Asheville Elopement Guide View of the Appalachian Mountains Mountains

June 22, 2023

Asheville Elopement Guide

Asheville is the perfect city for couples who want to elope and have a romantic wedding. This charming city, located in the Appalachian Mountains, offers stunning views and a unique atmosphere. If you’re looking for a destination elopement, Asheville is the perfect choice.

One of the best things about getting married in Asheville is the breathtaking scenery. The North Carolina mountains offer a stunning backdrop for your special day. The Blue Ridge Mountains are famous for their beauty and will leave you speechless.

When it comes to planning your elopement, Asheville has everything you need. From excellent food and lodging to unique venues, this city has it all. Plus, the Appalachian Mountains offer a wide range of activities for nature lovers, making it a great destination for a honeymoon.

In this guide, I’ve outlined everything you need to know about getting married in Asheville and around Asheville—how to obtain a permit, which ceremony spots you can choose from, and a little about what makes this city one of my favorite places to photograph elopements. Keep reading and learn everything you need to know about planning an Asheville elopement, and then contact me so I can help you craft an authentic, true-to-you wedding experience unlike any other. You deserve the wedding of your dreams—that starts with finding your special place!

Asheville Elopement Guide View of the Appalachian Mountains Mountains

History of Asheville

Asheville, North Carolina is a city rich in history and natural beauty. Nestled in the Appalachian Mountains, Asheville has become a popular destination for those seeking a luxurious getaway in a stunning location.

One of the most fascinating aspects of Asheville’s history is its connection to the Blue Ridge Mountains. These majestic peaks have been a source of inspiration for artists and writers for centuries, and Asheville has been no exception. Many photographers have been drawn to the area to capture its rugged beauty and unique culture.

Asheville, a city nestled in the Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina, has a rich and fascinating history. It was originally inhabited by indigenous peoples, and later became a popular spot for settlers due to its fertile soil and access to transportation routes.

The Biltmores

In the 1800s, the Biltmore family purchased land in Asheville and built the famous Biltmore Estate, which still stands as a testament to their wealth and influence. The estate also brought jobs and tourism to the area.

The 20th century saw Asheville become a hub for the arts and music scenes. The vibrant community attracted artists, musicians, and writers, who flocked to the city for inspiration. Its natural beauty also made it a popular spot for photographers, who captured the stunning scenery of the surrounding mountains and forests.

Today, Asheville continues to thrive as a destination for those seeking culture, history, and natural beauty. Whether you’re exploring the town’s musical heritage, taking in the stunning mountain views, or learning about the Biltmore family’s legacy, there’s always something new and exciting to discover in Asheville.

Why You Should Have An Asheville Elopement

Asheville is an ideal place for elopements! The weather in this North Carolina city is fantastic, especially during the spring and fall. The mountains provide a stunning backdrop for your photos, and the scenery is simply breathtaking. If you’re looking for an intimate wedding experience surrounded by nature, Asheville offers plenty of options. From mountain views to waterfalls, you’ll have no shortage of gorgeous locations to choose from.

In addition to the natural beauty, there are plenty of activities in Asheville to make your elopement a memorable one. Take a romantic hike, go for a picnic, or explore the town’s local shops and restaurants. Whether you’re a local or traveling from afar, Asheville is the perfect place to celebrate your love. Don’t hesitate to book your elopement here and capture these special moments with stunning photography.

Getting Married in Asheville

First: Pick a Date

Choose a date at least a few months out (at the minimum) to give yourself enough time to secure any necessary permits for a wedding in Asheville

Second: Pick a Ceremony Location

You’ll need to list your ceremony spot & date on your permit application.

Third: Secure your permits & reservations

Rather your eloping or having a traditional wedding—you’ll need a Special Use Permit. Below, I’ve mentioned everything you need to know to apply.

Lastly: Have your dream wedding!

All you have to do now is get yourself to North Carolina!

When is the best time of year to have an Asheville Elopement?

The best time of year to elope or host a wedding in Asheville depends a lot on your comfort with certain temperatures, and the greenery you’d like to see. If I had to choose, April & October would be my favorite months in Asheville!


Summer in Asheville is hot—the nights become quite pleasant, but the days are pretty warm. If you’re not used to days in a lot of direct sunlight summer would be quite uncomfortable here. Summer is also peak season for tourism so if you aren’t a fan of crowds I would avoid summer, especially weekends


Fall is one of my favorite times to visit Asheville. The leaf color change is just beautfiul and is a must see! If you want the best of leaf color change I would suggest eloping in late October. This is the peak time for color change. The typical high is in the mid 60’s and the low being in the late 40’s. I would recommend bring a wrap or jacket as it’s a little chilly, especially on mountians.


Winter in Asheville is the slowest for tourism. Highs usually run in the 40s and 50s. Grass and trees typically have no foilage and sometimes there’s snow. If you are looking for a snowy wedding I would suggest choosing a different state as snow isn’t always gurenteed in Asheville. Waterfalls do tend to ice over which can be a really cool look! However, what can come with this is unknown road & park closures.


If you love flowers blooming then Spring may be a great choice! However, with all that greenery comes more rain. Spring is the main time to look out for flash floods, be sure you’re hiking on durable surfaces, and check with the park for any warnings about upcoming weather. 

Places to Elope in Asheville, NC

Accessibility & Rules

This will vary depending on where you choose to have your ceremony. Down below are some popular elopement places with their corresponding rules.

1. Biltmore Estate

Biltmore Estate is a stunning venue for your elopement in Asheville, North Carolina. The estate is grand and timeless, offering a breathtaking backdrop for your special day. It has elegant architecture and sprawling gardens, and amazing mountain views. Biltmore Estate creates a romantic and sophisticated atmosphere that is perfect for intimate ceremonies. The estate has a rich history that adds to its charm and makes it a memorable location.

The estate can be booked out 3 months before your elopement date. Prices vary depending on which Biltmore elopement package you choose. Here is where you can contact them to inquire about your elopement.

This is also a great venue if you want to hold a reception with any family. You also have accommodations on the property at Biltmore Inn.

Blue Ridge Parkway

The Blue Ridge Parkway is an incredibly scenic 439-mile drive. The lush mountains provide perfect photo backdrops for destination elopements. As you wind through the parkway, you will encounter stunning tunnels, big rocks, and breathtaking waterfalls that will leave you in awe. It’s a great place to escape with your loved one or to capture unforgettable memories. So, if you’re looking for a peaceful and picturesque getaway, the Blue Ridge Parkway is definitely worth exploring.

Here are some of the best spots on the Blue Ridge Parkway for an elopement:

  • Craggy Gardens
  • Tanbark Ridge Overlook
  • Glassmine Falls Overlook
  • Looking Glass Falls

Eloping on the Blue Ridge Parkway does require a permit. The permit fee is $40 and the application fee is $60. You will need to submit the form via email at least 30 days before your date. The permit allows you to hold a two-hour small ceremony but not a reception.


  • No live plants or hanging objects to nature
  • Only up to 25 guests
  • Area must stay open to the public

*Certain areas of the park are not available for elopements. Find more information and apply for your permit here.

Pisgah National Forest

Pisgah National Forest boasts stunning scenery, with rolling hills, cascading waterfalls, and vibrant foliage. Your photos will be nothing short of magical against the backdrop of Pisgah’s natural beauty. You can also add fun activities such as climbing or horseback riding.

The forest is public land so you don’t have to have a permit for an elopement here.

Here are a few top elopement spots in Pisgah National Forest:

  • Roan Mountain Rhododendron Garden (great in the summer for blooms)
  • Roaring Fork Falls
  • Black Balsam Knob
  • Tom’s Creek Falls
  • Wiseman’s View
Mount Mitchell State Park

Mount Mitchell State Park boasts stunning views and breathtaking landscapes that make it the perfect destination for an elopement. With a possible 360 views of lofty peaks and rolling hills. Mount Mitchell is about 30 miles outside of Asheville.

To host your elopement in the park, you will need a $45 Events and Special Activities permit which you can obtain here.

North Carolina Arboretum

If you really love florals and aren’t interested in hiking to your ceremony then I would recommend the North Carolina Arboretum, just 15 minutes from Asheville. The Arboretum isn’t too large so it’s perfect to feel intimate and get beautiful and colorful images.

This is a little more like a traditional venue so the price starts at $750. You can find more information here.

Great Smoky Mountains National Park

The Great Smoky Mountains National Park is one of my favorite parks to suggest. It’s really a breathtaking place to elope. It has endless miles of mountains, wildflowers, scenic trails, rocky rivers, wildlife, and stunning waterfalls.

National parks do have stricter rules when it comes to weddings and elopements. You will need to apply for a Special Use Permit at least 14 days in advance with an application fee of $50. The permit allows you to hold a two-hour small ceremony but not a reception.

*Certain areas of the park are not available for elopements. Find more information and apply for your permit here.

The top location recomendations:

  • Cades Cove: This is by far my favorite! The overlook provides a stunning panoramic view of the mountains. In the summer there are wildflowers. If you’re lucky, it may snow in the winter.
  • Cades Cove Methodist Church
  • Cataloochee Valley and Overlook
  • Cataract Falls
  • The Historic Mingus Mill (more of a rustic location)
  • Road to Nowhere (Fontana Lake Overlook)
  • Heintooga Overlook (Flat Creek Trail)
Gorges State Park

This state park is great if you like a more rocky look and waterfalls. It’s located at the border between North and South Carolina so it’s about 1 hour and 30 minutes from Asheville. The park does offer activities such as horseback riding. To host your elopement in the park, you will need a $45 Events and Special Activities permit which you can obtain here.

Chimney Rock State Park

Chimney Rock State Park is located about 1 hour (30 miles) from Asheville. The park offers mountain sceneries, waterfalls, and overlooks.

The top location recomendations:

  • Chimney Rock
  • Hickory Nut Falls
  • Vita Rock
  • Lake Lure Lookout
Claxton Farms

Claxton Farms is a more traditional venue with a rustic look. The elopement packages at Claxton Farms start at $2550. You can find more information here.

Homewood Manor

Homewood is a 1920s restored stone manor and is perfect for a castle backdrop. There are fireplaces, chandeliers, and a grand piano. To learn more about how you can elope here, we recommend contacting the owners directly here.

The Ridge

The Ridge is located 40 minutes from Asheville. This venue has a 360-degree view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. You can find more information here.

Omni Grove Park Inn

Omni Grove Park Inn is a grand stone manor perfect for cozy elopement. Of course, you could also find your accommodations here as well. You can find more information here.

Fred W. Symmes Chapel

The Fred W. Symmes Chapel’s nickname is “the Pretty Place Chapel” because of its stunning views of the mountains. Elopement costs start at $2250 for two hours. You can find more information here.

What Does It Cost to Have an Elopement in Asheville?

It could cost as much or as little as you want to get married in Asheville. If you’d like to see a more detailed breakdown of the cost of elopements, we did that math and determined the average elopement costs a couple between $7,200-$16,500.

In Asheville, your potential costs could be:

  • Special Use Permit: $45
  • Special Use Permit (per vendor): $varies
  • Entrance Fee (good for 7 days): $varies
  • Plus, a photographer, officiant, and any other vendors you want to include:

Travel: $500 – $2,000
Attire:  $500 – $3,400
Officiant: $450 – $800 
Bouquet: $150 – $300
Photographer: $3,500 – $10,000
*most elopement photographers also serve as planners
Wedding Planner (optional): $1000-$4000

If you’re dreaming of a luxurious wedding, Asheville won’t disappoint. This city is known for its high-end accommodations and top-notch services. You can have the wedding of your dreams while surrounded by the beauty of nature.

Overall, Asheville is a top destination for couples who want to elope and get married in a unique and beautiful setting. With its stunning landscape, excellent amenities, and luxurious atmosphere, there’s no better place to say “I do.” It’s definitely a destination you won’t regret choosing for your special day.

Ready to plan your Asheville elopement?

I can’t wait to explore this incredible celebration with you! 

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Torianna Brooke

Hi, Welcome to my blog! I'm a wedding photographer in Georgia & South Carolina providing my clients with photojournalistic meets editorial images. Serving clients who find trust in the process of my photographs as well as brides who are joyful and sophisticated. 

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