New Zealand Elopement Package
Finding an elopement destination that can double as your honeymoon is always a win-win in our book. New Zealand is the perfect wedding and honeymoon destination for couples who want to elope out of state. This island country in the southwestern Pacific Ocean is well known for its wine and is the main filming location for Lord of the Rings. Despite those things, New Zealand is probably one of the most picturesque places to elope with jaw-dropping views in one of their national parks or beaches. We put together everything you need to know when putting together your New Zealand elopement package including vendors and the best places to elope in NZ!
This resource is pretty long, so feel free to use the jump links below to jump to the section you’re most interested in.
- Where to Elope in New Zealand
- When to Elope in New Zealand
- Permits and Leave no Trace in New Zealand
- Elopement Vendors For Your New Zealand Elopement
- New Zealand Marriage Licenses
- Best Places to Stay in New Zealand
Where to Elope in New Zealand
Abel Tasman National Park
Probably the spot to elope is Abel Tasman National Park. There are golden beaches, granite cliffs, and its world-famous coast track. Depending on where in the park you want to elope, you will need a permit of some sort. There are even locations that are only accessible by private charter boats. Since this is the smallest and most popular national park in New Zealand, we recommend eloping off-season here and during the week.
Are you both huge Lord of the Rings and The Hobbit fans? Hobbiton is a movie set that is a pretty popular tourist spot in New Zealand. However, it’s also a good place to have your elopement or small wedding. They have a couple of spots to plan your ceremony and reception. If, however, you just want to take your portraits here, you can! For $1,500, you can have up to four members of the bridal party and your photographer on set for two and a half hours.
Located in Westland Tai Poutini National Park, Fox Glacier is a 13-kilometer-long glacier. Plan an epic glacier high or a flight to a more remote location. This spot is perfect for couples who want something unique while embracing the winter elopement vibe. You’ll need to pay for a helicopter tour and consult your photographer/vendors if you’re interested in having a small wedding here.
Fiordland National Park is where you’ll find Milford Sound and other pretty amazing scenic views. It’s on the west coast of the South Island, and it has waterfalls and towering peaks to be the perfect backdrop for your ceremony. Couples can go kayaking here or plan a cruise to spend overnight. If you’re looking for something super adventurous, then plan a diving or snorkeling adventure during your elopement.
Another popular spot for Lord of the Rings fans is Putangirua Pinnacles. These large earth pillars are located at the head of a valley in the Aorangi Ranges, and it’s an intermediate trail to explore. Usually, it will take close to 4 hours to walk all the way up The Pinnacles.
Mount Aspiring National Park
Remote wilderness, high mountains, and gorgeous river valleys. Mount Aspiring National Park is truly gorgeous for couples who love to hike of any expertise level. You have some of the easiest trails from Cameron Lookout Walk and Fantail Falls to more challenging hikes like Blue Valley Track.
Whanganui National Park
The Whanganui River winds its way from the mountains to the Tasman Sea. It winds through hills and valleys and the surrounding forests of Whanganui National Park Park. If you’re looking for something whimsical, then the trails within the forest are it. Some of the spots you can check out include the Bridge to Nowhere Walk and the Atene Viewpoint Walk.
When to Elope in New Zealand
Like with many other places to elope, different seasons in New Zealand can appeal to different couples, depending on what they are looking for during their wedding adventure.
Summer is a popular season to get married in New Zealand most arguably because of the longer days and the warmer weather.
Fall is next on the list with popularity, but the weather is really dependent. You can expect a mix of warm summer days and cold winter nights. You may even see snowfall, but you’ll definitely see fall foliage! One thing to keep in mind during this time is a lot of holidays in New Zealand are during this season, so some areas may be packed during this time.
Winter is the season for you if you have your eye on planning a New Zealand alpine mountain elopement. It’s also the least planned for weddings and elopements because of the off-season, which leads to lower crowds and lower prices in comparison to summer.
Spring brings flowers and melting snow, with some snow-capped mountains. Spring is very similar to Fall in that you’ll get some warmer days than others.
Elopement Vendors For Your New Zealand Elopement Package
It becomes difficult to navigate a new destination for your elopement, especially in a completely different country. There are rules and regulations you may not be familiar with, and deciding on the actual place for your elopement ceremony can even feel overwhelming. Connecting with an experienced elopement vendor takes the guesswork out of planning your New Zealand wedding adventure. These vendors specialize in the area, so they are familiar with all the permits and regulations, especially when it comes to making your ceremony official. We also love working with experienced vendors who specialize in New Zealand because they suggest some of the more remote and off-the-beaten path elopement locations. Connect with one of the below to get started!
Permits and Leave no Trace in New Zealand
New Zealand, like many other places to elope, requires couples and vendors to leave no trace and follow location-specific permits and regulations. Getting married on a beach or park in New Zealand requires a permit and permission from the local council. Our best advice is to always practice the basics of leave no trace anywhere you visit, and to ask the location and your vendors regarding any required permits or fees you may have missed along the way.
New Zealand Marriage Licenses
Usually getting married can be complicated when you’re considering a whole different country, but in New Zealand’s case, it isn’t so. You do not need to be a New Zealand citizen to get legally married here. The marriage license itself cost $150. You do need to sign the declaration in front of an authorized person. You have to apply for your license at least 3 days prior to your ceremony and after you obtain your license, it’ll expire after 3 months.
Best Places to Stay in New Zealand
When it comes to finding the perfect place to stay for your New Zealand elopement, you want to keep in mind where your elopement destination is. Once you have considered travel times to and from your adventure, think about who is staying with you at your accommodation. Finding unique rentals is always an awesome option for a more intimate and unique stay during your wedding day. Take a look at these places to stay we are loving: