A warm embrace against the weather - husband and wife on the Isle of Skye

      Are you thinking of eloping to The Isle of Skye in Scotland? Or are you in the process of planning your romantic Isle of Skye elopement wedding?

      That’s awesome! We truly believe that an outdoor elopement wedding is one of the most unique and special ways to celebrate your love and to set the tone for the adventurous life that you plan to lead together! As award-winning Scottish elopement photographers, we have captured love stories throughout Scotland, Europe and America. So we can put on hands on our hearts when we say that you have chosen one of the most stunning places in the world to exchange your vows! The Isle of Skye has to be the best location for adventurous, nature-loving couples who love mountains and the great outdoors to choose for their elopement wedding.

      We are a husband and wife adventure elopement photography team who know the Isle of Skye well—we’ve captured many elopements here, we’ve holidayed here, we’ve climbed the mountains here. We would love to share that knowledge with you and give you all the support and guidance you need to plan an amazing Isle of Skye elopement adventure!

      In this blog, we will give you the low-down on some of the best Skye elopement locations, practical advice on the logistics of planning a relaxed and fun elopement day on the Isle of Skye (including the legal elements) and some recommendations for celebrants, other suppliers and characterful accommodation options.

      We’re here to make your life easy! So grab a cup of coffee, a notebook and pen…and read on!

      Welcome to the Isle of Skye!

      The landscape of the Isle of Skye is like nowhere else in Scotland. The moment that you cross the Skye Bridge, you feel like you are stepping into another world. Skye is a rugged and wildly romantic place; the weather here changes quickly, mists cling to the mountains and fogs roll in from the sea. This is the land of Gaelic epics.

      Whilst the landscape makes Skye feel remote and wild, there is a thriving local community here and the restaurants are some of the best in Scotland. An Isle of Skye elopement has the benefit of feeling other-worldly away-from-it all, while also allowing you to enjoy incredible, award-winning restaurants, a lively cafe culture, cosy pubs where live Scottish folk music nights draw the locals in and you can get a genuine taste of Scottish culture (not to mention fine Scottish whisky—Talisker anyone?)

      Newlyweds walk down a road in the Isle of Skye

      WHERE TO ELOPE ON THE ISLE OF SKYE?

      The 5 Best Skye Elopement Locations

      We’ve photographed many elopements and outdoor weddings on the Isle of Skye. Whatever the season and whatever the weather, Skye never fails to take our breath away!

      Skye is popular with tourists, and with very good reason. So as Scotland elopement photographers, we want to give you a bit of insider-knowledge into a few of our favourite places to elope on Isle of Skye and some tips on how to avoid the crowds!

      A husband and wife who eloped to Skye brave the weather with umbrellas

      1. THE QUIRAING: The perfect location for a mountain elopement wedding in Scotland

      The Quiraing is about 30 minutes drive from Portree (one of the central settlements on Skye, and one that’s well-served with amenities). Adventurous couples can embark on the hike up to the Quiraing (which takes roughly 2 hours – depending on your pace). If you are fit and energetic, it’s a spectacular walk! For couples who are a little less adventurous, or who want to include older parents or grandparents in their ceremony, you can drive up the single-tracked Uig road from Staffin to a pass through the Trotternish. From here, it’s a short walk to the much-photographed ridge. It’s worth noting that it’s a steep road, and in winter (Dec-Feb) it can get icy and making access by road tricky.

      In summer, the Quiraing is very popular with tourists, so you are unlikely to have the place to yourselves unless you are willing to get up there early (before about 7am). If you don’t mind the early start, it’s well worth it! Alternatively, we have found a beautiful, secret, secluded spots with spectacular views about 15-20 mins walk from the car park where you are unlikely to be disturbed—even during busy periods. There are also alternative walking routes in from near Flodigarry that provide a more remote experience. The Quiraing is certainly one of the most epic backdrops that you could dream of for an outdoor elopement wedding ceremony!

      The Quiraing is about 30 mins drive from The Fairy Glen (see No.3) , so it’s totally do-able to capture some epic images at both locations, if you would like to.

      2. LOCH CORUISK: Best lake or loch Skye elopement wedding location.

      Loch Coruisk is a stunning, secluded location: a lake surrounded by mountains. It feels both inspiring & majestic and peaceful & protected all at the same time. It’s either a 7 km (3-4 hour) walk along the coast from the village of Elgol, or a considerably longer one from Sligachan. Or you can take one of the cute, wooden ferry boats that are run several times a day from Elgol between April-October by Misty Isle Boats. It’s also possible to charter your own private boat for greater flexibility in timings, making it extra romantic and special. But either way the boat trip offers great camaraderie, with excellent stories from the skipper.

      The scenic boat journey to Loch Coruisk adds to the fun and the sense of adventure. In addition to spectacular views of the Cuillin Mountains, you are likely to catch glimpses of a great variety of seabirds—oyster catchers, golden eagles, puffins and occasional sea eagles. You might also spot basking sharks, minky whales, dolphins and porpoises sometimes following playfully along by the boat.

      It’s worth noting that the ferry boat to Loch Coruisk is weather dependent. If the wind is particularly strong, and coming from a specific direction, the boats are unable to sail. Should this be the case we have some pretty stunning Plan B options in and around Elgol, a wee walk along the headland, up our sleeve. You will always be able to get married in a spectacular setting, we promise you won’t be disappointed!

      A couple who eloped to the Isle of Skye brave the weather

      3. THE FAIRY GLEN: The best Skye elopement location for lovers folklore and mysticism.

      The Fairy Glen, just above the village of Uig, is as enchanting and otherworldly as its name suggests. It’s luscious, green and verdant with softly rolling hills and quiet pools. Compared to the rugged drama of the rest of the island, the Fairy Glen feels altogether softer and more gentle. Like the Quiraing, it’s popular with tourists, so we would recommend arriving early around 7–8am, if you want to have the place to yourselves. Alternatively, we have recced a few spots where you are less likely to be disturbed.

      The Fairy Glen is about 30 mins drive from the Quiraing (see No.1), so it’s totally do-able to capture some epic images at both locations, if you would like.

       

      4. THE CUILLIN MOUNTAINS & THE OLD MAN OF STORR

      Best Isle of Skye elopement locations for mountaineers or couples who want an adventurous wedding. These offer easier approaches as well as more committed adventures. For the adventurous there are bealach—passes between hills—that offer unique locations for elopements with stunning backdrops.

       

      5. Hidden Places and Secret Spots

      We are always happy to recce a super-romantic Isle of Skye wedding ceremony location just for you! We’ve found many out of the way stops that avoid the crowds. Get in touch if you would like to discuss some alternative locations for your Skye Elopement!

      GET IN TOUCH

       

       

      Best Isle of Skye elopement wedding accommodation & venues

      One of the things that we love about Skye is that while it’s wild and remote, it also has some really amazing hotels and restaurants. It’s your wedding day – so you’re going to want to make it really special, right?!

      There are so many amazing places to stay on Skye. However, finding the right place to fit in with your wedding plans can be challenging if you are not familiar with the island – and how long it takes to get from one place to the next. We’re here to help you with that! We’d like to share our local knowledge and recommend some hotels that we think are really stunning – and will make really romantic accommodation options for your Isle of Skye elopement adventure!

      Do keep in mind that Skye is a large island, and that a lot of the roads are single-track – so it takes a while to get around. Make sure that the accommodation you are booking is well-placed (less than 60mins drive) of your elopement ceremony location.

      Kinloch Lodge (good for Loch Coruisk elopements)

      Classy, characterful and situated in a stunning loch-side on The Sleat Peninsula, Kinloch Lodge offers complete luxury, tranquility and amazing locally sourced food! Absolutely perfect for a couple planning their intimate wedding or elopement on Skye. It’s 40mins drive to Elgol (where the boat for Loch Coruisk departs) so it’s a good accommodation if you have chosen Loch Coruisk as your elopement ceremony location.

      Coruisk House (good for Loch Coruisk elopements)

      Boutique hotel (only 4 rooms, sleeps 8) in the tiny, remote hamlet of Elgol. It’s perfect for couples wanting to get away from it all. It’s quiet and cosy, with amazing locally sourced food. It’s just a 5min drive down to Elgol Pier – where the boat for Loch Coruisk departs. So super-convenient for a Loch Coruisk wedding.

      Bosville Hotel, Portree (good for Quiraing, Fairy Glen and Fairy Pools elopements)

      In a central location in the small town of Portree, the Bosville Hotel is cool and classy, with super-friendly staff and delicious food. We’ve eaten there on many occasions now, and it’s been excellent every time! Some of the rooms are quite small (and would make getting ready together a bit cramped) so it’s worth booking one of the larger rooms with a sea view.

      The Three Chimneys (good for Neist Point, Fairy Pools and Dunvegan elopements)

      Award-winning restaurant with rooms renowned for it’s excellent Scottish food, situated in a quiet corner of Skye overlooking Dunvegan Castle.

      Wife and wife embracing on the shores of Loch Coruisk on the Isle of Skye

      Best Self-Catering & Airbnb accommodation on the Isle of Skye for an elopement wedding

      1) Mint Croft Cottages (Good for The Fairy Glen, Neist Point, Fairy Pools elopements)

      Mint Croft is a rare find, a luxurious gourmet b&b in three old crofters’ cottages perched above the sea. It’s a labour of love created by a couple of designers turned modern-day crofters. You’ll want to hole up here and never leave. Set in the stunning and remote coastal village of Geary, yet only ten minutes drive from Skye’s only Michelin star restaurant and the island’s oldest pub.

      2) The Crofter’s House (Good for The Quiraing, Fairy Glen, The Old Man of Storr and Fairy Pools elopements)

      An original 1830’s crofter’s cottage that has been completely renovated to provide a calm and peaceful retreat in the surrounding rugged landscape of the Scottish Highlands and Islands. Situated beside Camustianavaig Bay on the Isle of Skye, the house enjoys a rural location, yet is only five miles from Portree. The space is decorated in a soft minimal style and offers a tranquil Highland hideaway for up to two people.

      3) The Spoons (Good for The Fairy Glen, Fairy Pools, The Old Man of Storr and Quiraing elopements)

      The Spoons feels like a home-from-home. Set in a peaceful location near Portree, it’s the perfect romantic retreat for two. The Spoons is centrally located making it the ideal place from which to explore the island. We have stayed here several times ourselves, and we love it!

      4) Harlosh Black H (Good for Neist Point, Coral Beach elopements)

      Two architecturally designed self-catering holiday cottages on the west coast of Isle of Skye with amazing views, offering stylish and contemporary holiday hideaways for two.

      If you’d like to chat to us about your Isle of Skye elopement plans get in touch!

      GET IN TOUCH

      A husband and wife hold hands during their elopement ceremony

      THE LEGAL ESSENTIALS

      Did you know that you can legally get married anywhere you like on the Isle of Skye, as long as your ceremony is conducted by a registered celebrant?

      Choosing the right celebrant is really important because their personality and approach will inform the atmosphere of your elopement wedding ceremony. So you will want to find a celebrant that you connect with on a personal level. Most celebrants appreciate that you will probably want to speak to a couple of different celebrants before making your decision, to see who you click with.

      The Humanist Association of Scotland has a list of approved celebrants. But if you would like some personal recommendations, we think the following people bring a lovely warmth and wisdom to the ceremonies they conduct: Rona Burstow, Ashton Easter, Laura Gillespie, Halde Pottinger.

      In terms of logistics, you and your partner will each need to give notice to the district registrar for the area where you intend to marry.

        • If your ceremony location is in the South of Skye (Elgol and Loch Coruisk) then you should contact the Broadford office.
        • If you are planning to elope in the North of Skye (Fairy Pools, Fairy Glen, Quiraing, Old Man of Storr) then you should get in touch with the Portree & Raasay office.

      **It’s important to note that you must give the notices to the district registrar no earlier than 3 months and no later than 29 days before the date of the marriage.**

      There is more detailed information on the paperwork here.

      For more information about our Isle of Skye elopement photography packages:

      GET IN TOUCH

      A bride to be enjoying a moment before her elopement wedding ceremony

      ISLE OF SKYE ELOPEMENT: SUPPLIER RECOMMENDATIONS

      HAIR & MAKE-UP

      The Skye Beauty Salon: https://www.skye-beauty.com/

      FLOWERS

        • Wild Gorse: beautifully wild and rugged floral creations that look amazing against Scottish landscapes
        • Rosehip and Wren: beautiful dried flower creations that you can enjoy for many months after your wedding

      RESTAURANTS

        • The Old Inn, Carbost – characterful traditional Scottish pub with live Scottish music
        • The Bosville Hotel, Portree – cool, cosy well-stocked bar & excellent contemporary Scottish menu
        • Marmalade Hotel, Portree – sister hotel to The Bosville, similar vibe and also cool.
        • Kinloch Lodge – cosy, classy Scottish shooting lodge with incredible food.
        • The Three Chimneys – world renowned Scottish restaurant-with-rooms in a beautiful location.
        • Waterside Restaurant, Kyle of Lochalsh

      A husband and wife enjoying a walk in the Scottish islands after their elopement ceremony

      WHAT TO WEAR FOR YOUR ISLE OF SKYE ELOPEMENT WEDDING

      Whatever the season, whatever the month, the weather on Skye is very changeable. You may, as the saying goes, get ‘four seasons in one day’. So come prepared! Layers, waterproofs and sensible, sturdy shoes are essential.

      FOR HER

      Whatever you choose to wear for your Isle of Skye elopement wedding will, of course, be a very personal decision. However, for your own comfort and enjoyment of your elopement adventure, we would offer the following pieces of advice:

      DO: If you are planning to wear a dress, choose a skirt with plenty of movement.

      Opt for something that will not restrict your movement and will allow you to have fun while you are exploring your beautiful elopement location without having to worry about your dress the whole day. Remember that you are likely to be walking up the odd hill or stepping over a stream or two. Make sure that your dress will allow you do to this. Plus, floaty dresses look amazing when caught by the wind!

      WE WOULD ADVISE AGAINST: A really, big, heavy, bulky dress or a dress with a very tightly fitting skirt

      In our experience, a tightly fitting dress will be restrictive to your movement and will probably prevent you from being able to fully relax and enjoy your day. Likewise, a big, bulky, heavy dress is likely to weigh you down and feel a bit cumbersome after an hour or so. Opting for something light & floaty is a great idea. It will not restrict your movement and will allow you to relax and have fun while you are exploring your beautiful elopement location. Who wants to be wrestling with their dress the entire elopement day?!

      A new husband and wife braving the winds on the Inner Hebrides of Scotland

      Layers will make a big difference to your general warmth, comfort and enjoyment of your day. Depending on the colour of your dress, cream or white merino wool tights or leggings are a great idea. Fingerless gloves work great. And, depending on the cut of your dress, a thermal vest or merino camisole would be a great idea, too.

      In terms of footwear, some sort of lace-up brogue boot or even walking boots are ideal. The ground is often quite damp and boggy in places, so waterproof footwear will prevent you from getting wet feet.

      Woollen shawls are an excellent way to add an extra layer – while also fitting into the Scottish surroundings. We love the Recycled Wool Shawls at the Tartan Blanket Company. They’re so beautifully made, and incredibly warm and wind-proof.

      FOR HIM

      Every guy has a sense of what he looks and feels good in. Again, if we were to offer one piece of advice, it would be to consider the backdrop of your Scottish elopement wedding, and what will feel in-keeping with it with your surroundings.

      A Tux or a sharp suit might totally rock for a city elopement. But you might want to consider something a little more rustic for your elopement on Skye? A hip tweed suit looks great amidst the mountains, plus they’re really warm – which is a definite bonus! For anyone of Scottish descent, or anyone just keen to get into the Outlander atmosphere of the place, there is obviously the kilt option, too!

        • Walker Slater (Edinburgh, London or online) – excellent wooden and tweed suits that look great against the rugged backdrop of the Isle of Skye
        • Stewart Christie (Edinburgh) – a Scottish institution, the oldest tailor in Scotland—suiting some of the finest gents in Scotland and beyond

       

      ISLE OF SKYE ELOPEMENT WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

      Photography is perhaps the most important investment that you will make in your elopement wedding. Your photographer has the responsibility of capturing the story of your day beautifully; to preserve these special memories forever and allow you to share them with your family and friends. They will also be perhaps the only guest(s) at this incredibly momentous and personal day of your lives – and their personality will influence the atmosphere of your day. Make sure that you choose a photographer whose style you love, but also that you connect with on a personal level, too.

      Most photographers are only too happy to speak with couples who are interested in inviting them to be a part of their elopement adventure. It’s a great way for them to get to know more about you and your ideas and plans for your day. It’s also a chance for you to get a sense of them – and how they would fit into it!

      It goes without saying that if you are looking for two friendly and fun Scotland based wedding photographers to capture your elopement, we would love to hear more about your plans! Skye is one of our absolutely favourite places to shoot elopements: it takes our breath away every time. We feel so honoured and privileged to be part of our couples unique and special elopement weddings – and we do everything that we can to ensure that they have the most amazing time! In addition to photographing their day, we have acted as witnesses to many of our couples – and we would be more than happy to do the same for you.

      GET IN TOUCH

      If you would like to get a sense of what it’s like to work with us, here are some testimonials from some couples who have worked with us in the past:

      Kim & Chrissie | Isle of Skye elopement at Loch Coruisk

      "We are so happy we chose The Caryls to photograph our wedding! Myself and my wife Chrissie opted for a private elopement ceremony up in the Isle of Skye, so we knew that when choosing our photographers they had to be very special. Not only would they be taking precious photos of a very special day, but they were also to be our witnesses and signing some very important papers. From the very start we felt so comfortable with Jim & Katy, and when it came to meeting them the day before our wedding we already felt like good friends! Jim & Katy went above and beyond what we expected. They know Skye extremely well and led us to the most beautiful spots on the island where all these amazing photographs were taken. Getting married at Loch Coruisk in the South of the island was their recommendation as well. We cannot thank them enough for what they have done for us. We felt very special and can only recommend choosing The Caryls to capture your very special day."

      Read the full story of their day on our blog.

      Cristine & Alex | Scottish elopement on the Isle of Mull

      "The Caryls are the best photographers in the United Kingdom! A wedding abroad is always a challenge and finding photographers is a crucial point of preparations. We considered a lot of candidates, but finally stopped at the Caryls. And never regret about our choice. From the earliest stages of preparations they provided us support and assistance with the ceremony site selection, legal and financial formalities. We’ve been constantly in touch and they were ready to reply any question. Jim and Katy assisted us a lot with organization of the whole day, gave us precious advises and were very attentive to details. We felt this support both during wedding preparations and on the wedding day, and even after it. Indeed, in the very beginning we felt it as an incredibly crazy adventure and till the very last moment everything seemed unreal. But in the end this day has become one of the best one in our lives. The Caryls have not only been our photographers and witnesses, they’ve become our friends and we would be happy to stay in touch with them."

      Read the full story of their day on our blog.

      Christina & Alen | Boho wedding in Big Sur, California

      The Caryls moody, romantic yet light filled scenic images drew us in. Meeting Katy and Jim via facetime solidified our decision in choosing them to photograph our wedding. We quickly realized these two are the most friendly, talented team. Better yet, they were willing to adventure internationally to shoot our Big Sur Destination wedding, which, in itself, was an amazing gesture. Thanks to Katy and Jim, we not only had the opportunity to hang out with two awesome individuals during our wedding weekend, who were so caring and kind to our family and friends, but we also have the most stunning images and keepsakes to look back on for years. Our friends and family members commented on how friendly and great our photographers were; they definitely were one of the highlights discussed! We highly recommend The Caryls for their professionalism, their ease in making you feel comfortable in front of the camera, for their ability to get the most amazing scenic shots, for their moody and romantic documentary style, and most importantly, for their friendly and easy-going vibe. When we look at our photos, we are immediately taken back to the emotions we felt, as Katy and Jim have the ability to capture that intimacy and those moments so incredibly well.

      Read the full story of their day on our blog.

      Adriana & Neil | Scottish Highland castle wedding

      “The Caryls are the loveliest couple and amazing photographers! They captured so many special moments on the day that I either hadn’t been able to see first hand or had forgotten! We hired them because we had seen the photos they had taken for friends of ours and absolutely loved how they captured them. We would 100000% recommend them to others—you will not be disappointed!! They specialize in elopements out in the wild but don’t hesitate to hire them for something more traditional! Our wedding was somewhere between traditional and not so traditional and they just captured everything so beautifully. On the day, they made us feel so relaxed and they almost just blended into the background. Not intrusive or demanding, they just let us be and captured the day as it unfolded. They whisked us away for a romantic quiet session in the woods right after we were married, and it was so special to have that time together. I will cherish that moment and those photos forever. Can not recommend them enough!”

      Read the full story of their day on our blog.

      Melissa & Luke | Scottish elopement in the Cairngorms

      "When we decided to get married outside in Scottish winter we didn't know what we might be letting ourselves in for. We loved the idea of eloping but didn't really know if we were just being crazy. When we spoke to Katy & Jim about our plans we were instantly put at ease. The Caryls have done this before and they were helpful in suggesting locations and timings for our ceremony that would both photograph well and also be practical on the day. When we got off the phone to them, we immediately started to get excited. Our elopement was small and with so few guests we thought the value of having really good photographs as a lasting memory of our day was essential. The Caryls images have a beautiful, wild, almost ethereal feel to them that is both artistic and documentary. If you're thinking about an outdoorsy elopement Katy & Jim are two of the best. They are professional, experienced, and take wonderful photos. Beyond that, they were a pleasure to have around on our special day and we highly recommend them."

      Read the full story of their day on our blog.

      Morgan & Stew | Alternative wedding in Edinburgh

      "We were so lucky to have this powerhouse capture our wedding day. The photos they created are now among some of our most treasured possessions. They were regularly in touch with us in the lead up, getting to know us and making sure they had all the information we wanted them to. It was obvious they wanted us to feel they had our backs which we appreciated immensely. Their directions and staging were subtle but clear and concise, they kept everyone at ease. They let the day happen around them, and captured what went on around them, without disruption or intrusion. Their presence on the day and into the evening was calm, collected, loving and considerate. We didn't want to say goodbye! We will be forever grateful they were a part of one of the most important days of our lives - it wouldn't have been the same without them."

      Lauren & Mat | Scottish elopement in the Cairngorms

      "We cannot thank you enough for the amazing job you both did. We absolutely loved going through them and reliving every moment of the day! Our families were so thrilled with the photos, and said that it felt like they were there - which was exactly what we were hoping for. We’ve shared a selection with quite a few of our friends and absolutely everyone has been blown away by the beauty that you managed to capture - at least one person even said the pictures moved them to tears! Honestly, you did such a perfect job and we are so grateful to have had you there with us :) THANK YOU!!\"

      Read the full story of their day on our blog.

      Annie & Jonny | Glencoe engagement shoot

      \"Describing Katy and Jim as two wonderfully talented photographers, whilst absolutely true, still doesn't seem to do this couple justice. There's more to it than that. Through their wonderful passion and incredible skills behind the camera, they are able to create images which capture the most intimate feelings between people, and I never knew that was possible. They have this fantastic ability to put people at ease, and create a light, natural atmosphere... never once feeling staged or uncomfortable. Combine this with their love of the Scottish wilderness, and you've got a formidable combination. Myself and my fiancé Jonny have been lucky enough to experience two photoshoots with The Caryls, and both times we have been so deeply touched by the magical images which have resulted. It's one thing to love a person, but it's another thing entirely to have the very essence of that love (a look, a laugh, a brush of the hand through the hair), crystallised forever in a photograph. I will be forever grateful that we met Katy and Jim, and for the photos which we will love for a lifetime.\"

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