How to Elope in Iceland
Having visited Iceland several times now + still everyday be excited about the next time we get to go back means a lot. I truly believe that Iceland is a place of magic, beyond explanation. It is a place that is so wonderful to experience, so full of unknown, adventure and relaxation. I think if you are looking for a wonderful place to elope that is not in the states this is the number one place! Iceland has so much to offer from remote waterfalls, coastal towns, rock, mountain, and more. In this blog we will go through together everything you need to know about planning your elopement in Iceland.
- Why should you elope in Iceland….
- How to Legally get Married in Iceland
- Best Time to get Married in Iceland
- How much does it cost to elope in Iceland?
- Where is the easiest place to elope in Iceland?
- Things to do in Iceland on your Elopement Day:
- Northern Lights Elopement in Iceland
- What to pack when visiting Iceland
- Things you should know before visiting Iceland
- Iceland Elopement Packages
- Your Iceland Elopement Photographer!
Why should you elope in Iceland….
I can not tell you how to elope in Iceland without telling you why you should elope in Iceland! The place is incredible. Seriously though, ice bergs, ice caves, mountains, black sand beaches, hot springs, water falls, coastal cliffs, the northern lights and so much more. The environment is sure to move you in some way. You could elope in what would feel like a winter wonderland snow globe. Or in the summer under a sunrise/sunset, yes at the same time because it is almost daylight for 24 hours.
There is so many different experiences to have or adventures to seek out. You could elope in stunning place known to many, or find your own quiet nook. You could elope in Iceland and have a killer honey moon for a few days or a couple weeks. Iceland has that much to offer. Iceland is a place to just be present together, without any other distractions.
How to Legally get Married in Iceland
You will need to be 18 years or older to get married in Iceland no matter where you are from.
If you are traveling to Iceland to get married you will need to submit all of your paper work at least 3 weeks ahead of time. You will need to submit your martial status through documentation of your government. You can not already be married in another country. If you have been married previously you will need to provide proof of divorce. If you are a United States citizen you will need to check with local authorities to see if you can obtain this paperwork.
You will also need to prove that you are staying in Iceland legally when there for your wedding. This could be a flight ticket or if needed you will need to show your visa.
After there ceremony has taken place you can go to Registers office in Reykjavík to obtain an English Marriage certificate.
Same Sex Weddings in Iceland + More
- Same sex marriages are legal in Iceland.
- Pink Iceland is a great company that I have worked with before that help you apply for all of the right documents and they offer officiants.
- If you are interested in a civil marriage in Reykjavík please visit this website. These are only performed on the week days and the same documentation and preparations are required.
- You can always get legally married in your country and then go to Iceland to read your vows . We have had many couples do this even within the United States to make their elopement days easier and less stressful. If you do this you can self solemnize during your ceremony or one of us can “officiate.”
Best Time to get Married in Iceland
In my personal opinion anytime is a magical time to elope in Iceland, but this not the case for everyone. If I were to stay the best two months to visit Iceland and wed would be late June or early to mid September.
Winter in Iceland
If you want those Winter vibes and you can handle the harsh weather conditions, go for it in the winter months! For Iceland Winter is considered to be November through March.This will also give you the chance to get some pictures together under the Northern Lights. Note that in the Winter many roads close and some places will not be accessible and it is advised to have experience driving on snow and ice. Visiting in the winter means you may want a back up plan. Weather conditions can be unexpected and dangerous, so it is important to be flexible in your travel during this time of year, but it is truly a beautiful time of year to visit.
Summer in Iceland
In the Summer months, July to early September, you get the beautiful Lupines blooming, beautiful weather and almost 24 hours of sunlight. This being said the summer months can have a lot more tourism. If you are looking for privacy it is great to consider eloping in the middle of the night to have epic locations to yourself. You could also consider eloping off the beaten path away from tourist highlights.
Fall in Iceland
The Fall months can already start to get chilly, but what may be the bigger downfall here is that October is actually Iceland’s wettest month. There are less tourist out in the Fall and you can already start to see the Northern lights during this time. Fall is considered to be September through October – snow typically starting not until November.
Spring in Iceland
Spring in Iceland is still considered “off season” which again means less tourist, cheaper flights and stays. However the weather can still be very cold, so plan to wear layers. If you are wanting to see the Northern Lights your best chance in the spring is early April and late March. May the weather starts to warm up more.
How much does it cost to elope in Iceland?
It is so hard to say exactly what an elopement will cost in Iceland because it depends on many factors of your trip. I would say on average you can expect an elopement in Iceland to cost between $10,000 – $25,000 if you are traveling from out of the country. Let’s break down the costs of an elopement in Iceland to help you budget your exact elopement:
- Travel (flight, rental, stay, gas, etc)
- Officiant: $350
- Marriage License: $70
- Any tours you decide to do (helicopter tours, guided adventures, cave tours, etc)
All the prices are listed in USD and Icelandic money is in ISK. You can use this to fill out the missing blanks as flights greatly vary pending where you are flying from, what airline and more.
Tip for saving money when visiting Iceland: You can rent a camper van and use that as your place to stay as well as your transportation. If you need a place to stay, but want to still save money consider staying at a hostel instead of a hotel or Airbnb.
Where is the easiest place to elope in Iceland?
Iceland is a small country, but big in a sense of there are tons of absolutely incredible and beautiful places to elope. Below are our top place to elope if you are wanting something easy. Locations that are easy to elope at means you can typically do more than one location on your elopement day or combine a ceremony location with an adventure!
Seljalandsfoss and Skógafoss waterfalls
These falls are not too far from each other, about an hour and a half drive from the city. Both falls are accessible year round. Both can be very busy during season. Expect to get wet at both of these as you can walk under and around them! However, what is neat about these is that they are easy to get to, require no hiking and are near a town if you don’t want to drive back to the city.
Black sand Beach
One of the most popular destinations in Iceland, located not to far from the waterfalls, and really a location you might want to pair with those. Located right outside of the town of Vík and requires little walking to go to beautiful spots for your elopement ceremony. You can explore the cave and basalt rock wall and look for puffins. Nearby is also an over look point where you can get high above the sand. Keep in mind when visiting here not to get too close to the water for the snicker waves.
Jökulsárlón Glacier Lagoon + Diamond Beach
Driving further from towns you will find this popular location to visit, meaning you can drive yourself here or take a tour here. Once you are here there is little to no walking to get to see all the epic and uniqueness this little pocket of the world has to offer. Also near here you will find Vestrahorn, a beautiful black sand beach area with epic mountains surrounding it, a little bit further off of the beaten path, but still easy to access.
Stone Bridge Near Arnarstapi
Driving North from Reykjavik back on the other side of the island you will find this little harbor town. The stone bridge you can walk out onto, keep in mind this is a popular location for birds and tourist and easy to get to. Right near here are many cliffy view points and access to water.
While this location is quite a longer drive, once you are there, you are there! This is located in the Wesfjords, once a local told me this was the most beautiful area in Iceland, and is the most Northern point of Iceland. This is known for the epic cliffs, but also for the best place to see puffins! Best time to visit here is May to August.
Things to do in Iceland on your Elopement Day:
The locations above are without a doubt stunning and amazing in all ways, but they are all easy to get to which means they can be busy! If you are going to Iceland and want a big epic adventure we recommend checking out these ideas, activities, guides and locations for your elopement:
- Do an Icelandic horse ride along the coast!
- Go whale watching on a sail boat, complete with hot chocolate and snacks.
- Do an Ice cave, Ice climbing or glacier tour. You can learn more about which Ice Caves to visit and tours here.
- Go deeper into the mountains on wild off roading routes which are F roads. Please make sure you have the proper way to get in and out – you do not want to get stuck!
- Visit the Faroe Islands for some insanely beautiful hikes. In the summer months you can travel to the Faroe Islands via Ferry otherwise you can take a plane from Reykjavik. This is an awesome way to do your elopement – start with exploring Iceland, elope on the Faroe Islands and from there honeymoon in either Norway, Denmark, Scotland or Paris (based on flights that come and go from the Faroe Islands).
- Day hike off the beaten path to waterfalls, mountains tops, highlands, glaciers and more! There are lots of short hikes in the higher tourism areas, but in the depths of the country you can find some longer, quieter treks.
- Visit local, natural hot springs – I am not talking about the Blue Lagoon. While the Blue Lagoon is very cool and quite the experience, we do not recommend that for an elopement day activity due to the tourism crowds. Some of our favorite hot springs for your elopement day are: Seljavallalaug, Hrunalaug and Sky Lagoon. When visiting a hot spring be sure to shower beforehand, follow LNT, drink lots of water and RELAX!!
- Snorkel between the tectonic plates, Iceland is the only place in the world that you can do this!! How cool to tick that off the bucket list on your wedding day?! Book a guide + learn more info.
- Stay somewhere super unique and wild for a great place to write vows, have a meal together on your elopement day, get ready at and or watch for the Northern Lights. Here are a few of our favorite ones to consider: Tiny Home glassed in with hot tub, The Bubble Hotel, Torfus Retreat
- Star gaze or look for the Northern Lights. If you want to star gaze you for sure need to visit at a time that is not summer since it is almost always daylight. You can see the Northern Lights anywhere almost a way from the city depending on where there is activity that day. We recommend trying to see the Norhtern Lights in the Westfjords and North Iceland.
- Rock Climb in Hnappavellir which is 4 hours from Reykjavik with 150+ bolted sport routes. This area is only open to folks climbing AND you can camp here! This area is a farming area so be sure to practice LNT while you send on the basalt rock.
Northern Lights Elopement in Iceland
If your dream is to have your elopement under the northern lights or the northern lights just be apart of your elopement day here are some tips to help you achieve that. I will say I have gone to Iceland for over a week in the Winter and were not able to see them. It is important to plan your elopement with acceptance that you may not see them and still be stoked about the experience you are planning.
- You want to track activity with this page for your best chance of knowing where and when you might be able to see them.
- Your best bet for seeing the Northern Lights is March or September. However, you need dark skies which are best from November to March. We are skipping October in our suggestion due to it being the wettest month typically!
- Be prepared to stay up late and drive around to different parts of the country. Be sure to pack things to keep you warm out there at night!
- You can book a tour to help you get to them and see them.
- Since you can not be certain on a specific day to see the Aurora we recommend booking a flexible elopement package/plan and communicate with your photographer these plans and flexible needs.
What to pack when visiting Iceland
When you visit Iceland you likely will be out in the conditions and want to be prepared. What to pack will also greatly depend on what time of year you visit. Here is a list of must packs no matter when you are visiting though!
- water proof shoes
- bathing suit + towel (I recommend a quick dry towel used when backpacking)
- a printed hand map of the country/areas you plan to visit
- re-usable water bottle
- re-usable shopping bags
- emergency kit (something with bandaids, lighter, etc)
Things you should know before visiting Iceland
- Don’t be strict on your timeline, be open to stopping at random places. Some travel can take longer than expected or in the Winter some areas may not be safe to visit.
- Don’t plan to be in and out of the country. There is so much to enjoy here, to truly experience Iceland I recommend staying around 7-9 days at least. For your elopement here I recommend a full day or multi-day experience.
- If you are traveling around the country for your elopement, get gas whenever you can. Gas stations are pretty spaced out in the small towns outside of the main cities.
- Arrive to Iceland at least two days before your elopement and be near the airport at the latest the night before to adjust to timezones and get settled in so you can be relaxed on your elopement day.
- Be prepared for any sort of extreme weather and have a back up plan.
- Do not stop your car in the middle of the road. Stay off of mountain roads (F Roads) unless you are in an suited car.
- ALWAYS, always practice Leave No Trace . A special note here – it is illegal to stand on the mosses in Iceland.
- For road condition information check out http://www.road.is
- Iceland is known for their seafood, so be sure to try some!
- Tipping is not required in Iceland, but if you do decide to tip it would not be considered offensive.
Iceland Elopement Packages
Eloping offers you so much more than a traditional wedding may. Specifically, when it comes to booking and working with an elopement photographer. Your elopement photographer is not here just to take photos of you. We offer assistance in planning, helping you co-create and dream up the best day imaginable. It is also important for us to get to you know you two. This way we can tell your story in a way that directly reflects who you are and your elopement day experience.
Here at Adventure and Vow all of our elopement packages include:
- Style Guide + Elopement Planning Guide
- Leave No Trace Guide
- Basic Travel
- Drone photo where permitted
- Two Photographers
- Assistance in planning
- Location Scouting
- Vendor Recommendations
- Same day sneak peek images
- Full gallery within 5 weeks from the elopement
- Printing rights to high resolution images provided in a beautiful client gallery
- and so much more!
From the start, we could tell they were kind, knowledgeable, talented, very responsive, and really cared about making our day great and true to us. The planning process felt so easy and really focused on us as a couple. They gave us the space and time to really dream up our ideal wedding day and how we wanted to feel. Then they made it all come to life.
Not only did we have a day even better than we dreamed but now we have the most beautiful, amazing pictures. We are so grateful to Adventure & Vow for our epic day, our beautiful pictures, and for making our wedding unforgettable.Natalie + Corey
Our elopement packages range from half day coverage for a quick, stunning ceremony and portraits to follow and go up to multi-day experiences that can involves exploring the whole dang country! We highly recommend booking a full day or more for an Iceland elopement to get the most out of your day and time in Iceland. Reach out to us so that we can discuss what package might be best for your elopement day!
Your Iceland Elopement Photographer!
Iceland fully captured my heart several years ago. I fully believe that it can provide an experience like no other for a couple looking for a more connective and emotive wedding day. From small adventures to big adventures it has so much to offer. I would love to help you plan your Iceland elopement and be there to capture your love story in such a raw place. Our Iceland Elopement Packages start with half day coverage at $9800 and go up to multi-day packages. This includes assistance in planning, two photographers and more!