Best Places to Elope in North Carolina

Learn the Best Places to Elope in North Carolina and How to Elope Legally

If you’re looking for some hopping spots to elope in the eastern United States, then look no further than these best places to elope in North Carolina!  As local elopement photographers, we know all the hidden gems as well as the classics for your North Carolina elopement, and we can’t wait to share with you!

Here’s a quick overview of the best places to elope in North Carolina, and then we’ll dive deep into why they’re epic and how to elope in North Carolina legally (because it can be a bit daunting at first).


Best Places to Elope in North Carolina

  1. Pisgah National Forest
  2. Nantahala National Forest
  3. Asheville
  4. Blue Ridge Parkway
  5. Tiny elopement venues

Related: How to Elope, Pros and Cons of Eloping


#1: Elope in Pisgah National Forest

Pisgah National Forest should be high on your list of the best places to elope in North Carolina!  With hundreds of miles of trails, oodles of waterfalls, and some of the most dramatic scenery in the whole state of North Carolina, Pisgah National Forest is a favorite of eloping couples!

Pisgah National Forest is also one of the best places to elope in North Carolina as the wedding permit process is fairly easy and spelled out easily here.

Some of the best places to elope in North Carolina in Pisgah National Forest are:

John Rock Trail for high elevation views, Sam Knob for a grassy wonderland, and Beacon Heights if you’re willing to wake up early to beat the crowds!

#2: Elope in Nantahala National Forest

Nantahala National Forest is one of North Carolina’s best kept secrets.  Skip those crazy touristy trails for some of these instead.  Eloping in Nantahala National Forest offers you ample camping and rafting opportunities if you’re looking for a little extra adventure in your best places to elope in North Carolina (which we think you should be ;)).

Some of the best places to elope in Nantahala National Forest are:

Devils Courthouse for a more formal-esque mountain vibe, Dry Falls for a quick waterfall view, and Siler Bald for wildflowers and high elevation vistas!



Couple Eloping with Dog
Montana Elopement Location

#3: Elope in Asheville

Most folks are shocked to find out that North Carolina is actually a massive state and some of these best places to elope in North Carolina can be kinda far apart.  Eloping in Asheville is a great place to start considering when you know you want mountains and a trendy mountain town as part of your experience.  Asheville will have mountains galore for your adventures and oodles of hopping spots for nightlife!  If you’re bringing guests along, they’ll surely love the Biltmore, and if they’re a younger crows–Asheville’s breweries are known world-wide for their authentic brews.  Check out this post for some “hoppin” (get it??) breweries to explore with your elopement guests and see why Asheville is clearly one of the best places to elope in North Carolina!

A lot of Asheville elopement locations fall into some of our other categories, but spots like Dill Falls and Buck Spring Gap are so close to Asheville, we love recommending these to Asheville enthusiasts!


#4: Elope along the Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway is one of North Carolina’s greatest treasures for nature lovers!  Known as America’s favorite drive, the parkway has epic views accessible via trails and/or scenic overlooks.  These are some of the western most elopement locations in North Carolina, so you’ll have the advantage of being close to Tennessee or hopping up to Virginia to continue to explore during your elopement!  The Blue Ridge Park is one of the best places to elope in North Carolina because of the hospitable mountain towns strung along the drive.  Boone, NC is one of my favorite towns to recommend to couples when eloping along the Blue Ridge Parkway.

Chestoa Ridge Overlook is one of the best places to elope in North Carolina when you want an easily accessible view that gives you a natural ceremony site while not booking a venue.  The Chimneys is one of the best places to elope in North Carolina due to the variety of locations at the end of trail!  With rugged rock formations and high elevations views, you’ll be stoked to exchange vows at The Chimneys!




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Eloping in the Mountains
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Mountain Elopement
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#5: Elope at North Carolina’s Tiny Elopement Venues

Just because you’re having an adventurous elopement at one of the best places to elope in North Carolina doesn’t mean you don’t deserve to have a bangin’ place to hosts your few guests!

There are some major perks to booking an elopement venue even if you want your day to remain adventurous.  Small elopement venues can offer you privacy that can’t be promised at other outdoor locations.  They bring a sense of meaning and sentiment to the day.  And (maybe most importantly), they give you a great place to eat all your yummy food at!! 😉

These tiny elopement venues are some of the best places to elope in North Carolina and are located all over the state.  Each one is familiar with eloping couples and their needs, so feel free to check them out!


Canaan Valley: an outdoor elopement venue in Asheville, NC

Why I love this tiny elopement venue:

The ceremony site speaks for itself on this lovely property.  You’ll feel snuggled into your ceremony amidst these gorgeous trees and be welcomed by a speakeasy reception area after to celebrate your North Carolina elopement!  This is one of the best places to elope in North Carolina due to its privacy and cozy vibe.

Why they’re one of the best places to elope in North Carolina:

Canaan Valley is fifty-six acres of picturesque beauty and Asheville, NC’s best outdoor wedding venue. What sets us apart from other venues is our location! Being located 15 minutes from downtown allows our guests the freedom to tour Asheville’s artistic and historical scenes or journey to explore the Blue Ridge Mountains. Our property features luxury onsite lodging so that couples may celebrate all weekend long. Couples have access to an in-house wedding coordinator. Wedding Belle’s NC helps couples with all planning needs from booking desired vendors, making rehearsal dinner reservations, providing marriage license consultations, completing paperwork, and more.


Contact Canaan Valley here to learn more about this awesome elopement venue!

The Venue at James Creek: an elopement venue with rolling pastureland and gorgeous woods in Ellenboro, NC

Why I love this tiny elopement venue:

Calling all lovers of wide open spaces!!  These pastures with views on views rival elopement venues state-wide for some of the most picturesque fields known to man.  With 5 ceremony sites ranging from rustic looks to classic simplicity, this venue can accommodate any elopement aesthetic making it one of the best places to elope in North Carolina.  We particularly love their ceremony site appropriately called “The Woods” so you’ll feel lost in whimsy while saying your vows with your dearly loved guests nearby.

Why they’re one of the best places to elope in North Carolina:

Located on 90 rolling acres in the foothills of western North Carolina, James Creek offers endless possibilities for an eloping couple. Our newly constructed barn, wooded areas, and creeks create a perfect intimate setting.

Contact The Venue at James Creek here to see if they’re the perfect fit for your elopement!

North Carolina Elopement Location
North Carolina Elopement Location

How to Elope in North Carolina Legally

While North Carolina is easily one of the most beautiful states to elope in the United States, navigating how to elope in North Carolina legally can be quite the challenge.

Some couples opt to skip this legal process and handle the legalities of wedding legally in their home state.  If you wish to legally wed in one of these best places to elope in North Carolina, then there are a few requirements for the marriage license.

Marriage License Requirements:

  • Both parties must register with the Register of Deeds in order to obtain their marriage license.  Click here to find the appropriate county.  You may have your ceremony in any county afterwards, but the license must be returned to the county from which it was obtained.
  • You may be required to apply for your license online, so plan to apply in person if your county of choice does not permit online applications.
  • Parties must apply for the marriage license and pay applicable fees which may vary by county.
  • Parties must possess a social security number, a government issued ID or birth certificate, and proof of divorce if applicable.
  • The marriage license must be obtained before the ceremony, and the marriage license expires after 60 days of nonuse.
  • The ceremony must be performed by a recognized officiant.  It should be noted that officiants ordained online are not recognized by the State of North Carolina.
  • Ceremonies must have a minimum of two witnesses.  Please plan to have us witness or ask random passersby hiking to witness your union and sign your license. 🙂

What often slows folks down when choosing one of the best places to elope in North Carolina legally, it is often the matter of choosing a recognized officiant.

These officiants are recognized by the State of North Carolina and would love nothing more than to help officiate your wedding day.

Donna Brown – based in Jacksonville, North Carolina and willing to travel

Gina Angel – based in Asheville, North Carolina and specializes in LGBTQ+ weddings

Amanda Jones – based in Asheville, North Carolina and willing to travel

Reverend Ronesa Rosewood – based in Asheville, North Carolina and specializes in spiritual, intercultural, traditional, and religious ceremonies

Danny Lewis – based in Asheville, North Carolina and serves Western North Carolina while specializing in reflecting your personal beliefs and wishes

Hannah Desmond and Tom Johanson – based in Asheville, North Carolina with over 20 years of officiating experience and specializing in interfaith ceremonies and LGBTQ+ friendly

All of these officiants and celebrants will offer additional insight as to how to elope legally, so definitely contact them as soon as possible to get on the right track for any additional needs eloping in one of the best places to elope in North Carolina!!

Now that you’ve got your location nailed down and the legalities taken care of, it’s time to find the *perfect* photography team to help document your day.

We’d love to be a part of your day!  Check out our most popular North Carolina Elopement Package to see if we’d be a great fit!

North Carolina Elopement Package

This elopement package is available at all the best places to elope in North Carolina!

-unlimited planning consultations (in person for local clients or online for travel clients)

-6 hours of wedding day coverage -unlimited images

-online, high resolution gallery -timeline assistance

-second photographer

-personalized vendor referral list

-can cover getting ready, ceremony, reception, photos with potential guests

-personalized elopement location list

-photographers travel and permit fees already included

-our undying love and support

-best for elopement days that want large sections of their day covered, their elopement, and an adventure same day


Contact us about photographing your elopement or to chat about this package’s specifics!

Hiking wedding photographers

Yo.  You need a North Carolina elopement guide and photographer.

Imma be so honest.  We love North Carolina, and we love helping couples plan their elopement days to be full of meaning and intention.  Kick that tradition crap outta here, and let’s plan something magical together!

You deserve for your wedding day to bring you peace in the great outdoors, and this is only a taste of how we help our couples.

All of our elopement packages come with professional elopement photography, two photographers, and unlimited planning assistance.  We think this is the best way to serve eloping couples, and we can’t wait to chat!

Contact us about photographing your elopement!

Additional Resources for Couples:

Glacier National Park Elopement | For if you’ve found yourself thinking Glacier National Park is the perfect place to get married!

Eloping in Montana | Because you need an all inclusive checklist to elope in this crazy beautiful elopement location!

How to Elope | So you can have a checklist and guide to get legally married anywhere!

Should I Elope | In case your mind isn’t made up yet, but you’re looking for help from real eloping couples!

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