Part of making the decision to elope is getting to choose exactly what you want to do on your wedding day, and what better way to get married than to escape to one of the most beautiful places in the world? With over 700 islands, the Bahamas are the perfect place to have a tropical getaway, and tie the knot while you’re at it. This guide will tell you everything you need to know to elope in the Bahamas – from legal stuff to places to elope, and more!
Reasons to Elope in the Bahamas
Whether you’re hoping for a private seaside ceremony, or want to include your loved ones in a beautiful resort wedding, you’re sure to find the perfect place to say “I do!” Before you can get to the planning, let’s go over all the reasons to elope in the Bahamas.
A Tropical Getaway
Eloping in the Bahamas means that on top of a gorgeous backdrop for your vows, you’re also taking a tropical vacation! You’ll head back home from your elopement adventure feeling refreshed and ready to start your new life as a married couple, after relaxing on the beach or heading to the spa. The serene turquoise waters of the Caribbean, soft sandy beaches and idyllic weather make for the perfect island paradise!
A More Intimate Wedding Day
Having an elopement, or even a destination wedding, means your guest list is going to be much shorter than it would be if you were tying the knot at home – if you even decide to have any guest list at all! Choosing to have a smaller wedding means you and your partner will have a more intimate experience with the people you love the most, and be able to focus on celebrating your love for each other. Your destination wedding in the Bahamas gives you a chance to spend some quality time with your guests, and get to have lots of one on one time with each other!
A Destination Wedding Includes a Honeymoon!
The best part about eloping in the Bahamas is that you can bundle your ceremony and your honeymoon all into one exciting adventure! You’ll be in a beautiful location, with plenty of islands to explore so you can sit back and relax before, during, and after you say “I do.”
Whether you want to lay out on the beach or go on a hike through the forest, the Bahamas have tons of activities to keep you busy if that’s what you’re into! The most fun part about the Bahamas is the many islands to choose from – you can get married at one and honeymoon on another, or do some island hopping.
The Best Time to Elope in the Bahamas
Though the weather in the Bahamas is always warm, the rain can vary a lot depending on the time of year. The best time to elope in the Bahamas is usually spring. Planning your elopement in April helps you avoid the spring breakers, and you can still get the nice dry weather before the rain comes in May. If you want a summer wedding, July is a nice time to visit the Bahamas.
Hurricane season lasts from August until October, so fall is a pretty difficult season to elope in the Bahamas since you have to be extra vigilant and flexible in case a hurricane forms! Once hurricane season passes, November is a great time to have your elopement, since it’s before peak tourist season in winter. Winter is slightly colder and much drier than the rest of the year, but from mid-December until about mid-April, you’ll find way more crowds trying to escape the cold in other parts of the world.
The Best Places to Elope in the Bahamas
With over 700 islands making up the Bahamas, there’s a little something for everyone! From the secluded beaches on some smaller islands to the bustling city in the country’s capital, there’s plenty of gorgeous locations to say your vows. Figuring out what’s the best for you can feel like a lot, so here’s a few of the best places to elope in the Bahamas!
A secluded island located 60 miles off the coast of Nassau, Eleuthera Island is the ultimate paradise! If you elope on Eleuthera Island, you’ll know why it’s said to be one of the prettiest islands of the Bahamas. The snow-white sand beaches and high sea cliffs against the turquoise waters of the Caribbean provide lots of places to say “I do!” The quiet, laid-back ambiance of Eleuthera is perfect for couples who want a more private ceremony. One of the best places to elope (and honeymoon) on Eleuthera Island is the Squires Estate overlooking Governor’s Harbor!
Only accessible by boat, Rose Island is a small island off the coast of Paradise Island – where Atlantis is! Once you get to the island, you’ll be able to get up close and personal with the Bahamas’ infamous swimming pigs, go on a snorkeling adventure, or venture out to explore one of the many secluded beaches and caves on this island! You can’t stay on this island overnight, but Paradise Island is only about a 30-minute boat ride away so it’s a perfect day trip for an intimate elopement ceremony!
The capital of the Bahamas is Nassau, and it’s also the largest city. If you’re interested in gorgeous stone architecture and lush gardens, this might be the perfect place to elope in the Bahamas! You’ll find a variety of places to tie the knot in town – historic landmarks, beautiful gardens, and cascading waterfalls. This is also the most popular place for tourists since it’s a large cruise ship port, so planning your ceremony for sunrise or sunset will help you avoid the crowds that pour out of the ships.
Getting Legally Married When You Elope in the Bahamas
If you’re visiting the Bahamas for your elopement, it might be easier to do the paperwork at home since it requires a little more work to get your marriage license in the Bahamas as a visitor. But, if you’re set on making it official while you’re in paradise, I’ll tell you what you’ll need to do!
To get married in the Bahamas, you’ll need to be in the country for at least 24 hours before they’ll give you your marriage license – and they’re only open Monday through Friday. If you’re arriving by cruise ship and can’t stay on land for the full 24 hours, the guest services should be able to give you a letter to confirm that you’ve been in the waters of the Bahamas for that 24 hours. After you’ve been there for 24 hours, you’ll need to head to the office of the Registrar General to fill out your paperwork – you’ll need to bring your passport, proof that you’re not already married, and the license fee of $120. Once you get your license from the Registrar, it’ll be valid for 90 days.
You will need an officiant and two witnesses to sign your marriage license when you get married. Your officiant must be someone from the island, so I can help you look for an officiant when we plan your elopement!
Bahamas Elopement Packages
Eloping in the Bahamas is a once in a lifetime experience, so hiring a photographer to capture all the special moments of your destination wedding is one of the most important things you’ll do! As an avid adventurer and elopement photographer, I’m excited to go on whatever adventure you choose and I’ll be with you every step of the way when you’re planning the elopement of your dreams!
If you want to know more about my Bahamas elopement packages, get in touch!