So you want to have an Enchanted Rock wedding or elopement. Yaass! I love Enchanted Rock, it is such a stunning and accessible location, great for any adventure wedding! Whether you want to get married just the two of you or bring your closest friends and family members along. Enchanted Rock is a great location to make it happen!
If you love desert landscapes and are a fan of the hill country then Enchanted Rock is the place for you! It’s basically a little desert-like oasis among the hill country.
Plus it is located about twenty minutes from Fredericksburg, a little town full of unique shops, wineries, restaurants and lodging. And if Fredericksburg doesn’t do it for ya then Austin is only a two hour drive away! Super easy for a day trip.
What this blog covers;
- Texas marriage laws
- The best time of year to have an Enchanted Rock wedding
- Ideal weather for an Enchanted Rock wedding
- The recommended time of day for an Enchanted Rock wedding
- Nearby restaurants + wineries
- What to wear
- Leave No Trace
Texas Marriage Laws
Wait, you mean we can just go to Enchanted Rock and get married!?
There are some laws in place for you to follow in order to make your marriage official in the eyes of the government. If that’s not your thing you should totally look into commitment ceremonies! But if you’re looking for the laws and marriage license requirements here you go…
- In Texas you can get married without witnesses! Meaning you just need someone who is ordained to sign your marriage license.
- You must wait 72 hours after you receive your marriage license for your ceremony to be performed.
When it comes to the legal stuff I highly recommend diving in and doing your own research. Here is a link that’ll give you a great place to start.
The Best Time of Year to Get Married at Enchanted Rock
Enchanted Rock gets really hot in the summer months! I would avoid June through September for your Enchanted Rock wedding.
Springtime is gorgeous! You’ll see a variety of wildflowers and lush vegetation.
Fall is beautiful as well, there are a lot of beautiful native grasses blooming during the fall season. They’re not nearly as colorful as wildflowers but still a wonderful sight! I really love all of the Texas native grasses.
If you do want to elope during the summer months try to elope at sunrise to beat the heat.
The Best Time of Day to Get Married at Enchanted Rock
I highly encourage timing your wedding around sunrise or sunset. Golden hour at Enchanted Rock is ENCHANTING. I have witnessed some of the most beautiful sunsets of my entire life at Enchanted Rock! It’s also a great place for stargazing. Make sure you bring headlamps for your hike back to your car if you want to do some stargazing!
The Best Weather for an Enchanted Rock Wedding
I am big on “there’s no such thing as bad weather, just bad gear” But there are some conditions that you want to be extra cautious of at Enchanted Rock.
- Rainy weather – Enchanted Rock is essentially a giant piece of granite. And when it is wet it becomes super slick and can be dangerous because it is such a steep climb to the top. If it is rainy and wet then I recommend staying towards the base of the rock. The park may even close down any elevated trails during rainy conditions. There are a lot of beautiful locations towards the base of the giant granite mountain! Like a loop trail that goes around the entire perimeter of the park.
- Heat – If you end up choosing a hot day at Enchanted Rock then make sure you bring enough water and protection from the sun. The summit trail does not have access to any shade and the granite heats up, making the trail even hotter than the surrounding areas. Make sure you have what you need to keep yourself hydrated and safe from the sun. If you are eloping in the summer months then I highly recommend a sunrise elopement to beat the heat.
- Wind – A windy day may feel annoying but embrace it! Your wedding dress flying all over looking epic as heck and your hair will have that windblown, adventurous look will make for some pretty awesome photos.
Eloping and getting married on public lands like Enchanted Rock requires special use permits.
Special use permit requirements vary from park to park. Permits will allow you to have a wedding ceremony as well as photography at Enchanted Rock. The permit fees go towards funding the park! They help you give back to the outdoor space that you love so much you are choosing it to say your vows. You can obtain the permit by contacting Enchanted Rock rangers directly Their phone number is (830) 685-3636 but I prefer contacting them through email to keep things in writing and usually send you the permit application via email anyways. VisitErock@tpwd.texas.gov
In order to enter Enchanted Rock you also need a day pass. Day passes are $8 per person! Day passes become available thirty days in advance and sell out FAST, especially on weekends. I recommend snagging your day passes as soon as they become available!
Camping reservations become available five months in advance and also book up really fast! Camping reservations are $14-$18 per night. I recommend snagging those as soon as they become available as well. You can get day use or camping passes at this link.
Does Enchanted Rock allow dogs?
Enchanted Rock does allow dogs but they are only allowed on the loop trail and not on the summit trail that climbs to the top of the granite mountain.
Enchanted Rock is about a 2 hour drive from Austin and 20 minutes from Fredricksburg. The drive to the park is on beautiful hill country roads! And the roads in the park itself are nice paved roads with ample parking available so there’s no need for any kind of special off-road vehicles.
A great thing about Enchanted Rock is because it is so close to Fredricksburg, a tourist hub, there are so many unique Airbnb’s near by!
I recommend Airbnb’s over hotels for weddings or elopements because Airbnb’s have a lot more space for getting ready before your wedding, offer more natural light and you can get creative and book something that aligns with a certain aesthetic or brings your experience to the next level!
For an Enchanted Rock elopement, I recommend staying in Fredricksburg or Llano!
Check out my Fredricksburg Airbnb list here.
If you want more tips and tricks for booking your lodging you can check out my “Booking Lodging for your Elopement or Wedding 101” blog.
Nearby restaurants + Wineries
There are so many restaurants and wineries near Enchanted Rock! But make sure you double check their business hours. Wineries all close around 5pm and the restaurant hours vary!
Fine dining –
Vaudeville; “Situated in the heart of Fredericksburg, this renovated three-story landmark encompasses all you might be looking for under one roof: a bistro, a gourmet market, a wine store, a home and giftware showroom, a supper club, an art gallery and an event venue.”
August E’s: “August E’s is located in the heart of the abundant organic produce and wine region of the Texas Hill Country. We are fortunate to have access to superb local suppliers. August E’s utilizes: Niman Ranch Natural Premium Aged Angus steaks and Broken Arrow Ranch in Ingram for,venison, axis, wild boar, elk and antelope. Chef Leu maintains his own quarter–acre organic garden for herbs, tomatoes and peppers while numerous local farmers provide fruits and vegetables year round.”
Sunset Grill; “Set in the beautiful Texas Hill Country, the Sunset Grill features inspired dishes using the freshest ingredients from local growers to create a memorable dining experience.”
Woerner Warehouse; “Every day guests enjoy the creative imagination of Chef Angela and her signature fresh salads, soups and jaw breaker sandwiches prepared at the peak of flavor. The daily specials reflect the abundant fresh, local produce and Chef Angela’s passion for clean, bright flavors are as beautiful to look at as they are delicious to eat. Gluten free breads and Vegetarian options are always available! Woerner’s also carries a wide variety of bottled beers and local wine.”
What to Wear
When you choose to get married at Enchanted Rock your wedding attire will look different from your traditional wedding attire.
Footwear – Your footwear is super important because you will be hiking up over rocks, on uneven ground and trekking across a lot of granite. Hiking boots with good ankle support and traction are a must. I highly discourage any type of heel, open-toed shoes, or dress shoes with slick bottoms.
Wedding dresses – your wedding dress should allow you ample room for leg movement! Being able to lift your leg up for climbing up and over rocks is key. Also being able to squat in case you need to use the restroom outdoors is a factor! Try some wind tests too to see how epic your dress looks blowing in the wind! Lightweight material makes a huge difference as well. The lighter the better, so your dress doesn’t weigh you down while you hike! If you want more info on selecting a dress for your elopement you can check out my “Elopement Dress Ideas” blog.
Other than that it’s pretty easy to find decent pants and suit jackets that work at Enchanted Rock! You’ll want to prepare for specific weather depending on the season you are getting married in.
Leave No Trace
When planning to get married outdoors it is important to consider the impact your wedding may have on the environment. A few ways to be mindful and leave less impact are;
- Don’t use live vegetation in your florals. Instead, use dried or fake florals! If you do want to use live vegetation make sure it is native to the area and not an invasive species. That does NOT mean to forage it from the park itself but instead to source it from local growers like Petals Ink!
- No fires outside of fire rings. So no sparklers or smoke bombs! Fairy lights and lanterns are a fun way to get creative nighttime portraits that don’t pose a fire risk.
Enchanted Rock Vernal Pools & Weathering Pits
“The “islands” of vegetation on the bare granite summit of Enchanted Rock are some of the most ecologically significant and severely threatened features of this state natural area. Known as soil islands, weathering pits, gammas or vernal pools, these patches of vegetation on bare rock develop in depressions formed by weathering over thousands of years. Because of the fragile nature of weathering pits, the Texas Parks and Wildlife Department wants to make sure visitors are aware of their significance. Too often they are perceived as nothing more than convenient rest areas or even “bathrooms” and are subject to trampling, littering and other forms of waste. PLEASE REFRAIN FROM ENTERING WEATHERING PITS UNDER ANY CONDITION. Enjoy and observe these special features only from their granite margins – STAY ON THE ROCK.” Source link
Following the rest of the seven leave no trace principles is important as well!
The seven Leave No Trace Principles are;
- Plan ahead and prepare
- Travel and camp on durable surfaces
- Dispose of waste properly
- Leave what you find
- Minimize campfire impact
- Respect wildlife
- Be considerate of other visitors
© 1999 by the Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics: www.LNT.org
Did this blog help you with your Enchanted Rock wedding planning? I would love to hear about it!
I also offer Texas elopement packages that include planning guidance as well as photography! Click here to check those out.
Ready to start planning? Contact me now!