How to Elope at Garden of the Gods

APRIL 2023

Madison + Josh

Colorado Springs, CO

If you’re looking for an alternative for the traditional wedding, eloping may be the way to go as it can be more adventurous and intimate. One place to consider when looking into elopement destinations is Colorado, where you can find a myriad of breathtaking landscapes for couples interested in eloping. Among these extraordinary locations, Garden of the Gods is one of my favorite options for Colorado elopements! Read on to find out why πŸ™‚

Why elope in Colorado?

Natural Beauty

Colorado is renowned for its awe-inspiring natural landscapes, featuring majestic mountains, picturesque meadows, and enchanting forests. The state’s diverse terrains offers endless possibilities for adventurous and romantic elopements, ensuring a stunning backdrop for your special day.

Privacy + Intimacy

Eloping allows you to focus solely on your love and commitment, free from distractions. Surrounded only by Colorado’s natural beauty, you can create an intimate experience that celebrates your unique love story and deepens your connection even further.

Iconic Landmarks

Colorado is home to numerous iconic landmarks, such as Garden of the Gods, which adds an extraordinary touch to your elopement. These landmarks provide breathtaking backdrops that will make your special day even more memorable, where you can exchange vows amidst truly awe-inspiring beauty. Every time I visit one of these places, I find that I’m constantly asking myself, “How is this real?

Why choose Garden of the Gods?

Unique Geological Wonder

Located in Colorado Springs, Garden of the Gods is a designated national natural landmark. This mesmerizing park showcases stunning red rock formations, dramatic vistas, and vibrant sunsets that will leave you and any guests that you may bring along in absolute awe.

Picturesque Backdrops

The towering rock formations, set against the clear blue sky and the majestic backdrop of Pikes Peak, create a truly magical ambiance for your elopement ceremony and photography. The beauty of this settings is so incredible, ensuring breathtaking moments and cherished memories (that make me GIDDY to get to capture as an elopement photographer!).


One of the unique adventures of choosing Garden of the Gods for your elopement is that it is a free and public park, making it an accessible and budget-friendly option. You can experience the grandeur of this natural wonder without breaking the bank!


Garden of the Gods offers easy access for couples and their guests. Well-maintained trails and designated areas for weddings ensure a smooth experience, allowing you to focus on your special day without logical challenges. I would definitely recommend Jaycee Plaza in the main garden area, as it wheelchair accessible with bathrooms and parking nearby and allows for up to 50 people.

Madison & Josh on 35mm film at Jaycee Plaza

Planning your Colorado Elopement

Research + Permits

Before embarking on your elopement journey, it’s essential to research any specific guidelines and regulations set by the park. While Garden of the Gods doesn’t require a permit for small weddings, familiarize yourself with the park’s rules to ensure a seamless experience and respect for the environment.

Choosing a Ceremony Location

Garden of the Gods offers numerous breathtaking spots for your ceremony, each with its own unique charm. I would recommend taking the time to explore the park in advance, considering locations such as the Gateway Rock, the Central Garden, or the Trading post for their scenic beauty. You should definitely choose a spot that resonates with your vision and enhances the magic of your special day.

Officiant + Witnesses

Ensure you have a licensed officiant to perform the ceremony. In Colorado, at least one witness is required for a legal marriage, so plan accordingly. This person can be your photographer, but you can also choose someone who is important you and can witness and support your commitment.

Elopement Photographers and Vendors

To capture the essence of your special day, it’s crucial to find professional elopement photographers (like me!) and vendors who are familiar with Garden of the Gods and its unique lighting conditions. Experienced photographers will skillfully preserve the magic of your elopement, ensuring that every precious moment is beautifully documented.

Making your Colorado Elopement extra special

Sunrise or Sunset ceremony

Garden of the Gods is known for its breathtaking sunrises and sunsets. Consider timing your elopement to coincide with the magical golden hour lighting, creating an even more enchanting atmosphere for your ceremony. The warm glow of the sun against the red rock formations will truly add a touch of ethereal beauty to your ceremony.

Personalize your vows

Take advantage of the intimate setting of the intimate setting to craft heartfelt, personalized vows that reflect your love story and journey together. Share your promises amidst the grandeur of nature, creating an emotional and unforgettable moment that will forever hold a special place in your hearts.

Celebratory Activities

Extend your elopement adventure by planning additional activities around Garden of the Gods. Embark on a romantic hike through the park’s trails, enjoying the serenity and beauty of the surrounding nature. Set up a scenic picnic amidst the stunning rock formations, savoring each other’s company and toasting to your love. Consider exploring the super cute little town of Colorado Springs, discovering its unique shops, restaurants, and attractions to complete your memorable elopement experience.

In conclusion – yes, you should def elope in Colorado!

Eloping in Colorado offers a unique opportunity to exchange vows in a picturesque natural setting, and Garden of the Gods provides a truly awe-inspiring backdrop for your intimate ceremony. As you embark on this unforgettable journey, make sure you plan ahead, adhere to any regulations, and seek professional assistance when needed (your elopement photographer will definitely be able to help you)! By choosing Garden of the Gods, you’ll create cherished memories of a breathtaking elopement in the heart of Colorado’s natural wonders. Embrace the beauty, the adventure, and the love that brought you here. Your Garden of the Gods elopement will forever be a testament to the majesty of nature and the power of your love.

35mm film
35mm film

Florals by Parsley and Valentine



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