All couples want the perfect wedding that best reflects their love, their relationship, and their personalities. They want to ensure that the ceremony, reception, and location all make a statement as they make that bold step into marriage.
Location plays a vital part in setting the scene and providing memories for the couple and the guests attending. It has to be special and well suited to the occasion. Some couples are happy to stay traditional within the local community, marrying at the local place of worship and booking a reception in a hotel. Others want to go a step further for the ideal outdoor wedding in an unusual destination.
What Is So Appealing About Marrying Outdoors?
There are many elements here. Some do so for spiritual reasons, preferring to be out of nature and family than in a place of worship. Non-believers that won’t marry in a church may not appreciate the idea of the courthouse wedding either.
Outdoor weddings offer more choice regarding venue and experience. They have a natural backdrop behind the altar, natural lighting of sun or stars and natural floral decorations. Couples can just add personal touches and embellishments and let the scene do the talking.
Is The Island Or Beach Destination Wedding Really On Its Way Out?
There is the impression that many young brides and happy couples are turning away from the beach wedding. This more traditional idea of the of resort/destination wedding has happened so many times that there isn’t anything new to achieve here. Guests are sure to make comparisons of this beach wedding in Mexico to another they attended in Maui. Besides, not everyone is that keen on excessively hot temperatures, sand in all the wrong places and that laid back feel.
Couples still want that “once in a lifetime trip” that means something.
Two key phrases are always thrown around with weddings: “this is your day” and “this will be the happiest day of your lives.” Many couples don’t have a problem with this first one. This is their wedding and can do as they choose. Therefore, a once in a lifetime trip to a dream location is ideal for a wedding. This doesn’t have to be an island paradise. This could instead be that trip to Europe that was on hold for financial, work or other reasons.
The simple truth is that a resort or destination outdoor wedding can be anywhere under the sun, stars, snow or perhaps a canopy of trees. If space can hold enough people comfortably, it can be a wedding destination.
The problem often comes with the second statement. Many couples don’t like this notion of one happy day, it puts too much pressure on the ceremony and takes the focus away from the honeymoon period and marriage itself. A more adventurous trip takes care of this issue.
Family friendly resorts not limited to tropical destinations.
Couples that want to invite the whole family often turn to large holiday resorts as an easy option for accommodation and cheap flights. Beach resorts are ideal for large family destination weddings. However, they are not the only option. Many regions and resorts that tap into the wedding market have the space and facilities for the larger wedding party. It all depends on the budget, how far people are willing to travel and the number of guests.
This raises an important point on the guest list: who should couples invite on this big trip abroad?
The guest list is a source of stress for many couples planning a wedding. There are different approaches, especially with a destination wedding abroad. Some are happy to pay out for large family groups with those package deals. Others would rather elope and have this adventure by themselves for a truly personal experience with less stress. The middle ground is a small party of the closest friends and family – the ones that want to make an effort to go to these weird locations and see this unique wedding take place.
Creating That Sense Of Adventure
There is a difference between creating a trip around a wedding and building a wedding into a journey. Couples can get married while away in all kinds of locations, with the ceremony a part of a much bigger adventure. This is a great ideal for all those that have a hobby that may play a part in a themed wedding. Adrenaline junkies can head to the mountain, sports enthusiasts to the site of a major event, nature lovers could go on safari.
Of course, an outdoor wedding abroad with a sense of adventure doesn’t have to be “once in a lifetime.” There is also the chance to revisit a place with an emotional connection. Couples that met backpacking in Asia or Australia as teens may marry where it all began. This becomes the chance to recreate old adventures and add new meaning to experiences.
The couple can also look into destinations for weddings where they can combine the honeymoon and wedding in one.
The great thing about these adventurous outdoor weddings and destination events is that it rips up that stereotypical platitude of “the happiest day of your life.” There is no need to focus so much stress on one day when it is the start of a whole new chapter of happiness and discovery.
With the best destination weddings, a day turns into a long weekend or a whole week of adventure. Couples experience this from the journey to the destination to the wedding and a new adventure as husband and wife on a honeymoon. There is no need to marry in a traditional setting and then jet off to an island paradise.
Finding Somewhere Magical
Many couples are after that sense of magic and a unique experience for that personal wedding and honeymoon. It has to be something that they can look back on fondly in years to come with more than just good stories about the weather or the cake. This explains why so many couples turn to Iceland as the ultimate alternative destination.
Iceland is as far removed from the tropical beach resort wedding as you can get. This immediately separates it from the pack as a place for an outdoor wedding. As for the magic, there is plenty of that around here. They do believe in trolls and fairies here, after all.
Iceland is a great example of a location that creates all the themes, lighting and backdrops for you. Two of the top reasons for choosing an outdoor wedding are the backdrop of the location and the natural lighting. For example, a sunset as the groom kisses the bride or starlight for the first dance, rather than a mirror ball in an over-used ballroom. This is again why Iceland is such a great choice. The scenery of the springs, tundra, and other natural wonders are impressive. They provide an incredible backdrop for the ceremony and photos. As for the lighting, there are no lights more spectacular to dance beneath than the Northern Lights.
What About A Ski Resort Wedding?
Iceland provides the proof that couples do not need a hot, sunny resort for the perfect outdoor wedding. Any location can act as a venue with the right seating, facilities, space, and decorations. Therefore, those that are more at home in the cold and snow may prefer the idea of a mountain or ski resort. Again, this is great for all those that want to blend the wedding and honeymoon in one big trip.
Head out with the family, get hitched in the resort and spend a week on the slopes. The other great thing about the ski resort idea is that there are so many choices. Many heads up into Canada for an easier trip and a great adventure weekend. Others will prefer to head to France or Switzerland. It all depends on the appeal of marrying at an old favorite or heading somewhere new for that “once in a lifetime” experience.
What To Wear?
The popularity of outdoor weddings in colder climes brings up an important question about outfits. Grooms often love beach wedding because of the causal attire. Snowy ski resorts offer a different challenge for brides that want to look great and stay warm. Some will brave it in a traditional white dress for the ceremony with a coat on standby. However, no rule says that brides have to wear a dress. All couples should wear whatever is comfortable for the occasion and that suits them.
Staying The US In Wine Country
Not all couples have that desire – or the budget – to leave the country for their wedding. The best outdoor weddings don’t have to be in a foreign land. There are many US resorts and locations in these vast, diverse landscapes with stunning backdrops and a great resort for the family. A popular example of this is to head to wine country.
These vineyards and resorts are at the top of the game when it comes to hospitality and has acres of land in sunny areas that transform into beautiful venues. Many resorts are just as experienced in providing hospitality packages for weddings as beach resorts.
Considerations For Foreign Marriage Laws
The appeal of the US, domestic outdoor wedding continues with the issue of legalities. Some couples don’t always realize that a destination wedding on foreign shores may not be a legal union. It all depends on the laws and rules of the country. Therefore, this “once in a lifetime” moment could be purely ceremonial, with the need for an “official” wedding at a later date. It may make more sense for couples to sort out the marriage licenses and rules within the US, or their state, for a hassle-free experience.
Adding Personal Items To Another Location
There is a growing trend with outdoor weddings to bring something of a home to the ceremony. Personal items add a sense of comfort and a unique feel to the occasion, rather than the out-of-a-catalog look of some resort weddings. This also harks back to old traditions of heirlooms and family treasures within a ceremony: “something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue.” These items can be anything that couples want to use, provided it will travel and work within the space.
Keeping it simple and naturally close to home in the woods/countryside.
Alternatively, couples can take it down a notch regarding travel and costs with a local affair in the woods or another local area of natural beauty. Nature lovers like the idea of heading into the woods with a few friends, an officiant and a few decorations to create a makeshift aisle. This rustic approach is cute and simple and ideal for all those that want a low key wedding close to home. Those with friends in the farming community potentially have access to an incredible landscape and a unique place to stay.
Of course, the best possible approach for an outdoor wedding, while cutting the costs and staying low key is to have a small, personal affair in a back yard. There are no venue or travel costs here.
Couples just need to decorate the space to their liking supply the food and drink and enjoy the day. There is the knowledge that it was cheap and simple, with close friends and family. However, it is as unique as you can get because no other couple will be able to use that space – unlike that beach resort in Mexico that has a handful of couples every weekend.
Think outside of the box with an outdoor wedding with personality, a unique theme and a location that means something.
The outdoor wedding is more than a chance to bring the action of the ceremony and the reception outside. There are more opportunities for couples than holding the ceremony in the grounds of a hotel or the typical beach resort.
Couples can think about their favorite destinations or a dream location and work a wedding around the trip, rather than a trip to the wedding. There are so many options to suit all tastes and budgets with the promise of drama, beauty, and some great memories.