Not everyone thinks “eloping” when dreaming of their ideal “I do”. But for others, nothing is more appealing than running off with your honey and coming back as man and wife.
There’s a stigma surrounding eloping, that you are going to end up next to an Elvis imposter in some cheesy church on the Las Vegas strip, but that doesn’t have to be the case at all. Not to say that isn’t an option if you want it, but there are many, many other elopement destinations that are sure to make for an incredible backdrop to your wedding. Not only is eloping typically far cheaper than planning a full-blown wedding at home, but these elopement ideas give you a stress-free, adventurous, and romantic wedding day just for the two of you.
When deciding where to elope, take into consideration the following 10 destinations. From wine country, to Vegas, to the mountains, to the beach, there’s bound to be something on this list of the best places to elope that will satisfy all your matrimonial desires.
1. Napa Valley, California
For you winos, the incredible scenery, beautiful weather, and surrounding vineyards make this an excellent location for an intimate ceremony. Kick up the romance factor by extending your trip and enjoy a ‘mini-moon’ by staying at one of the many bed and breakfasts located on wineries throughout the Valley. This is a great option for those of you who are looking for a bit of intimacy, as you can get married on the patio of a romantic cottage or within the vineyards of your favorite winery.
An added bonus is that you can bring back some of your favorite bottles to enjoy with friends and family, allowing them to feel like they were part of your special day after the fact!
2. Niagara Falls, NY
Not just for tourists, Niagara Falls are arguably the most famous waterfalls in the world, and makes for an exceptional backdrop for your vows. As one of the most mesmerizing places in the world, your special day will be made even more special as you either stand next to the falls, or say your vows from an overlooking helicopter or hot air balloon. Not only is it romantic and spontaneous, but definitely one of most memorable elopement destinations in the world.
3. San Francisco, California
This Bay Area city has a variety of wonderful locations for those interested in eloping ocean side or elsewhere within the city. With options that will include a view of Golden Gate Bridge, the ocean, or one of the many exquisite parks and gardens, San Francisco is one of the best places to elope. Regardless of where you are in the U.S., airfare won’t break the bank and you will have a ton of entertainment, dining, and yummy libation options at your fingertips.
4. Maui, Hawaii
If white sandy beaches are one of your wedding stipulations, Maui may be just the place for you. With beaches that go one for miles, crystal clear water, and beautiful sunsets, this is a perfect location to say your vows.
Not only will you have a picturesque location for your wedding, but you won’t have to wait for your honeymoon! Also, because Hawaii’s weather is pretty perfect year-round, you won’t be limited to a particular time of year.
5. Las Vegas, Nevada
When you are brainstorming elopement destinations, Vegas is sure to be at or near the top of list. With more than 50 wedding chapels along the Strip alone, it’s easy to see why this is the case. Your elopement options in Vegas are endless, from getting married in one of the premiere hotels to a drive-thru, there’s something for everybody! With dirt cheap airfare and awesomely affordable hotels, it’s hard to argue with Vegas as one of the best places to elope.
6. Lake Tahoe
If you are looking for both the beach and mountains, Lake Tahoe may be just the right fit. Offering the best of both worlds, this is a prime location for those looking for a headache free (Nevada famously offers same-day marriage licenses) elopement with gorgeous mountain views. From five star resorts to romantic cabins, Lake Tahoe is sure to make your wedding day as memorable as any.
7. Bali, Indonesia
For those looking for the best places to elope outside of the U.S., Bali should be in the running. While getting to the island may be a bit less convenient than other options, it will most definitely be worth it.
One of the most romantic destinations on our list, Bali is made special not just because of its incredible beaches and balmy weather, but because of the Balinese people. While it may be a bit more complicated to elope in Indonesia than the U.S., you won’t be disappointed by the island ambiance and native Balinese touches.
8. Jackson Hole, Wyoming
A celebrity hotspot, this charming mountain town has some of the most amazing mountain views you’ll ever see, making for an unforgettable wedding day location. This elopement destination is perfect for the outdoorsy couple, as it’s nestled in the Teton Mountains and a stones throw from Yellowstone National Park.
9. New Orleans, Louisiana
New Orleans really is the Big Easy, especially when it comes to marriage laws. Louisiana allows out-of-state residents to get married without a waiting period, making it a perfect elopement destination.
With more live music than you know what to do with, excellent cuisine, and an overall fun atmosphere, this is a great wedding spot for those looking for a bit of Southern charm intermixed with vows.
10. The Greek Islands
Perhaps the most expensive (but still affordable) elopement destination on our list, the Cyclades are comprised of roughly two dozen islands in the gorgeous Aegean. Boasting some of the bluest seas in the world, these islands are an excellent spot for the world travelers who are seeking romance, intimacy, and an adventure on their wedding day. While there is a waiting period for eloping, if you are looking to elope and don’t mind planning in advance, this dream location will be worth the wait.
Eloping is what you make of it. If you want it to be more planned out and thought through, it can be. On the other hand, if you are looking for spontaneity, there’s options for that too. Either way, the best places to elope will be filled with romance and you will be able to look back on your wedding day with a smile and the knowledge that it is a memory for just you and your spouse.