Wow, where do I even begin with Alaska? If you haven’t considered eloping in Alaska, I’m pretty confident that once you read this guide your mind will be changed! Alaska is one of the most beautiful yet underrated elopement locations in the United States. If you dream of eloping in a location that has abundant and thriving wildlife, snow-capped mountains in every direction, massive glaciers, and fields of long grass and wildflowers, then Alaska is the place for you!
I know it might sound intimidating to plan your elopement in Alaska, but that is exactly what this guide is for. I am sharing everything with you from the best locations for your elopement to the best time of the year to elope so you can confidently plan the elopement of your dreams!
Heck yes you can and there are so many epic locations you can choose to elope at!
So Alaska is a bit different in that they only recognize two seasons: winter and summer. For the best and mildest weather, I would recommend the beginning and end of summer which is May and September. You will have the most amount of daylight during the summer months and the temperatures aren’t too cold.
Just like any other elopement, I would recommend planning around 1 year in advance. This gives you a better chance at booking the photographer you want and gives you time to plan out all of the logistics without stressing too much. BUT that doesn’t mean a more last-minute elopement isn’t possible too! Just reach out to your favorite vendors and see what their availability is and go from there!
This is such a tough question because there are so many amazing locations to elope in Alaska. I share tons of options later on in this blog!
If you want to elope in Alaska I would recommend that you are someone who is up for an adventure. Many of the epic locations that Alaska has to offer can require some hiking.
Yes, you will need an officiant and 2 witnesses. Your photographer and videographer can be those witnesses.
If discovering new places and escaping city life is what you crave for your elopement then Alaska is an epic location. It’s a massive state and has so much to see and explore and so much land that is untouched. One of the best parts of eloping in Alaska is that it is not nearly as busy as most of the national parks in the US. It has a much lower tourist rate meaning you will have the opportunity for a much more serene and private elopement experience.
On top of that, you will get to witness some of the most insane landscapes with massive glaciers, unreal snow-capped mountain peaks, thriving wildlife, and lush greenery!
As a travel elopement photographer and someone who visited Alaska recently, I can say without a doubt that it is one of the most beautiful and epic places I have visited. Every place you go to has the most insane landscapes that provide a picturesque backdrop for an elopement. Below I share 7 of the best locations to elope in Alaska:
Hatcher Pass is one of the most popular destinations in Alaska. It is located in the Talkeetna Mountains, between the towns of Willow and Palmer about 90 minutes from Anchorage. You can enjoy tons of recreational activities or just enjoy a scenic drive. Because you can drive through this area you can actually stop at the top of the pass where you will have the most beautiful views of alpine lakes, wildflower meadows, and snow-capped mountain views.
Because of its accessibility and idyllic scenery, this is definitely one of the best locations in Alaska for an elopement. And if you have friends and family joining you for the ceremony, it’s a great option as it’s easy to get to with little to no hiking needed.
The Kenai Peninsula is a stunning area in Alaska home to tons of small coastal towns that sit along the Glacier-covered Kenai Mountains. The Peninsula extends about 150 miles so there are a lot of different locations but I have personally visited Homer and Seward. If you are looking to have a coastal elopement that is surrounded by lots of marine life then this is the perfect area as it is well known for its fishing, whale watching, and hiking. If you are not feeling up for a long hike, there are plenty of drive-up locations that give you access to some of the most beautiful views of the bay and nearby lakes and rivers.
Girdwood is located about 45 minutes south of Anchorage and is a true resort town. This is a great option if you and your partner are hoping for an epic snow-filled winter elopement. Girdwood is known for its skiing/snowboarding as it has the longest double black diamond ski run in North America. You can also enjoy other epic adventures such as glacier trekking, helicopter tours, and hiking to local waterfalls.
The Portage Lake Area is a great option for couples wanting a lake-view elopement that is easily accessible by car. Along the road leading to Portage Lake, there are several pull-offs with beautiful views that could be the perfect backdrop for your ceremony. The snow-capped mountain views, idyllic lake and river views, and wildflower-filled grasslands make this a great location for your Alaska elopement.
Beluga Point is a lookout spot that you can pull off onto which has the most beautiful views of Turnagain Arm and sometimes you can even see Beluga whales hence the name. This lookout point is found along the Seward Highway near milepost 110 & south of Anchorage. You can also choose to walk down to the beach but be mindful that it isn’t the easiest to get down there so make sure you are prepared and have shoes with good tread.
If you imagine your Alaska elopement on a glacier then there is no better option than the Matanuska Glacier. It is by far the most accessible Glacier in Alaska and is also the largest in the United States that is accessible by car. You can only access the Glacier when you do a tour and these are offered year round and are $150/person. If you plan on eloping in the summer, they offer self-guided tours until 5 p.m. and those are $30/per person.
Wrangell-St. Elias National Park and Preserve is the largest National Park in Alaska at 13.2 million acres of land. When I say that this National Park is big, I mean it is BIG!! Yellowstone is only about 2.2 million acres to give you some perspective on just how big it is. The beautiful and rugged landscapes at Wrangell-ST. Elias National Park consists of volcanoes, a LOT of glaciers, lush forests, and abundant wildlife. Because of all of the mountains, there are actually only two roads that enter the park and most people opt to take helicopters to get to the park.
Okay if you are thinking about eloping in Alaska, then a Helicopter tour has to be something you consider. There is truly no better way to see this beautiful state and reach locations that are untouched and thriving.
Because so many locations in Alaska are really only accessible by Helipcter, many couples opt to do this so that they can elope on glaciers and on mountain tops. There are LOTS of different companies in Alaska that offer packages specifically for elopements making the planning process much easier. Here are some great options for Helicopter companies in Alaska:
So Alaska is a bit different in that it only recognizes two seasons: summer and winter. I would recommend choosing to elope in the summer months if you aren’t wanting to do any winter sports. The summer months in Alaska are absolutely stunning as the wildflowers are blooming, waterfalls are flowing, everything is super green and there are snow-capped mountains in every direction. There is also a lot more daylight in the summer months with the sun not setting until as late as 11 pm. THAT’S 18 HOURS OF DAYLIGHT!!!
If the cold and snow don’t bother you, then Alaska is absolutely beautiful in the winter months and epic for some winter sports. You can enjoy skiing/snowboarding, exploring ice caves, cozy cabin vibes, and maybe even see the Northern lights. The major downside to the winter months is that you only get about 5 hours of sunlight during the day. But if this doesn’t bother you, opt to visit Alaska in February or March as the temperatures are a bit more bearable and the amount of daylight starts to increase during the later winter months.
Alsaka is an epic state and if you choose to elope here you have so many fun and adventurous activities you can choose to experience. And if you are going all that way, I highly recommend you do at least a few things. Here are some ideas for you:
In most places in Alaska you will not need a special use permit but if you are choosing to elope in a National Park, just head to the website to see if a permit is required. If it is, just ensure that you follow the steps required to obtain your permit in time. I am also here to help if I am your photographer!
Luckily getting your marriage license in Alaska is a pretty easy process. Here is everything you will need to do:
The marriage license is only good for 90 days so make sure you apply for it within the one to two-month window before your elopement.
I’m a travel elopement photographer who is absolutely obsessed with capturing moments for people in love that will live on forever!
My goal is for your photos to be as real & authentic as humanly possible, so that every time you open up your gallery, it’s like you’re right back there again, feeling alllllll those same feels you felt the first time around. I value real-life moments, not fake shit.
Wanting me to capture your epic Alaskan elopement?