There’s no denying elopements have become popular as a wedding trend over the last few years. Between navigating sky-high prices and the hassle of hosting an event, more couples opt to elope and save themselves stress and money. But choosing the perfect place to elope can be a tall order!
While eloping used to be stigmatized since it was often secretive, today’s couples embrace eloping with a sense of creativity and fun. That means many seek unique and memorable destinations to exchange their vows.
If you’re looking for an incredible elopement location, you’ve come to the right place! Forget the traditional church or courthouse wedding – these unique locations will make your big day truly special. We’ve gathered a list of some of the most remarkable and unique places in the world to exchange your wedding vows. We’ve got epic wedding venue options for every kind of couple, from beautiful beaches and stunning mountaintops to epic city views. So pack your bags for an adventure as you prepare to say, “I do!”
Top Places to Elope In the USA
If you’d like to stay in the country, there are many epic elopement locations to consider. Whether you choose a romantic city, sandy beach, or rugged wilderness, these destinations will inspire you. Once you’ve found the perfect elopement dress, grab an officiant and a photographer and plan your ceremony at one of these spots in the United States:
Niagara Falls, New York
One of the most incredible places to elope is in front of a natural wonder like Niagara Falls. With its roaring waters and gorgeous scenery, it’s a unique and romantic setting for your ceremony. Become partners in life aboard a boat like Jim and Pam in The Office while overlooking the majestic falls.
Yosemite National Park
Another great option for nature-loving couples is Yosemite National Park. The park is home to breathtaking locations like Tunnel View or Glacier Point. Or, for an incredibly unique experience, you can exchange your vows at the top of Half Dome! All you’ll need is yourselves, your officiant, and perhaps a pre-made wedding bouquet.
Empire State Building, NYC
If you’re looking for an urban setting with an incredible view, consider getting married at the top of the Empire State Building or One World Trade Center. Not only will you get a bird’s eye view of New York City’s skyline, but you’ll feel absolutely on top of the world after you say your “I do’s!”
Central Park, NYC
Central Park is an attractive option with plenty of photo-worthy spots for a more intimate elopement in the city. Central Park offers endless possibilities for couples to consider, from beautiful gazebos and stunning bridges to lush gardens and forest backdrops.
San Francisco City Hall
For something a little more traditional but equally spectacular, try eloping at City Hall in San Francisco – it’s famous for being one of the most beautiful courthouses in the world. Spanning two city blocks, it is a landmark of architectural beauty. The inside and outside of this historic building are equally impressive and make for iconic photos.
Joshua Tree, California
For an otherworldly experience, get married in Joshua Tree National Park. With its surreal landscape of giant rocks and strange plants, it’s like nowhere else on Earth. Be sure to go during a cooler time of year. Also, opting for a weekday will ensure you have more privacy for epic photos!
Big Sur, California
Big Sur is an incredible place to elope. With its towering cliffs, wild coastline, and redwood forests, it’s one of the most beautiful places in the world. And there are plenty of hidden locations for an intimate ceremony.
The Redwoods, California
The giant redwoods are some of the oldest living things on Earth and provide a breathtaking backdrop for your elopement. There are plenty of spots to choose from, but we recommend Muir Woods for its incredible beauty.
Outer Banks, South Carolina
If you’re looking for a beach setting with a little bit of everything, the Outer Banks is the perfect place for you. With its sandy beaches, dunes, and lighthouses, it’s a sweet romantic destination for an elopement with a view of the ocean.
Maui is the perfect place to elope if you’re looking for a tropical paradise that will take your breath away. Its dazzling beaches, lush tropical forests, and spectacular waterfalls make it an enchanting place to exchange your vows.
Arches National Park in Moab, Utah
Arches National Park offers couples out-of-this-world landscapes that inspire intimacy and wonder. With its surreal landscape of giant rocks and strange plants, it’s like nowhere else on Earth.
The Grand Canyon
The iconic Grand Canyon‘s panoramic views make it an incredibly romantic setting for your ceremony. Whether you plan to wed with just the two of you or invite a small group of guests, your special day’s memories will be grand!
Zion National Park, Springdale, Utah
Another great option for nature-loving couples is Zion National Park. Its towering cliffs, waterfalls, and rivers make it a stunning location for an intimate ceremony. If an adventure elopement is your dream, you can pick from one of their many trails to find the perfect spot to exchange your vows.
City Park, New Orleans
For a more urban setting with exquisite architecture, consider getting married in New Orleans. Get photos in the French Quarter and exchange your vows in the beautiful City Park. With its live oak trees and Spanish moss, it’s a truly magical place for an elopement.
Palm Springs, California
Palm Springs is the ideal place to elope if you’re looking for a desert setting or a mod-vintage vibe. The towering palm trees, stunning mountain vistas, and kitschy hotels with mid-century modern style make Palm Springs a one-of-a-kind location for a fun and quirky ceremony.
Grand Teton National Park in Jackson Hole, Wyoming
Consider getting married in Grand Teton National Park if you want a majestic mountain backdrop for your elopement. Its towering peaks, wildflower fields, and pristine lakes make Grand Teton a gorgeous place to exchange your vows.
Glacier National Park in Montana
For an indelible experience, consider eloping in Glacier National Park. The forest, mountains, and lakes infuse it with a magical vibe. One important thing to note: to marry within the park, you will need a special-use permit, which you’ll need to apply for at least 30 days in advance.
Charleston, South Carolina
Charleston should be on your list if you’re looking for a romantic and historical setting. Its cobblestone streets and vintage architecture provide an enchanting backdrop for an intimate ceremony. The colorful buildings downtown are full of charm, or you can embrace a coastal vibe with the beach as your backdrop.
Los Angeles, California
Elope with the stars in Los Angeles. Secret spots abound either in and around Hollywood or in one of the city’s other diverse neighborhoods. There are iconic landmarks that provide memorable backdrops too. Consider saying “I do” on top of a mountain on one of LA’s iconic hiking trails.
Key West, Florida
Key West is the one of best place to elope for couples who want a laid-back and relaxed setting. With its white-sand beaches and turquoise waters, it’s a beautiful destination to get married. Spend your wedding day on the beach and book a sunset cruise for an intimate, romantic celebration.
If you’re looking for a desert setting with fantastic views, Sedona is ideal. Its red rocks and stunning sunsets make it a romantic destination for a personal ceremony. If you’re after something that feels special, the spiritual energy of Sedona is genuinely palpable.
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park, Gatlinburg, Tennessee
The Great Smoky Mountains National Park in Tennessee is a true hidden gem of an elopement destination. The misty mountains and pristine forests make it a breathtaking place to exchange your vows. You could even extend your stay for a mountainside honeymoon by booking lodging at a darling cabin where you can cozy up with your new spouse.
Las Vegas, Nevada
And last but not least, if you’re looking for a fun and festive elopement location, look no further than Las Vegas! There are countless fun and unique places to get married, from the top of the Eiffel Tower at Paris Las Vegas to a gondola ride at the Venetian. So whatever your style, there’s a wedding venue in Vegas that’s perfect for you.
The Best Places to Elope Abroad
Of course, no list of epic elopement locations would be complete without the City of Love – Paris. Consider several iconic spots, like the Eiffel Tower or Arc de Triomphe. (If you prefer Notre Dame Cathedral, be sure to check the progress on its reconstruction). Or, for something a little more low-key, you can exchange your vows in front of the beautiful Luxembourg Gardens.
For a magical and enchanting setting, consider eloping in Dublin, Ireland. Its rolling green hills and historic castles make it a romantic place to get married that feels like something out of a fairytale!
Edinburgh is the perfect place to elope if you’re looking for a breathtaking setting. The medieval architecture and spectacular city views make Edinburgh an ideal destination for a quaint and picturesque wedding.
Isle of Skye, Scotland
If you’re looking for a wild and remote setting, the Isle of Skye in Scotland is the perfect place for you. Its rugged coastline and majestic mountains make it an incredible place to elope. You’ll feel like you’re on top of the world, and not just because of the higher elevation!
For a romantic and panoramic setting, Tuscany is hard to beat. With its rolling hills in breathtaking countryside, vineyards, and medieval villages, it’s the perfect place to exchange your vows– you’ll never want to leave! Couples from all over the world choose Tuscany for their elopements.
If you’re dreaming of stunning sights and incredible sunsets, Santorini is the perfect place for you. Its whitewashed buildings and blue-domed churches make it a truly magical place to elope. No wonder it’s the most popular wedding destination in the Greek Islands!
The Dolomites, Italy
For a breathtaking backdrop for your wedding ceremony, the Dolomites in Italy are hard to beat. Their towering peaks and dazzling views make them an awesome place to exchange your vows with your new spouse.
Lake Louise, Alberta, Canada
Say you’re looking for a picturesque setting with no muss or fuss. In that case, Lake Louise in Alberta, Canada, is the perfect place for you. Its turquoise waters and towering mountains make it an incredible place for a quaint and intimate ceremony.
Machu Picchu, Peru
One of the most incredible places to elope internationally is Machu Picchu – it’s an absolutely captivating setting for your ceremony. The background is unlike anything you’ll see in the world – perfect for an adventurous couple who wants a side of adrenaline with their marriage vows.
The Perfect Place to Elope
There are endless possibilities for where to elope, so pick a location that speaks to you as a couple and get ready for an unforgettable experience! This alternative wedding style is growing in popularity – there are even specialty elopement photographers who focus their craft on capturing epic, adventurous marriage ceremonies!
Choose one of these fantastic places to elope and start planning your dream wedding today!
This article originally appeared on Wealth of Geeks.
Jessica Bishop is the founder of TheBudgetSavvyBride.com, the #1 online resource to help couples all across the world plan a beautiful wedding on a budget they can actually afford. Jessica is known as a Budget Wedding Expert and has shared her money-saving tips and tricks with outlets such as Good Morning America, BRIDES, Glamour, Cosmopolitan, Huffington Post, Refinery 29, and more. She’s also appeared as David Tutera’s featured expert at Your Wedding Experience bridal shows. Jessica’s book, The Budget-Savvy Wedding Planner & Organizer, is a best-seller with over 150,000 copies sold.