If you’re looking to run off to tie the knot in an epic destination surrounded by gorgeous scenery, look no further than Alaska! In this detailed elopement guide, I’ll share everything you need to know about how to have an unforgettable Alaska elopement, from why and when to have your elopement to the legal stuff and the most amazing locations.
Alaska is the largest US state, and it shows in its endless landscapes that offer picture-perfect views and abundant wildlife. It’s home to some of the world’s best national parks and charming mountain towns. Alaska boasts massive mountains, lush forests, cascading waterfalls, stunning coastlines, and more. Talk about the perfect wedding backdrops!
And, if you’re looking to extend your trip for an unforgettable honeymoon, Alaska is a fantastic place for it. Whether you and your love enjoy getting adventurous in the mountains or on the water, relaxing seaside, or a mix of both – Alaska has it all.
May and September are the best months to run off and exchange your vows in Alaska because it’s right before and after peak season.
That said, you’ll need to consider the experience you’re looking for in terms of activities, budget, and weather when planning when to have your Alaska elopement,
Alaska’s busy season is during summer, June through August. The weather is warm, wildlife is plentiful, and the day is longer. With this comes larger crowds and higher prices. You still get to experience the good parts of this before and after the summer season while finding fewer crowds and lower costs.
Alaska winters are also incredible if you’re dreaming of a winter wonderland elopement. You’ll experience lots of snow, offering an unmatched backdrop for your elopement ceremony. It’s important to note that Alaska’s winters only have about 5 hours of daylight per day.
Experience an epic winter elopement in Alaska with a bit higher temperatures and more daylight hours during February and March.
If you’re looking to get married in Alaska legally, there are a few requirements and steps to take.
If you’re not a resident, you can still obtain an Alaska marriage license for $60. Learn more here or check out this quick guide:
For your ceremony, you’ll need two witnesses and an officiant. Among the Pines (that’s me!) is not only an elopement photographer, but I can also act as a witness and officiate your wedding.
Want to keep things easy and skip the Alaska marriage license? You can always do the legal stuff in your home state before you ‘unofficially’ elope in Alaska.
Now for the fun part! While Alaska is filled with some of the world’s most remarkable elopement locations, here are some of my absolute favorites. Whether you and your love are looking for a hiking adventure, a peaceful lakeside wedding, or an elopement with various backdrops, there’s something for just about every couple.
Denali National Park spans over 6 million acres of wilderness in south-central Alaska. It’s also home to North America’s tallest peak, Mount Mckinley. With its massive size, it’s just about impossible not to find the perfect spot to say ‘I do.’
In the park, you can find countless hiking trails, various waterfalls, and wildlife galore. There are gorgeous snowy mountains during winter, while the park boasts vibrant wildflowers in the summer. Talk about endless photo-ops!
Just below the national park in south-central Alaska is Denali State Park. Denali State Park is a smaller version of the national park but doesn’t lack picturesque backdrops and fun activities.
The park boasts forested wilderness with stunning landscapes and is the ideal destination for couples who appreciate hiking and camping. While there are tons of spots to elope within the park, Byers Lake is one of the most peaceful and beautiful.
I recently headed to the small mountain town of Girdwood to photograph this magical elopement, and I’m still drooling over it! Situated just south of Anchorage, Girdwood is one of Alaska’s most charming and beautiful areas. It’s also a fun place to stay and explore before and after your elopement.
Girdwood is found within a rainforest and is surrounded by the Chugach mountains. What better way to exchange vows than surrounded by glaciers and forests while chasing waterfalls?!
If you want to experience an adventure like no other for your Alaska elopement, I highly recommend the Hatcher Pass. This iconic mountain pass winds through the Talkeetna Mountains in southwest Alaska.
The Hatcher Pass goes for about 60 miles and offers many fantastic elopement locations. Stop and explore rolling hills, luscious fields, famous red cabins, and colorful wildflowers. There are tons of spots for you to find your perfect elopement spot.
Although the Wrangell St. Elias National Park is often overlooked, it’s the largest in the United States. Elias National Park is nestled in the mountains off the beaten path in southeast Alaska and offers jaw-dropping views.
The park has various elopement locations to fit just about every couple’s style. The Ultimate Thule Lodge offers a mix of adventure and luxury, while a helicopter tour from above takes you to various glaciers and mountaintops.
Many couples choose Anchorage for a convenient Alaska elopement location with various activities and stunning scenery. It’s Alaska’s largest city and offers so much to see and do.
There are many places to hold your elopement ceremony, from intimate lakeside spots to mountainsides to charming lodges and inns. Best of all, they’re all right in the city or just outside.
Our final Alaska elopement location is the fabulous Kenai Fjords National Park, where you can find glaciers, coastal fjords, and islands. It’s in south-central Alaska and covers almost 700,000 acres of the Kenai Peninsula.
Kenai Fjords National Park is the perfect place to elope if you love the water and mountains. And, what better elopement experience than boating while exploring glaciers, watching whales, and checking out the fjords?!
Now that you have the details on how to elope in Alaska, here’s a quick checklist for you to make things easier.
I hope this guide has you excited to elope in Alaska!
If you need help planning your dream elopement, Among the Pines is here for you. I offer elopement photography for adventurous dreamers and can help you plan the most perfect day.
My Alaska elopement packages include:
kinsley + caden
“Brooke was the perfect choice for our wedding day! We had a micro wedding at Sapphire Point in August. I had never been to Sapphire Point and Brooke was so helpful suggesting vendors, picture locations, parking, marriage license info etc. She was so kind and helpful before and during the whole process and was a large part of why the day went so smooth. She does so much more than just show up and take pictures, Brooke will truly go out of her way to make your wedding day perfect! The photos are gorgeous and I keep getting so many compliments! I truly cannot recommend her enough!”
"Brooke was a large part of why our day went so smooth and will truly go out of her way to make your wedding day perfect!"
We chose Brooke to capture our Colorado elopement and she did exactly that and more. She made it easy to plan our day out with locations and timelines so that we could focus on ourselves. We decided last minute to change our afternoon/evening elopement to a 6am sunrise one so beat the heat of the day. Brooke accommodated us without hesitation and even created a new timeline for us so that we knew where to be for the perfect sunrise. She was kind and understood what we wanted in terms of our elopement and we are so grateful to have her capture the day. Our photos turned out beautiful and truly helped us relive the day. I would recommend Brooke to anyone wanting their special day photographed.
"Brooke accommodated us without hesitation and even created a new timeline for us so that we knew where to be for the perfect sunrise."
erica + stacy
kirstie + colin
Brooke not only photographed our mountain elopement beautifully, but she put so much thought into the details and knew all of the answers the questions I didn’t even know to ask. She really puts a lot of thought into each photo and brings her expertise while still remaining very open to what we wanted and ideas we had. She even helped pick the perfect spot for us and advised us on the logistical details like securing a reservation at the mountain lake where we wanted our ceremony. She is SO easy to work with and very friendly and chill. My husband and I are super awkward in front of a camera but she made it so natural and easy - and the shots came out better than we could have imagined.
"She really puts a lot of thought into each photo and brings her expertise while still remaining very open to what we wanted and ideas we had."
amanda + jace
Brooke is many things; talented, calm, flexible, experienced/ knowledgeable, patient, incredibly responsive, organized, resourceful in a pinch, supportive, creative, professional yet a blast to work with, and goes above & beyond w her clients. Our wedding was a spectacular dream and we couldn't be more grateful that she made that single day last forever. Whether she's photographing nature or an intimate event, her pictures tell a story of peace, love, whatever your vision may be. We couldn't recommend her more and we look forward to booking with her for all of our vow renewals, seasonal and family pictures for as long as she'll have us.
"Whether she's photographing nature or an intimate event, her pictures tell a story of peace, love, whatever your vision may be."
linden + brent
Working with Brooke was a dream come true! Before we even met, my husband Brent and I were impressed by her portfolio. After meeting, we were even more convinced that her photography skills and knowledge, and her fun and easygoing personality were exactly what we were looking for in an elopement photographer. Brooke was able to take our vision and facilitate everything so that it worked out beautifully, especially when it came to finding the perfect location (the incredible mountains surrounding Ouray). Throughout the entire planning process, she was honest and flexible, and made it clear that her goal was for us to be 100% happy. In the end, her creativity and our happiness totally shine through in every single photo.
"Throughout the entire planning process, she was honest and flexible."
lauren + branden
I can't begin to express my gratitude for the intimacy and beauty behind Brooke's photographs. In capturing our wedding day, she went above and beyond to document our story, our families, and the depths of our love in ways that I'll forever be grateful for. Brooke has an eye for not only capturing the adventure and magic of your love, but deeply connects with your personal story, understands your relationship, and then gives that back in the most incredible way. She is truly an artist and tells your story in an authentic and creative way for you to look back on for years to come. We are forever grateful to Brooke for spending the time to get to know us, our story, and capturing the memories that we'll relive for years to come.
"Brooke deeply connects with your personal story, understands your relationship, and then gives that back in the most incredible way."
heather + jedd
“If you're contemplating which photographer to go with, THIS IS YOUR SIGN TO CHOOSE BROOKE!!!! She is so so so talented and was able to capture our elopement exactly how I pictured and wanted! We eloped in Ridgway, CO this past September and she was so helpful figuring out picture locations, recommendations of timeline for the day, and just made the whole day feel so smooth. She schedules multiple check ins, phone calls, etc., leading up to the big day to ensure everything is as you want it. Brooke has such a calming, down to earth presence and is one of those awesome people you feel like you've known forever after just the first time of meeting."
"Brooke has such a calming, down to earth presence and is one of those awesome people you feel like you've known forever."
christy + austin
Brooke is the absolute best. She truly went above and beyond for my fiancé and I to be able to get our engagement photos taken with the fall colors. Brooke is so sweet, fun, personable and incredibly talented. We could not be more in love with our engagement photos! Our engagement session with Brooke was such a special experience and a memory we will cherish forever.
"Our engagement session with Brooke was such a special experience and a memory we will cherish forever."