Category Archives: Venues

nautical key largo wedding bag

The Key Largo Wedding Welcome Bag

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Key Largo wedding welcome bag
Key Largo, Florida Wedding Welcome Bag
These wedding welcome, paper bags for guests have been specifically made with a Key Largo wedding in mind. These are white bags with blue and brown starfish couple and custom text templates on both sides. I have not made the destination text customizable because there is a map of Florida on the back with a big red star over the Key Largo location. The map cannot easily be removed by the customer. Please ask if you would like a bag like this with your Florida wedding location “starred”.


Starfish are popular with couples, but we also have a nautical anchor bag design. It has the same map on the back. This one however also has a place for the name of the location / venue at the top on the reverse.
nautical key largo wedding bag
If you want a cloth tote bag in this design, please take a look at this post which has a picture and link to the product.

OR VIEW ALL Destination Wedding Welcome Bags.

So where is Key Largo? It is the northern most key in the string of Florida keys. It is known for it’s large underwater reef at the John Pennecamp Reef State Park. There is boating, snorkeling and diving in this large body of water that is protected by the state.
As in all of the keys, the sunsets will be magnificent. The water will be clear and gorgeous and the beaches lovely. It’s a fabulous place to plan a beach wedding. Simply google “Key Largo Weddings” and see what is available.
Queen Angelfish at John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park Key Largo, Florida
By Florida Memory ( [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Planning a Key Largo Florida Wedding

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There are many reasons to get married in the Florida Keys, not the least of which is that the weather is perfect. Not all areas of Florida stay warm year round, but in the Keys the climate is very temperate.

Key Largo sunset
Sunset on Key Largo

By Mark Winograd (Personal collection, Mark Winograd) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

In the Keys, you can enjoy sunrises and sunsets as the islands are all fairly small in width. Because you will be surrounded by tropical water, the ocean breeze keeps the sweltering humidity (which you will encounter in other Florida locations) at a minimum.

This post is specifically about Key Largo, which is the northern most Key. It is a “long key” just off the mainland and is easy to get to. If wedding guests fly into / out of the Miami International Airport, it’s only about an hour away.

If you are just beginning to look for a special place to have your Florida beach wedding, please check out the Key Largo Lighthouse and their magnificent aerial photography of the site.

A highly rated hotel / inn on Key Largo is the Kona Kai Resort, which offers “beach ceremonies”. But it is a small resort with only 11 rooms and may not be large enough for wedding parties who wish to stay at the same location. It may be a good spot to choose for the honeymoon.

Another wedding ceremony destination option, on this same island, is the Ocean Pointe Suites. It’s beachfront, and gets high ratings by Conde Nast Traveler, and ranks in the top 20 by The Knot. It looks nicely secluded and even offers boat slip rentals, in case any guests would like to bring along their private boat!

A Key Largo wedding means that the honeymoon could easily include a diving trip to the offshore John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park. A catamaran will take passengers out to the reef where you’ll visit one of the most unique parks you’ve ever seen. It’s all underwater!

This area is dedicated to tourism, and there will not be a lack of things to do. Or travel on down the Keys on a Honeymoon road trip and see what else the beautiful Florida Keys have to offer. Create your own wedding invitations to match your tropical destination theme at our online store.

New England Wedding Venues

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new england weddingAlthough I mainly write about beach weddings, held in a tropical location, I currently live in New Hampshire. The New England area also offers beautiful, yet cooler, locations to exchange vows. It is possible to have a wedding on the water up here in the northeastern United States, but the water will be cold, even in summer. Unless you call 72 degrees warm. And that is lake water. If you are going to the ocean, plan on high water temps somewhere in the low 60’s. Brrrrr. You probably won’t be swimming on your wedding day, unless you are planning to “trash the dress” and weddings by the sea are still doable. After all, oceans are beautiful no matter where they are located.

New England is not known for it’s beaches, but it is known for it’s beautiful landscapes and of course, fantastic autumn foliage. Having a New England wedding and a Florida honeymoon, sounds just about perfect.
Because New England has everything from the big city of Boston to the rural farmland of the north country, wedding venues of all types can be found. Surround yourself with water at a New England Aquarium wedding, in the heart of Boston, or get married in a barn in the hills of Vermont.

New Englanders love their wineries and breweries, and many of them offer rooms to use as wedding venues. The Woodstock Inn Station and Brewery does weddings. I’ve never attended a wedding, but I have eaten outside on their patio, and the food was wonderful. Their home-brewed beer was delicious too.

Another popular idea is to have a greenhouse wedding. The Common Man is a chain of restaurants that serves delicious food and they have a big greenhouse at the Common Man Inn and Spa up in Plymouth, NH where couples can marry. New England weather can be unpredictable. There is no need to worry about the weather when you are enclosed within a space loaded with flowers and greenery.
Below is a link to my Pinterest board with New England wedding venue pins. Or visit my Wedding Venues in the Florida Keys post if the tropics is your preferred destination.

Follow Sandpiper Wedding & More’s board New England Wedding on Pinterest.

(Retro Blue Car Photo Credit: shnslt at Pixabay)

Florida Wedding Venues: The Florida Keys

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Key West beaches
Smathers Beach, Key West (courtesy Wikimedia Commons)
Getting married in the Florida Keys will be a beautiful dream come true. The Keys are a popular vacation spot, and I visited them twice while I lived in central Florida. Key West, being the furthest island in the chain of keys, is no doubt the best known. But how is it for celebrating a wedding? Just as nice as any other tropical Florida beach, would be my answer. The water is crystal clear and tropical in that area, whereas in other areas of Florida it is not.

To marry at the spot farthest south, take a look at the wedding venues at Fort Zachary State Park in Key West. State Parks tend to be casual and more affordable than bigger hotels, but they have certain guidelines to follow, and being a state park, there will probably be tourists and visitor around on the day you wed.

The Florida Keys stretch on for many miles. From the time you leave the Florida mainland until you reach the end of the keys at Key West, you will have gone approximately 113 miles. It will take about 2 hours travel time. Along the way you’ll pass through some of the other regularly visited Keys, such as Key Largo, Islamorada, and Marathon Key. The keys are links by a series of bridges, the longest one being the Seven Mile Bridge at Marathon Key, and mile markers are used to designate locations.

At the beginning of the Keys, sits Key Largo. It’s known for the John Pennecamp Coral Reef State Park, but the Island also has a seemingly beautiful wedding venue at the Key Largo Lighthouse. I have never been there, but they have a fantastic website full of photos, and the place looks awesome. There are a lot of water activities, such as diving and snorkeling along the reef, which would make it a fun place to honeymoon.

These are just a few suggestions, and I’m sure you’ll find other appealing venues all along the miles of the beautiful Florida Keys.

Florida Panhandle Beach Wedding Venues

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Florida panhandle map
Venues in the Panhandle
The panhandle area of Florida has some of the most beautiful beaches you’ll find anywhere. Located at the top of the state, and stretching beneath the states of Georgia and Alabama, the strip of land called the panhandle is a popular resort area. It’s white sandy beaches make a beautiful backdrop for ceremonies and receptions. Fort Walton Beach is always at the top of the best beaches list, but there are other similar places to consider for a beach wedding ceremony.

Eden Gardens State park offers a “bay venue” or bayou, with a mansion on the grounds.

Or rent the Saint Rita House on Rosemary Beach. It’s one of the many cottages in the Rosemary Beach location and offers a cottage that sleeps 10 and a carriage house that sleeps 4-5 people. The website has more info, but it could be perfect for a small, private wedding.

Then there is Alys Beach. It’s an “on the beach” venue for the ceremony with reception venues within walking distance. The Alys Beach area offers a variety of venues which will accommodate a varying number of guests. Alys Beach is actually a small town. And the site provides a map of the area as well as a list of venues within the town, which is a growing community.

Then there is the Highlands House which does weddings in Santa Rosa Beach. The link goes to their FaceBook page.

I hope this helps you find the perfect venue for a Florida panhandle wedding!

Get Married in Eden Gardens Florida State Park

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southern mansion museum
Wesley House at Eden Gardens
You don’t have to leave the country to get married in a tropical location. Eden Gardens is one of Florida’s state parks. It is located in the northern, panhandle part of the state, and contains beautiful areas where the ceremony and reception can be held.

A focal point of this park is the beautiful Wesley House, however, no weddings can be held inside, or in front of, the house. It is a museum which holds second largest known collection of Louis XVI furniture in the United States. It does seem that wedding photos can be taken on the porch outside. Read more about the rules and regulations on the park website wedding page.

There are beautiful, huge, live oak trees on the grounds, which are draped in Spanish moss. One 600 year old tree is known as the “Wedding Tree” and is a popular location to get married. The long, spreading branches certainly make for an amazing photo with the couple and guests gathered beneath. When I lived in Florida I had massive live oak trees in my yard and a few things come to mind. They are home to many creatures, including snakes. I once saw a very long rat snake fall out of one of my oaks. Just sayin’.

Other choice spots to hold the ceremony are at the Bayou, or the screened pavilion. The pavilion will hold up to 100 people. It would be a great place to hold the reception, or to use in case of bad weather. Also keep in mind that no alcohol can be served until after sunset, after regular park hours. Read the FAQ pdf publication for more info.

With beautiful gardens on the property and a reflection pool with koi, photo opportunities abound. There is even an area that leads to the Bayou, or bay. Newlyweds who want to marry outdoors may want to consider Eden Gardens. Pure7 Studios has a whole page of photos taken for a wedding which was held there in June of 2010. The pictures are lovely, but getting married in summer in Florida means extreme heat, so plan accordingly.