Elopement in Upstate New York

New York Elopements

Upstate New York is a hidden gem of an elopement destination. Most people might have some misconceptions about NY. What comes to mind might be: Broadway, fashion, taxi cabs, traffic, and the bright city lights of NYC. BUT - that is not the New York we're talking about here! Surprisingly, the rest of the state is actually filled with nature. We've gotten to know the incredible, rugged, and picturesque landscapes that make-up the gorgeous state of NY. From the massive Adirondack mountain ranges to the calm waters of Lake Placid - it has so much to offer. It can be the perfect place to get married, whether you're a local looking to elope or have a wedding. As your adventure elopement team serving New York and all of New England, we're here to help you decide where to elope in New York.

In this New York Elopement guide, we'll go over:

  1. How to Decide Where to Elope
  2. Elopement Location Options
  3. Top Elopement destination in Upstate New York
  4. Elopement + Intimate Wedding Venues to Consider
  5. Finding an upstate New York Elopement Photographer

How to Decide Where to Elope in NY

Elopement planning is such a fun process, and something I LOVE helping with! Choosing to go the nontraditional route and plan a wedding that is personal to you and your partner is SO special. Elopements nowadays are flexible because you get to completely customize an experience that best suits YOU and your dream. Picking where you want to elope can be a unique challenge though, because the options for an outdoor adventure elopement are virtually limitless. Trying to find the perfect spot to get married can be a daunting task for some couples when they realize they're not tied to down to a guest list, venue restrictions, or the expectations of traditional weddings. That's why we are here to help.

New York elopement with family

When planning your elopement there are a few things to consider in regard to where to elope. Undoubtedly, the options are endless. However, determining where to have your elopement will come down to a few key things. Here are some questions to ask yourself when planning your elopement location:

  • What's your vision?
  • What scenery do you want to be surrounded by?
  • Will there be guests?
  • How far do you want to travel?
  • What does it look like?

Eloping in Upstate New York

Finally, so you've decided to elope in New York! HECK YES! And now you're onto figuring out where specifically to say I do. Trust us, this is generally the fun part! The exciting thing about eloping is that it will most likely just be the two of you OR 10-20 of your closest family and friends. Generally, having less people involved gives you a wider variety of places you can get married rather than a 100+ person wedding. If you want a more detailed guide on where to elope, then we help our couples find exact locations that fit their needs and desires!

Elopement Location Ideas for New York

1. The Mountains: Adirondack, Fingerlakes + the Catskills

A lot of people don't realize this is an option, but if you are eloping and love the outdoors, then why not do it somewhere like the Adirondack Mountains?! They aren't only awe-striking in the summer, but they are absolutely stunning in all 4 seasons. In the fall, the leaves begin to turn everywhere you look. It appears that the mountains are on fire – shades of red, orange, and yellow as far as the eye can see. And in the winter, every branch hangs heavy, blanketed in fluffy white snow. If you're from New York City, you may want to escape and head north!

2. By the water

Upstate New York also has some stunning lakes that make you feel like you're by the ocean. There are also ponds with mountain views, waterfalls, and swimming holes, and rivers fit for floating on. Finally, there are plenty of summer camps and campgrounds, waterfront parks, and even intimate wedding venues right on the bank if being by the water is important to your relationship.

3. An intimate wedding Venue

There are some venues that offer elopement packages. This could also be a great option, especially if it includes accommodations and an experience to go with it. It's such a great way to have everything in one place, and make sure your loved ones feel taken care of. Check out more wedding venues in the section below!

4. Backyard/Private property

Adirondacks NY elopement

If you or your family has a beautiful backyard or you're considering renting a property, then this is also a wonderful option. Because of guests, it will be more simple logistically to have everything in one place. It could be a place that is meaningful with a lot of space, and you'd be able to do everything in one place. Find out how to have a Backyard Wedding in my guide here!

5. New York City

NYC Elopement

New York is KNOWN for NYC - Broadway, the crazy fashion, taxi cabs; you know the vibe! While we are talking mostly about outdoor elopements, you may be a city couple! If you want a retro city elopement - New York is IDEAL! You can go the classic courthouse ceremony and explore the NY city with your photographer!

Where to elope in New York for an adventure elopement

  1. Catskill Mountains: The Catskills are located in the eastern part of New York and boarder Massachusetts. A few cute towns located here are Hudson, Woodstock and bethel. There are some incredible hikes and waterfalls to explore, including Kaaterskill Waterfall.
  2. Adirondack Mountains: The Adirondacks is honestly a lot like the White Mountains. Located in the North east of New York, the mountain range is absolutely incredible. There are incredible hikes, waterfalls, rivers and lakes. Lastly, this is the home to the popular Whiteface Mountain and Lake Placid.
  3. Minnewaska State Park: A State Park located north of NYC, so if you are looking to escape and have an outdoor elopement close by, this could be a great option for you. The Awosting Falls is a beautiful waterfall to have your intimate ceremony.
  4. Watkins Glen State Park: This State park is located in the Finger Lake region of New York, which you can find far west. Here you will find loads of waterfalls, gorges and rivers. If you're looking to have a waterfall elopement in NY, then this will be the place.
  5. Letchworth State Park: Otherwise known as the Grand Canyon of the east, Letchworth State Park is filled with canyons, waterfalls, and hiking trails. This is a popular spot for white river rafting, kayaking and swimming. If you're looking for an adventure, head west!

With an adventure elopement, there are so many incredible outdoor locations in New York. The aforementioned list is just a small preview of what our location guide entails (trust us, there is A LOT). This list can be a great place to get you started! Many of the locations we've mentioned are quite popular, so if you want to get off the beaten path, make sure to hire an expert New York planner or photographer – luckily, we have one on our team!

When you have a location expert, you have someone who truly knows the area and will take care of you in ways you may not have ever thought of. Our team has an entire list of location options, with trails and hiking info, that way we are prepared to pivot just in case! We LOVE helping clients choose their perfect elopement location. Our process always starts with a location questionnaire; This way, you have a customized list of locations that fit within the vision you have for your day!

New York forest elopement

Top Upstate New York Wedding Venues for an Intimate Wedding

Not interested in the DIY intimate wedding or elopement? Consider booking a venue! Certainly, choosing a venue can be great if you have guests to keep everything at one place. New York is filled with unique wedding venues, and we have a ton up our sleeve to help you with.

Here are the top 5 best venues to have an intimate wedding or elopement in Upstate New York!

  1. Spruceton Inn (Catskills)
  2. The Woodhouse Lodge (Greenville)
  3. Scribner’s Lodge (Hunter)
  4. Gather Greene (Coxsackie)
  5. Foxfire Mountain House (Mt Tremper)

AND SO MANY MORE on our exclusive client location guide! PLUS we have a list of epic New York Airbnbs you might want to consider for your intimate wedding/elopement as well! Whether you use them to stay the night, get ready, or have the entire celebration there. Renting a private property like an Airbnb or VRBO can be a unique elopement experience!

New York Elopement Photography

Convinced that New York is the elopement destination for you? Reach out to book your New York Elopement and Intimate Wedding photographer! So excited to hear about you and your day!!

Adventure elopement photographer team

A New Hampshire + Vermont based adventure elopement and intimate wedding photographer team for the adventurous souls. We specialize in New England and destinations worldwide, empowering you to create the most beautiful, adventurous day and give you the memories you'll be able to look back on for all the years to come.


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