So you want elope in North Carolina? Great choice! Here’s a guide with the best time of year, list of popular places and all the rules and permit information! North Carolina hosts beautiful mountains and some pristine beaches along the Outer Banks. There’s so variety in our landscapes that it makes an excellent state to elope in! There are some rules and LNT principles that must be followed when it comes to eloping in some of the most popular areas. Here you will find some of the regulations and links to where you can find more information!
To get a Marriage License in North Carolina, you both must go to a Register of Deeds Office. You can one here. You must bring either a Social Security number or a notarized statement that the applicant is ineligible to receive a Social Security number. They may also require proof of age, such as a government-issued ID or birth certificate. The Register of Deeds may also require proof of divorce if either partner was previously married. Because requirements can vary, you should contact the Register of Deeds in the county you intend to pick up your marriage license in, with any specific questions.
There is no waiting period between picking up your marriage certificate and getting married! You could do it on the same day if you wanted to, but I would advise doing it the day before or even earlier if you can. The license does expire after 60 days though.
There will need to be two witnesses to sign your marriage license as well at the time of your ceremony!
According to the North Carolina Judicial Branch,”a wedding can be performed by a magistrate or by any minister who is ordained in a religious denomination or authorized by a church.”
Here is a list of Officiants in North Carolina.
If you don’t want to deal with making sure you bring the marriage license, having two witnesses, and finding an officiant, you could get go ahead and get married at the courthouse and save your elopement day for your personal vows to each other. Most people count their elopement day as their wedding anniversary when they go this route. This can take a lot of the stress out of your day!
Below are some of the popular areas to elope in North Carolina. There’s tons of spots that make beautiful elopement locations within these areas! To help you find that exact spot, I assist all my couples in location scouting before their elopement.
The best times of year to elope in North Carolina are the fall and spring. Our summers can be very humid and hot and winters can be cold. Some of the Blue Ridge Parkway will also be closed in the winters. Th beaches in North Carolina are lovely in the fall or spring, but keep in mind, we also get hurricanes in the fall months. The average temperatures below are for the Piedmont (middle area of NC) and temps tend to be cooler in the mountains and warmer by the beach.
Average Temperatures for the Piedmont area
Always keep in mind the 7 principles of LNT when planning your elopement and make sure whatever photographer you choose also follows LNT. This will keep these areas nice for years to come and prevent the need to prohibit weddings there like some of the places that have been listed below.
Sometimes permits are not required within National Forests depending on location and size but alway reach out and asked them just in case! Photographers that help plan and guide elopements will need a permit, so make sure your photographer has one.
Places you CANNOT elope at:
“Considerations if you do choose to visit the National Forest:
For more information on National Forests weddings, go to the US Department of Agriculture.
Blue Ridge Parkway
All weddings, elopements, or vow renewals that take place along the Blue Ridge Parkway require a special use permit. Special use permits will not be issued for any federal holiday, federal holiday weekend, or during the entire month of October.
The following areas are NOT allowed to be used for a wedding or elopement (MP referring to milepost):
Things that are prohibited on the Blue Ridge Parkway:
List directly from National Park Service.
As you can see, there’s so many amazing spots to elope at in North Carolina. For more info on the services I offer, check out my elopement pricing page. If you want to find more information about North Carolina check out these blog posts.
5 Reasons to Elope in North Carolina
Best Places to Elope in North Carolina
Best Hikes in North Carolina
To inquire about your own North Carolina elopement, contact me here!
March 8, 2022