April 21, 2023

20 Of The Best Winter Wedding Venues In California (2023)

Couple sitting on the snow at a ski resort; image overlaid with text that reads 20 Of The Best Winter Wedding Venues in California

My passion is capturing couples’s weddings, elopements, engagements, and proposals with meaningful pictures that tell their stories with authentic and beautiful imagery. As a result, I’ve gotten the privilege of visiting many wedding venues in California and seeing how much joy they’ve brought the couples I’ve worked with. Often, the venues are near beaches or the weddings are during the warmer times of the year. However, there are also many winter wedding venues in California that can bring a couple’s dream wedding to life as well. These wedding venues vary from cozy to elegant, and there’s something for everyone.

20 Of The Best Winter Wedding Venues In California

To make this list easier for couples, I separated these winter wedding venues in California by location. Many are located in popular areas such as Mammoth Lakes or Redwood National Park. Holding a wedding in these areas then means convenient access to all the activities the areas offer, such as skiing, hiking, and more. 

It’s important to know as well that these winter wedding venues in California are in no particular order. Whichever one appeals to you most, whether that’s toward the top of the list or the bottom, is the one I recommend you choose.

Mammoth Lakes Winter Wedding Venues

Mammoth Lakes, like all the areas on this list, is beautiful at all times of the year. Set in California’s Sierra Nevada mountains, it’s known specifically for Mammoth and June Mountain. Depending on the time of year, the lakes, mountains, and surrounding areas offer activities such as shopping, hiking, camping, skiing, snowboarding, and more. 

Couple on a ski lift with guy kissing his bride on the forehead, captured by Christopher Brown Weddings

They also feature a large assortment of winter wedding venues in California.

#1 – The Mill Cafe

The Mill Cafe, a cozy ski cabin, allows guest counts up to 60. With its warm, rustic decor and famous house-made pulled pork, this wedding venue is ideal for couples dreaming of an intimate wedding with delicious in-house food.

#2 – Eleven53

Accessible by gondola ride, Eleven53 offers couples the opportunity to tie the knot at 11,053 feet on Mammoth Mountain. The venue accommodates up to 70 standing guests for the ceremony and up to 50 seated guests for the reception.

Bride and groom sitting on the snow during their wedding shoot in a ski resort, taken by natural light wedding photographer Christopher Brown

For this and other elevated winter wedding venues in California, I recommend planning out your attire well. It will get cold, and it’s important to take that into consideration.

#3 – Top Of Mammoth Mountain

This outdoor ceremony area provides couples with a unique mountain wedding. It comes complete with incredible views and is conveniently located near Eleven53. The area accommodates up to 150 standing guests.

#4 – McCoy Station

McCoy Station is also accessible by gondola ride, which is necessary since it’s located at 9,630 feet on Mammoth Mountain. In the winter, couples can enjoy an outdoor ceremony on the sundeck with stunning views of the snowy mountains, sun, and everything below. The deck can accommodate up to 150 guests. 

#5 – Parallax (Reception Only)

Mammoth Mountain only has this one fine-dining restaurant. For wedding receptions, Parallax offers elegance, dining, dancing, and incredible views. The dinner can be customized to your liking, and the venue can accommodate up to 80 guests.

Groom kissing bride on the cheek as they sit on the snow, captured by Christopher Brown Weddings

#6 – Eagle Lodge (Reception Only)

Eagle Lodge offers a vast indoor space for wedding receptions. It’s another elegant experience set right at the base of the Eagle Express chairlift. Lodging accommodations are within walking distance, meaning Eagle Lodge is a great choice for couples looking for something with convenience.

Big Bear Lake Winter Wedding Venues

Similar to Mammoth Lakes, Big Bear Lake features a wide array of things to do, such as skiing, snowboarding, hiking, tours, dining, and shopping. 

It also features several winter wedding venues in California worth a look.

#7 – Apples Bed & Breakfast Inn

With a bright pink and white exterior, Apples Bed & Breakfast immediately sets itself apart from other inns. Ceremonies take place beneath an elegant gazebo while guests watch from the comfort of the well-manicured grounds. 

Apples also offers two wedding packages. They offer an elopement package, which comes with lodging, breakfast, an on-site wedding coordinator, and more. Their wedding package offers the same, along with full wedding coordination from Graystone Catering and additional benefits, such as a professional DJ and table setup.

#8 – Shay Meadows Ranch And Resort

Shay Meadows Ranch And Resort is one of several winter wedding venues in California that’s perfect for couples desiring a peaceful retreat. It’s a historic site and has even featured in some movies.

Couple skiing down the mountain during their winter wedding shoot with Christopher Brown Weddings

Some of its natural features include a pond, meadow, the nearby forest, and surrounding mountains. It accommodates up to 250 guests, can double as a vacation rental, and offers indoor-outdoor options for events. 

#9 – Into The Woods LLC

Into The Woods LLC is located in Big Bear City, which sits along Big Bear Lake’s shore. The 13-acre property hosts both ceremonies and receptions in an intimate, secluded setting surrounded by the tranquil beauty of Big Bear.

The hosts, a husband-and-wife pair, allow outside vendors, and they’re ready to support couples and their guests in any way they can.

#10 – Bear Creek Resort

Bear Creek Resort offers couples the chance to marry in a log-style gazebo, along with all the conveniences the resort brings otherwise. These include lodging, a tent option for the reception, horseback riding, golf, shopping, and more.

Bride and groom smiling candidly at each other in the middle of snow-plowed path in California

#11 – Grey Squirrel Resort

In operation since the 1950s, the Grey Squirrel Resort features 19 rental cabins and three acres of property to enjoy. The resort also offers two wedding packages: the Enchanted Love Story and the Charming or Ultimate Charming Rose.

The Enchanted Love Story allows up to 100 guests, includes two cabins for two nights, a six-hour event time, and is for couples looking for a wedding sometime between Friday and Sunday. The Charming Rose includes two cabins for one night, allows up to 100 guests, and is for couples looking for a wedding between Monday and Thursday.  The Ultimate Charming Rose is the same except, like the Enchanted Love Story, it includes two cabins for two nights instead of just one.

#12 – Knickerbocker Mansion

The Knickerbocker Mansion, set on 2 1/2 acres near Big Bear Lake, is a rustic, cozy wedding venue choice. It offers multiple outdoor ceremony and reception areas on its grounds, such as the Courtyard, Mansion Patio, and Turf Front Yard.

Couple sitting in the snow with glasses on, captured by Christopher Brown Weddings

It also includes lodging for up to 33 guests, a bridal suite, recreation room, close proximity to the Snow Summit Resort, and is within walking distance to the Big Bear’s shopping and entertainment district, the Village.

#13 – Gold Mountain Manor

Built in 1928, the 7,000-square-foot Gold Mountain Manor is cozy, rustic, and luxurious. It’s the perfect mix of days of old with modern conveniences. Couples can have a garden wedding or a more intimate ceremony in front of the manor’s red quartz rock fireplace.

Unlike some other winter wedding venues in California, renting the manor provides guests with exclusive access for a night or weekend. It also comes with multiple wedding packages. These range in guest count, number of nights, additional services and amenities, and more. 

#14 – Holcomb Valley Ranch

Holcomb Valley Ranch is only four miles from Big Bear Lake. This is an ideal property for couples looking to camp or relax in a cabin.

Black and white photo of couple kneeling and sharing a kiss in the middle of a path, taken by Southern California wedding photographer Christopher Brown

It’s 400 acres, and it even offers climbing options, courtesy of Holcomb Valley Pinnacles Climbing. It features three wedding packages, which allow access to a campsite, lounges, or the pavilion. 

Lake Tahoe Winter Wedding Venues

Lake Tahoe, like Mammoth Lakes, is set in the Sierra Nevada mountain range. Its clear blue-green waters attract a plethora of visitors every year, and it has something for everyone. This includes beaches, skiing and snowboarding, swimming and boating, restaurants, shopping, and more. 

It also has a number of winter wedding venues in California worth exploring.  

#15 – Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel

Located at the base of Heavenly Mountain Resort, the Lake Tahoe Resort Hotel offers 400 suites for guests to stay in. Among its many amenities are valet options, in-house dining, and it’s pet-friendly, too.

20 Of The Best Winter Wedding Venues In California. Couple sitting in the snow with their ski gear and smiling at the camera.

For weddings, the hotel has four venue options: Tallac, Ballroom, Garden Atrium, and Lakeside Beach. The latter is only available through October, but could be a late-autumn option if a couple would prefer that instead. The indoor venues offer modern elegance, while the beach venue uses the lake and surrounding forest as a backdrop.

#16 – Tahoe Beach Retreat

The Tahoe Beach Retreat sits right on Lake Tahoe’s shores. It’s warm, cozy, modern, and includes amenities such as an outdoor pool and marina. It’s also near Heavenly Village and features three waterfront restaurants and bars.

Black and white photo of couple sharing a kiss during their ski trip, taken by Christopher Brown Weddings

For weddings, there are multiple venue options, including the Lakeview Ballroom and Deck, Beachfront Tent, and Boathouse on the Pier. The retreat also has four wedding packages: Tamarack, Twin Peaks, Pyramid, and Heavenly.

#17 – Hard Rock Hotel & Casino

The Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Lake Tahoe offers multiple room and suite options. It’s pet-friendly, has shopping, a pool, dining, and a 24-hour casino. All of this is in addition to multiple venue options, including the Graceland and Revolution ballroom venues.

Graceland is nearly 6,000 square feet, while Revolution is 6,500 square feet. Weddings and receptions also include a special events coordinator, tables, chairs, and service staff, among other amenities.  

#18 – The Landing Resort & Spa

The Landing Resort & Spa is a retreat with a semi-private beach, wine cellar bar and lounge, heated outdoor pool, rooftop deck with a fireplace, and a patio with a view of the lake, not to mention the full-service spa. 

20 Of The Best Winter Wedding Venues In California. Black and white photo of couple candidly laughing with each other in the middle of a path.

One aspect of the Landing that sets it apart from some other winter wedding venues in California is that it offers outdoor ceremonies all year round on its Grand Rooftop Terrace. The terrace is 3,600 square feet and accommodates guest counts up to 200 for the ceremony and up to 250 for a cocktail reception.

#19 – Valhalla Tahoe

Created in 1979, Valhalla Tahoe is a part of the Tallac Historic Site. Its goal was and still is to restore three estates on the site while also developing it as a historic center. 

For weddings, the beautiful and intimate site has the Grand Hall. Up to 130 guests can attend, and it includes two dressing rooms, exclusive use of the building for the event, the Grand Lawn for receptions, tables and chairs for setup, and more.

#20 – Redwood National Park

Another option deserving of a spot on this list of winter wedding venues in California is Redwood National Park, also called Redwood National and State Parks. While not a traditional wedding venue, what Redwood National Park offers is a unique elopement experience for adventurous couples.

What To Know About Eloping At Redwood National Park

Redwood National Park is actually four different parks, which are Redwood National Park, Jedediah Smith Redwoods State Park, Del Norte Coast Redwoods State Park, and Prairie Creek Redwoods State Park.

Black and white photo of couple smiling at each other in middle of path, taken by California wedding photographer Christopher Brown

To elope in one of these parks, you’ll need to secure a permit, which comes with a $100 fee. For applications outside of the norm, the fee is $200. Permits also don’t grant exclusive access to a location, meaning you won’t have the area to yourself. However, for an adventurous elopement, these areas offer one-of-a-kind experiences and are worth the non-exclusive access.

Conveniently, Redwood National Park comes with a list of pre-approved locations. There are enough to fill out another list of winter wedding venues in California. For participant counts of 10 and under, the park allows ceremonies in the following locations:

  • Berry Glen ( up to 6)
  • River Trail ( up to 8)
  • Merriman Grove ( up to 8)
  • Zig Zag #2 (up to 10)

For participant counts of up to 20, the park offers the following:

  • High Bluff Overlook
  • Schmidt Grove
  • Organ Donor’s Grove
  • Templeman Grove
  • Lost Man Creek Gate

The following locations also allow participant counts up to 20, but they’re only available from October 25 through May 1:

  • Crescent Beach Day Use       
  • Crescent Beach Overlook      
  • Prairie Creek Amphitheater   

Eloping at other locations in Redwood National Park is still possible, but doing so means your application needs a special review.

Final Thoughts On 20 Of The Best Winter Wedding Venues In California

Winter wedding venues in California offer unique experiences. Many of these wedding venues also host weddings at other times of the year too, but for a white wedding with incredible accompanying backdrops, I recommend booking them in the winter.

Regardless of your decision, my hope is you at least see these winter wedding venues in California the same way I do. Not only are they worth your time, but they also provide you with unforgettable memories. If you find yourself in need of someone to capture those memories for you, I’d love to help. Let me know what your ideas are, and I’ll get started right away!


Black and white photo of couple sharing a kiss on snowy mountain; image overlaid with text that reads 20 Of The Best Winter Wedding Venues in California
Black and white photo of couple skiiing on mountain; image overlaid with text that reads 20 of The Best Winter Wedding Venues in California


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