Let’s face it, our country’s climate is anything less than idyllic. It’s for this reason, that 1 in 4 couples now opt to jet off abroad to tie the knot. Marrying abroad trades in local church traditions for beaches, mountains, lakes, and a variety of exciting cultures. But where’s most popular these days? And why?
We’ve made a list of the nation’s favourite locations for destination weddings, and helped you on your way a bit with some amazing venues and wedding planner suggestions. You can thank us later!
1. For cocktails and sunset backdrops: Ibiza
Ibiza is THE party island, of course, but its also one of the most popular destinations to say ‘I Do’ among UK couples, complete with the most gorgeous sunsets and tasty Mediterranean cuisine that are sure to win your heart. You can go glam with a classy beach club and all-white theme, or opt for a bohemian style, with rustic cliff landscapes and a chilled beach ceremony.
Ibiza’s amazing weather, authentic old town, vast sandy beaches and lush hills make this island more than just a party destination for us Brits. The quieter side of this famous Balearic island oozes romance, beauty and feel good vibes. Our advice is to tie the knot here either during September or October, the best months to avoid high-season crowds but still with glorious sunshine.
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For an exclusive and fresh Ibizan wedding, look no further than the charming Agroturismo Sa Talaia. Agroturismos are traditional farmhouses that have been transformed into boutique hotels and country venues. They are popping up all over the island, and this one has got to be our favourite. The best thing about this 50km island is that no matter how secluded and private your venue is, you’re still only a short drive away from the buzz that Ibiza offers.
Within the lovely Agroturismo Sa Talaia, there’s a lounge capable of hosting all types of banquets, and the surrounding gardens and terraces will be at your disposal to offer guests delicious canapés and aperitifs. The outside areas welcome up to 200 guests and can be covered by a marquee for ceremonies or outdoor dining.
A place as special as this boasts natural beauty from every corner, so you can take the most amazing wedding photos. Their chill out zone is relaxing and calm, and with their pools and hammocks your photos will add an original touch. Take a look for yourself and fall in love!
2. For the safari-seeking explorers: South Africa
The reason behind more and more couples jetting off to South Africa for destination weddings is pretty obvious: it’s more colourful, exotic and dynamic than our home towns. Let’s face it, holding your destination wedding here will make for a day that no-one will ever forget. Here, you can enjoy both a safari holiday and the most important day of your life in one, incredible trip.
Cape Town, in particular, is an exciting city with mountains, habours, beaches, gardens, and some spectacular venues. What more could you want? Get hitched under african skies, surrounded by the exciting flora and fauna that this diverse country boasts.
In the Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel, you can enjoy a luxury South African wedding of any style. Get married in their lush gardens, their elegant ballroom or their intimate function room. Cape Town’s gem of a venue is situated at the foot of Table Mountain, enabling the more adventurous types to hike up to some incredible views. The hotel also runs activities such as powerboat tours and acclaimed wine trails.
3. For the paradise lovers: The Bahamas
Imagine secluded sandy beaches, warm glistening waves, and a lush tropical backdrop. If you’re a sun-loving couple, then this exotic collection of 700 mini-islands is most definitely for you. With this paradise, you don’t even have to wait until summer! In fact, the months between June and November tend to be hurricane seasons, so you can instead opt to marry in months that you wouldn’t even consider at home.
With the Bahamas, the possibilities are endless. Think unique church ceremonies, or underwater weddings, botanical gardens, beach bonfire receptions, sunset boat cruises and a plethora of activities for your guests to enjoy before and after your special day.
Our favourite destination wedding venue for offering all of this, and more, is the world-famous, ocean-themed Atlantis resort. Probably the most well-known holiday resort in the whole of the Bahamas. With almost 4,000 rooms spanning across its hotels (The Beach Tower, The Coral Towers, The Royal Towers, The Cove, The Reef, Harborside Resort), and a 141-acre waterscape named Aquaventure, which includes fresh and saltwater lagoons, water slides, river rides, marine habitats and pools, it gives luxury a whole new meaning.
The Atlantis Bahamas website has everything you need to know, from pictures of their 20 different venue spaces, to invitation help, package details, and helpful information about the legal requirements to marry in the Bahamas.
4. For lakeside love: Italy
Beautiful Lake Como in Italy, to be precise. Just a small drive out of Milan you will find yourself surrounded by stunning architecture and the unparalleled, natural beauty of Lake Como and surrounding mountains. The views will render you speechless; it’s quite possibly one of the most romantic places in the world. Your guests will also be lost for words as they enjoy sumptuous and fresh Italian food while looking out onto the serene waters.
When organising the day of your dreams far from home, we advise that you use a wedding planner that knows the area. That’s where Lea from Eventoile Handmade Weddings & Events comes in. She offers a creative full wedding planning service. You’ll feel relaxed with her advice from start to finish: she can take care of flowers, caterers, venue, and anything else if needs be!
With a landscape so beautiful, you won’t need to consider extravagant decorations as much. But when it comes to the subtle details, Lea has a keen eye for design. According to Lea, finishing touches, such as table decorations and chair dressings, should always be handmade. That’s why 90% of the décor she uses for her happy couples is always handmade by her or her talented team. The outcome is a wedding set-up that could rival the very beauty of the lake itself, but instead, it complements it. Eventoile Handmade Events & Weddings are all you need for your destination wedding at Lake Como.
5. City lights and modern elopement: Las Vegas
So if you’re an eccentric, fun-loving couple, that would rather a crazy stag and hen-do followed by an intimate ceremony, instead of a big fussy and traditional day, then Vegas (baby) is certainly for you. Yes, it’s far. Yes, it’s an elopement cliché. But there are many reasons why 100,000 couples marry in Las Vegas every year.
Firstly, despite the effort to get there, a wedding in Las Vegas is quick and convenient. You’ll most likely have fewer guests, or none at all. And, since Las Vegas knows weddings, you’ll have coordinators, florists, photographers, videographers, tuxedo rentals and more at your disposal, in whatever chapel or hotel you choose for your ceremony. This will not only ease stress and prevent a Bridezilla from forming, but it will also allow you more time to see all the amazing places and do all the great things that this incredible city has to offer.
You can get hitched in a chapel, a casino, a stunning hotel, the Grand Canyon or even mid-air in a helicopter! But for stylish, sleek and modern, here’s our top suggestion:
The iconic and elegant Bellagio Hotel has two wedding chapels, a variety of packages, and an impeccable wedding planning service. All they require is your presence! As well as in their East and South Chapel, you can also get married in their Fountain Courtyard or on their stunning terrace, both with unforgettable and unrivalled views. Everyone who’s been to Vegas has marvelled at this hotel’s magnificent exterior, so why not have it as the backdrop to your wedding?
Even after only 5 top suggestions for destination weddings, we bet that you’re already struggling to choose. All of these spectacular places are nothing less than perfect for your special day. So, what are you waiting for? Choose your favourite and get planning!