Andrew Molera State Park: SPECIAL EVENTS/FILMING


The Big Sur Sector of California State Parks has resumed accepting applications for Elopement Special Event Permits and “Simple” Film Permits of ten (10) people or less for events/shoots in locations that allow for six (6) feet of physical distancing between the event/shoot and regular park visitors.

Events with more than ten (10) people are not permitted. 

"Complex" film shoots or shoots with more than ten (10) people will not be permitted.

Elopement Events:  Email the Big Sur Sector’s Special Event Office at with the park, location within the park you would like to use for an Elopement, and Elopement date to receive an updated 2020 Elopement Special Event Information Packet.  This packet includes COVID -19 updates regarding physical distancing requirements, new location limitations, and other health and safety requirements.

Film Permits:  Visit to find more information on the difference between a “Simple” and “Complex” Shoot.  You can also email the Big Sur Sector’s Film Permit Office at for more information.

Although we have resumed accepting applications for Elopements and Film Permits, applications or permits may be cancelled with little-to-no notice in response to COVID-19.

Please take this into consideration before submitting an application.

(Updated 08/01/2020)

Special Event Permits

The Big Sur Sector permits “elopement” style ceremonies at this park with an approved Special Event Permit. Elopements are suitable for those wishing to have a very small (10 people or less) low-key event in a rustic, outdoors location that must be hiked into.  There are no exclusive access sites at this park.  Receptions and/or catered events are not permitted at this park.  Seating is not available.  You may apply for an “elopement” permit up to six (6) months in advance.  Applications received less than thirty (30) days prior to the event date are subject to additional fees and restrictions.

The parking lot may be suitable for race start/finish areas or for an aid station location with the approval of a Large Event – Special Event Permit.  Large Event applications must be received at least sixty (60) days in advance of the event date in order to be considered.

Small hiking tours or photography workshops conducted by non-profit or for-profit entities may occur with the approval of an Annual Special Event Permit

For more information, download the information packet:
2020 Elopement Special Event Information Packet

Contact the Special Event Coordinator at 831-667-0507 or for availability, permit & fee information, Large Event permit information, or to apply for a Special Event Permit.

Motion Picture and Still Photography Permits

All film shoots at Andrew Molera State Park and all other California State Parks are required to have a valid film permit issued by the California Film Commission (CFC).  The term “film shoot” refers to both motion picture and still photography shoots.  The term “film” refers to both analog (actual physical film) and digital media.

The Big Sur Sector permits “Simple” shoots on Monday-Thursday, non-holiday dates.  “Complex” shoots are only permitted on Monday, Tuesday, or Thursday non-holiday dates.  Film shoots are not permitted on weekends (Friday-Sunday) nor on holiday dates.  Additionally, film shoots may not interfere with any park programs or previously scheduled events.

Applications must be received at least two (2) weeks prior to first shoot date in order to be considered by the Big Sur Sector.  Applications can be submitted online at the CFC’s website at

It is important for film makers and producers to note that RESTRICTION OF PUBLIC ACCESS IS PROHIBITED.  Closed sets, nudity, pornography, profanity, loud music, or any obscene activities are strictly prohibited on State Park Property.  Additionally, film shoot are not permitted in any closed or roped off areas.

Anyone wishing to conduct a film shoot at the beach in this park, please note the following:  You cannot drive to the beach at this park.  The hike to the beach is via a one (1) mile trail with negligible elevation gain.  Additionally, you must cross a narrow, seasonal footbridge over the Big Sur River to reach the beach.  This footbridge will not be in place between October and mid-June; therefore, reaching some areas of the park, including the beach, during this timeframe would require the cast and crew to cross through or ford the river.  River crossings may be prohibited during rain or if the river is running high and/or fast.

For more information about filming in a California State Park, including information on fees and the difference between a “complex” and “simple” shoot, please visit

To check availability, contact the Film Permit Office at 831-667-0507 or

To apply for a film permit with the CFC, please visit

For information regarding filming outside of a State Park in Monterey County, please visit the Monterey County Film Commission's website at

 More information: Film Production in California State Parks


Photograph courtesy of Sharon Pieniak