Pretty in Ponce Inlet Beach

Tucked away from busy, everyday life there is a hidden gem of a town, Ponce Inlet. Situated just a few miles south of Daytona Beach, Ponce Inlet is a much quieter, more preserved version of it’s bustling neighbor: the “world famous” beach. That being said there are still days worth of exploring and fun within this quaint beachfront town. With emerald water so clear you can see through the warm rolling waves and white sand, you might think you are closer to the Bahamas than Florida! Ponce Inlet provides opportunities to see manatees, dolphins frolicking close by and manta rays swimming by your side. As the fluffy white clouds billow offshore, you and your beloved just might decide to stay forever after your wedding on the beach…and who could blame you? But if you can break away from the sun and sea, then grab your sneakers, appetite for fun and let’s explore Ponce Inlet Beach!

Wedding Couple kisses on sand walkway to Ponce Inlet Beach

Top 5 Things to do in Ponce Inlet

One of the coolest things about this list is you could do them all without any transportation besides your own two feet! Now if you’re planning a summer Ponce Inlet wedding, you will likely still want to drive and soak up some A/C in between stops. Let’s explore Ponce Inlet and why it is pretty perfect!

Child runs on sand at Ponce Inlet Beach Florida with seagulls

1. Ponce Inlet Jetty

There aren’t many places quite like Ponce Inlet Jetty. You can actually walk along a paved sidewalk atop the jetty for about 100 yards. The views are like no other with a variety of boats passing by. It’s like you’re walking on water. The jetty itself is free. Parking at the Lighthouse Park runs $10. Public bathrooms, picnic tables, a wooden walkway through the dunes, all make for a perfect beach adventure! The water is the clearest in this area: watch the fish shimmer in the sun as you take a swim. You can even get married at this park with the lighthouse in the background!

Ponce Inlet Beach jetty walkway at sunset with view of lighthouse

2. Ponce Preserve

You don’t need extreme survival skills to hike this trail. However, the views and peacefulness at Ponce Preserve are well worth any trek. You can walk through a shaded path to a lookout tower with a beautiful ocean view. Continue a little further to a beach access point. Walk in the opposite direction and you can journey down the boardwalk to the Intracoastal river. At its heart is the Green Mound State Archaeological Site, an ancient Indian midden. At the base of the Green Mound is a live oak estimated to be more than 350 years old. It’s the perfect spot to reconnect with your significant other and enjoy the beauty of nature. If you are staying in the area for your honeymoon, why not share a romantic moment and watch the sun rise together.

Aerial view of Ponce inlet Beach, Florida

live oak at ponce preserve, FL

3. Marine Science Center

A fun spot for animal lovers, kids and grown ups alike! The Marine Science Center is an awesome place to visit for an hour or two. You can pet sting rays (don’t worry, they’re harmless), observe gorgeous tropical fish tanks, learn about the turtle rehabilitation and view sea turtles, visit the aviary, and more! And there’s a fun gift shop with perfect souvenirs to remember your Florida Beach Wedding by!

Ponce Marine Science Center entrance sign

4. Ponce Inlet Lighthouse

Tie your sneakers and get ready for some spectacular views! Climb 203 steps to the top of the 175 foot tall lighthouse. The views of the ocean, beach, and surrounding cities of New Smyrna Beach and Daytona Beach is breathtaking! Trekking to the top is well worth the effort — and when you come back down explore in the on-site museum and light station. The Ponce de Leon Inlet Light Station is one of only 11 lighthouses on the National Historic Landmark list.

Ponce Inlet Lighthouse Florida for weddings

5. Off the Hook

Looking for a place to get some delicious fresh seafood (or a burger for you non-seafood lovers out there)?  Off the Hook offers delicious food and an atmosphere that matches the Florida vibe. Picture yourself: sitting on the water, sunset watchin’, cold drink in hand, and maybe even a dolphin show in the river if you’re lucky! Sounds like a date!

Off the Hook restaurant aerial view, Ponce Inlet, FL

So what complete beach wedding packages work best with a Ponce Inlet seaside wedding? Our staff recommends these ocean themed decorations:

The Beach Bliss Distinctive Design with navy and gold decor is perfect with the sky, the sand and the sea. Hanging starfish lanterns, flowers, nautical rope and a large decorated “chalkboard” sign announcing the new couple is stunning, along with a chilled water station for your guests. You can even change the materials colors if you like.

Bliss beach wedding arch in blue and gold with white chairs

Another favorite is the Teal Distinctive Design. Nothing says “ocean” like vibrant teal flowers, greenery and bamboo. White resin chairs and chalkboard sign announce your marriage, along with the convenient addition of chilled water for your wedding guests. 

At a Florida Beach Wedding this couple has their first kiss with a teal wedding arch

Okay, now you know how to enjoy this pretty and pleasant beachfront venue. We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention that getting married on Ponce Inlet Beach is pretty darn awesome too! 🙂 Click HERE to book your beach wedding today!

Ponce Inlet Beach walkway to sand and ocean view

 

 

 

Ponce Inlet Beach Wedding Photos

Ultimate Bride Guide: Destination Wedding Invitations

Destination wedding planning time! So you’ve decided on a beach wedding in Florida and of course you want to invite your friends and family. And planning a destination wedding is a stress free experience with the Beach Wedding Specialists at the Florida Beach Weddings company. So give your guests the same stress free beach experience by following these easy destination wedding invitations tips!

African American wedding couple kissing on Daytona Beach

  • Timing: You know the old saying, “Timing is everything.” Well a late invite could have your destination beach wedding more like a VERY quiet elopement. Give guests PLENTY of time to save and plan for your destination wedding. The real truth is lots of folks won’t make travel arrangements until they get an honest-to-goodness invite. So if a lot of people are going to have to travel for your wedding, sending the invitations out 3-4 months in advance will be a greatly appreciated. (And trust me, nobody will forget about the wedding because you sent them a little early.)
  • Are you having a pre-wedding cocktail party or other event such as a rehearsal dinner? Don’t forget to include those details.
  • A destination wedding is an especially good time to utilize a “Save the Date” card. Check out these cute postcards or magnets

Teal save the date cards for a beach wedding

To Paper or Not to Paper: That is the question. You can save money with a paperless invite from Evite and Greenvelope; some are even free! They even have some great beach wedding themed Evites. You can also do this for “Save the Dates” and follow-up with paper. Just make sure paper and pencil guests (ahem, Grandma and  Grandpa) have access and information! You can even get romantic, beach-themed invitations from Etsy: a sunset, sandy beach, tropical flowers or starfish will be hard for your guests to turn down!

Wedding invitations with a beach theme and starfish design

Content: Be sure to include all the traditional wedding invitation information, of course. Rather than being super-formal, just address people by the names they actually use. The key to remember is to clearly communicate the who, what, where, and when for your destination wedding. If you’re sending out save-the-dates, put your wedding website (if you have one) on them to get your guests even more interested in your special day. When you send out your formal invitation out later, include the wedding website information again…we all get so much information so another link doesn’t hurt! 

You may also need to add hotel/travel information. Let guests know the best ways to get there, when flights to your destination go on sale, and links to places to stay – you might even want to book reasonably-priced accommodation for your guests and then ask them to reimburse you. A fun idea is to arrange welcome gift bags for them on arrival with items that they can enjoy during their stay.

White wedding favor bag with beach shells on it

Most importantly include specific instructions/directions for getting to your beach wedding ceremony site. Your Florida Beach Weddings Specialist will provide you with a complete, detailed agenda with landmarks for you to communicate to your guests. Guests should arrive about 30 minutes before the ceremony time. We often tell our couples to have someone act as a “guest liaison” so that the bride and groom are not held up with last minutes texts or phone calls. 

Couple walks down aisle at beach wedding in Siesta Key, FL

Gifts: “Our guests are already spending so much money traveling to our destination wedding…or we don’t need anything.” This a common concern for many modern couples so what should you do? What is the best wording to use to discourage gifts or steer guests toward a different kind of gift? Avoid printing “no gifts” on the invitation. Instead, you can carefully word the invitation with a cute message. Here’s some fun wording from Pinterest that you can include on a separate card asking them to contribute to a possible honeymoon fund.

Wishing well gift card for wedding use

Inviting guests to a Hometown reception after your destination wedding
Are you planning a hometown reception after your beach wedding? If you have only invited a small number of guests to your destination ceremony, you may wish to have this type of party upon returning home. You’ll need to send an invitation for your hometown reception that also serves as an announcement for your destination wedding. Here is an example of how to do this:

They got their feet wet in the sea and the sun
They exchanged their rings and had some fun
Jane & Jon
were joined together in marriage
on July 13, 2021 at Treasure Island, FL
In celebration of their union, please join us for
a post destination wedding reception
on August 22, 2021 at 3:30 PM

Design Time: Now for the really fun part…choosing your invitation design. There is no shortage of creative and beautiful beach wedding invitations designs.The ideal destination wedding invitation will excite your guests so they say, “Yes, we’re coming” and book their flight! You can also send them a preview of the beach wedding package you have chosen in an email or link, and photos of the destination wedding location whether it is St. Augustine, Daytona Beach, Cocoa Beach near Orlando, or one of our perfect Gulf beach wedding venues near Tampa (Siesta Key, Clearwater Beach, St. Pete, Venice Beach).

Couple kissing under floral beach wedding arch St. Augustine FL

Rustic Romance wedding in St. Augustine

It’s time to find the perfect wedding invitation design and get ready to fill in all your special day details. Click here to secure your ceremony date for your Florida Beach Wedding today!

Beach Wedding Photo Shoot Quick Tips

Your wedding photos will serve as a permanent memory from one of the biggest days of your life. When you get married at a coastal wedding venue, it is important to end up with an album full of timeless, cherished photos to show off back home. This quick tip guide will provide the basics for your best seaside Florida wedding photo shoot.

St. Augustine couple in the sand after beach wedding

Pre-wedding Day

Before we get to the tips and tricks for the actual beach wedding photo shoot, let’s talk pre-wedding. A little pre-game, if you will. Make sure both bride and groom have properly fitted/altered clothing and undergarments. Nothing says photo buzz kill more than an unsightly bra strap or see through dress. So put on the full get up, and get outside because sunlight has a way of, well, bringing a whole new light to sheer/white. You can even have a friend/self timer snap a couple photos to make sure everything is in it’s proper place. Also, if you have a large guest list and have paid for extra photography, pre-wedding is the time to think over your family photo must haves. You can make a list if you like, but at least give it some thought ahead of time. If you opt for photography time with our beach wedding company you will have an hour of extra time for pictures. You can get a lot of photos in an hour so give it some thought…and of course we have suggestions to make you both look great!

Pre-Aisle Walk

Once you’ve established everything pre-wedding day, let’s talk about what to do right before the walk down your beach themed wedding aisle. Once you’re fully dressed (brides and grooms) have a friend give you an 360 degree inspection. Pin, shimmy, fluff, straighten, whatever needs to be done, do it now. Check accessory clasps and reinforce any backings or buttons. Boutonnières can be pinned and perfected now. That beautiful close up of you sharing your vows will have you saying, “GRRRRR” when your necklace clasp is upside down, glaring at you. One last powder and lip gloss is a great idea pre-aisle walk, but BE SURE to place a paper towel/t-shirt/barrier over the wedding dress before applying. Also, give the cell phone and sunglasses to a friend. Even a silenced phone provides an unsightly bulk in your pocket and you don’t want to lose it in the sand.

Beach Packages in Florida with starfish lantern aisle-way and beach wedding decor.

Ceremony 

There’s really nothing much for you to remember here. Just prepare to follow the lead of your photographer and beach wedding officiant/coordinator. And if you’re extra nervous, remember to smile and take some nice, deep breaths. Don’t let your resting face look like you are awaiting a life sentence instead of a joyful wedding union on island sands.

Post-ceremony Beachfront Wedding Photo Shoot

If you’ve hired Florida Beach Weddings rest assured, you are in good photography hands. Your experienced photographer will be doing the posing and directing, but communicate if you have any specific ideas in mind, especially any you planned for in advance. This is the time  to remember any specific family members or friends you want to include in your photos. Our photographers will do the organizing, but just be sure to communicate with them so no one is left out.

Siesta Key bride and groom

A few go-to wedding photography tips:

  • Flowers– When holding flowers, your hands should be grasping the stem(s) and hands should be just directly below the belly button. It will feel a little awkward, but will look totally natural and appropriate in the photos. The natural resting place to hold flowers for most people is too high for photographs and ends up swallowing up the bride in photos. Sometimes we pose you with flowers close to your face for extra impact, like the Siesta Key bride shown above.
  • Natural- Don’t force unnatural poses. Take a moment to really savor the moments of your wedding day and the beauty of your spouse. Your excitement, love, and confidence will be evident and reflect in your pictures. There is nothing more beautiful than a couple just married on the beach.
  • Wind & Sun- Find out more on beach wedding hair tips HERE but to keep it simple, consider the elements. There is usually at least a slight breeze at the beach, if not full on wind. So make sure your hair is pinned and out of your face for your photos. And you may be tempted to wear sunglasses, but hold off until after the beach wedding photo shoot. If you have extremely sensitive eyes, just communicate with your photographer and the old, “1,2,3, open your eyes and cheese” trick will work (for kids and adults alike)!
  • Your Personality– A classic, embraced, happy couple is a timeless photo look. But if you and your spouse have a wacky, silly side, capture that. It could make for a fun Christmas card or thank you image!

Cocoa Beach bride and groom kissing

Ready to smile your way down the aisle? Check out our wedding package deals and reserve your date today.

Are Fort Myers Destination Weddings Affordable?

Now that the news is getting more positive every day, couples are looking forward to getting married at their favorite destinations. Is it your dream to say, “I do” on a beautiful sandy beach? Look no further than sunny Fort Myers in southwest Florida. But are you wondering, “I heard Gulf beach weddings can be complicated and expensive to plan. Are destination weddings affordable?” The answer is yes. So let’s break it down.

Fort Myers beach wedding hotel

Fort Myers Beach Wedding Q & A:

  • How much does the ceremony cost? Experience and efficiency keep our beach wedding packages affordable and fair. With over 13 years experience in the wedding industry our beach wedding company has perfected the one stop shop. Outside vendor costs are eliminated and everything you need is all in one place. Whether it’s an elopement, very small beach wedding or you’re bringing on the party bus, there’s a complete wedding package for you. All the elements of a traditional ceremony including on-trend, elegant decor, a wedding officiant, photographer, your vows and music can be included. In almost all cases, you will not need a beach wedding permit fee for Fort Myers Gulf beach weddings. This saves you money by not having to pay for a permit fee. Florida Beach Weddings packages in Fort Myers start at $699 and at the top end average $2,500.Check out options and prices here.
  • What about travel expenses?  With Southwest Florida international airport located within an hour of the beach, flying to your destination wedding is easy. Check travel sites like travelocity.com or hotels.com and see which airlines offer the best deals. There are low cost airlines that may fly into local airports and can cut hundreds from you budget. You can also read pros and cons of traveling to Florida during the off season to save money.
  • How much does the hotel cost? This is another topic that can vary substantially with tourist seasons. The cheapest rates are typically between slower seasons, late April-May and mid September-November. If your Fort Myers beach wedding date is flexible, this is a big way to save money. You can also buy a block of rooms with your guests to save money. This can be a huge money saver for making destination weddings affordable. Check out The Best Western Plus Beach Resort Hotel which is less than 5 minutes from our most popular Fort Myers beach wedding location. 
  • What about our guests? Once you’ve done your research on flights and hotels, you can provide accommodation information for your family and friends. The best thing is to give guests plenty of advance notice of your destination wedding plans. This will give them ample time to budget for your wedding. And who doesn’t want to take a vacation to sunny Florida, right?

Fort Myers Beach Wedding couple with photography and setup

Bowditch State Park is our favorite Gulf beach wedding location in Fort Myers. With a beautiful, long wooden walkway, amazing sunsets, and beautiful beach scenery, you will feel that you have escaped to a tropical paradise for your seaside wedding ceremony. We recommend having your wedding around sunset to take advantage of the beautiful sky perfect for your wedding pictures. Bowditch State Park Beach weddings are great for all size weddings as they have a large parking lot to accommodate your guests. 

Fort Myers Beach Times Square cafe

Oh and we can’t forget that a destination beach wedding doubles as a honeymoon. No need to jet off. Once you officially become Mr. and Mrs., grab a drink, a beach chair, and enjoy the Fort Myers Beach view!  The Key West express is an easy way to set sail for a quick destination honeymoon in Key West. After you tie the knot on the beach, consider taking the Key West Express to Key West for a night or two all alone. It is the perfect little escape for the two of you! Contact one of our Beach Wedding Specialists for more information on a 2020 or 2021 wedding.

Beach Wedding Dress DOs and DON’Ts

Choosing the perfect beach wedding dress should be exciting and fun, so don’t allow the pressure of finding the perfect dress take away from enjoying this cherished wedding planning time. With over a decade working with wedding dress experts, we’ve compiled a checklist of DO’s and DON’Ts for finding your dream dress.summer florida beach wedding dress

DO’s and DON’Ts for finding the perfect Beach Wedding Dress

  • DO- Decide your style choice ahead of time. Avoid sticking with only the hottest trends and consider styles that flatter your figure and personal fashion sense. Also consider your beach wedding package decor and the style it brings to your wedding day.
  • DON’T- Get stuck in Pinterest mode. Keep in mind these (likely) photo-shopped models may or may not have your same body type, skin tone, bust, hair…. Find your inspiration, but be open to variations that suit you and your style. Check out our photo page for more inspiration!

  • DO- Consider the weather. Florida beach weddings are likely warm weathered events with a variety of weather on the east coast beaches and the west coast or Gulf beaches. So with the exception of December-February, choose a dress with a breathable fabric. Traditional long gowns are popular but it’s probably best to avoid long sleeves, which may leave you melting in the heat!
  • DON’T- Forget about your skivvies! It’s a good idea to have both a strapless bra and regular bra on hand. This will give you the best idea of what you’ll actually look like on your big day! No-show underwear are a good idea too so you’ll know exactly what’s going on underneath! *The same is true for any fittings.
  • DO- Bring your camera when dress shopping. Make sure to have a friend or sales associate take your picture outside in the gown before purchasing. Sometimes the natural sunlight can bring “new light” to your undergarments that would otherwise go unnoticed inside.

Beach bride style with natural flowers and an ivory lace dress from one of our Palm Coast, Florida beach weddings

The last “DO tip” before you say “I DO” is to enjoy your dress shopping experience. Whether it’s with your mom, sister, best friend, or peacefully by yourself, cherish this traditional bridal right of passage. Find the dress that makes you feel confident, beautiful, and aisle ready!

A bride poses for her Daytona Beach Weddings Photography.

Anastasia State Park Weddings are the ideal spot for photos by the dunes.