Whimsical Huron-Manistee National Forest Elopement Inspiration, Michigan

Whimsical Huron-Manistee National Forest Elopement Inspiration, Michigan

Who said you have to elope at a super popular elopement destination? Did you know there are probably epic places to explore near you for your wedding adventure together? Huron-Manistee National Forest in Michigan is the perfect elopement location for couples looking for a whimsical, fairy tale vibe. The Midwest has gorgeous places to elope too!

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Planning Your Elopement at Huron-Manistee National Forest

Photography by SparrowSong Collective

The Huron-Manistee Forests are actually two separate forests, which were combined in 1945. This area has plenty to explore, but there are some rules couples should know about when planning their wedding here, including making sure you have the proper permits.

“Manistee Forest is seriously such a magical place! Special use permits and photography permits are required for commercial use of Huron-Manistee National Forests. It’s super important to get in contact with the Huron-Manistee Forest Service Office about permits and details before planning your elopement here!

Some small but powerful LNT tips – Always dispose of all trash or food, even if something is bio-degradable. And always walk through mud puddles, to not destroy the fragile ecosystem and tread a new trial.” [Corinne, the photographer]

Check out our Michigan elopement packages to start planning!

Tips For Your Forest Elopement in Michigan

  • Huron-Manistee National Forest has a ton of off-road dirt trails, so drive the right vehicle for that terrain, and prepare to get a little dirt/mud on your car!
  • There was little to no cell reception, so plan beforehand including what roads to take. Having a map with a route downloaded is super helpful too!
  • Remember to bring lots of bug spray, depending on the time of year.
  • Manistee Forest has plenty of campsites for tents and RVs, but if camping isn’t your thing, there are a bunch of super cute Airbnbs in little lake towns surrounding the National Forest, and Grand Rapids is only an hour’s drive as well.

Details From This Styled Wedding Day

Amy and Ted, the couple, got ready together, had a golden hour picnic with chocolate cake and a charcuterie arrangement, and hiked the forest with lanterns. Their ceremony was just minutes after sunset, overlooking the forest and Manistee River.

“Picnicking at golden hour was definitely a huge highlight. We had the cutest picnic basket and charcuterie, with chocolate cake. Amy and Ted toasted with strawberries, and smeared icing on each other in between laughs, it was such a good time.

Another highlight would be shooting the ceremony as the sun dipped below the trees. We may have had to reapply bug spray for the fifth time, but we had this beautiful, scenic overlook of the forest all to ourselves. They quietly shared things they loved about each other, the birds sang, and after their first kiss we cheered!” [Corinne, the photographer]

Check out these elopement ideas to inspire you further!

Should You Elope?

“I love documenting elopements because couples can truly be themselves, in a peaceful environment when they exchange vows. There are no expectations or obligations, and they get to create a unique experience that celebrates them in an authentic way. It’s an honor to be invited into that space and document such unique and beautiful love stories!” [Corinne, the photographer]

Learn how to elope here.


Photography | SparrowSong Collective

Agencies: @theigroup @uniquemodelsgr

Photos From This Inspiration at Huron-Manistee National Forest

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