Elopement Photographer | Avonture Elopem



I'm Shanmari - elopement crafter and photographer here at Avonture. I'm based out of Ohio and travels worldwide to help venturing couples like you plan their dream elopement that values their beliefs and authenticity.

How to Elope in Ohio | Top 5 Ohio Elopement Locations

Ohio elopements might not give you that red desert feels, or majestic mountain peaks like on the west side of the United States. But don't be fooled by the loveliness of the west when Ohio has beautiful spots that will be perfect as a backdrop for your elopement day.

From fairytale-like forests to waterfalls, large moss-covered ledges, and fantastic hiking trails, Ohio honestly can give you one heck of an elopement experience.

Here's how I can help with your Ohio Elopement.

Ohio elopement photographer standing in front of a waterfall surrounded by moss covered ledges and trees

I am an Ohio Elopement Photographer that specializes in all areas in and around Ohio. While I have traveled to many beautiful and amazing locations in Ohio, it is my goal to find and plan the perfect place for my couples to say "I do."

My specialty is discovering the best Ohio elopement location and permit preparation for your big day. I am committed to getting you there safely and ensuring that the day is everything you have been dreaming of and much more.

With my FREE elopement resources, you will know the best attire to wear, how to choose your elopement bouquet, and how to get privacy at your Ohio elopement.

When you choose me as your personal elopement photographer, I give all my couples a FULL planning guide, so you never feel overwhelmed or concerned about the process.

I can't wait to start this journey with you! Feel free to contact me with any questions you have about eloping in Ohio!

interracial couple facing each other and smiling standing on the trail in the woods behind the squires castle on their Ohio elopement day

Eloping in Ohio

An Ohio elopement can range from a winter wonderland, following a muddy trail to a rushing waterfall, or admiring the many different colors of the trees in the fall. Whatever season you decide for your Ohio elopement, don't forget all the incredible adventures Ohio has to offer as well.

  • Zip lining through high trees.

  • Hiking trails that lead to incredible waterfalls.

  • Canoeing or kayaking on one of the many rivers.

  • Skiing during the winter months.

  • Rock climbing or caving.

  • Horseback Riding

  • ATV off-roading.

  • Hot air ballooning.

  • Or even simple activities like hanging out in a hammock or bird watching.

Not to mention the really unique places you can enjoy staying at in Ohio. There are luxury A-frame cabins with campfires and hot tubs. Maybe you prefer a secret treehouse, camping spots, glamping experiences, and so much more!

groom in Scottish kilt hugging wife from behind surrounded by moss covered ledges on their Nelson Kennedy Ledges Ohio elopement day

Obtaining a Marriage License in Ohio?

When you elope in Ohio, you must obtain a marriage license within the county you are eloping. Once you picked your spot, look up the county Probate Court Office of your chosen location, and that's where you'll go to apply for your license!

To apply for your Ohio marriage license, you'll need a photo ID and social security numbers. Sometimes they will require your birth certificates, too, so make sure to contact the county Probate Court Office you are eloping in to obtain the correct information for the requirements to apply for a marriage license.

Price range from $50 - $100

Valid for 60 days.

Vendors in Ohio

If you are looking for the best vendors for your Ohio elopement, look no further! I can help you with all the details such as:

  • Private chefs

  • Florists

  • Officiants

  • Adventure sport guides

  • Wedding cakes and other pastries

  • Hair and make-up artists

And so much more!

bride wearing hiking boots and a dress covered in fallen leaves and dirt walking over tree branches on her Ohio elopement

Leave No Trace in Ohio

There are seven main principles for Leave No Trace:

1. Plan ahead and prepare.

2. Stay on hiking trails and camp on durable surfaces.

3. Dispose of your waste.

4. No picking flowers or taking rocks – leave everything you find.

5. Minimize campfire impacts.

6. Respect all the wildlife and do not disturb.

7. Be considerate of those around you.

The good news is you can elope in Ohio and have your furry best friend present and most state parks. Expect to possibly pay a small pet fee, usually $1, to take your dog. Here is a list of all the parks that allow dogs.

There are rules that you need to adhere to if you plan to bring your pet.

  • Any pets must be on a leash

  • Pick up all pet waste and throw them away when you leave the park.

  • Keep pets from ruining any vegetation and stay on hiking trails.

Where to Elope in Ohio

gay couple walking through the snow with their dog surrounded by ledges in the cuyahoga valley national park on their Ohio elopement

1. Cuyahoga Valley National Park

I feel super lucky to live near Cuyahoga Valley National Park and get to hike it almost every weekend! I discover new beautiful things every time I visit this park, and it gets me to go back and explore more every time.

Permit Fees: $75+

Website: https://www.nps.gov/cuva/planyourvisit/permitsandreservations.htm

Blue Hen Falls

I know the name sounds funny, but an Ohio elopement right by the unique Blue Hen Falls will feel like you are saying your vows to each other in a fairytale book setting. Hike a bit further and you'll discover a second waterfall, Buttermilk Falls but be prepared to cross a few creeks getting there. Bring your dog along for the 3-mile adventure elopement too!

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Wedding Permits are not issued for Blue Hen Falls, so you won’t be able to hold your ceremony here but that does not mean you cannot explore the waterfall and take beautiful photos here on your elopement day.

Length: 3.0 Miles

Elevation Gain: 580 ft

Route Type: Out & Back

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

My favorite time to go: Early morning and on a weekday during Spring, Winter or Fall.

Brandywine Gorge Falls

Brandywine Gorge Falls won't disappoint! Expect a huge rushing waterfall, hiking trails, creeks and breathtaking sceneries. Access to this waterfall is easy so expect less privacy here during busy season.

IMPORTANT INFORMATION: Wedding Permits are not issued for Brandywine Falls on weekends, holidays, or during the month of October. So, you won’t be able to hold your ceremony here but that does not mean you cannot explore the waterfall and take beautiful photos here on your elopement day.

Length: 1.4 Miles for the Gorge Trail

Elevation Gain: 164 ft

Route Type: Out & Back from the parking lot to the falls and a loop for the Gorge Trail.

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

My favorite time to go: During spring in the early mornings for a rushing waterfall and during fall to walk alongside the creek.

Brandywine falls Ohio on a summer day

The Ledges Overlook

Facing west this overlook hangs above the trees, perfect for the most magical sunset elopements with a beautiful view of the sun setting above the trees.

Length: 2.3 Miles

Elevation Gain: 209 ft

Route Type: Loop

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

My favorite time to go: Snowy winter mornings on this trail is truly magical, be prepared for ice on the trail and large icicles on the ledges.

2. Cleveland Metroparks

The Cleveland Metroparks has over 18 reservations, 100 hiking trails, and ample places to choose from to elope. If you have set your sights here, consider some of these spots to elope.

Permit Fees: $100

Website: https://www.clevelandmetroparks.com/getmedia/40164e39-b19d-4e3c-bcd1-961df70d23ce/WeddingApp3-14bnew.pdf.ashx

berea falls Ohio

Squires Castle

If you want to feel like you are standing next to a stunning castle in Scotland, Squares Castle is for you! Built in the 1890s, Squares Castle is a place of historical value and has become a popular place for couples wanting an adventure wedding. A 2 min walk from the parking lot with a wonderful trailhead right behind it.

Length: 2.1 Miles

Elevation Gain: 213 ft

Route Type: Loop

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

My favorite time to go: Weekdays on a snowy day during winter or a peak fall foliage day in fall.

Rocky River Reservation

You will see a beautiful gorge, lush, and scenic natural environment with plenty of places to explore and hike through. If you want to see some of the best mother nature offers, visit the Rocky River Reservation.

Length: 2 - 7 Miles

Elevation Gain: +- 275 ft

Route Type: Loop

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

My favorite time to go: These trails are closer to larger cities so it can get busy on weekends, I recommend eloping here on an early morning weekday.

3. Hocking Hills State Park

With 25 miles of hiking trails and magnificent waterfalls, Hocking Hills State Park is a beautiful place for couples to elope in Ohio. One of my all time favorite hiking and camping spots in Ohio, the beauty of this park will never cease to amaze you no matter how many times you visit! During winter you'll discover frozen waterfalls, in spring, rushing waterfalls and in fall the magnificent beauty of fall foliage.

Permit Fees: $40 - $90

Website: https://ohiodnr.gov/wps/portal/gov/odnr/buy-and-apply/special-use-permits/special-event-special-use/special-activity-state-park

elopement at cedar falls in hocking hills Ohio couple in wedding attire facing each other

Ash Cave

Ash Cave is a shallow cave with its rim appearing like a horseshoe and spans an impressive 700 feet with a beautiful runoff waterfall. The valley floor is usually full of wildflowers in every season.

Length: 0.5 Miles

Elevation Gain: 111 ft

Route Type: Loop

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

Cedar Falls

Considered to be wild and lonely, Cedar Falls has views of steep rocks, caves, and waterfalls. This is a special place to see and a beautiful place to elope – alone or with family.

Length: 0.9 Miles

Elevation Gain: 157 ft

Route Type: Out & Back

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

Rock House

Rock House is a unique tunnel-like corridor in rock situated in the middle of a 150-foot cliff. With seven gothic-arched windows and sandstone columns, this is every exploring couple's dream destination.

Length: 0.9 Miles

Elevation Gain: 203 ft

Route Type: Loop

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

Old Man's Cave

Old Man's Cave has five parts: The lower gorge, lower falls, middle falls, upper gorge, and upper falls. The gorgeous gorge cuts through 150-feet of the Backhand sandstone. The whole distance of the gorge is half a mile.

Length: 0.6 Miles

Elevation Gain: 42 ft

Route Type: Out & Back

Pet Friendly: Yes, on leash.

4. Headlands Beach State Park

Headlands Beach State Park consists of the famous 35-acre Lake Eerie for perfect sunrise elopements. While this is a popular spot for tourists, consider eloping in the early morning to get the perfect beach view and privacy.

Cleveland Ohio elopement on Lake Erie a lesbian couple in a black wedding dress and a white wedding dress windswept and kissing


Absorb the history of Lake Eerie with a variety of Lighthouses to view. Every beacon and tower are different from the next, making this a fun game to play with your partner traveling along from one lighthouse to the next.

5. Nelson Kennedy Ledges State Park

Nelson Kennedy Ledges State Park is a wonder! Consisting of waterfalls, rugged cliffs, and beautiful natural landscapes, you won't be disappointed with the views. A place for exploring couples wanting a real adventure for their Ohio elopement.

Cascade Falls

Seeing the vegetation growing out of the rocks and a massive flow of water roaring down to the bottom of these falls is out of this world. If you decide to elope in Ohio, I highly recommend taking a trip to see Cascade Falls.

cascade falls nelson Kennedy ledges state park Ohio

Devils Box

From Cascade Falls to Devil's Box, expect a short two-mile hike with stunning greenery and forest trees, making it the perfect place for elopement photographs. Bring your dog along for this one!

When to elope in Ohio

The season you elope in is an integral part of your planning. You will need to know about the vegetation and views to expect, the proper attire to wear, how to travel to your elopement spot.

  • Spring: Early Spring in Ohio might present stunning flowers on the trees covered with a thin blanket of snow. One of my favorite things about an Ohio elopement in the spring is the waterfalls flow at their best. There are rushing waterfalls, beautiful, blossomed trees, fields, and wildflowers. You might even find some deer or other critters on your elopement day.

purple flower in the rocky river reservation Ohio

  • Summer: Summers in Ohio is when the adventure is about to begin. You can go river rafting, rock climbing, and water sports. Just be mindful that state and national parks get busy in the summer, and there may be more onlookers than usual. I'll do my very best to get you the privacy and seclusion you need.

  • Fall: Probably the most incredible season of the year in Ohio. You will see every range of colors on the trees and ground. Every shade of red, yellow, brown, and green takes your breath away! The weather is perfect too. It's not too hot for hiking, and those crisp early sunrise elopements are full of drama and romance. Keep warm in the evenings next to a campfire, some hot chocolate, and your partner by your side.

fall foliage in Cleveland Ohio

  • Winter: If you LOVE the snow and want nothing more than to be surrounded by a snow covered forests and frozen waterfalls, having the perfect elopement in a winter wonderland, then you will love eloping in Ohio in the winter. Fields of snow and white-capped trees are the perfect theme for a winter elopement.

Fall is a magical season and can bring many tourists, such as in the summer. Everyone wants to see the beautiful colors and experience these one-of-a-kind trails. Plan your elopement for Tuesday – Thursday because these days have the least traffic on the hiking trails. Many who take a long weekend vacation might even take Friday or Monday off work. If you want more privacy and seclusion on your elopement day, read further here!

There is so much to do for couples who want to elope in Ohio! There are wooded forests, unique waterfalls to choose from, miles of hiking trails, and adventure sports to enjoy. With mountaintops, red rock formations, and caves, anything your adventurous heart desires – Ohio will deliver.

It is my job to ensure you get the Ohio elopement of your dreams. Don't hesitate to contact me so we can get planning!

Elopement Photographer | Avonture Elopem



I'm Shanmari - elopement crafter and photographer here at Avonture. I'm based out of Ohio and travels worldwide to help venturing couples like you plan their dream elopement that values their beliefs and authenticity.

Need help crafting your own elopement day?

 If you'd like help planning your dream elopement day with a ultimate elopement planning guide, personalized location idea list just for you, vendor recommendations, planning and traveling tips and tricks, my never-ending help and guidance and an authentic, documentary approach to photographing your adventure - I would love to help you plan your day from scratch and make all your wedding dreams come true and more.

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