and the reasons why you should elope in less known places

Elope Italy and Beyond: Top 8 Mountain Elopement Locations

I've noticed that when couples think about eloping overseas, Italy is one of the destinations they usually choose. If your dream is Italian elopement or you want to explore other mountain destinations, I've got you covered. 

When people think of Italy, they often think of the vineyards in Tuscany, the Amalfi coast, and the Dolomites. But did you know that according to Wikipedia, Italy is the fifth most visited country in the world? It means having an intimate elopement wedding in a place like Venice can be more crowded than you imagined. But don't worry: even though Italy elopement packages are often centered around these popular destinations, there are countless hidden gems where you can enjoy privacy and beauty in equal measure.

In this blog, I'll share which elopement spots you should avoid in Italy and which ones I suggest. I'll also share my favorite mountainous elopement locations from other countries nearby. Let's start by finding you a perfect place to elope!

dreaming of getting married in Italy or in another mountainous destination?

Written May 21st, 2024.

Alternatives to eloping in Italy

Italy has been experiencing increased tourism for several years, and nowadays, it is a super popular elopement destination. There are multiple options, which I cover below, but let's start with the basics.

Is it possible to get legally married in Italy?

Yes, it is, but it's not the easiest process compared to other EU countries. I recommend having a symbolic ceremony in your home country or state.

What is the best time to elope in Italy?

If you are planning a wedding in Italy, consider choosing a date between late April and mid-June. Another option is to aim for early September to early October. These times are ideal for avoiding the peak tourist season.

Let's talk about Italy

Details about eloping in Italy

Italy wedding inspiration

I want you to dream big, encourage you to do things you’ve always wanted to do on your elopement day. Make it epic day. Make it truly the experience of a life-time.

Lake Como is famous for its stunning views and luxurious villas. During the summer, it attracts many tourists, but visiting in early spring or late autumn offers a quieter experience. The beautiful waters and charming towns create an ideal backdrop for your special day.

Less crowded alternative:

Explore the nearby town of Varenna. It offers incredible lake views and a relaxed atmosphere, perfect for those looking to avoid the crowds while still enjoying the beauty of Lake Como.

The stunning Dolomite mountains are dramatic and Instagram-famous. The Dolomites are perfect for a unique elopement experience if you avoid the most popular locations. Most crowds get there between July and August. Depending on the winter, there can still be a lot of snow in June.

Less crowded option:

The Friulian Dolomites nearby have fewer people and beautiful mountain views with great hiking trails.

Venice is famous for its lovely canals and impressive buildings. Although it is quite crowded in summer, it's a great city to visit in November. With foggy mornings and peaceful streets, you may feel like the only tourist among the locals.

Less crowded alternative:

Visit the less crowded town of Treviso nearby. It has beautiful canals and medieval streets without the worry of tourists.

The Amalfi Coast is popular for elopements, especially in spring and early autumn. The most popular reasons for that are stunning coastal scenery and picturesque towns like Positano and Ravello.

Less crowded alternatives:

Consider the Cilento Coast, just south of Amalfi. Cilento Coast has equally breathtaking views and historical sites but with fewer tourists. Towns like Palinuro and Marina di Camerota have the same elements, but you can avoid crowds.

Most famous locations for your Italy wedding

Italy's Most Famous Elopement Destinations

Less explored than its western counterpart, the Eastern Riviera of Liguria features old coastal towns and pristine landscapes. To see the real Riviera and have a more private elopement, consider choosing a place like Liguria Ponente. Visit Sestri Levante and Portovenere, quiet towns with fewer tourists, ideal for couples seeking romance and privacy.

Abruzzo offers secluded mountain experiences in its national parks like Parco Nazionale d'Abruzzo, where the rugged terrain and remote locations ensure privacy.

Tucked away in northwestern Italy, Valle d'Aosta is less visited by international tourists. Perfect for couples looking for a mountainous setting, Gran Paradiso National Park provides peaceful views and a secluded atmosphere.

Best locations for your Italy wedding

More Secluded places to elope in Italy

The best mountain elopement locations

Mountain elopement locations

Slovenia is a small mountainous country with only two million people. It has a fraction of Italy's tourist crowds. It boasts a variety of landscapes, from Alpine mountains to lush forests, all compacted in a small, accessible area.

Can you get legally married in Slovenia?

Yes, you can, the process is comparable with Italy's one. I recommend having a symbolic ceremony in your home country or state.

What is the best time to elope in Slovenia?

If you're considering a wedding in Slovenia, the best months are between May and October. The busiest season is between July and August, but an intimate elopement is also possible then.


If you're considering getting married in Lake Como, you should definitely explore Lake Bohinj. It's a quieter, secluded location surrounded by thick forests and beautiful mountains.

Logar Valley's peaceful, beautiful landscapes remind me of Tuscany's rolling hills. Planšarsko is a lake at Logar Valley, which would be a lovely location for a more intimate wedding ceremony.

Like Italian Dolomites, Triglav National Park offers breathtaking mountain views but with fewer tourists and untouched natural reserves. Only 45 minutes of driving from Lublijanas International Airport.

Secluded locations in Slovenia that are similar to Italy's ones:

Croatia as an elopement location

Croatia is a pretty country by the Adriatic Sea, blending old charm with the natural beauty of its coast and land. With 4 million people, Croatia is a peaceful choice for tourists, unlike busy places in Italy. The country's crystal-clear waters, historic cities, and a string of idyllic islands have earned its fame.

Can you get legally married in Croatia?

Yes, people from outside the EU can legally marry in Croatia, and the process is generally comparable to Italy's. However, I think it's better to have a symbolic ceremony in Croatia and do the paperwork at home.

What is the best time to elope in Croatia?

The ideal time for an elopement in Croatia is from late spring (May) to early autumn (September). Again, it's more quieter in shoulder seasons, making it great for a more private celebration. July and August are the busiest months because of the tourists.

Motovun is a small hilltop town in Istria, surrounded by lush forests and vineyards. It’s a perfect location for couples seeking privacy and charm away from the busy coastline.

Lastovo is part of a remote island group known for its untouched nature, old buildings, and beautiful starry nights. It's designated as a Nature Park. The island’s traditional way of life and minimal tourism development make it a unique spot. Though more remote, Lastovo is accessible via ferry from Split or Dubrovnik

Prokljansko Lake is a freshwater lake near Šibenik, surrounded by greenery and away from tourist areas. It connects to the sea. Just a short drive from Šibenik, combining convenience with seclusion.

Secluded spots in Croatia that have the feeling of Italy's ones:

Norway mountain locations

Norway's "freedom to roam" policy allows people to camp and wander almost anywhere. Also famous for its stunning natural beauty, with majestic fjords and untouched wilderness.

Can you get legally married in Norway?

No, at least not if you're outside Nordic countries. I recommend that you officially marry in your home country and then have your dream ceremony in the mountains.

What is the best time to elope in Norway?

The ideal time for an elopement in Norway is from late spring (May) to early autumn (September). The summer months offer mild weather and long days because of the Midnight Sun, especially in northern parts like the Lofoten Islands. For more privacy and peace, consider visiting during the shoulder seasons.

Rondane National Park offers vast, untouched wilderness areas, perfect for couples seeking privacy and a connection with nature.

Senja, like Italy's Dolomites, is famous for its rugged peaks and wild nature. Although it has become more popular over the years, it is still less visited than the Dolomites. Honestly, you probably shouldn't visit Segla, the most recognized peak at Senja. The other peaks in the area are even more impressive.

You could probably compare the Lofoten Islands to Italy's Lake Como. They both have amazing scenery, but the Lofoten Islands are on a different level. The dramatic Arctic land spaces with steep mountains rising from the ocean provide an experience you won't forget. Lofoten crowds during the summer months, but it's not a problem when you know where to go.

Secluded Norway locations that have similar feeling of Italy's ones

Switzerland mountain locations

Switzerland is as beautiful as Italy with mountains, but less crowded and more organized in its quieter areas. If you avoid crowded places in Grindelwald and Lauterbrunnen, you could have an amazing experience between the two of you.

Can you get legally married in Switzerland?

No, but you could still have an amazing elopement experience there! Just do the paperwork home and then have your dream ceremony in the mountains.

What is the best time to elope in Switzerland?

The best time to elope in Switzerland is from late spring (May) to early autumn (September). During these months, Switzerland has nice weather for outdoor weddings in its beautiful landscapes, from valleys to mountains. 

May and September are great times to visit if you like fewer people and a quieter atmosphere. They still offer pleasant weather but with fewer crowds compared to peak summer.

This hidden valley in Valais is not as popular or easily accessible as other tourist destinations. It is ideal for a peaceful and private elopement. Binntal offers dramatic alpine landscapes with fewer tourists. Its lush meadows and high peaks create a serene backdrop akin to the quieter sections of the Dolomites.

Binntal (Binn Valley):

This valley is in the southernmost part of Switzerland, close to the Italian border. Tourists often miss it, making it a great place for an intimate elopement. One could compare Magic Valley to Almafi Coast because of its lush landscapes and traditional architecture without the crowds.

Valle di Muggio (Magic Valley):

This lesser-known valley in central Switzerland is a hidden gem for those seeking privacy and nature. Surrounded by high Alpine peaks, it offers a peaceful retreat with plenty of hiking trails. Göschenertal is like the Dolomites but with fewer people, making it a peaceful spot for a secluded mountain wedding.

Switzerland Locations that are more secluded than Italy's ones:

Faroe Islands mountain locations

The Faroe Islands are far less visited than Italy. In fact, most people outside the EU won't even know about them. They feature rugged cliffs and untouched landscapes, perfect for a secluded elopement. While it's not the easiest to get to, you won't forget this place ever.

Can you get legally married in the Faroe Islands?

Faroe Islands, which belongs to Denmark, is easier than most EU countries. In fact, Denmark offers the easiest process for getting officially married in Europe.

What is the best time to elope in the Faroe Islands?

In general, the weather in the Faroe Islands is unpredictable. Locals say that you can experience all four seasons in one day. This means you can have sunshine, rain, and fog within just a few hours.

The best chance of experiencing nicer weather would be during the summer months, particularly from late June through August.

Mykines, the westernmost island of the Faroes, boasts puffins and cliffs along the Atlantic Ocean. Due to its accessibility, which requires a ferry or helicopter transfer, the island is less frequented by tourists.

Eloping in Kalsoy can certainly be magical and unique if you're prepared for non-ideal weather. You can only get there by boat that runs daily.

A small village on Eysturoy with a natural gorge offering incredible seclusion and dramatic sea views.

Secluded Locations in Faroe Islands:

Austria as an elopement location

Austria is beautiful like Italy, especially in the mountains. The atmosphere is noticeably more peaceful outside bustling metropolises like Vienna and Salzburg. If you're looking for a peaceful experience, Austria's lesser-known locations will be perfect.

Can you get legally married in Austria?

Yes, Austria's marriage laws for foreigners are straightforward. If you do paperwork in your home country or state, you can have your ceremony whenever and wherever.

What is the best time to elope in Austria?

May and September are particularly good choices if you prefer fewer crowds and a more tranquil atmosphere. Summer months (June to August) are popular because of the warm weather and longer daylight hours. However, these months can be busier, especially in tourist hotspots like the Salzkammergut or Tyrolean Alps.

Tucked away in the westernmost part of Austria, the Silvretta range in Vorarlberg is remote and less traveled. It offers stunning alpine scenery with pristine lakes and peaks, ideal for people seeking a private elopement experience.

This lesser-known national park in Styria features rugged mountains and deep river gorges. Compared to other Austrian national parks, it is less frequented by tourists and provides a serene and intimate setting. I highly recommend checking this for your intimate wedding day.

Obertauern is a popular winter sports location that becomes peaceful during the summer. Once the ski crowds leave, this high-altitude resort transforms into a quiet, almost deserted landscape. If you're thinking about an Italian wedding in the Dolomites, this might be a perfect option for you.

Secluded Elopement Locations in Austria That are comparable to Italian ones:

France as an elopement location

France is popular like Italy but has many quiet places for a small elopements, especially in the mountains and countryside. If you're not looking to elope in Paris, check out the places below.

Can you get legally married in France?

France has complex residency requirements, but a symbolic ceremony in these secluded spots can be magical.

What is the best time to elope in France?

If you have been thinking about eloping in France, consider it between May and September.

Known for its dramatic cliffs and deep forests, Vercors offers numerous trails and hidden spots. It's a less-visited gem that provides both stunning views and privacy.

Located in the southeastern part of France, Mercantour boasts stunning alpine scenery, crystal-clear lakes, and diverse wildlife. It's accessible yet offers plenty of secluded spots perfect for an intimate ceremony.

Queyras offers untouched natural beauty, extensive trails, and fewer visitors than the more famous French Alps.

Secluded Elopement Locations in France:


Austria as an elopement location

If you haven't visited Portugal yet, I highly recommend it! Although most people think it's only a famous beach destination, there are also beautiful places inland. Instead of exploring beaches of Lisbon, let's take a look at the secluded Islands a bit further from the mainland.

Can you get legally married in Portugal?

Yes, the process is quite straightforward. People from outside the EU can legally marry in Portugal, and the process is generally comparable to Italy's. However, I think it's better to have a symbolic ceremony in Portugal and do the paperwork at home.

What is the best time to elope in Portugal?

Opt for May to September for the best outdoor conditions. Summer months can be hot, but the wind will help with that a lot if you're on the coast or an island.

Porto Santo is a small island known for its beautiful 9-kilometer-long sandy beach and peaceful atmosphere. Many people often overlook it because of its bigger neighbor, Madeira.

Santa Maria in the Azores has sunny weather, beautiful beaches, vineyards, and traditional homes with red and white chimneys.

Flores is the most scenic island in the Azores because of its stunning flowers, cliffs, and waterfalls.

Flores Island (Azores):

Secluded Locations for Azores or madeira elopement :

Yeah, I know. It sounds like I don't care about your wedding photos, but that's not true. Hear me out. Wedding photos are different from headshots. You don't just want cool images; you want an unforgettable experience and to remember how it all felt. That's why it's crucial to choose a photographer who values your experience.

I believe that the moments and memories of your special day are more important than just creating a perfect photo. Instead of replicating picture-perfect images from Instagram, I want you to focus on how you want to feel when looking at your wedding photos.

Rather than staging elaborate poses, I aim to capture the genuine essence of your love story. We can climb a mountain or find a beautiful lake spot, but these are not just backdrops—they are the settings for your story. My promise is that we won't do anything solely for a photo; we will do it for the experience.

When you look back at your wedding photos, I want you to see the story of your commitment, the love you felt, the connection you shared, and the adventure you embarked on together. If you feel the emotions in the moment, you'll feel them in your photos, and that's what matters most to me.

Why do I care more about your experience than your wedding photos?

At the beginning of 2023 I started offering elopements at set locations in Europe on set dates throughout the year as full day or multi-day experiences. These locations are chosen for their ability to help you feel present and connected with your partner. Surrounded by the wild sea, silent lakes, and vast open spaces, you'll experience the raw beauty of these locations.

To ensure the best possible experience, I limit availability to 1-2 elopements per destination. To stay informed about upcoming adventure elopement destinations, join my mailing list and follow me on Instagram.

If you haven't found your perfect location, ask for a la carte Italy elopement packages. I would love to help you plan your Italian wedding! See more at my FAQ section.

My elopement destinations

Italy wedding experience

As an elopement photographer, I also provide vendor recommendations for everything from a wedding planner to accommodations and rental cars, ensuring your elopement day in Italy runs smoothly. And if you're looking for more elopement inspiration or a planning guide, I offer a free consultation to help bring your Italian elopement vision to life.

When it comes to choosing the perfect elopement location in Italy, the possibilities are virtually endless. Each location offers a unique and unforgettable setting for your wedding photos and ceremony.

Italy elopement packages & planning assistance

Read more about me

Hey! I'm Jaakko!

I'm an elopement photographer based in Finland, perfectly situated to capture beautiful elopements in Italy and other stunning mountainous locations across Europe.

My passion for nature stems from my active upbringing. My parents ensured I spent a lot of time outdoors, and I even competed in orienteering, which made map reading second nature to me. I love road trips, visual arts, and trail running.

When I get to know couples, I approach them with an open mind and heart. I'm eager to learn about the real you—your shared moments, passions, and daily life. Whether you're eloping in the majestic Dolomites, the serene Swiss Alps, or the picturesque landscapes of Slovenia, I'll be there to document your unique story.


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Do you have questions, ideas, inquiries? Excited about eloping and want to get started planning? Want me to capture your elopement elsewhere in the world?
Drop me a line, and let's chat. I cannot wait to hear from you!

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