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Elopements are one of my favourite things to do outside of my adventure portrait sessions, and as such I have found some of the best Canberra elopement locations.

Being Canberra’s elopement photographer, I love to take the time to recommend the most awesome places to the couples I work with who want to tie the knot in the most personal way possible. 

So here is my list of 10 awesome places to elope near Canberra. These are locations that really showcase the best of everything and have a huge bang for their buck when it comes to sights, sounds, and style.

As some of these places are quite remote, you can end up in some very magical and unique areas. I would always like couples to heavily consider having an acknowledgement of the original land owners in their ceremony. We are very lucky to live in Canberra and on the absolutely beautiful and special land. I think our thanks are thoughts are due.

1. Literally under any tree you love

I wanted to have this as the number one choice for where you can elope because it really can be anywhere. The sky is the limit!

For example when taking Sally and April out for a scout around Issacs’s Ridge in Canberra, we came across several absolutely gorgeous locations which would have made the perfect spot for any elopement.

So it doesn’t matter if it was that tree that you two first kissed under on your first date, or that river you discovered in the middle of nowhere, you can commit wherever you’d like!

When finding a place to elope, let your imagination run wild, or better yet bring me along to help you work out which place may work best. And yes, I can even do this remotely with the magic of Google Earth (I’ve done this more than once)! 

Important points to consider: 

With so many different areas to choose from, you may even find it overwhelming to decide on where to go. This is why I would heavily recommend sitting down with your photographer and draw up a shortlist of potential places. In the case of myself, I would go and then give personal recommendations for each of these locations. 

Perfect for the couple who: 

Want to really make it a personalised adventure unlike any other. This is for the couple who want a truly unique adventure.

2. Booroomba Rocks

Land type: Forest and Mountain 

Walking time: 30 minutes steep climb 

If you’re looking for one of the most scenic mountaintops in all of Canberra to tie the knot, this is the one for you. Few places in Canberra can compete with Booroomba Rocks in terms of mountainous views and stunning landscapes. 

Where to have the ceremony: 

Booroomba Rocks provides the perfect outcrop for your elopement, with many flat areas dotted around the area. Lots of room and space for you to find a comfortable place to elope. 

Important points to consider: 

Booroomba Rocks can be a challenging climb, and you most likely will sweat a bit. So if you’re a bit preious about makeup, this may be something to consider. I personally recommend that couples do the walk themselves prior to their big day so that they are able to acclimatise to the difficulty of it.

Perfect for the couple who: 

Love their hiking and insanely epic views. This isn’t an easy climb but when you get to the top and get to look out across literally tens of kilometres, it truly makes it all worth it.

3. Gibraltar Falls

Land type: Forest and Mountain 

Walking time: 5 minutes gentle walk 

Another one of Canberra’s incredibly iconic areas. Gibraltar falls is most well known to locals for providing absolutely stunning backdrops and the perfect place in summer to sit back, relax, and paddle.  

Where to have the ceremony: 

There are many flat rocks and points around Gibraltar falls that would serve perfectly for you both to have your vows read. 

Important points to consider: 

I personally recommend trying to elope here on a week day potentially, only because at weekends this is a very popular spot for locals to sit, swim and bathe. There is also a sheer drop over the side and potentially wet slopes, so bring firm footwear. Hey, I told you these were adventurous places to elope! 

Perfect for the couple who:

Love their water based scenery and who want a real valley to be married in. There are very few places in the ACT just like this!

4. The Pinnacle Nature Reserve

Land type: Grassland, forest, and mountain 

Walking time: 20 minutes gentle walk 

If you’re looking something close to Canberra with the feel of a National Park, the Pinnacle Nature Reserve is a hidden gem in Canberra’s crown. 

Located just outside of Belconnen, this stunning nature reserve has a really diverse set of landscapes that serve as the perfect backdrop to a couple wanting to elope without the fuss of a traditional wedding. 

Where to have the ceremony: 

Two main areas are perfect for your ceremony at The Pinnacle Nature Reserve. 

The first is in the grassland area, which sweeps across the start of the Pinnacle Nature Reserve. Think of a slice of Disney’s Lion King. 

The second would be at the top of the Pinnacle Nature Reserve, which looks out towards the rest of Belconnen. However, you wouldn’t even peg it as being anywhere near Canberra with the views it has.  

Important points to consider: 

Another spot that may be best suited to eloping in during the week, with weekends leaving it to be a busy walking path for many people. This Canberra elopement spot is pretty busy sometimes.

Perfect for the couple who: 

Want to have an elopement that isn’t too far from Canberra but who still want something scenic and nature filled.

5. Mount Stromlo

Land type: Mountain, worn out buildings

Walking time: 5 minutes gentle walk 

Maybe one of the most obvious choices on this list, Mount Stromlo is still a cracker of an area, if somewhat slightly overshot. Still, if you love the vibe of those burnt out observatories, this one is for you! 

Where to have the ceremony: 

There are a few great places in and around Mount Stromlo which provide the perfect backdrop for elopements. The first is in the burnt out observatory, with it’s very neatural coloured washed walls and rusted machinery. 

The other place would be at the top of one of the hills at Mount Stromlo, with a great view out to Canberra and beyond. 

Important points to consider: 

Another spot that can be quite busy at weekends, especially with the mountain bike pathway nearby. If you’re comfortable being in front of others who may want to gaze into what you’re doing, this is for you, otherwise I’d personally not have this as a first choice. 

Perfect for the couple who: 

Like their amazing views and slightly worn out rustic buildings. Also it is not too far from Canberra so easy accessibility.

6. Tidbinbilla – Hanging Rock or Gibraltar Peak

Land type: Forest and Mountain 

Walking time: 5 minutes gentle walk (Hanging Rock) / 3 hours moderate climb (Gibraltar Peak)

Tidbinbilla is essential exploration for anyone who has a remote interest in exploring nature. Located right down the road from the Canberra Space Centre, Tidbinbilla is a real playground for nature lovers, and provides an incredibly diverse array of locations to elope in. 

Where to have the ceremony: 

Two locations which I would highly recommend for being the ‘better’ places to elope, would be Hanging Rock, and Gibraltar Peak. 

Hanging Rock is located around a 10 minute drive from the main tourist centre. It’s most notable feature is it’s huge (you guessed it) rock that hangs and creates a slightly covered area. Getting there is no more than a gentle 5 minute walk from the car park, and has covered in dense forest and huge boulders. If you want something a bit more dark and moody, this is for you. There is a great space there for you to have your ceremony. 

The other location that I think is absolutely gorgeous is that of Gibraltar Peak. This isn’t for the faint hearted, with a climb of around 3 hours or so in total. As with many elopements I capture, I recommend good footwear and a nice big bag to carry your clothes and extras in. This is definitely one for the hiking couple who really love to get out there and explore! Right at the top there is an outcrop which makes the perfect Canberra elopement spot to share your vows.

Important points to consider: 

Hanging Rock is a very gentle walk and very laid back.

With Gibraltar Peak, be prepared for a real hike, so bring water and all of the regular hiking essentials with you.

Perfect for the couple who: 

I know this sounds odd, but this is for the couple who really loves nature. Both Hanging Rock and Gibraltar Peak provide some of the most awesome spots in Canberra to elope.

7. Taemas Bride and Valley, near Wee Jasper

Land type: Valley and beach 

Walking time: 5 minutes gentle walk 

Whilst not technically ‘in’ Canberra, this is no longer a drive than any other location on this list. However the Taemas Bridge on the way from Yass to Wee Jasper is a sight to see.

I wanted to include this, as if you’re looking for that beachy and sandy spot with an almost post-apocalyptic landscape, this may be for you. A stunning valley filled with old petrified trees, surrounded by lush grass and foliage on every hill. Travelling through the fence down the side of the metal bridge will get you below it, where you’ll be able to see the huge supports, and get the sand beneath your toes. 

Where to have the ceremony: 

The area beneath the bridge is filled with sand, old logs, and grass when the water levels are just right. There are lots of flat areas for yourselves to share your words. 

Important points to consider: 

The valley’s water level is very dependant on what the situation is currently like with the water in NSW. Therefore it is important to get a good understanding of how the valley would look closer to your elopement. This is something that I keep an eye on, with regular explorations around the area to gauge just how we would be sitting. Having a plan B for this can be a great idea! 

Perfect for the couple who: 

Love that slightly more rustic and moody landscape, who also love water and sand but don’t want to go down to the coast to experience it. 

8. London Bridge

Land type: Valley and water

Walking time: 15 minutes gentle walk 

Game Of Thrones nerds rejoice, this may be exactly the elopement location you’re looking for in Canberra. London Bridge is very distinctive, with it’s incredible rocky arch and waterway beneath it.

Where to have the ceremony: 

Three areas come to mind where you could have your ceremony.

The first would be on top of the rocky archway. This provides an epic view and placement of yourselves.

The second would be right near the bottom of the arch where you’d be framed by the opening to the cave. Great if you love that slightly moodier feel, right next to the water. If you are really rock and roll, elope whilst you’re in the water!

The third place would be under the trees just in front of the dip into the cave. This is a well shaded and beautifully framed little area.

Important points to consider: 

As it is a very open location, if you go on a hot day, grab your sunscreen!

Perfect for the couple who: 

Want some really insanely GoT themed backgrounds to their elopement; there is nothing like it in Canberra from what I’ve found. This Canberra elopement location is one that people do not expect is in Canberra!

9. Corin Dam

Land type: Valley, river and plains 

Walking time: 10 minutes steep walk 

Located right at the end of the road that Gibraltar Falls is also on, this area is right after crossing the vast Corin Dam. This alone has some amazing views, but when you get down into the valley at the end, you’ll start to see some gorgeous environments, from rivers to beautiful glades.

Where to have the ceremony: 

Whilst there are several different areas in and around Corin Dam, I believe the best place would be just beneath the base of the dam, where there is a stunning open grassy plain.

Important points to consider: 

This is a little bit of a steep descent, and a bit muddy as well, dpeending on the weather, so be prepared with good strong footwear.

Perfect for the couple who: 

Want it all, from awesome views to the more intimate and quiet locations in the forest. A canberra elopement location that is very adventurous.

10. Yankee Hat Walking Trail

Land type: Valley and grassland 

Walking time: 5-50 minutes gentle walk 

Yankee Hat Walking Trail is Canberra’s answer to the vast plains of somewhere like Africa or even Tasmania. This is a stunner of a wide-open grassland area.

Yankee Hat Walking Trail offers a great trail to walk along and great views of the mountains of the Namadgi National Park.

Where to have the ceremony: 

Due to the wide open nature of Yankee Hat Walking Trail, take your pick! You may even like one of the small forest fragments around the area.

Important points to consider: 

Another wide open area that isn’t well sheltered, so bring the sunscreen if it is going to be a hot day!

Perfect for the couple who: 

Wants the epic landscape of Tasmania without the travel there!

The Next Step: Planning your elopement

These are just 10 of the many incredible canberra elopement locations that I know and plan with the couples who want me to capture their big day.

If you’re thinking about eloping and aren’t sure of the next step or want to get an idea of other amazing locations, get in contact and let’s connect! I love to help couples realise their dream elopement with the most kick-ass photography ever.

With the elopements I do, I specialise in elopements Nationally across Australia, and International. I also help couples plan their day, and all photographer travel fees are included in my packages!

James is an adventurous wedding and elopement photographer based in Canberra, Australia. He travels everywhere to capture adventurous love stories with passionate and non-traditional couples.

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