Outdoor wedding in Sicily: where and how to organize your event

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How to organize a wonderful outdoor wedding in Sicily? And above all: where?

Sicily is a beautiful place to host outdoor events. Not for nothing, it is envied for its mild and sunny climate almost all year round.

However, organizing an outdoor wedding could be more complex than expected, especially if we are talking about a religious wedding.

So let’s find out the candidate places for an unforgettable outdoor event and, above all, what elements we need to pay attention to if we intend to organize our ceremony or reception, making everything really perfect.


Organizing an outdoor wedding in Sicily: places and locations

I will be partisan, but I must warn you: organizing an outdoor wedding is not easy at all. For this reason, even more in this case, it is advisable to contact a wedding professional.

After having explored the authentic Sicilian places for an outdoor event, we will see the critical issues to consider—always – for a ceremony or reception without inconveniences.

Catholic outdoor wedding in Sicily

I always get a question from my couples: can we celebrate a religious outdoor wedding in Sicily? The answer is yes and no. Some churches in our region have magnificent outdoor spaces where marriage can be celebrated. Similarly, some flexible priests agree to celebrate religious weddings even in areas bordering the church—gardens, porches or groves.

What if neither option is possible? There are still two ways to go for broke to have the outdoor wedding you have always dreamed of.

  • Make a formal request to your parish, well written and motivated—and here, a part of the priests will yield to your wishes.
  • Submit a formal request to the bishop of the diocese.

If you clash with priests and bishops who are very loyal to the catholic norm for which the space for the celebration of marriage must be consecrated – a church – and in your chosen municipality, there are no churches with outdoor areas, alas we should give up.

But don’t worry, even if we can’t organize a romantic religious wedding in the woods or on the beach. We could always create an incredible outdoor reception!


Civil marriage outdoors? There is always the symbolic rite option!

Even organizing a civil wedding outdoors may not be a walk in the park. Like the religious one, civil marriage also requires the place of the celebration to be authorized. And not all municipalities have outdoor locations legally equivalent to the municipal house!

Also, in this case, it will be possible to request an exception, but also, this time, it will be challenging to obtain it. How then to get married with an outdoor ceremony? The solution is to organize a suggestive symbolic rite. And go to sign the official document during the days before or after the event. I talked about this theme in my article dedicated to Symbolic Rites. Go read it if you want to know everything about these emotional rituals!

Now let’s see the perfect locations to celebrate an outdoor wedding in Sicily – or hold a splendid reception!

Beach wedding: intimate and wild or comfortable?

How can you not think of Sicilian beaches as the stage of your big day? I will not go much into this topic, for which I refer you to my article dedicated to Beach Wedding in Sicily.

However, I want to show you at least two types of beach weddings.

  • Wedding on free, wild and – often – breathtaking beaches.
  • Wedding in an equipped beach resort.

Don’t worry: there will be no children in bathing suits and bathers to disturb you!

Let’s go step by step: if your dream includes a wedding on a wild and isolated beach, better to investigate the idea immediately with a wedding professional. It may not be as simple as it sounds!

We should consider wind, rough seas – and any storm surges in the days preceding the event – authorizations, protected natural and landscape areas, accessibility for suppliers, etc.

In short, run to read the article and contact me. In this case, there is no time to waste to get started with the preparations!

ps. By the way, if you are heading out on your wedding planning journey now, I recommend you read my article on 20 essential steps!

On the other hand, things get a little simpler if we talk about an equipped establishment.

In fact, not everyone knows that there are bathing establishments that offer themselves – or lend themselves – to the celebration of unforgettable beach weddings. It goes without saying that the event’s organization will be easier by choosing this solution. I am thinking, for example, of the available furnishing options. Moreover, these locations are usually easily accessible by suppliers.

In fact, not everyone knows that there are bathing establishments that offer themselves – or lend themselves – to the celebration of unforgettable beach weddings. It goes without saying that the event’s organization will be easier by choosing this solution. I am thinking, for example, of the available furnishing options. Moreover, these locations are usually easily accessible by suppliers.

Bride-drinking-a-cockatail-while-preparing-for-her wedding

Wedding in the wood in Sicily

We are used to seeing woodland weddings in mountainous areas or on exquisitely northern European Pinterest boards. But also in Sicily, it is possible to organize weddings in the wood. At least a couple of locations come to mind where it is possible to celebrate unforgettable symbolic rites outdoors in the nearby wooded areas of the property.

And the reception? It could be organized in the gardens of the location, perhaps with imperial tables and exquisitely natural decorations – wood, ornamental greenery, dried flowers – or, to offer a change of scene, inside. Even with the same convivial mode of the imperial table!

A suitable proposal for chic country weddings and for more elegant themes.

The wedding in the vineyard in Sicily

Did you think that vineyard weddings were limited to the well-known and beautiful locations in Tuscany or the Langhe? I’m delighted to tell you no!

Even in Sicily, we have fantastic estates with verdant vineyards ready to host your dream events. Large imperial tables could be perfect here too, perhaps with a rich table setting characterized by pastel-coloured drapes, coloured glassware, or finely painted porcelain. And good light design!


The terraces overlooking the sea

Last but not least in my heart – and in that of my couples who have chosen it – is the terrace option overlooking the sea. How to organize a wedding by the sea, avoiding the critical issues and bureaucracy? Celebrating the event in a location that has a terrace overlooking the sea. And I assure you that there are several with truly breathtaking views.

In this case, not only can the ritual take place outdoors, directly by the sea, but also the aperitif or the buffet will enjoy the same postcard background. A not insignificant advantage, especially in the first summer season, which grants long days with interminable muffled sunsets. The only flaw? The wind is often a constant. But nothing that cannot be handled by following the advice I have prepared for you below.

10 tips for an outdoor wedding without unexpected events

Now that we have explored beautiful places for an outdoor wedding in Sicily – and dealt with the bureaucratic aspects of the matter – I would like to point out some classic elements of the wedding that in the case of an outdoor event, will have to be adapted or at least considered. I’m sure you haven’t thought of some of them!

Dress, shoes and hairstyle for an outdoor wedding

If you have decided that the only limit to your love must be the sky … beware of your clothes! Especially for the bride, the choice of a huge dress could not go well with the characteristics of the various places we have just talked about. Weddings on the beach, on breezy terraces or in the woods could prove to be very unsuitable to be experienced with large chiffon dresses, with long tails, white gloves and a wide veil.

Likewise, it is better to opt for an updo: the wind in your hair, in this case, would be anything but a pleasure!

Also, pay attention to the heel, especially if you plan to celebrate your big day on a bright green lawn, in a clearing, or on the sand. Here we prefer thick heels, not too high and perhaps with plateau – in order not to run the risk of dirtying the toe of the shoe.


Season, timetable and set-ups

Other key elements to consider if you decide on an outdoor wedding in Sicily are the season, the time of the event and the arrangements. Why did I choose to address all these seemingly very different topics altogether? Because they have one common denominator, or rather two: heat and cold!

I’ll explain better. Organizing a ceremony or an outdoor reception in Sicily, in July or August, is a decision that must be managed correctly so that the guests – and the newlyweds – can enjoy a pleasant event without suffering too much from the high temperatures.

In particular, we can play on the timetable and on the set-ups. In the high summer season, it is better to choose the late afternoon for the ceremony and the evening for the reception. Maybe with a party that continues until late at night.

Also, be careful to create the appropriate shaded areas for all guests, especially if the aperitif or the buffet will be served outdoors while waiting for the bride and groom.

It seems obvious, right? Yet I still happen to hear of weddings celebrated on August 14 in which there was not enough space for everyone in the shade!

Even if the wedding is celebrated in locations particularly exposed to the wind, let’s remember to create sheltered areas and use the proper settings. It is better to avoid floating decorations, especially in glass, castles of glasses, paper napkins, and in general, all those non-fixed and unstable settings.

On the other hand, if the wedding is celebrated in the cooler seasons, it is adequate to anticipate mid-day and allow all guests to enjoy the warmth of the Sicilian sun.

Plan B in outdoor weddings in Sicily

Many couples, sometimes on the advice of some locations, fall under the belief that if you celebrate an outdoor wedding in Sicily in spring or summer, plan B is unnecessary. After all, in* insert a month of these seasons here * it never rains usually, doesn’t it?

And instead, without wanting to be the spoilsport and doing all the necessary conjuration, sometimes it rains…or there is a strong wind! And if you don’t have a plan B, it could be a real problem.

Having a location that offers an alternative plan in case of rain is an added value to your event. But if your place of the heart doesn’t offer this privilege, don’t worry. The wedding planner will prepare the appropriate settings – gazebos, themed umbrellas, waterproof covers – so that you can fully enjoy your day, even under a few drops of rain. Or, she can recommend an equally magnificent alternative location to welcome your yes for life.


The wedding bag: a must for outdoor weddings!

What is the wedding bag? As the word itself says, we are talking about a bag with everything you need to make your guests better enjoy your wedding. What do we put inside the wedding bag? It depends on the event, the number of guests, and the season!

  • Fans
  • Sunglasses
  • Slippers – flip-flops for the summer, in terry cloth for the winter
  • Tissues and wipes
  • Patches of different sizes
  • Mints
  • Shoeshine
  • Caps
  • Stoles
  • Mini-umbrellas
  • Spray for mosquitoes

In short, everything that, based on when and where your event takes place, could be useful to the guests to better appreciate your day. Especially if we are hosting an outdoor wedding! Think what it would be like to forget your sunglasses at a beach wedding in Sicily. I really don’t want to be you.


The management of spaces and entertainment in outdoor weddings

More space, more fun! Or not? The question of space management becomes all the more critical the more they expand. And it gets even more complex!

Having a lot of outdoor space means having to organize it so that the wedding is not scattered and all guests can find “their place” in a broad and convivial environment.

This is why it is essential to create thematic areas and divide the available square footage better. Especially in weddings where both the ceremony and reception happen in the same location! In this case, it is essential to design spaces that do not make the guest feel “always in the same place”.

And entertainment must also follow this line! Pay attention to the sound aspect. Not all locations have internal/external piped music in the case of mixed spaces. We may have to face the unpleasant problem of silence when passing from one environment to another!

Outdoor wedding in Sicily: a dream to plan

We understood that organizing an outdoor wedding is not that easy. But if guided by the right professional, it will become a beautiful journey!

Contact me to start organizing your dream together.

Tania Costantino – Full Service Wedding Planner in Sicily

Photo Credits: Giuseppe Santanastasio Photographer