Elope in Alaska

How to Elope in Alaska

From scenic locations to unforgettable adventures, here is everything you need to know about how to elope in Alaska.

Glittering snowfall. Monumental blue glaciers. Majestic wildlife and pristine forest trails. For many couples, there is nothing more romantic than the profound power of nature that Alaska provides. Due to the remote and often snow-covered elopement locations, figuring out how to elope in Alaska can seem like a dream just out of reach. But with the right planning, your elopement adventure could take place beneath the Northern Lights or amid the skyscraping mountains of one of the most beautiful places on earth.

Sitting down and determining what you want your Alaskan elopement to look like is the first step towards creating a celebration you won’t soon forget. Here is how to elope in Alaska from an elopement planner and photographer who believes respect for nature and authenticity should be at the core of every love story.

How to elope in Alaska and see the Northern Lights

How to Elope in Alaska: Why Alaska?

For some, the thought of such a remote and wild location can seem like an intimidating place for a celebration of love! But for others, especially those who thrive on adventure, Alaska can be the ideal place to say, “I do.” While there are thousands of reasons why eloping in Alaska is a good idea, here are a few of my favorites.

Pair Your Elopement with a Honeymoon

Most likely, your journey to Alaska will require a longer trip and slightly more planning than other locations in the lower forty-eight. That’s why I recommend pairing your elopement with the honeymoon of your dreams. This is a great way to check out multiple locations across Alaska (more on that below!) and ensure you are able to accomplish all of the activities on your to-do list.

Take in the Untouched Scenery

There’s no doubt about it: it is worth navigating how to elope in Alaska for the unbelievable natural scenery. From jaw-dropping fields of glaciers to the unforgettable Northern Lights of the Aurora Borealis, the scenery in Alaska is truly unmatched. With mountains, lakes,  summertime wildflowers, and winter snowfall, the photos captured on your Alaskan elopement and the memories created together make for an unforgettable experience.

Celebrate in a Remote Location

Many couples who choose to elope are drawn to the beauty of celebrating their love in an intimate setting without onlookers or societal pressures. Alaska provides a wonderland of natural beauty with very few people, which provides the solitude many desire to celebrate their love.

How to Elope in Alaska: Best Places to Elope in Alaska

With quaint mountain towns and breathtaking national parks, choosing a location to elope in is the first step when planning how to elope in Alaska. Here are a few of my favorite locations, each with their own unique personality and appeal.


Anchorage is a popular jumping-off point for many couples beginning their elopement adventure. This city has a major airport and unique hotels and restaurants surrounded by natural beauty, making it a great place to start your elopement adventure before venturing into national parks or other locations.


Seward is just south of Anchorage, and a scenic two and a half-hour journey by car. It will take you longer though because it’s one of the most beautiful drives I’ve ever taken and you’ll want to stop a lot along the way to enjoy the incredible views and wildlife. The town of Seward provides cozy hotels and restaurants but is also the best place to stay if you plan to visit Kenai Fjord National Park. From unbelievable wildlife to fantastic mountain views, this is one location you will want to visit when planning how to elope in Alaska.


For a more resort-like experience, Girdwood is the place to be. Home of the epic Alyeska Resort, Girdwood is an excellent way to plan your adventures while relaxing in style at the end of the day. (As a big fan of playing hard and resting easy, I’ve always dreamed of a gorgeous elopement celebration in a National Park, followed by a honeymoon stay in Girdwood.)


Are the Northern Lights on your bucket list? Then Fairbanks is your place! The Aurora Borealis is traditionally seen in the winter, so pack your parka if you are adding this location to your elopement or honeymoon list. But this quaint town offers more than just vivid night skies, hot springs and hikes abound for an even more spectacular celebration.

Denali National Park

This park is Alaska’s most popular attraction – and for good reason. From year-round helicopter rides over some of the most stunning locations on earth to a close and respectful connection with wildlife, Denali National Park makes for a spectacular elopement location. (Can you imagine the elopement photos?)

How to Elope in Alaska: Activities and When to Elope

Whether you choose to elope in the summer or winter, there will be countless activities and sights to see! Sit down with your partner and make a list of the activities you want to do during your trip. This will help inform the best time of year to plan for your elopement. My only recommendation? Make sure your trip is long enough so you can truly see Alaska! Here are a few of my favorite Alaskan activities and the best time of year to participate.

Whale Watching or Wildlife Viewing – Best in the Summer

The cold and snow can often keep animals tucked away. More than that, many animals, such as bears, whales, and salmon prepare for the winter by fattening up in the Alaska wilderness during the warmer summer months. Your best bet for seeing these animals and learning more about hibernation and migratory patterns is to come in the spring or summer.

Northern Lights Viewing – Best in the Winter

While the Northern Lights are technically present year-round, the increased hours of darkness during the winter months make it the prime time to see this natural wonder. September to April provides the best viewing window of this phenomenon, so you have some wiggle room when planning how to elope in Alaska. (As someone who has spent plenty of time catching these lights on a starry night, it’s worth the chilly weather!)

Helicopter Ride – Any Time of Year!

Weather permitting, most places offer helicopter tours any time of the year! Flying high above mountains, tundra, and magnificent glaciers should be on your to-do list, no matter when you plan on visiting.  Furthermore, the intimate nature of a helicopter ride (picture you, your pilot, and your partner) provides a romantic adventure every couple should experience.

Glacier and Nature Hikes – Best in the Summer

Due to heavy snowfall in the winter months, longer hikes, especially with a specific landmark in mind, are best planned for the summertime. However, if you feel inspired to go for a snow-covered stroll or hike at any time during your winter elopement, I’m all for it! (Pro tip: due to Alaska’s challenging terrain, it can be beneficial to ensure you are physically fit for your elopement adventure. Here’s how.)

Elope in Alaska and see glaciers

How to Elope in Alaska: The Logistics

Once you have decided to take the plunge and have committed to figuring out how to elope in Alaska, don’t forget to integrate the small details and logistics. Here are a few things to consider as you start planning the adventure of a lifetime.

How to Elope in Alaska: Laws and Permits

Alaska makes it fairly easy to get married in their state, but there are a few requirements that you should review ahead of time to ensure your elopement celebration goes off without a hitch. Here are the requirements:

  • An Alaskan marriage application ($60)
  • A three business day  waiting period once the application has been submitted before you receive the license (A great time to check out Anchorage or Girdwood!)
  • A certified officiant (Pro tip: get yourself an elopement photographer who can officiant AND photograph your special day.)
  • Permits to national parks, when necessary

The three-day waiting period to receive your marriage license provides an excellent time to explore an area of Alaska and get acclimated before the big day. Your elopement officiant should help you navigate this timeline to ensure your applications are received in a timely manner, so your “I do’s” are official!

The Packing List

The old saying is true, especially when it comes to planning how to elope in Alaska, “There is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothing!” This doesn’t mean you need to go out and purchase a bunch of expensive gear for your elopement adventure, but it does mean that packing more layers of clothing than you may think can ensure your time in the tundra is comfortable (and positive!)

The truth is, packing for your Alaskan elopement is very much the same as packing for any other adventure elopement: prioritize comfort, but don’t forget to add your own unique style! You can see a full packing list and additional information on packing for your elopement celebration here.

Sentimental items, such as notes from family and friends, “something borrowed and something blue,” hiking wedding dresses, fur shawls, bow ties…. They are all welcome on your Alaska elopement, and are incredibly fun to photograph! (Just make sure you bring something cozy to wrap up in at the end of the day.)

How to Elope in Alaska: Working with an Elopement Planner and Photographer

My top recommendation for any couple planning an elopement in Alaska is simple: make sure you have an elopement planner! An elopement planner is a wealth of information and resources, from making sure you have a backup during acclimate weather to ensuring the special touches are prioritized.

As an elopement planner and photographer, I help my couples:

  • Recommend local vendors, from florists to caterers
  • Recommend lodging and ceremony locations
  • Information you need to obtain your permit and marriage license paperwork
  • Provide you with detailed schedules so you can prepare for what comes next!

I believe your elopement is one of the most special days of your life. When planning how to elope in Alaska, it is important to have a guide to support you in the planning of this once-in-a-lifetime experience. As an elopement planner, it is my goal to not only ensure your paperwork is in order and you have everything you need, but also to ease your mind so you can enjoy your elopement fully. It is my honor to take this journey with you!

Alaskan Elopement Photographer

Your Elopement in Alaska

Perhaps you have always dreamed of glittering snowfall or vivid stars on your elopement day. Maybe you have never considered it before, but the remoteness and majesty that the Alaskan wilderness provides is starting to sound more and more exhilarating! No matter which category you fall into, I would love to chat with you about how to elope in Alaska, and what the telling of this love story could look like for you.

If you would like to chat more about planning, photographing, or officiating your Alaskan elopement, reach out! I can’t wait to help you uncover all the adventures that Alaska has to offer. From the diverse landscapes to the intimate beauty this state provides year-round, I know we can discover something magical and authentic for your special day.

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *