfect place for your once-in-a-lifetime moment.
We make it easy for brides to plan their perfect wedding. We’re here to answer questions and make arrangements, even if you’re planning your wedding from afar. View some of our most frequently asked questions below and don’t hesitate to contact us for more information.
Do I need a marriage license to be married in South Walton?
Yes. You can’t be married in South Walton unless you have a Florida marriage license.
Where do I get a marriage license in Walton County?
Marriage licenses are issued by the Clerk of Courts. The Clerk of Courts has two offices in Walton County and one is located in South Walton at the South Walton Courthouse Annex. For more information on marriage licenses, please visit the Walton County Clerk of Courts website or call (850) 267-3066 to contact the South Walton Clerk of Courts office by phone.
How can I find South Walton wedding vendors?
One of the best ways to find reputable local wedding vendors is to contact the Walton Area Chamber of Commerce. You can reach them by phone at (850) 267-0683 or you can view listings for local businesses online at their website, www.waltonareachamber.com.
What are "preferred wedding vendors"?
Some wedding reception venues have a list of wedding vendors they require you to use called “preferred wedding vendors.” To avoid any confusion be sure to ask your wedding venue if they have a “preferred vendors list” and inquire about all their policies regarding wedding vendors.
What can my guests and I use to help plan our trip before and during our stay?
Visit South Walton provides up to 100 complimentary Visitor Guides, Beachgoer’s Guides, Hiking & Biking Guides, and/or Visitor Maps to help you and your group navigate the destination and explore all we have to offer. If you would like to request these items, please complete our weddings brochure order form. Should you need more than 100 of any one item, please contact the Visit South Walton Sales Department directly at (800) 822-6877. All items ordered must be picked up at the South Walton Visitor Information Center.
What is the difference between public and private beach accesses?
A public beach access is owned by the county or state and is open to all members of the public. Weddings are permissible at all public beach accesses in South Walton. A private beach access is owned by an individual, hotel, resort, restaurant, or company, and you must have permission from the owner, or a property representative to conduct a wedding there.
Can I be married at a public beach access?
Yes, you can be married at any public beach access in South Walton.
Is there a list of public beach accesses?
Yes. To view a map that lists South Walton’s public beach accesses, please visit our Beach and Bay Access page.
Do I need a special permit to have my wedding on the beach?
Yes, all weddings held on South Walton beaches require Beach Wedding Permits.
How do I apply for a Beach Wedding Permit?
To apply for a Permit, complete the Beach Wedding Permit application form and return it to Walton County Planning and Development Services. Click here to get a Beach Wedding Permit application form online, or call Walton County Planning and Development Services at (850) 267-1955 to learn more information about the application process.
Is there a fee for the beach wedding permit?
Yes, there is a $50 permit fee for all applications regardless of how many are in attendance.
How can I make sure the public beach access of my choice will be available at the time of my wedding?
If you're having a ceremony at a public beach access, you are required to obtain a Beach Wedding Permit through Walton County Planning and Development Services. Once your permit is issued, your wedding details are added to a calendar. Walton County Planning and Development Services will not schedule multiple weddings or events at the same time and location. It is important to understand that although no other weddings will be taking place at the same time as yours, the public beach access will not be closed to individual beachgoers.
What is the earliest/latest I can have my beach wedding?
There are no curfew regulations for beach weddings so you can have your wedding as early or late as you want. However, if you are having your ceremony at a non-traditional hour we strongly suggest you advise the local Sheriff’s Office of your plans. Please call (850) 892-8186 to contact the Walton County Sheriff’s Office.
Can chairs, arches, runners and other decorations be set up on the beach?
Yes, but all items (including rented items) must be taken down immediately following the ceremony to comply with Walton County Ordinance No. 2003-07, Section 4.G and Section 22-54(G), also known as the “Leave No Trace Program,” which states that items left unattended on the beach overnight will be removed and discarded. The ordinance is in place to protect our beaches and marine life. To learn more about the “Leave No Trace Program,” call Walton County Code Enforcement at (850) 267-4578, or click here to read the ordinance in its entirety.
Do any state parks in South Walton allow weddings?
All four of South Walton’s state parks allow weddings but each park has its own specific rules, requirements, fees, and limitations, such as parking and access. To receive detailed information about what is permissible at each state park, please contact them individually. For your convenience, we have provided links to each park’s website: Deer Lake State Park, Eden Gardens State Park, Grayton Beach State Park, and Topsail Hill Preserve State Park.
What if it rains?
If your event is outdoors, it’s essential to have a backup plan organized so you're prepared for the possibility of bad weather. Many wedding venues have alternate locations where weddings can occur if it rains. If you're working with a venue, ask them about your options. If you're not working with a commercial venue, be sure to explore venue alternatives and make your own arrangements in case of inclement weather.
What are the closest airports to South Walton?
South Walton has two airports located in close proximity to our beaches. The Northwest Florida Beaches International Airport (ECP) is east of South Walton in the Panama City Beach area, and the Northwest Florida Regional Airport (VPS) is situated west of South Walton in the Ft. Walton Beach area. The average drive time to both airports from South Walton is about 30-45 minutes.
What kind of honeymoon options are there in South Walton?
Couples can choose the South Walton setting that is right for them and celebrate their marriage with an unforgettable Florida beach getaway that's relaxing, fun, and meaningful - everything a good honeymoon should be.