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How to Elope to Scotland in 2025

May 25, 2024

Eloping to Scotland offers a blend of breathtaking landscapes, rich history, and romance, making it the perfect destination for a truly luxurious and intimate wedding experience.

At The Elopement Company, we specialise in creating bespoke elopement adventures that cater to your every desire, ensuring your whole trip is nothing short of magical. We are your luxury Scottish Elopement Planners.

Planning how to elope in Scotland might seem overwhelming, but that’s exactly why we’re here – to handle every detail and make your dream elopement come true.

Choosing a Location

Selecting the perfect location is the first step in planning your luxury Scottish elopement. Scotland boasts some of the most stunning and diverse landscapes in the world. There are literally thousands of spots in Scotland that you can marry. Here are some exclusive locations to consider:

Loch Lomond & The Trossachs National Park

This iconic national park offers a mix of tranquil lochs, dense forests, and rolling hills. The serene beauty of Loch Lomond makes it an ideal spot for a luxurious elopement.


  • The Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond: More than just a song! Pristine waters and Highland mountains create a breathtaking backdrop.
  • Luss Village: A picturesque village with charming cottages and stunning views.
  • Ben Lomond: For the adventurous couple, this hike offers panoramic vistas.

The Cairngorms

The Cairngorms National Park is a winter wonderland and a stunning destination for those who love dramatic landscapes and pristine nature. The area offers luxurious lodges and exclusive venues.


  • Rothiemurchus Estate: A private estate with ancient forests and lochs.
  • Aviemore: A charming town with access to outdoor activities and luxury accommodations.
  • Balmoral Castle: The Scottish residence of the Royal Family, offering unparalleled grandeur.

Dumfries and Galloway

A hidden gem in the southwest of Scotland, Dumfries and Galloway offers rugged coastlines, ancient woodlands, and a wealth of history, perfect for a secluded and luxurious elopement.


  • Caerlaverock Castle: A moated triangular castle steeped in history.
  • Threave Gardens: Beautiful gardens offering a serene setting. Like some others on these lists, you will need permission to marry here. Check out the rules here.
  • Mull of Galloway: Scotland’s most southerly point with stunning coastal views.


Known as “Big Tree Country,” Perthshire offers lush forests, beautiful rivers, and elegant country houses, ideal for a luxurious and tranquil elopement.


  • The Hermitage: An idyllic woodland walk with waterfalls. One of our favourite locations in Scotland. A National Trust for Scotland Property requires permission.
  • Blair Castle: A grand castle with exquisite gardens and woodland.

Orkney Islands

For those seeking an elopement with a touch of history and mystery, the Orkney Islands offer ancient stone circles, dramatic cliffs, and serene beaches.


  • Skara Brae: A preserved Neolithic village offering a unique backdrop.
  • Ring of Brodgar: A mystical stone circle steeped in history.
  • St. Magnus Cathedral: A beautiful and historic cathedral.


Glencoe’s dramatic landscapes, with its steep mountains and sweeping valleys, provide a breathtaking setting for an elopement. It’s one of Scotland’s most iconic locations, perfect for couples seeking a blend of adventure and beauty. Fancy a Glencoe Elopement?


  • Three Sisters: A trio of picturesque peaks offering stunning views.
  • Glencoe Lochan: A serene lochan surrounded by forests, perfect for intimate ceremonies.
  • Hidden Valley: A secluded spot ideal for adventurous elopements.

Isle of Skye

The Isle of Skye is famed for its rugged beauty and mystical landscapes. It offers a variety of breathtaking locations, each providing a unique and romantic setting for your elopement.


  • The Quiraing: A landslip with incredible rock formations and sweeping views.
  • Fairy Pools: Crystal-clear blue pools set against the backdrop of the Cuillin mountains.
  • Dunvegan Castle: A historic castle with stunning gardens and loch views.


Scotland’s capital city, Edinburgh, combines rich history with modern elegance. It’s an excellent choice for couples seeking a blend of urban sophistication and historic charm. An Edinburgh Elopement could be the perfect option


  • Edinburgh Castle: A historic fortress offering stunning views of the city.
  • Arthur’s Seat: An ancient volcano providing panoramic views of Edinburgh.
  • Royal Botanic Garden: Beautiful gardens perfect for a tranquil elopement.

Choosing a Date

When planning how to elope in Scotland, the date you choose can significantly impact your experience:

Avoid Midge Season

  • Timing: Midges are most active from late spring to early autumn (typically May to September).
  • Regions Affected: Mainly the Highlands and the Northwest.
  • Impact: These tiny biting insects can be a nuisance, detracting from the beauty of your day.

Avoid Edinburgh During Festivals

  • Timing: August is the busiest month due to the Edinburgh Festival Fringe and other events.
  • Impact: The city becomes extremely crowded, making it difficult to find accommodation and quiet spots for your ceremony.

Best Times to Elope

  • Late Spring (May and June): Enjoy milder weather, blooming landscapes, and fewer tourists.
  • Early Autumn (September and October): Experience vibrant fall colors, calm weather, and less crowded locations.
  • Winter (November to February): Winter and autumn are the absolute best times to elope in Scotland. Imagine exchanging vows against a backdrop of snow-capped mountains or a frost-covered glen. The serene beauty and the quiet, off-peak atmosphere make these seasons ideal. Castles and cozy lodges offer warm, intimate settings for indoor ceremonies.
  • Autumn (September to November): The fall foliage transforms the landscapes into a tapestry of rich colors, creating a picturesque setting for your elopement. The crisp air and fewer tourists add to the charm of an autumn wedding.

What You NEED for a Legal Ceremony

To have a legal wedding in Scotland, you’ll need:

A Celebrant

A celebrant is crucial for your ceremony. They can be humanist, religious, or civil celebrants authorized to conduct legal marriages. Each type offers different styles and personal touches, so choose one that aligns with your vision.

Two Witnesses

These can be anyone over the age of 16. If you’re eloping just the two of you, don’t worry! You can often find locals who are willing to act as witnesses. We can also arrange for witnesses as part of our service.

Required Documentation

  • Marriage Notice Forms: Submit these to the registry office in the area where you plan to marry at least 29 days before your wedding date. These forms can be submitted up to three months in advance.
  • Documents: You’ll need to provide your birth certificates, passports, and any relevant documents if you have been previously married or in a civil partnership.

For a non-legal commitment ceremony, you only need a celebrant. This option is perfect for couples who want a symbolic ceremony without the legalities.

What You May Want


A skilled photographer is essential for capturing the magic of your special day. Jodie and Matt have been elopement photographers for years and are often the ones that will photograph your elopement. If they are not available, we can recommend some of the best photographers in Scotland. Your photos will be a cherished reminder of your elopement, and we know all the best spots for breathtaking shots.

Benefits of Hiring a Professional Photographer

  • Expertise in Elopements: They understand the unique dynamics of elopements and know how to capture intimate moments naturally.
  • Knowledge of Locations: Their experience allows them to suggest the best times and places for perfect lighting and scenery.
  • Personalised Experience: They tailor their services to match your vision, creating a stress-free experience.


A videographer can add another layer of magic to your elopement, capturing the sights and sounds of your day. A beautifully edited video will allow you to relive your elopement and share it with friends and family.

Why Consider a Videographer

  • Dynamic Memories: Videos capture movement and sound, adding depth to your memories.
  • Professional Quality: High-quality footage and editing create a cinematic experience.
  • Shareability: Videos are easy to share with loved ones who couldn’t attend.


Nothing says “Scottish wedding” quite like the sound of bagpipes. A bagpiper can add a touch of traditional Scottish flair to your ceremony, making it even more memorable.

The Elopement Company

Incorporating Bagpipes

  • Ceremony Entrance: A bagpiper can play as you walk down the aisle.
  • Post-Ceremony: Celebrate with traditional Scottish tunes after your vows.
  • Photographs: Bagpipes provide a unique and atmospheric soundtrack for your photo session.


A beautiful bouquet and boutonniere can add a personal touch to your elopement. Consider incorporating local flowers for a truly Scottish feel.

Floral Options

  • Seasonal Blooms: Choose flowers that are in season for the freshest and most vibrant arrangements.
  • Scottish Heather: A traditional flower that symbolises good luck and protection.
  • Personalised Bouquets: Work with a local florist to create a bouquet that matches your style and colour scheme.

Hair and Makeup

Hiring a professional hair and makeup artist will ensure you look and feel your best on your big day. Many artists specialise in elopements and can come to your accommodation to help you get ready.

Benefits of Professional Hair and Makeup

  • Long-Lasting: Professional products and techniques ensure your look lasts all day.
  • Personalised Service: Artists can tailor their services to your preferences and wedding style.
  • Stress-Free: Enjoy a relaxing experience while getting pampered before your ceremony.

Scottish Traditions to Include in Your Ceremony

Incorporating traditional Scottish elements can add a unique and meaningful touch to your elopement ceremony. Here are a few traditions to consider:

Quaich Ceremony

The Quaich, also known as the “loving cup,” is a traditional Scottish drinking vessel used to symbolize the sharing of the couple’s first drink together. It’s a beautiful way to include a piece of Scottish heritage in your ceremony.

How to Include It

  • Choosing a Quaich: Select a Quaich that reflects your style, from traditional silver to more contemporary designs.
  • Drink Choices: Fill it with a drink that has significance to you both, whether it’s whisky, wine, or a non-alcoholic option.


Handfasting is an ancient Celtic tradition where the couple’s hands are bound together with a cord or ribbon to symbolize their union. This ritual is often the origin of the phrase “tying the knot.”

How to Include It

  • Choosing the Cord: Use a cord or ribbon that holds personal meaning or matches your wedding colors.
  • Personalizing the Vows: During the binding, you can recite personalized vows to make the moment even more special.

Oathing Stone

The Oathing Stone ceremony involves the couple holding or touching a stone while they say their vows, symbolising the solidity and permanence of their promises.

How to Include It

  • Selecting a Stone: Choose a stone that has personal significance or find one from a special location. Many couples opt to bring a stone from home whilst others choose to find one on the day.
  • Incorporating the Vows: Hold the stone together as you recite your vows, symbolising your enduring commitment.
  • Did you know? This tradition is where the saying “set in stone” is reported to come from. All Scots kings were also crowned on a stone – The Stone of Destiny.

Accommodation Choices

Scotland offers a range of luxurious accommodation options to suit your needs and budget:


From luxurious five-star hotels to charming boutique options, Scotland has a wide variety of hotels to choose from. Many offer wedding packages and stunning locations for your ceremony.

Top Hotel Options

  • The Balmoral, Edinburgh: A luxurious hotel with iconic views of Edinburgh Castle.
  • Glencoe House, Glencoe: Offers opulent suites and breathtaking mountain views.
  • Kinloch Lodge, Isle of Skye: A cozy, family-run hotel with Michelin-starred dining.


For a private and cozy experience, lodges offer a range of options from rustic cabins to luxurious retreats, often set in picturesque and remote locations.

Popular Lodges

Monachyle Mhor, Balquhidder: A boutique lodge with a farm-to-table restaurant and beautiful surroundings.

Kinloch Lodge, Isle of Skye: A luxurious lodge offering stunning views and gourmet dining.

The Lodge on Loch Goil, Loch Goil: An intimate retreat with a unique treehouse and breathtaking loch views.


Airbnb provides a diverse array of unique accommodations, from city apartments to countryside cottages, offering flexibility and a home-away-from-home experience.

Unique Airbnb Options

Black Shed, Isle of Skye: A modern, architect-designed cabin with panoramic views.

The Bus Stop, East Lothian: Stay in a converted bus with countryside views and modern amenities.

Stunning Penthouse, Glasgow: A luxury penthouse in the heart of the city, ideal for urban explorers.

Bed and Breakfasts

Bed and breakfasts offer a more personal touch, with hosts providing valuable insights and local recommendations.

Recommended B&Bs

2 Cambridge Street, Edinburgh: A charming B&B in a central location, perfect for exploring the city.

Creag Mhor Lodge, Ballachulish: A beautiful Victorian lodge with stunning views of Loch Linnhe.

Westerton B&B, Callander: A quaint B&B offering cozy rooms and a welcoming atmosphere.

A mountain elopement in Scotland

Eloping from the UK

Eloping from within the UK to Scotland is relatively straightforward:

Legal Requirements

  • Marriage Notice Forms: You must submit marriage notice forms to the registry office in the area where you plan to marry at least 29 days before your wedding date. These forms can be submitted up to three months in advance.
  • Documents: You’ll need to provide your birth certificates, passports, and any relevant documents if you have been previously married or in a civil partnership.


Scotland is easily accessible from anywhere in the UK by car, train, or flight. If you’re driving, the scenic routes can add to the adventure of your elopement.

Travel Tips

  • Driving: Consider renting a car to explore remote areas and enjoy the scenic drives.
  • Trains: The train network is extensive, with stunning routes like the West Highland Line.
  • Flights: Major airports in Edinburgh, Glasgow, and Inverness offer domestic flights.

Eloping from Abroad

If you’re planning to elope from countries like the USA, Canada, or Australia, here’s what you need to know:

Legal Requirements

Marriage Notice Forms: Like UK residents, you must submit marriage notice forms to the local registry office at least 29 days before your wedding.

Documents: Besides your birth certificates and passports, you might need a Certificate of No Impediment (CNI) from your home country, confirming there’s no legal barrier to your marriage.


Flights: Major Scottish cities such as Edinburgh and Glasgow are accessible via direct flights from many international airports. You may need connecting flights if traveling from the USA, Canada, or Australia although currently 8 cities fly direct including New York, Orlando and Washington DC

Accommodation: For convenience, stay near your elopement location. Many remote areas offer accommodations that fit various budgets.

Travel Tips

Time Zones: Plan your travel and ceremony dates while considering time zone differences and travel durations.

Weather: Scotland’s weather can be unpredictable. Pack accordingly and have a backup plan for outdoor ceremonies.

Jet Lag: Arrive a few days early to acclimate and recover from jet lag before your big day.

International Travel Considerations

Passports and Visas: Ensure your passport is valid for at least six months beyond your stay. Check visa requirements for entering the UK.

Health Insurance: Obtain travel insurance that covers health care and emergencies abroad.

Currency: Scotland uses the British Pound (£). Exchange currency or use international credit/debit cards. Current exchange rates:

  • US Dollars to Pounds: $1 = £0.78
  • AUS Dollars to Pounds: $1 = £0.52


Eloping to Scotland offers an unforgettable experience with breathtaking landscapes, rich history, and a touch of magic. Planning might seem daunting, but The Elopement Company can handle every detail, ensuring your day is special and stress-free.

So, pack your bags, embrace your sense of adventure, and prepare to create lasting memories in one of the most beautiful places on earth.

Slàinte mhath!