Elopements and micro-weddings: Top 5 destinations in Snowdonia and North Wales
If you struggle to get excited by traditional venues, and love the idea of getting married somewhere totally unique, immersed in nature, then a micro-wedding or simple elopement might be perfect for you! The term elopement conjures visions of romantic escapism. Historically, the term meant “to run away secretly with the intention of getting married usually without parental consent”. But also, the term simply means “to escape”, and couples are now using the term when referring to small destination weddings or a micro-weddings.
I love where I live and I honestly think there are so many magical places you could get married or renew your vows in North Wales. As an independent celebrant I can do your ceremony absolutely anywhere, anytime and in any style you choose. To give you some inspiration (and a little taste of what's on offer), I have picked my top 5 destinations below. All have a short walk in, so no need to worry about you or your guests arriving hot at sweaty at your chosen destination!
Porth Iago, Llŷn Peninsula
The Llŷn Peninsula has over 100 miles of coastline. There a multiple stunning beaches and any one of them would make a great setting for a beach wedding, but Porth Iago is a a bit of a hidden gem. One of the prettiest beaches in the area, the bay is sheltered between the headlands of Dinas and Graig Ddu and has crystal clear water, great for a pre- or post- ceremony dip! Access to the beach is either via the Wales Coast Path via a scramble down the dunes, or via a private farm track leading to a car park.
Watkin Path Pools, Snowdon
The Watkin Path Pools are probably one of the most instagrammable sights in Snowdonia! Don’t let that put you off. Even on a sunny day, its possible to find an isolated stretch along the river banks next to the turquoise waterfalls and pools. The backdrop is truly spectacular and the inviting waters are a renowned wild swimming spot. The walk in is <1mile from the Nant Gwynant road junction. There is a public car park on the opposite side of the road.
If you are looking for an atmospheric setting, then look no further than the dramatic amphitheatre of Cwm Idwal. The views in every direction are awe inspiring, whether looking down the valley toward Bethesda or up towards the dramatic cliffs of Devils kitchen. A short walk in from the Youth Hostel / Visitor Centre on the A5, the path is well laid.
Llanddwyn Island, Anglesey
Anglesey is renowned for some of the best beaches in North Wales. Newborough Beach is certainly one of them. It stretches 3.5 miles along the south-western margin of Anglesey. The length of the beach means even at peak times, the beach doesn’t feel very busy. A short walk along the beach takes you to Llanddwyn Island, a narrow peninsula and the home of the home of St Dwynwen (the Welsh patron saint of lovers). It’s a particularly romantic spot with views of Snowdonia and the Llŷn Peninsula.
Access is from the Forestry Commission pay and display car park. The Island can be cut off at very high tides.
Southern Snowdonia - Barmouth and Cregennan Lakes
Lesser visited southern Snowdonia has some hidden gems. The views in this area are simply breath-taking and its often without the crowds. For that reason, I’m including two gorgeous spots for you to consider. Ok I sneaked an extra spot in, but trust me they are both worth it!
Cregennan Lakes is owned by the National Trust and sits on the northern slopes of Cader Idris, 5 miles from Dolgellau. It’s a lesser-known spot and so you will feel like you are truly escaping into the wilderness for your magical day.
A busier, but no less magnificent spot is the Panorama. Situated on an easily accessible hillside behind Barmouth, the views over the Mwaddach estuary and southern Snowdonia are some of the best in Wales.
What are your favourite spots? Let me know in the comments :-)