Edinburgh is cobbled streets, echoes of distant bagpipes and warm pub fires on rainy days. Every close and wynd is filled with an air of romance. When you elope in Edinburgh you’re greeted with ancient buildings, friendly people and whisky that burns at first but turns into homey warmth in your belly.
Edinburgh really does offer a unique way to elope in a city that feels like home, even if you’ve travelled far. You can craft a day that feels uniquely like you. From history to adventure to food, here’s why Edinburgh is a great destination for your once-in-a-lifetime elopement.
Writers have called Edinburgh a city of contrasts. It being both wide and narrow, ancient and new. This means it is home to almost anything you can dream up. If you’re looking to elope on with rolling hills or in a quiet library or in a lively restaurant – Edinburgh has you covered.
Edinburgh is the city for history lovers. To walk Edinburgh streets is to walk through centuries. Our Old Town is medieval, our New Town is Georgian and it all rests in the shadow of the historic Edinburgh Castle. Many of the elopement locations below have a great role in Scottish History, a rich tapestry which you get to weave your love story into.
Edinburgh is also a place for nature lovers, unlike many big cities Edinburgh has an abundance of green spaces that make for both epic and quiet elopement spots. You can ascend the jagged crags of Arthurs Seat and Holyrood park or opt for a more intimate space. You can follow narrow closes and streets to find quiet gardens and romantic villages that feel a million miles away from the city.
Some of our most popular elopement spots are out in nature where sunlight falls through the trees and rivers flow gently beside you.
Nothing says ‘today was a special’ quite like sharing delicious food together. Edinburgh may not be known as a foodie haven but I think that’s does a disservice to our talented food industry. Scottish cuisine is fresh, comforting and grounding. It’s the perfect way to connect with both the history & our lands and for those visiting from overseas it is a unique experience to make your elopement day even more memorable.
Speaking of memorable experiences, Edinburgh has lots to offer to make your elopement experience even more unique.
You could elope on an extinct volcano at Arthurs Seat.
You could elope in one of the oldest fortifications in Europe, which housed Mary Queen of Scotts in Edinburgh Castle.
Eat in Edinburgh’s most atmospheric restaurant by the Castle at The Witchery.
You could use Edinburgh as your base to explore the rest of Scotland – visit the mountains of Glencoe & the fairy lands of the Isle of Skye.
In Scotland, we have a saying:
May the road rise to meet you. May the wind be always at your back. May the sun shine warm upon your face the rains fall soft upon your fields.
This is often used at weddings to bless the couples, but this sentiment of warm wishes and respect is something you’ll find with all the Scots you meet. We’re a romantic, imaginative and friendly bunch. We’re exactly the type of people you’d want by your side whether we’re officiating, photographing or simply witnessing your elopement.
When you elope in busy spot in Edinburgh, it’s not uncommon to be cheered, congratulated and hugged!
So you dream of eloping in Scotland but you know we’re not known for our great weather? That’s exactly why an Edinburgh elopement could be for you – you’ll find all the hills, castles and culture you’ve been dreaming of but with the added bonus of lots of cafes, shops and restaurants to shelter from the rain.
Edinburgh is a unique place with unique and friendly people. Nowhere else can you find such deep history, epic scenery & wonderful fairytales to ensure you have a once in a lifetime elopement experience. When you elope in Edinburgh you’ll walk away with the most special memories and unique photographs to immortalise the day forever.
One for the history lovers, eloping at Edinburgh Castle is a bucket list moment if there ever was one. The Castle has stood since the 12th Century and has been an occupied site since the Iron Age. Throughout the centuries, it has hosted Monarchs, seen wars and has shaped Edinburgh into the city it is today. Housing some of the most ancient buildings in Edinburgh, a romantic courtyard and epic views of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Castle should be at the top of your list if you’re eloping in Edinburgh.
Learn More About Eloping Edinburgh Castle: https://www.edinburghcastle.scot/venue-hire/weddings
Riddles Court is a hidden gem in Edinburgh, a quiet and historic close just off the Royal Mile & minutes from the Castle and other beautiful photo locations in Edinburgh Old Town.
With a rich tapestry of history dating back to the 16th Century including Royal Banquets and 18th Century Edinburgh University Hall of Residence, this venue is one for the history lovers. The Building looks out on some of Edinburghs most famous sites and inside you’ll find the original features expertly restored.
This is the perfect place to elope in Edinburgh for those looking for a quiet yet romantic old building to house their story.
Learn More About Eloping in Edinburgh’s Riddles Court: https://weddings.shbt.org.uk/riddles-court/
One of our favourites! Dalhousie Castle is just 20 minutes drive outside of Edinburgh City Centre yet it is quiet, secluded and above all, romantic. The castle was built in the 13th Century and was the seat of the Ramsay Clan in Scotland. The original remnants of the 13th Century building can still be found in the vaults with the rest of the castle being renovated in 1450. The walls have seen Monarchs, Wars and even been a boarding school (Hogwarts anyone?).
Inside the Castle, there are rooms overlooking the grounds creating the most tranquil getting ready space and an intimate chapel in which to say I do. You’ll walk down the aisle to the echoes of a traditional Scottish Piper and take part in the ancient Scottish traditions that feel right to you in order to seal your bond.
In the grounds you’ll find a bubbling stream, an ancient watchtower ruin and deep forests. These make for the most romantic newlywed photos and film to immortalise your day. Theres also a dungeon in which you can eat dinner by candlelight and a spa to fully unwind the day after you elope!
Discover more about Eloping at Dalhousie Castle: https://www.dalhousiecastle.co.uk/weddings/
One for the architects, design and history lovers. If you’re a lover of aesthetics – eloping in the National Museum of Scotland might be your calling.
The museum is located in the heart of Edinburgh on Chambers Street, minutes from the Royal Mile and Grassmarket areas which are popular spots for visitors and locals alike and home to many beautiful restaurants and photo locations. It is central and easily accessible for any guests you many invite too.
Ceremonies tend to take place after hours meaning you have the entire museum to yourselves as well as access to the private rooftop with views across all of Edinburgh and beyond.
A particularly popular elopement spot is the People’s Gallery within the museum, a favourite spot of ours within the museum as you are surrounded by the dedicated Scottish History galleries and say I do in front of an ancient Pictish Stone.
Learn More About Eloping in The National Museum of Scotland: https://www.nms.ac.uk/corporate-social-events/plan-your-event/weddings-and-social-events/
So you’re looking to elope in a fairytale village straight out the pages of your favourite fantasy novel? Dean village is the choice for you. Unbelievably, located within central Edinburgh this village remains tucked away and intimate.
Elope in the open air with the river bubbling beside you, leaves rustling in the breeze. Dean village is a perfect elopement spot in Edinburgh for elopers looking for a relaxed vibe and lots of nature.
After you say I do, take a stroll along the Water of Leith across to Stockbridge – one of Edinburgh’s quaintest parts of town. You’ll pass by St Bernard’s Well, an 18th Century structure depicting the Greek Goddess of Heath, Hygeia. Unfortunately, you cannot drink from this well but it is a romantic spot to stop & ask for a blessing, you may even want to share a drink of whisky from the Quaich in Hygeia’s honour for good health & wellbeing in your marriage together.
Carberry Tower is a sought after location in Scotland. It is 7 miles outside of Edinburgh, meaning it’s just a short drive from the city centre and easily accessible from town, Edinburgh airport and Waverley Train Station.
The Estate Home dates back to the 1400s, completed in 1500. Your first step into the Entrance Hall is into the original Castle keep meaning it is a deeply historical site.
Carberry Tower’s history dates back to Roman times with many roman coins and pottery being found on site. As well as this, it has also played a crucial part in Scotland’s history with it being home to Carberry Hill, where Mary Queen of Scots surrendered to the English before being imprisoned in Linlithgow Palace. Later, it housed Jacobite troops on their way to the famous battle of Prestonpans where they were victorious against the English.
When you elope at Carberry Tower you weave your story into a rich history, you share in the footsteps of key Scottish Historical figures. You have access to the dreamiest of libraries, piano rooms and banqueting halls as well as fairytale Castle grounds sheltered by ancient Oak trees.
Discover more about Carberry Tower: https://carberrytower.com/
Arthurs Seat & Holyrood Park is an excellent place to elope in Edinburgh. The park his home to some of Edinburghs most Romantic Spots including St Anthonys Chapel Ruins. The Ruins look out over the city and down onto St Margarets Loch below. These ruins are shrouded in mystery with their origins being unknown. Just a short hike from the grounds below, you often get the ruins completely to yourself. This site is one of our favourite elopement spots in Edinburgh, with the views and their air of magic and mystery it’s the perfect spot for an unforgettable elopement.
For those who have dreamt of eloping near water, Dunsapie Loch is quietly tucked away on the other side of Arthurs Seat. It is a small loch, with jagged cliffs behind it and some trees ensuring an intimate ceremony. Moreover, Dunsapie Loch is especially beautiful at sunrise as it faces sunrise in the East.
When eloping in Edinburgh, you can’t get much more luxurious than the 5 Star Prestonfield House. Located in the shadow of the beautiful Arthurs Seat. Prestonfield started as a home for Monks back in 1376, it was known as Priestfield. It has played an important role in both Edinburgh and wider Scottish History. Now, it is a 5 star hotel boasting 20 Acres of grounds, a roof terrace and a gothic tea room and is a hotspot for celebrities visiting Edinburgh. Though, to save the best for last, did we mention its dog friendly? A perfect location for those looking to elope in Edinburgh with their dog!
Elope at Prestonfield House: https://www.prestonfield.com/celebrations-events/weddings/weddings-up-to-50-guests/
An underrated spot, rarely visited by tourists and perfect for nature lovers eloping in Edinburgh. Escape the city & feel the moss under your feet and the green hills rolling as far as the eye can see. The Pentland’s change with the seasons, snowy winters give way to the yellow and coconut smell of the Gorse which then passes to the purple Heather in late summer. A true Scottish feast of the senses for elopers. Think of the hills as a little slice of the Scottish Highlands, close enough to retreat for the evening back to the cobbled streets of the city.
The City Chambers is the quintessential Edinburgh Wedding Venue. Many marriages have begun within its walls. The building is Edinburgh’s Town Hall and handles intimate weddings among many other things for Edinburgh residents. When it comes to celebrations, the Chambers are well located just off the Royal Mile and just a short walk from many iconic Edinburgh landmarks and bars and restaurants.
Book your Edinburgh City Chambers Elopement: https://www.edinburgh.gov.uk/weddings/city-chambers-weddings
Edinburgh is home to many great restaurants. After a day of saying I do and exploring Edinburgh, you’ll work up an appetite and maybe even spend the evening round a table with your loved ones. Here’s our suggestions for a great post-elopement meal in Edinburgh.
On days of celebration, it’s only natural to raise a glass and toast to your new life together. Edinburgh has a great many bars to accommodate you whether you fancy a glass of wine, a whisky or a mocktail.
If you’re making a trip out of your elopement in Edinburgh, here are some of the best things that Edinburgh has to offer:
Fancy eloping in the Scottish Highlands? Read our Blog: https://oneofthesedaysphotography.com/2023/04/24/blog-how-to-elope-in-scotland-in-2023/