Did you know having an Alaska destination elopement with family is possible? Just because you’re dreaming of a grand, rugged adventure in Alaska doesn’t mean you have to leave your loved ones behind!
This is another one of those have your cake and eat it too – go to the wild to say your vows and have your closest people there!
You’re big grand adventure doesn’t have to be solo.
I’m no stranger to making the “impossible” completely possible. As an elopement concierge and adventure photographer, I scout, brainstorm, and capture up intimate weddings with up to 20 guests regardless of where in the world you dream of eloping.
If you’re thinking Alaska might be the place for you, keep reading to learn everything you need to know about an Alaska destination elopement with family.
Tip #1: Plan ahead for your Alaska destination elopement with family
If you’re bringing a crew, you want to make sure they are staying comfortably and sometimes that means getting creative and needing to plan enough in advance that you can book out the town! In some of the smaller towns, the lodging situation can be a little tricky. This is where planning ahead really comes in handy.
For example, if you want to go to Kenai Fjord National Park for your Alaska destination elopement with family, you will want to book lodging in Seward. Seward is a very small city with relatively few Airbnbs. It’s completely possible to book enough spots or to find a place that is big enough to accommodate everyone you want, but without the forethought, you could come up short on accommodations.
Tip #2: Open your mind to all the possibilities for your Alaska intimate wedding
When you imagine your adventure elopement, your mind is probably flooded with options that you could pick. But what if the destination is the experience? What if going to a really rad place altogether is the main event (other than the I do’s)?
For example, Shearwater Cove. I just did an intimate wedding with this yurt ecolodge as the homebase and it was the most dazzling spot. It’s only accessible by the lodge’s private water taxi, making it extremely private and intimate.
The beautiful yurts tucked into the lush landscape of narrow walls running down to the cove, or, the new Premier Yurts, perched proudly atop the cliff with sweeping views to feast on. A taste of wilderness, but, beautiful, comfortable, with thoughtful amenities in each yurt. They have (and are expanding!) community spaces across the property that make time with your family and loving chosen guests fun and relaxing.
Lastly, there is loads of exploring potential!
Kayaking is included for you to glide around and explore the famous Resurrection Bay, but they also offer other excursions you can book through their local network like dinner cruises or hiring several helicopters to do custom heli rides to glacier landing, dog sledding, or just capturing sky-high views.
If you’re planning to elope with a crew, the destination can truly be the adventure. And then it lets everyone evolve in their own direction. You two could continue on to have a honeymoon, while your friends can do a backpacking trip and those who need to return home, can.
You created an amazing experience while you’re together, but also have created an awesome launch pad for all of your loved ones to go to next.
Tip #3: Think about the people you’re inviting to your elopement.
If your crew of people is more the type to want amenities and proximity to modernization, think about that. You’ll want to book a “home base” to be somewhere closer to the major cities. You will have access to really cool lodges, Airbnb, and other amenities. Your vendor access will rise, too. Then, you can plan your wilderness exploration for day trips.
Just because you’re close to town doesn’t mean you’ve limited your Alaska destination elopement.
For example, what if you got married at an iceberg lake for your Alaska destination elopement with family?
Option 1: you could rent several helicopters or a ski plane (or two!) and fly your whole crew to your icy spot.
Option 2: If you don’t want to take to the air with your family to get to the lake (because that can understandably rack up a bill!) you can explore alternative options that can give you an equally magical experience.
To continue with this iceberg lake option… Working with a vendor, you could hire 4×4 trucks, then all riding together overland across the glacier’s former path where you arrive to a boat. You hop aboard the boat, skimming up river, through icebergs of all sizes to a glacial moraine outcropping.
Together, your whole crew could do a little hike and finish by standing on the edge of the moraine, the glacier, beautiful water, and glinting hunks of ices spread out before you.
How freaking magical?! What an amazing spot to elope. What a radical experience for your guests. Your Alaska destination elopement can be incredible with family included.
#4. Dare to dream and think differently when planning your Alaska elopement
In the theme of having amazing experiences, you have to make sure you prioritize the things that YOU want when planning your Alaska destination elopement with family.
Maybe you stay in cute cabins back in the “front country.” This gives you a more modernized launching point for your adventure. It gives you the chance to rent various options you want. Like a float plane to take you to a high alpine lake and a public cabin. Together, we can coordinate a caterer, hire a wedding tablescape designer, and create an off-the-grid romantic candle-lit dinner in the backcountry. You get the convenience of society and the mystery of off-grid.
It is through the incredible vendors, my expertise on how to organize your wedding experience and the sparkle of a dream within you that creates a perfect formula to make the once-in-a-lifetime experience you deserve.
For every one of my couples, I vet vendors extensively. I learn what kind of vendors you need and would like to work with, then I do a deep dive. I scour the internet, reach out to my connections, and contact the vendors directly. All while making sure these vendor options will be the right teammate for your experience. I’m not sending you a list of options, I’m connecting you to the right people. This helps keep your stress and overwhelm minimized while still making your epic adventure. (And this is why my couples love my elopement concierge service!!)
I want my couples, I want YOU to think big. Because the big things ARE possible.
#5. Trust your vision
Back in the day people had hesitations about elopements. It’s 2024 and at this point, people recognize elopements as a valid wedding experience choice. But sometimes people can be a little limited in their thoughts on it. But YOU are different.
You have decided to dream bigger than just a unique ceremony. You’re thinking about starting your new life of marriage with a coffee table book-worthy experience.
The secret to making your experience happen is by holding strong to your vision.
When you tell your loved ones about your Alaska destination elopement, they might not be prepared to get it. It might take them a minute to wrap their brain around your idea. Just because people are shocked by your ideas, or unsure, doesn’t mean that your ideas aren’t brilliant. Sometimes their hesitation boils down to the fact they haven’t ever taken a water taxi, flown in a heli, or traveled as far as Alaska.
If you outline why you want to do what you want to do, they will catch the vision. Show them my website. Help them understand that creating and capturing these experiences is what I do best. I make big dreams come true.
Hold firm, hold fast. Your idea is wild and big and brave and should absolutely be created. Don’t let anyone dim your fire.
Your Alaska destination elopement doesn’t need to happen without your family
As an elopement concierge and photographer, I only work with groups of up to 20 total people because it gives us way more options. By tailoring your attendees to cap at a crew of 20 or fewer at your intimate family wedding, we can see so much more of the world, do so many more things, and create the wide-eyed amazement that my couple’s can’t get enough of!
If you’ve got less than 20 must-have people and you’re ready to create the grand Alaska adventure of your dreams, I’m ready!
I’m going to Alaska again in June 2024, and I still have some availability. If you want to plan your Alaska elopement for 2024, now is the time to get started:-) I can’t wait to talk with you!
Let the above images from my travels to Alaska be proof. It IS possible to create the experience of dreams and steward a once-in-a-lifetime adventure for your loved ones.
Want to read more?
Here is another one of my blog post about planning an elopement with family.
This is a post about how to tell your loved ones you want to elope.
The most important thing to plan for is to definitely get dialed in on location for your Alaska destination elopement with family as soon as possible! Alaska is a HUGE state, but, the logistics of providing & booking transport, lodging, etc can be tricky if you don’t plan ahead. So, work with a elopement concierge/photographer who can help you narrow down exactly where & how you want to elope so you can lock in all those details early on for WAY less stress. Want to learn more about creating an amazing intimate wedding in Alaska family, check out my secrets to an Alaska elopement here!