When couples come to us wanting to elope, the biggest concern they have is how to make their elopement special out of a fear that they may regret eloping. They also often wonder what to do on their elopement day. We here at Celebrate Again exist to help you realize that eloping is a celebration more magical than you could ever imagine because the possibilities are almost limitless. This is why we’re so excited to bring you this list of 25+ fun ideas for how to make your elopement special and magical!
Create All Day Fun
Table of Contents
- 1 Create All Day Fun
- 2 Go on Adventures
- 3 Go for a Dip
- 4 Create a Playlist
- 5 Include Cultural Traditions
- 6 Craft a Unique Ceremony
- 7 Travel Some Place Unique
- 8 Practice Yoga or Meditate
- 9 Read Letters from Loved Ones
- 10 Have A First Look
- 11 Get Ready Together
- 12 Invite Someone You Love
- 13 Create a Custom Scent
- 14 Start a Tradition
- 15 Create a Secert Handshake
- 16 Find a Special Beverage
- 17 Include Meals
- 18 Eat Dessert
- 19 Decorate Your Spaces
- 20 Include Unique Elopement Day Activities
- 21 Have A First Dance
- 22 Chill Out
- 23 Plan A Surprise
- 24 Ride in Style
- 25 Wear Fabulous Clothes
- 26 Wear Shoes You Love
- 27 Stay Some Place Cool
- 28 Free Elopement Wedding Checklist PDF Download
Most couples eloping only think about exchanging vows and maybe dinner after, but what if your elopement wedding day was more about creating the most epic day of your marriage and less about the formalities of getting married? What if the day or even the days surrounding your ceremony were full of all your favorite things, having the time of your life, setting the tone for the beginning of your marriage together?
I’m not going to lie here, I wish my husband and I would have done this a decade ago. Hey, Emmy here, the CEO behind Celebrate Again. I believe that wedding days should be about couples, their stories and loves, not just saying, “I do” and signing a marriage license, but about setting the tone for the rest of your lives together. So, why not start off with an epic adventure? Wondering what else you could do? Keep reading–I’m so excited to share ALL the ideas I have for you two!
Go on Adventures
Eloping couples like yourself seem to be living life a bit differently, wanting to really experience the most out of life which is why we encourage all of our couples to think about some of their bucket lists and tackle a few items there to celebrate their wedding day!
Ever wanted to hot air balloon ride? Why not exchange your vows floating in the sky?
Ever wanted to go snowmobiling through the backcountry of a mountainous landscape? Find a secluded spot to dive into another world exploring someplace you may never have known existed.
Hike through a forest or stunning trail. Maybe one that ends with a beach view and waterfall?
Visit a stunning vista that will make your jaw drop.
Go for a Dip
Water or mountains, it’s always a topic of conversation around here. Many couples struggle to decide between the two: a beach location for their elopement, or a mountain location (Which is why we love serving Colorado, Oregon and Hawaii, where either of these are options are accessible within the same day!) But what if you enjoyed some swimming on your wedding day, hitting up a hot spring or rowing out to a gorgeous view, or just getting on the water?
Create a Playlist
Considering all your five senses on your wedding day experience can truly make it magical. Take some time to create a playlist for your day that you can return to as you look back on the day. Because isn’t most music we love tied to an amazing memory we have listening to it? Most couples only think about music for a first dance, but since you’re doing things differently, why not make it more epic by making the whole day full of music you love?
Include Cultural Traditions
While you may be breaking the cultural norm, that doesn’t mean you can’t borrow traditions you particularly love to craft a day that’s uniquely you. Are you drawn to Turkish culture? Create a Sofreh Aghd (a gathering of items that represent an element of the couple’s new life and marriage together which could include items from family or friends too). Consider planting a time capsule together, literally tying the knot, or practice handfasting, a tradition from the Scottish. Dive into any heritage you want to find traditions that fit you.
Craft a Unique Ceremony
Travel Some Place Unique
While you certainly can get married at home or in your home state, it is also crazy fun to travel someplace unique to make your elopement special. We particularly love these locations in the U.S. because of their unique landscapes that are accessible by most people, especially if you’ve got a small crew eloping with you.
Known for its winter wonderland and world-renowned skiing (especially in Telluride), Colorado also has alpine lakes, sweeping mountain views like Rocky Mountain National Park, and spots like Buena Vista, a true hidden gem with its own modest waterfalls. Check out our best places to elope in Colorado guide for some ideas!
The forgotten state by most Americans who think Texas and Arizona touch. It’s called the Land of Enchantment for a reason with its stunning white sands, alpine lakes (if you know where to look), Sandia Mountains in Albuquerque, dormant volcanos (see this desert elopement), ancient ruins, and uncrowded desert vibes. It’s one very unique place to go, full of rich history too.
Practice Yoga or Meditate
Do you practice yoga or meditate daily? Why not include your sacred practices into your wedding day experience? And get this friend, I’m a yoga teacher too. So if you’re looking for a custom-made yoga class to connect you two on your elopement wedding day I can do just that for you! Learn more about our Celebrate Again yoga to get a taste!
Read Letters from Loved Ones
If your family or bestie cannot attend, have them write you a handwritten letter you open on your wedding day. Make sure to have your photographer document you opening your letters so they can see your reactions–I’m sure they’ll appreciate being able to see your reaction later!
Not close to anyone who’s not already coming? Write each other a letter. Most vows are promises, but what if you started your day reading a letter to your beloved before you saw each other in person? Not sure what to write? Check out our love quotes for her guide to help you get started!
Have A First Look
Get Ready Together
If you don’t want to do a first look together, consider helping each other get ready, zipping up each other’s dresses or buttons. It can be a really sweet intimate time!
Invite Someone You Love
Including a few special people is one of the biggest pieces of advice I get from couples who eloped in a more old fashioned way, such as at a courthouse with only a judge and one witness present. In many places, you’ll need at least two witnesses, so why not include two close friends, family, or a small crew to celebrate your beautiful day. Why not also include your pups?
Pro tip: Did you know in the state of Colorado your dogs can be your witnesses and sign your marriage license with their paw prints? Say what?! Yep, you don’t need witnesses in Colorado you can self solemnize (aka no officiant or witnesses needed) so your dogs can sign just for fun! Check out our How To Elope In Colorado guide for more info!
Create a Custom Scent
Start a Tradition
Starting your own tradition is a great way to give your elopement a special touch. At some point on your wedding day, start a tradition of your own. Here are some ideas to get you started:
- Maybe create a jar that every year you’ll add one thing to it that symbolized your year together. Collecting something sustainable on your wedding day like a rock.
Leave No Trace Warning: Don’t pick wildflowers on your wedding day unless you are on your own private property. Most take decades to grow back.
- Take a photo holding your parent’s wedding photo or your baby picture, then the next year hold your wedding day photo and keep adding on each year.
- Start an adventure journal together. Each year add a photo from the year along with an expert. Yep, you can totally create your own “Up” adventure book.
Create a Secert Handshake
I know this sounds SO elementary but how fun would it be during your ceremony to include a secret handshake.
Ok ok, I know maybe I watched “The Parent Trap” a few too many times growing up, but I think partners are also best friends, and best friends should have their own secret handshake.
Find a Special Beverage
Do you love wine, scotch, beer, or even sparkling water? Maybe you could splurge a little to buy your favorite, try that brand you’ve had your eye on but just couldn’t justify the price before, and let it be a part of making your elopement special.
Leave No Trace Pro Tip: We know how big those champagne popping photos are, so please be mindful of leaving champagne on trails or outdoors were it can attract wild life to the trails and endanger everyone. Instead opt for spraying carbonated water and drink your champagne.
Whatever dessert you love, include it on your elopement wedding day: cupcakes, ice cream, cookies, pie, brownies, pineapple. Enjoy indulging your favorite treats, because why not?
P.S. Some of these photos are recipes over on our yoga site if you have a hankering. Click the photo to get the recipe.
Storytime: My husband and I personally didn’t like cake, so we had cookies at our wedding, to which I’m ashamed to say no one ate because we didn’t “cut the cookies.” So after our wedding I then proceeded to eat 6 gallon-sized bags of cookies over the next three months single-handedly. Hi, my name is Emmy and I’ve had a cookie problem since age 3. 😉
I even hear out in Portland, Oregon there is a new restaurant in town called The Yard (originally from Alabama) that makes milkshakes with brownies on top. Talk about a special treat for your elopement day!
Decorate Your Spaces
While you may not want to decorate the beautiful outdoor location you chose to elope at, you may want to decorate where you have a mini dinner or reception after with family or friends. Include a centerpiece from a florist, or go a little crazy with balloons, streamers, twinkle lights, or laser star lights.
You could even include “just married” tags hanging off a hiking backpack, your car, or any other fun places!
Want to decorate but not sure where to start? Consider hiring a stylist to help you create a unique picnic or reception space just for the two of you or your small crew!
Include Unique Elopement Day Activities
Do you love backyard movies? Why not rent a projector and screen your favorite movie as a part of your reception.
- Do you love picnics? Why not picnic for lunch or dinner on your elopement day? Bring in some flowers, your favorite books, pillows, and make it magical!
- Buy some yard games and play with your family and friends.
- Start a fire and roast some s’mores. Maybe bring your guitar to play and sing along or hire a local musician to serenade you!
- Visit a local food truck for one of your meals.
- Commission a local artist to paint or draw a scene from your day.
- Go on a tandem bike ride.
- Ride the train or bus in your wedding clothes, enjoy all the congratulations.
- Play with nature confetti, grabbing dried leaves and throwing them up in the air (biodegradable confetti is important, especially to leave no trace)
- Ditch your phones and bring a disposable camera to document the day from your own point of view as well as hiring a professional.
- Play your favorite board game.
Ask your local vendors about unique things to do in the area that you could include on your wedding day.
Pro tip: All of our couples get handpicked activity recommendations from us from our years of exploring and living in all the places we serve!
Have A First Dance
But instead of having to be the center of attention in a large crowd, enjoy dancing under the stars or in the comfort of your hotel or romantic stay! Don’t forget a Bluetooth speaker and portable charger to make it feel more special! Downloading your song ahead of time can also make sure you can play your song if you decide to dance in the middle of nowhere adventuring!
The best thing my husband and I do anytime we go on a trip just the two of us is to plan for some good old fashioned chill time. While having a day packed full of adventures is crazy fun, it goes by so fast. While it’s hard to want to slow down on your wedding day, remember taking time to soak it all up will make it that much better.
Here are some chill ideas for your elopement:
- Enjoy some hammock time together
- Take a mid-day nap (if you need help falling asleep try my free yoga Nidra for sleep guide to help you drift off fast!)
- Read your favorite books
- Read through our romantic love quotes list
- Soak up the scenery
- Sit by a fire
- Sit on a patio or deck
- Get in a hot tub or hot spring
- Take a bubble bath together
- Hangout in bed surrounded by candles or flower petals
- Get a couples massage
- Do a puzzle together
- Cook together
- Write down your favorite moments from the day together
- Practice yoga or meditation
Plan A Surprise
- Do you love to sing? Write or sing them a song!
- Do they have something they are collecting a lot of? Gift them with something on your wedding day.
- Do they have a favorite candy? Write them a candy note card using the candy as the words to write a silly phrase. Just search candy cards for a list of ideas!
- Write them sticky notes and have them left everywhere after they got to sleep so they can see them when they get up to get ready.
Let your creativity run wild to make the day extra special for your beloved.
Ride in Style
Pro tip: We are excited to partner with Native Jeeps to help our Colorado couples arrive at remote locations outside of Idaho Springs where they’ll guide you and you get to drive your own 4×4 jeep on trails that fit your comfortability levels!
Wear Fabulous Clothes
Since you’re not splurging on guest gifts or catering for 400 why not feel fabulous in what you wear or include two outfits! We have a great elopement wedding dress guide that can help you navigate what to wear!
Consider what activities you may be doing throughout the day. If you’re hiking or adventuring consider what type of dress you can move well in or if you’re wanting to do that in another part of the day consider two outfits. You could even have a wedding day swimsuit for when you get in that hot spring or hot tub later!
Wear Shoes You Love
Stay Some Place Cool
Consider renting a really badass rental property for your elopement and crew. Check out our VRBO Colorado wedding venue guide for ideas in Colorado!
Many of our couples like to make their elopement special by turning their elopement into their honeymoon also and enjoying a luxury stay someplace!
Schedule Your Free Elopement Consult
We would adore coming alongside you to help you navigate all the rules, permits and locations around your wedding experience as your guides and photographers.
We believe that your wedding day is meant to be cherished as an experience and not just an event. We’d love to help guide you in crafting a wedding day experience that you’ll never forget. Learn more about hiring us as your Oregon elopement photographers, Colorado elopement photographers or Albuquerque New Mexico elopement photographers!
NEED HELP PLANNING YOUR ELOPEMENT?
Free Elopement Wedding Checklist PDF Download
Ready to make wedding planning easier? Download our free elopement checklist PDF!
Pin How To Make Your Elopement Special For Later
Need some self care?
Here at Celebrate Again we’re on a mission to cultivate a lifestyle of celebration. But we know that first begins with ourselves. We must first care well for ourselves so we can show up with 110% for everything else in life.
Not sure where to start? Join Emmy as she uses the tools of yoga and meditation to help you along in your self love yoga, and self care journey.
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