Best Elopement Locations in Colorado
Colorado is a breathtaking state with a wide range of stunning locations that are perfect for couples who want to elope. From the snow-capped peaks of the Rocky Mountains to the lush forests and sparkling lakes, Colorado offers endless opportunities for a romantic and intimate elopement. Choosing an elopement location is one of the most important decisions during the planning process, and there are several factors couples should consider. Some of these considerations include accessibility, required permits, seclusion, and of course the desired type of landscape or activity opportunities.
As elopement photographers, we have had the opportunity to visit and work with couples in many unique locations throughout the state. Below are some of our favorite places to elope in Colorado.
The Maroon Bells are a stunning and iconic destination in Aspen, Colorado, and are a perfect location for couples who want to elope. Located in the Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness area, the Maroon Bells are two peaks that rise up over 14,000 feet, providing a breathtaking and majestic backdrop for your elopement ceremony.
We love this locations for its breathtaking beauty, but also because of how easily accessible it is with just a short walk from a parking lot. It also has an amphitheater available for reservation if you'd like to have a ceremony with a few of your friends and family. The amphitheater books up very fast, so you'll need to plan several months in advance!
In addition to the Maroon Bells themselves, the area surrounding the peaks is also stunningly beautiful. The Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness is home to a variety of scenic spots, including meadows filled with wildflowers, forests of aspen trees, and sparkling streams. Another great thing about eloping at the Maroon Bells is the range of outdoor activities that you can enjoy in the area. The Maroon Bells-Snowmass Wilderness offers a variety of hiking and backpacking trails, which you and your partner can explore before or after your ceremony. There are also campsites and picnic areas you can reserve to enjoy the night in a secluded and intimate setting.
Vow Renewal at the Maroon Bells
Black Canyon of the Gunnison National Park
When you think of Colorado the first thing that might come to mind is mountains, but did you know it also has a Canyon? Its deepest point is 2,722 feet (829 m)! We love the Black Canyon because of how unique it is from the rest of Colorado. If you're not afraid of heights, this might be the perfect location to elope! There are many unique viewpoints that are easily accessible with a short walk from your car. To elope here you will need a special use permit, so make sure you apply for one.
Engagement Session at the Black Canyon
Great Sand Dunes National Park
Located in southern Colorado, Great Sand Dunes National Park is home to the tallest sand dunes in North America, which rise upwards of 750 feet tall. These stunning dunes provide a one-of-a-kind setting for your elopement, with the dramatic sand formations creating a surreal and otherworldly atmosphere. One of the best things about eloping at Great Sand Dunes National Park is the sense of solitude and serenity that you can experience there. The park is relatively remote, which allows you to focus on the beauty of the park and the intimacy of your ceremony. One thing to keep in mind when eloping here is that you will need to apply for a special use permit, but the beauty of this park will make it worth the extra step.
Engagement Session at the Great Sand Dunes
Rocky Mountain National Park
Rocky Mountain National Park is the most popular and visited National Park in all of Colorado, and It's not difficult to see why! This national park is home to some of the most beautiful landscapes in the state, with its towering peaks, meadows filled with wildflowers, and crystal-clear streams. Eloping in Rocky Mountain National Park allows you to exchange your vows surrounded by the beauty of nature, with the majestic Rocky Mountains as your backdrop. This is another great option to include a small group of your closest friends and family. The park has designated areas where you're able to have a wedding ceremony, and each has a maximum guest capacity. If you want to elope here you'll have to plan far in advance, since the park only issues a very limited number of permits each year.
Near: Estes Park
Marriage Proposal at Rocky Mountain National Park
If you're looking for lake and mountain views, the Twin Lakes might be the perfect option! This is a great elopement location for many reasons; It's easily accessible for friends and family, and you don't need a special permit to have your elopement ceremony here! There are also several campsites nearby you can reserve to have a late night campfire or picnic.
Just west of the Twin Lakes you will find Independence Pass. This long stretch of winding road offers many opportunities for sightseeing and visiting several beautiful locations, including a ghost town! You will have the option of staying near the road, or venturing further out and hiking one of the many trails. Independence Pass is closed during winter months, so this would only be an option between the months of June and October.
Piney River Ranch
Piney River Ranch is a private ranch near Vail Colorado. This is a great option for elopements or larger weddings since they offer an event space for up to 200 people and catering. If you're not planning a big event and would just like elopement photos here, that is also possible with a small photography fee. While you're here you'll also be able to go fishing, canoeing, paddle-boarding or even horseback riding! Piney River Ranch is closed during winter months, but is a great option during summer or fall.
Elopement Portraits at Piney River Ranch
Garden of the Gods
Located in Colorado Springs, this beautiful park is known for its towering red rock formations, which provide a stunning and unique setting for your elopement. It's very easy to elope here since there isn't a need for a special use permit, unlike several other parks. The Garden of the Gods also offers a variety of designated scenic spots for your ceremony, all of which are available on a first come first serve basis. A downside to eloping here is the large number of visitors, so if privacy is a top priority for you it may not be the best option.
Near: Colorado Springs
There are of course many other great places to elope in Colorado, including other less easily accessible backcountry locations for those feeling adventurous. As elopement photographers, we are here to help couples find the perfect location that aligns with their unique needs and vision.
No matter where you decide to elope in Colorado, you're sure to have a beautiful and memorable experience. Whether you're looking for a secluded mountain retreat or a bustling city location, Colorado has something for every couple who wants to exchange their vows in a beautiful and intimate setting.
Planning an elopement in Colorado? We would love to help you!
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