VERMONT ELOPEMENT GUIDE
Eloping in Vermont
ELOPING IN THE BEAUTIFUL GREEN MOUNTAIN STATE
where will you elope?
There are so many wonderful locations to elope in Vermont that narrowing it down to just one is so dang hard! Good thing I know all the best spots so you can have a "just us" experience!
Read on below on how to elope in Vermont, marriage laws, best season to elope, our favorite Vermont activities to do and how to plan your elopement in the Green Mountain state!
IMAGINE YOUR ELOPEMENT DAY
You wake up on your elopement day and it's Fall in Vermont. The air is crisp and you're cozy at your super cute Airbnb in Stowe VT drinking some coffee or tea of your choice. You get dressed into your wedding attire together and take in the morning together. Your photographer (me!) heads to your airbnb and when they arrive hands you some apple cider donuts from a local cafe in town, freshly baked from the morning. Your photographer hyped you up about how perfect the foliage is. They grab a few details of you lacing up your boots and then you all head out on the trail with lanterns. It's early morning and the sun has yet to make its appearance. The only light you can see is from the lanterns and headlamps you brought. The chilly air blows through your hair and you feel the leaves crunch under your boots as you walk up the trail.
You all finally get to the trailhead that leads up to the highest peak in all of Vermont, Mount Mansfield. Your photographer grabs a few candid photos of you both adjusting backpacks and wedding attire and then you start to ascend the mountain!
After 4.5 miles on the trail, you finally reach the peak. Your photographer pulls out your handwritten vows you had spent writing together the night before. As soon as you can speak, you look into your partners eyes and yellow and orange light starts to wrap its arms around you. You're both in awestruck of the views and the colors of the trees. You think it's the most beautiful thing you've ever seen.
You're so deserving of an adventurous elopement like this. An experience that elevates and compliments your love for nature and for one another in a place and time that reflects who you both are and where you're headed together.
Let's do this!
HOW TO PLAN A VERMONT ELOPEMENT
Elopement-friendly State: Vermont is known for its welcoming and relaxed approach to elopements. The state has minimal legal requirements and offers a straightforward process for couples looking to tie the knot without a big wedding ceremony.
Marriage Laws: To elope in Vermont, couples need to obtain a marriage license from any town clerk's office in the state. Both parties must be present, provide identification, and pay a fee. There is no waiting period, and the license is valid for 60 days.
Scenic Natural Beauty: Vermont is renowned for its stunning landscapes, picturesque mountains, and charming rural settings. Whether you prefer mountain vistas, scenic lakes, or rustic countryside, the state offers a diverse range of breathtaking locations for elopements.
Quaint Towns and Historic Inns: Vermont is dotted with charming towns and historic inns that provide intimate and romantic settings for elopements. Places like Stowe, Woodstock, and Shelburne offer a blend of natural beauty and New England charm, making them popular choices for couples seeking an elopement destination.
Outdoor Adventure Opportunities: Vermont is a haven for outdoor enthusiasts. Couples can incorporate adventure activities into their elopement, such as hiking, skiing, snowboarding, kayaking, or even hot air ballooning. The state's diverse terrain and four distinct seasons provide endless opportunities for unique and adventurous elopement experiences.
Vibrant Fall Foliage: Vermont is famous for its spectacular fall foliage. From mid-September to late October, the state's landscape transforms into a vibrant display of reds, oranges, and yellows. Elopements during the peak foliage season offer a stunning and romantic backdrop for exchanging vows.
For Foodies: Vermont is celebrated for its farm-to-table cuisine and artisanal food products. Couples can indulge in delectable locally sourced dishes, craft beers, and Vermont's famous maple syrup during their elopement celebrations. Many venues and restaurants in the state offer customized menus to cater to the couple's preferences.
CHOOSING YOUR VERMONT ELOPEMENT LOCATION
Planning your elopement requires a ton of decision making, one of which includes figuring out where to elope! I have photographed and guided couples through so many different parts of Vermont that I know all the best spots. I also currently reside in Vermont so it makes it super easy for me to go out and location scout!
Vermont, while in the north east of the country is such a small town State but there are so many hidden gems for epic adventures and breathtaking views.
ELOPEMENT LOCATION EXERCISE
1. Sit down somewhere comfy and close your eyes. Let your mind wander for a few minutes and picture standing somewhere with your partner. Where are you? What do your surroundings look like? What time of year are you in?
2. On either your computer or a notebook, write down what feels like your vision - make sure this aligns with your goals for your elopement. Be specific!
3. Weigh your options - find out which location speaks to you the most! Are you at the beach or on a mountaintop? This will determine what activities will take place.
4. Once you've found a location make sure there are no fees or permits. If you're wanting to elope in a National or State Park there will be varying fees depending on location. Your photographer (me) can help you with this!
TOP ELOPEMENT LOCATIONS IN VERMONT
Smugglers' Notch State Park: Tucked away in the heart of the Green Mountains, Smugglers' Notch is a rugged and awe-inspiring location for adventurous elopements. This narrow mountain pass offers breathtaking views, towering cliffs, and winding trails that lead to hidden waterfalls. Whether you choose to hike to Sterling Pond, explore the caves, or exchange vows on the edge of a cliff, Smugglers' Notch will provide a dramatic backdrop for your elopement.
Mount Mansfield State Forest: As the highest peak in Vermont, Mount Mansfield offers a thrilling and picturesque setting for adventure-loving couples. Whether you decide to hike to the summit or take a scenic gondola ride, the panoramic views of the surrounding valleys and mountains will leave you in awe. The iconic ridgeline and stunning alpine meadows provide an unforgettable setting for an adventurous elopement ceremony.
Sterling Pond - The Sterling Pond Trail is located in the Green Mountains of Vermont, within the Mount Mansfield State Forest. It is near the town of Stowe and is part of the Smugglers' Notch State Park. The Sterling Pond Trail is approximately 1.7 miles long. It is a relatively short trail but offers a rewarding hiking experience.
Moss Glen Falls: A natural attraction located in the town of Stowe, Vermont. It is known for its serene and tranquil beauty, making it a popular destination for nature enthusiasts, hikers, and those seeking a peaceful retreat.
Bingham Falls: A natural attraction located in the town of Stowe, Vermont. It is known for its rugged beauty, clear pools, and serene surroundings.
Barnes Camp Loop: The “Barnes Camp Loop” is a great hoice for hikers looking for a short, low-elevation hike.
ARE YOU READY TO START PLANNING YOUR EPIC ELOPEMENT?
Your day can be whatever the heck you want it to be! Try and visualize what your dream day will look like - maybe you've found some good info here that you can tie into your planning. Or maybe you need a bit more help and need additional resources. You can head to my blog here.
You can also read a blog post about How to Elope in Vermont here.
Whatever you come up with, reach out to me! I can't wait to hear all about your hopes and dreams for your day!