Are you getting married? More and more of us are moving away from a traditional church wedding and looking for a more individual and personal wedding day. But where? Your choice of location will set the scene for one of the most important days in your life. Whether you decide on a marquee in your parents’ garden, a castle, a romantic woodland glade, or something extreme such as the top of a mountain or the bottom of the sea.
In Scotland we are lucky to have a host of romantic and unique locations that you can choose to make your wedding day memorable. We have the most stunning countryside, some of the best beaches in the world and dramatic mountainscapes. As well as fabulous historic castles and monuments round every corner, meaning you can choose absolutely anywhere for your wedding.
Yes, we’re spoilt for choice, but we’re also spoilt for choice of weather, so think twice before choosing a location where you could as easily find yourself in a snowstorm as a heatwave.
It can be challenging to find the right place for you as a couple, and it’s not always easy to consider all the practicalities when you’re consumed with enthusiasm at the thought of tying the knot at the top of Ben Nevis. How will your granny get to the top? What to do with your small nephews and nieces if you’re thinking of a hot air balloon? Can your best man swim if you’re thinking of joining Nessie under the waves of Loch Ness?
Photo credit: @michaelcarverphotography
Castle, Country or Can I Really Do That?
With such a bewildering choice, first of all you need to decide what type of wedding you want. Getting married in a castle just couldn’t be simpler, although it may well come at a price. Scotland’s castles are famous throughout the world, and it’s estimated that there have been up to 3,000 in our beautiful wee country – although you may not want to consider a ruin for your wedding. You may be interested to know that Aberdeenshire has more castles per hectare than anywhere else in the UK!
The most well-known will always be Edinburgh Castle – St Margaret’s Chapel can hold 30 guests, ideal for a small but perfectly formed wedding. There’s a castle for almost every letter of the alphabet… Airth, Barnbougle, Cornhill, Duart (on Mull – this featured in the film ‘Brave’), Eilan Donan, Fyvie, Glengorm, Huntinglaw, Invercauld, Johnstone, Kinfauns, Lauriston, Muness (on Shetland – this is the most northerly castle in the UK), Neidpath, Old Cluny, Pitsligo, Rait, Skibo, Traquair (in the Borders – the oldest inhabited house in Scotland), Urquhart, Venlaw, Winton. You just can’t beat a fairytale Scottish castle for romance. Do watch out though, they don’t all have roofs. Other posh venues include Archerfield House in East Lothian, go Gothic at the fabulous Mar Hall on the River Clyde, or treat yourself to the ultimate in luxury at Branxholm Park in the Borders, complete with spa.
Then of course, there’s the country option. You can say your vows against a spectacular background like Glencoe, or beneath the Cullin on the Isle of Skye, by a lochan in the Cairngorms National Park, in the beautiful walled garden at Cambo Estate in the East Neuk of Fife, or on Inchcolm Island in the Firth of Forth. Check out the Schiehallion Bothies and go climb a mountain. And let’s not forget our beautiful beaches – you’re never far from a beach in Scotland. There’s Tyninghame in East Lothian Luskentyre Sands on Harris, the West Sands at St Andrews and so many more.
Can you really get married anywhere you like? Yes, you can in Scotland. For those who would like something very different and special, here are some ideas – a maze (Traquair House), a yurt, a conservatory, a barn, a boat, a train, an art gallery (try Jupiter Artland for a fabulous mix of country and amazing outdoor art installations), a distillery, a treehouse, a lighthouse (Mull of Galloway), underwater, a hot air balloon, a farm, an aquarium, a vineyard (yes, there are some). What would make you happy on this most important day in your life?
Photo credit: @andrewraephotographer
It’s Your Choice and Your Memories
Your wedding day is one of the most exciting and memorable occasions in your life. Don’t be phased by the choice of locations, and make sure it’s your choice and nobody else’s. You’ll need to consider cost, availability and practicalities, especially for some of the more ‘out there’ locations, but the final decision is yours. Enjoy making it, and enjoy your perfect wedding day even more.