North Carolina is home to some of the most romantic wedding venues and the most outstanding panoramic views of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Whether you’re just looking for a fantastic outdoor location to host your ceremony of virtually any size, or you’re the kind of couple whose love comes alive in nature: Asheville and Glenville, North Carolina are absolutely the location for you.
Elopements are on the rise in western North Carolina, and for a good reason! This beautiful part of the state boasts many great areas to get married along the Smokey Mountains and the eastern continental divide. Get married outside in God’s own country; all you need is a willing heart, a marriage license, and a great photographer to capture it!
Elopements aren’t “Running Away” Anymore
Gone are the days when an elopement meant running off without the parent’s permission to Vegas to get married. Couples today choose elopements intentionally because they have a different idea of what a wedding day should look like.
Generally, elopements are classified as just the two of you and someone to marry you, but the meaning has evolved over the years, and some people do have a few guests in attendance. For the most part, elopements are defined as less than 10 people in attendance.
Why Do People Choose to Elope in North Carolina?
If you’ve spent any time in this biodiverse state, you would quickly see that it’s one of the prettiest places on earth. Okay, I might be a bit biased, but where else can you get amazing mountain views, gorgeous waterfalls then and drive a few hours to one of the most beautiful coastlines in the US?
How to Legally Elope in North Carolina
- You both must be 18 years of age or have written parental consent
- You need to apply in person at the County Register of Deeds, whether you live here in another state
- This license is valid for 60 days after you obtain it
- Same-sex marriages are recognized in North Carolina
- You will need a valid ID, birth certificate, and also your social security number
- Marriages may be performed by an ordained minister of any religious denomination, a minister authorized by a church, a magistrate, or a federally or state-recognized Indian Nation or tribe
- Marriages performed by those ordained online are not currently recognized by the state
- Along with your officiant, you must have two witnesses sign your marriage certificate
- Cost for a marriage license is $60; most registrars only accept cash
- You or the officiant must return the marriage license to the Registry of Deeds within 10 days of being signed
Many couples skip the red tape by getting married legally by a judge or in the courthouse and then doing their elopement vows as their solemn commitment to each other.
Asheville Elopement Photography
When you’re intentionally choosing the person to marry and the place you want to get married, it only makes sense that you’ve got to care about who you hang out with on the day you get married. The couples that hire me want a photographer who not only takes great photos but is fun to be around!
I love helping my elopement couples find just the right spot. If you’re not familiar with the area, I can give you a ton of ideas on locations depending on the look you want and how remote you want to go.
In fact, on my days off, you’ll mostly find me hiking around the Asheville area, scouting out new spots for photos, taking landscape photos, and enjoying the beauty and serenity of the mountains.
Sit on top of the continental divide and take in these views! This amazing property borders the Pisgah National Forest and is absolutely meticulously maintained. Open-air concept, beautifully decorated, and the outdoor decks and views go on forever. Take in the sunset in the hot tub, or do yoga or pilates above the clouds. This property would be the perfect place to come back after your celebration if you have a few close friends or family who are involved with your elopement. The home sleeps up to 12 people and can be rented by the week, but I’d suggest longer if you can because you’re not going to want to leave this peaceful place.
This historic hunting lodge nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains is situated on 45 private acres with an elevation of 2860 feet. This recently renovated lodge is not only beautifully decorated, but it can also sleep up to 12 and is within minutes of many local attractions such as Pisgah National Forest, Chimney Rock State Park, and Lake Lure. The outdoor living space is the star in this location, with many different areas to sit outside and take in the views. Sit around the fire pit, or chill in the many different hammocks and swinging chairs located in areas to get away and read. You don’t even need to leave the property if you love nature; there are hiking trails all around the area!
Luxurious comfort and stunning views are the name of the game in this quaint cottage just 30 minutes outside Asheville. This getaway is located in Gerton, North Carolina, and has over 125 raving reviews about the location.
Beautiful decks to take in the views over Hickory Nut Gorge, a hot tub to soak in, and three bedrooms that sleep 6 people comfortably. A great choice for people who love day trips but also love sleeping in comfortable beds! This would be a great location to get away from it all with a few other couples and enjoy hiking right from the backyard. I have hiked 3 of the trails and really enjoyed them.
Want to keep it cozy and keep it all about you? This cottage is a great choice for just the two of you. Located in Asheville but tucked away from the world, you’ll enjoy spectacular views of both downtown and the Blue Ridge Parkway.
Amenities make this feel like a home, with books to take and read and handmade soap by a local artisan. Sunsets are spectacular here, grab a bottle of wine, sit out on the porch, grill out, and take it all in. Close enough to nature if you want to hike, or just a few minutes ride to the downtown Asheville nightlife.
Another great location for just the two of you, this cottage is a place that will welcome you after your elopement celebration. Only 5 miles from downtown and the Blue Ridge Parkway, the hosts have made sure it feels homey and welcoming, even providing breakfast items for your first day.
Relax outside and soak in the hot tub after a long day of hiking, or feed the koi in the pond and listen to the sounds of waterfalls. Expansive outdoor deck to take in the views and enjoy. The best of all worlds, secluded but close by to so many activities in Asheville. My friends Kathleen and Keith stayed here, and we did her maternity shots in the yard behind it.
If you’re looking for a highly accessible (no steep or windy roads) and an easy drive from Asheville to stay, then this beautiful luxury home is a great choice. Not only do you get great views of the Blue Ridge Mountains, but you can also fish, swim, and hike right on the property. 5 bedrooms, 3 outdoor patios, a pool all to yourself, hot tub, fire-pit, Game room, 2 stone wood-burning fireplaces, and a fully appointed kitchen. Located just off the Blue Ridge Parkway and less than 30 minutes to many attractions in Asheville and the surrounding area.
Tree Houses of Serenity - Multiple Houses - Sleeps 4+ $280+/night
Get your inner child on and stay in a treehouse! This isn’t built with cardboard boxes and sticks; this amazing treehouse can sleep up to 4. Built right into the native towering white oaks, you’ll get to look out over picturesque views and enjoy the stars at night. This is a special place if you love treehouses, but it’s built for comfort with all modern amenities, and the layout makes it easy to navigate. Truly unique! It feels a world way, but only a 10-minute drive to Asheville, grocery stores, and eateries within a 5-minute drive. My friend Trent and Stacy captured a wedding here. Place is epic!
Dream of staying in an actual log cabin? Sleeping accommodations for up to 5, and many amenities like a covered porch, open-air deck, and 2 ponds for catch and release fishing. This spacious property is seated on 45 acres and feels like it’s a world away from the hustle and bustle.
Enjoy the quiet on a paddleboat, walk the nature trails all around the property, or if you love to canoe, Lake James is a short 15-minute drive away. Enjoy the evening around the fire pit, roasting smores and watching the stars shine above.
This cozy farmhouse is in the middle of the mountains in Spruce Pine, North Carolina, surrounded by a wildflower meadow and pond. You’ll have the whole place to yourself to explore, and the farmhouse can sleep up to 4 comfortably. Though the farmhouse was built in the 1940s, it has been fully updated and has a great kitchen and many places to relax.
The host has a list of all the local places to shop or get outdoors in nature; nearby, you can golf, hike, fish, and mine for gems. Or you can relax and just enjoy the views and wander around this property and enjoy all the 4 acres has to offer, including tons of wildlife and native berries to pick.
If you want a bigger yurt to accommodate up to 4 people, this luxury yurt at Sugar Creek Sanctuary could be the yurt you are looking for! The mandala-inspired decor leaves you feeling serene and peaceful, and there’s plenty of amenities in this fully climate-controlled 716 square foot space.
From the spacious deck, you’ll hear sounds of the stream, take in the peaceful views, or dance under the stars at night. About a 25 minute ride into Asheville if you need supplies; otherwise, you’ll have all you need to commune with nature and each other in this out-of-the-way spot.
Located in Little Switzerland, North Carolina this cottage is cozy and comfy and very walkable to many great places to visit. Nearby you can explore Mt. Mitchell, Linville, Falls, and Blowing Rock. You’ll have private access to the entire cabin.
Sit outside and sip coffee or wine and take in the enchanted garden and the native trees and flowers, or use it as a place to wind down after a full day of hiking, golfing, biking, boating; all the best things North Carolina has to offer!
Have you always been curious about a tiny house? Love goats and alpacas? Then look no more because this beautifully designed tiny house wood cottage is ready to welcome you, and you can even pet and feed the animals.
It feels like you’re far away from everything, yet it’s just about a 15-minute drive to the heart of Asheville. Explore during the day, come back and relax on the deck, dip your toes in the nearby creeks, and relax and sleep with the sounds of the animals and nature around you.
An amazing property that sleeps up to 7 is located in Asheville, just a few miles from the Blue Ridge Parkway. You can enjoy the picturesque views but still stay in a modern, upscale property. This property looks like it should be featured on the cover of Farmhouse Chic Magazine. Optimized for both indoor and outdoor, you can take advantage of the well-appointed kitchen for group meals or take it outside for grilling and chilling around the fire pit. Enjoy the pastoral views, and then head into Asheville less than 5 minutes away.
Located in Boone, North Carolina, this home is filled with woodsy furniture and curated folk art. It’s quiet and isolated but only 5 minutes from downtown Boone. 700 square feet of charm also means that you can say “sorry, just us!” and make this A-frame getaway all yours. Sit outside on the back deck, take in the mountain breezes and fresh air, read a book, and do some birdwatching. The sounds of the creek will lull you to sleep at night in your cozy hideaway.
4000 feet up, and the views of the Rocky Mountains do not quit. This log cabin-style home sleeps 4 comfortably and has all the amenities from a huge hot tub outside to a chef-style kitchen. It’s well away from the hustle and bustle of town, but you can still get to Asheville within an hour or 30 minutes to Bryson City. Zipline or go rafting at the Nantahala Outdoor center, or hike all over the Great Smoky Mountains. There’s good fishing nearby at the Fontana Dam, and if you’re into nightlife Harrahs Casino is nearby. Bring a good 4 wheel drive vehicle to access the home; you’re in the mountains now!
Booking Your Elopement Photographer
If you’re planning to have your elopement on a Saturday, then you need to book as soon as possible because these prime dates fill up quickly, especially during the summer months.
If your plans are more flexible, then I highly suggest getting married on any day of the week, NOT a weekend. You won’t be fighting day-trippers hiking or the traffic on the narrow mountain roads, and you’ll be able to have a more relaxing time all around.
We can do a sunrise elopement, a sunset elopement, or whatever your vibe is, we can make it happen. From amazing waterfalls to panoramic views of blue-layered mountains, there is something for everyone here in North Carolina.
Ready to adventure together? Get in touch and tell me about your upcoming elopement! Fill out the form below!