ELOPE IN COSTA RICA
Are you thinking about eloping in Costa Rica? But maybe you’re wondering if it’s the right fit for you?
I have been privileged to photograph a whole bunch of elopements in Costa Rica over the past 15 years. I can tell you that I can’t think of a single couple who wasn’t over the moon about their wedding here. Even when it rains, it’s a magical experience.
The atmosphere in Costa Rica is enchanting, the people are warm and welcoming, and the natural beauty is captivating. There’s a reason that hundreds of couples come here to get married each year— it’s a slice of paradise on earth.
IS A DESTINATION MICRO WEDDING FOR YOU?
Have you always loved the idea of gallivanting off to a far-off place to get married? Maybe the idea of eloping and doing away with all the family drama of who has to sit next to who during the reception is appealing. Or maybe, COVID-19 has thrown a wrench in your plans and a tiny wedding in the tropics is just what you need. Regardless, there are many reasons why people choose to elope abroad. One of the best parts is that you can perfectly customize your wedding. I’ve seen all sorts of elopement ceremonies from an intimate wedding on the beach with a handful of guests to an all-day adventure hiking to a waterfall to say ‘I do.’ You want to make the arduous hike to get married at the top of Chirripó, the highest point in Costa Rica? An elopement is the way to go.
WHY ELOPE IN MANUEL ANTONIO
The Manuel Antonio area, on the Central Pacific is an ideal place to get married. An exotic elopement turns into a wedding and honeymoon all at the same time. For this reason, you’ll definitely want to choose a location where you can relax and explore. Manuel Antonio is the perfect spot for several reasons. Check out my favorites here!
Now you know why Manuel Antonio is a great spot to visit, what can your elopement ceremony look like here? Check out some of these great ideas!
What Does Eloping In Costa Rica Look Like?
What can you expect from an elopement in Costa Rica? While each one is unique, I’ve been honored to witness quite a few so I can give you an idea of what to expect.
Most days in Costa Rica (even during the rainy season) dawn sunny and clear, so let’s start our hypothetical day off like that. You wake up and take a fresh cup of coffee out onto the balcony to enjoy the view and watch the monkeys play in the trees.
Soon, the makeup artist will arrive to help the bride prepare and things will get rolling!
Once everyone is ready, it’s time to head to the beach for the ceremony. This couple stayed at Makanda, an adults only boutique hotel and got married on the main beach. This other couple stayed at Arenas del Mar, a very fancy eco-hotel with their own private beach that is perfect for eloping.
This couple stayed at gorgeous Villa Caletas during the rainy season and a rainbow photobombed their pictures!
Elopement ceremonies are typically short and sweet. There isn’t a lot of fanfare and some couples choose to write their own vows. It’s a lot easier to speak from the heart when there isn’t a whole crowd of people watching!
Afterward, we typically do the portrait session and now that you’re married you go on to enjoy the rest of your day — or evening if the wedding was timed with sunset.
Eloping With Guests
Eloping traditionally has the connotation of running away and getting married in secret, but this isn’t always the case. The number of micro weddings is on the rise as people are interested in small, simple weddings (or are concerned about social distancing). These weddings are so small they’re basically elopements, just with a handful of guests.
Elopements with guests often have a small reception after the ceremony. In that case, I’ll stick around and get some fun photos of the couple and their guests dancing the night away in paradise.
Receptions usually happen in a restaurant or an event space at the hotel or private house. Not always, though. This couple had theirs right on the beach!
The rest of your time here can be spent relaxing, enjoying nature, or going on exciting adventures — it’s up to you!