Planning your wedding in Dorset

Far away from the busy hubbub of England's big cities lies the peaceful and rural county of Dorset. Here, you can bury your feet in golden sand in the seaside resort town of Bournemouth. Dorset wedding venues are some of the best, hidden gems in the country. With beautiful landscapes and panoramic views on offer across the county. If you're getting married in Dorset or are considering it then let our guide below help you with your planning. recommendations, tips and advice from local suppliers and some local, real wedding inspiration.

Where to start?

1 You can't get far without first working out your wedding budget. Try and get a rough idea of what you can afford. Put this number into our handy, free budget calculator to get a guide on how this might be split.
2 Now that you're all set with your budget, it's time to get an idea of the guest numbers. You may need to go back and revisit your budget depending on numbers. Our free guest tracker in the planning tools section will help you store all names and details.
3 Next, it's time to find your dream venue. There's serious choice on offer in Dorset. From coastal, beach venues to country houses, there's something for everyone. You may need to book a separate venue for the ceremony.
4 Finding the dream wedding dress can take a while and there's no need to feel rushed. Check out our wedding dress section to browse 1000s of designers and styles. Get an idea for what you like and then see which boutiques near you stock the designs you like.

Dorset wedding venues

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Perched on the clifftop with sweeping views of Bournemouth Bay and its seven miles of golden sands, the 4* Bournemouth Highcliff Marriott Hotel is the ultimate setting for your seaside wedding.
Bournemouth Highcliff Marriott

Wedding dress stockists

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First things you need to do when planning a wedding

Free planning tools
5 Now that you've booked your venue it's time to find your other suppliers. We recommend starting with local, Dorset-based photographers. They might be a bit pricier than you'd expect but they're well worth it!
6 If food and drink is not in the venue package and this is something you need to source separately then it's worth getting your catering sorted. Plus, you get to enjoy all the tasting. Fortunately, Dorset has plenty of great catering suppliers and there's even more choice in nearby Hampshire.
7 So you know the date of your delightful Dorset wedding! It's time to send save the dates to all your guests. If you're sending physical save the dates then check out our fantastic stationery section for some great suppliers and designs.
8 Are you have a band or DJ? 82% of our couples say they are most looking forward to the party part of the wedding. This is often the most memorable part of the wedding for your guests. You may need to look outside of Dorset for more choice when it comes to musicians.


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Amazing face is a professional team of hair and make up specialists who believe in making our Brides look ‘naturally you but a little more exquisite ' we aim to enhance, not mask and make you look and feel absolutely wonderful on what is your dream day.
Amazing Face Dorset

Hair & make up artists

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9 Dorset has an abundance of fantastic local florists. Can you get them to incorporate local flowers into the floral arrangements? It's always fun to include flowers that grow locally.
10 Hair and makeup just for the bride or your bridesmaids too? Get your trial booked in (you'll have to pay for this) so you've got an idea of the whole look on the big day. Hair and makeup artists are usually willing to travel so may worth looking at suppliers in Hampshire too.
11 Cake! Lots of yummy cake makers in Dorset and just like the catering before, this is your chance to get stuck in with the tastings. Find a local Devon-based supplier to ensure your cake doesn't have to travel too far on the day.
12 While we've only picked a handful of supplier categories above, we recommend you use our checklist planning tool to make sure you have everything ticked off. Remember, you'll also need to look at attire for the groom, groomsmen and bridesmaids along with Venue styling decor and favours.


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For a further breakdown of local suppliers, we suggest that you search the venues and suppliers in the following regions:

Bournemouth, Ferndown, Winterborne, Wareham, Evershot, Upwey, Poole, Kingston, Durweston, Wimborne, Beaminster, Lyme Regis, Christchurch, Dorchester, Kimmeridge, Oborne, Weymouth, Highcliffe, Swanage, Charmouth, Sherborne, Bridport

Nearby wedding locations