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Of all the possible locations for a beachy elopement on the Oregon coast, Hug Point stands out for its tranquil, idyllic environment. Quieter than the most popular tourist locations in Oregon like Cannon Beach, Hug Point has all of the same charm and magical vibe for the perfect PNW elopement on the beach!
In this guide, we’ll go over:
- Some history and fun facts about Hug Point
- The weather and seasons
- Activities to consider while eloping at Hug Point
- How to get there
- Parking and entrances
- Permits for an elopement
- Info on the tides
- Cell service
- Beach guidelines
- Where to stay near Hug Point
- Hug Point elopement packages
About Hug Point
Hug Point is near Seaside, Oregon, between Cannon Beach and Manzanita. This state recreational area used to be a stagecoach road that ran alongside the beach long before the coastal highway was put in. The stagecoaches would “hug” the coastline to avoid the tides!
The most popular activity at Hug Point is to walk along the beach, where you can admire the sandy cliffsides and huge spruce trees. The main walk on the beach heads north toward Hug Point, which is a tall cliffside point overlooking the sea. If you walk beyond the point, you might be able to see Haystack Rock on Cannon Beach in the distance.
The northern walk will also reveal a seasonal waterfall, which is one of the features I love most about this location for an elopement. Caves in the cliffs and tide pools to explore make this a wonderful place to say your vows.
Weather at Hug Point & The Best Time to Elope
The weather at Hug Point is what I’d call fairly mild year-round! Hug Point is accessible at any time of year, so you can hold your elopement here whenever you want to.
In the summer, the average temperature is in the high 60s Fahrenheit. There’s usually still a few inches of rain each month even in the warm seasons, so be prepared for moody or rainy weather even if you choose a summer date. You’ll have close to 16 hours of daylight in the summer at Hug Point, which gives you so much time to explore and soak in the day!
In the winter, temperatures usually sit around the 40s. There’s a lot more rain at this time of year, and possibly even the tiniest bit of snow in December or January! If you layer up and bring some rain gear, a winter elopement on this coastline will be stunning.
Of course, winter is also going to give you more privacy for a Hug Point elopement. Summertime on the Oregon coast is the busy tourist season, so there will be more people around when it’s warm. Aiming for late spring or the fall might get you the best possible time for both weather and crowds, but in my opinion you can’t really go wrong when eloping here!
Check out these monthly averages for weather and precipitation at Hug Point for a little more detail:
Activities for an Elopement at Hug Point
No adventure elopement is complete without some unique fun sprinkled into your day. Hug Point is really well located to be able to add in some exploring in the nearby areas, and this is something I highly recommend, especially if you’re not local to the area!
As you stroll along this beach, walking up toward Cannon Beach is definitely worthwhile. Haystack Rock is a super cool feature of the landscape, and it’s such an iconic beach that it would be a shame to get so close and not stop by!
I absolutely recommend stopping by the waterfall at Hug Point, too. Water spills directly over the cliff onto the sand, and there are some really cool beach caves as well.
If you’ve never been, Manzanita is the cutest little seaside town, and it’s just a quick drive south (about 13 minutes). There’s golfing, horseback riding, kayaking, bike rentals, boutique shopping, and so much more in Manzanita.
Oswald West State Park is another great option to add in some more adventure to your Hug Point elopement. If hiking during your elopement experience sounds fun for you, this is the place to go! Hiking all the way up Neahkahnie Mountain will give you what I think is one of the best views of the entire Oregon coastline. It’s an 8 mile trail with 2300 feet in elevation gain.
Hug Point Elopement Planning
Now that you’re convinced Hug Point is the perfect place for your elopement (*wink, wink*), let’s get into some of the finer details so that you can coordinate your day to run as smoothly as possible!
How to Get There
Hug Point is super easy to get to. If you’re heading south on Highway 101 from Cannon Beach, it’s just 5 miles down this road. You’ll see signs for the Hug Point Recreation Site.
Entrance & Parking
Once you’ve seen the sign for Hug Point, all you have to do is turn right into the parking lot on the west side of the highway! Hug Point is a day-use area, and it’s fee-free! There is no payment required to park or access it.
Once you’ve parked, the beach is right in front of you! It’s a short walk down to the sand.
Whether or not you’ll need a permit in order to get married at Hug Point depends entirely on what you plan to do here for your elopement.
A few scenarios that will require a special use permit are:
- Having over 50 people in attendance
- Any modification of park land by placing temporary structures; this means that placing props like an archway, any furniture, tents, chairs, etc. will require this permit
The full packet of information and instructions on the special use permit can be found here. If you aren’t sure whether or not your celebration will require the permit (the jargon in these packets can be super confusing!), it’s advised that you call the park staff to ask them directly. The Coastal Region Office phone number is 1-541-563-8500.
If you have more questions about this part of planning your elopement, I’m your resource! We’ll walk through what’s needed together when you hire me as your Oregon elopement photographer.
At Hug Point, you can get stranded on certain areas of the beach by the tides, so it’s super important to know the tide schedule. The tides also determine whether you’ll be able to access the waterfall at a certain point of your elopement day.
The Tides Chart website here shows you current and upcoming tide schedules. The tide chart also gives you current weather and wind information. When you hold your elopement here, bookmark this chart, and check it before you head out for your day. Make sure you know when the tide is rising and falling so that you don’t end up stranded!
A lot of adventurous locations to elope in the Pacific Northwest don’t have strong cell signals, so it’s extra important to be prepared ahead of time with maps and weather info, etc.
At Hug Point, you should keep your cell service in most spots! Since this location isn’t a deep forest or too far from civilization, you’ll be able to still access the interwebs for things like the tide chart, weather forecast, and your maps.
I do still recommend printing maps and the tide chart, or having pictures saved that you don’t need cell service to access. Just in case anything happens, it’s good to have backups so you can be completely analog and still stay safe!
Hug Point Beach Guidelines
Public lands like Hug Point always have different rules about what you can and cannot do or bring while you visit.
At Hug Point, you can bring your pups along! They technically do not need to stay on a leash the entire time, but as the dog owner you are responsible for the good behavior of your animal and making sure they are not harassing any people or other animals. Eloping with your dog is such a fun experience, so Hug Point is a great beach for having your fur babies along on the adventure!
If you’re thinking about having a small campfire on the beach, it’s best to call the park directly at 503-368-3575. Depending on the time of year, burn bans may be in effect, and not all state lands allow campfires.
Lastly, you can’t park overnight or camp directly at Hug Point, but next up, we’ll talk about some options for where to stay, including camping!
Where to Stay Near Hug Point
Airbnbs in Cannon Beach, Arch Cape, Seaside, and Manzanita are all conveniently close by. A cozy seaside cabin has such a great vibe for an adventure like your elopement! Here’s a few Airbnbs I like:
- Cannon Beach Chalet
- Seaside Townhouse
- House at Arch Cape
- Oceanfront Cottage (with private beach access!)
- Coastal Cedar Sanctuary (with a relaxing barrel sauna!)
- Sunset Cove
Whether you’re an avid tent camper or want to roll up with your trailer or RV, camping elopements bring a sense of peace and quiet that I just can’t describe! The simplicity of a cup of coffee made over the fire before you get married is amazing. Here’s a few campgrounds close to Hug Point:
- Nehalem Falls Campground (for tents, RVs, trailers, day use, and groups)
- Kelly’s Brighton Marina
- Wright’s for Camping (tent camping only)
- Sea Ranch
Lodges & Resorts
You also really can’t go wrong with a classic lodge or resort stay. These can be higher end, cozy, comfy, or simple. And on the coast, they usually have great views, too!
Another unique option is to rent an RV or camper along the Oregon coast, where you’ll be able to take it where you need and have a cozy stay the entire time. There’s lots of great resources for where to find these rentals, but here’s just a few:
Hug Point Elopement Packages
Every elopement is unique, which is why it’s important to find an elopement package that’s catered to your needs and vision.
My packages are about more than just photography– I also include assistance with permits, locations, timeline creation, advising on your elopement attire, recommending other amazing vendors, curating a list of places to stay, and more. You deserve a stress-free and memorable experience, so every package includes unlimited consultations with me and personalized advice.
When you’re ready to book, contact me here! I can’t wait to dive into planning your incredible day (or days!) at Hug Point.