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Guide to Beach Weddings

Nothing is more exotic and romantic than a beach wedding. But if you thought only the rich and famous could afford a wedding by the sea then think again. There are many options available to you to suit a variety of budgets.In the UK, there are a number of beaches that are licensed to marry on. If one of these beaches isn't the one that takes your fancy then you can apply for a temporary license that will allow you to marry on the beach of your choice. This will cost you money but will mean you can marry on your favourite Cornish beach or Welsh bay. Abroad, you are advised to look into resorts that specialise in exotic beach weddings.

From the Caribbean to the South of France, there are plenty of places worldwide where you can have your ceremony by the sea. For marrying outside the UK you will need to ask your travel agent if there are any documents you will need to provide, but if you book through a reputable agency they will give you everything you need to know so you can relax and enjoy your special day.

If you'd rather marry in a traditional setting but like the idea of a beach ceremony then you can have a blessing on the beach. This is a great option for couples where one person wants to marry traditionally and the other wants a more alternative wedding.

A beach wedding abroad guarantees great weather, a beautiful setting and an instant honeymoon. But not all your guests will be able to afford the cost of airline tickets or the time off work. A way of getting round this is to have your dream wedding in the sun, then hold a reception when you return to the UK for anyone who couldn't make it to your exotic location. This not only means you get to celebrate twice and have 2 sets of photographs for the album, it's also a great excuse for a big party. It gives you the beautiful paradise beach wedding and a traditional British knees up on your return.

Another option you have is to hire a private beach. This has many benefits. You can guarantee there'll be no-one around walking their dog and will allow you to orchestrate the photos exactly as you want.

Hiring a private beach can be pricy and costs vary massively depending on the chosen country.

However, if you book a trip that is designed for a wedding, it is likely the resort you choose will have a private beach anyway, possibly only minutes from your hotel or villa. These wedding-resort packages may seem a little impersonal to you, but many include a reception, photographer, accommodation, catering and someone to carry out the official ceremony, so they are a great option for couples who want planning their wedding to be relaxing.

You can easily have a traditional wedding in a church in a seaside town, then have a gathering with your guests for some stunning photos on the beach. This option gives you the best of both worlds.

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