Elopements

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Best Locations to Elope in Northern Minnesota

A Pacific Northwest inspired Elopement photographed by Payton Rademacher Photography
A North Shore groom dipped his bride and kissed her.

Eloping in Northern Minnesota is so underrated. It is full of incredible landscapes, waterfalls, stunning scenery, many hidden gems, and secret treasures. If you are looking for a location in Minnesota to elope – don’t worry, you’ve come to the right place! While I might be biased, as a Minnesota Elopement and Intimate Wedding Photographer, I don’t think a more serene image exists. I put together this list for y’all of the best elopement locations in Northern Minnesota, spanning across the Duluth, Two Harbors, Silver Bay, and more! 

Table of Contents:

  1. Elopement locations in Northern Minnesota
    • Duluth, Minnesota
    • Two Harbors, Minnesota
    • Silver Bay, Minnesota
    • Lutsen, Minnesota
    • Schroeder, Minnesota
    • Grand Marais/BWCA, Minnesota
    • Grand Portage, Minnesota
    • The Superior Hiking Trails, Minnesota
    • Isle Royale National Park, Michigan
    • Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota

Elopement locations in Northern Minnesota

Duluth, Minnesota

Duluth, Minnesota, has the coolest big city vibe and it also comes with many scenic nature views. You can find sandy and rocky beaches, many hiking trails filled with beautiful scenery, and beautiful paths along Lake Superior. Duluth is a port city on Lake Superior in North Shore, Minnesota, offering views of the unique 1905 Aerial Lift Bridge, the landmark connects the city to Park Point. This is the world’s longest freshwater sandbar! There are many local delicious options for food and gorgeous places to stay that are favorites to many. This city is special in how it is built on a hill. You can get a breathtaking “top of world” feeling and view of Duluth and Lake Superior hiking up to many multiple overlooks.

  • Aerial Lift Bridge
  • Park Point
  • Superior Hiking Trail
The elopement bride wrapped her arm around her groom's neck and kissed.

Two Harbors, Minnesota

Two Harbors, Minnesota, is a 30-minute drive from Duluth in North Shore. It has the cutest small town vibes with plenty of local restaurants and even a lighthouse! Lake Superior, the North Shore, and state parks with multiple hiking trails are just a few of the many things it has to offer.

  • Split Rock Lighthouse State Park
  • Gooseberry Fall
Gooseberry Waterfall

Silver Bay, Minnesota

Silver Bay, Minnesota, is the most popular place to elope. The astounding views of rocks and cliffs give your photographs a unique look. Silver Bay offers some local favorites including the cute coffee café “Timber Coffee Company” and the yummy pizza restaurant “Zoe’s Pizza Kitchen”. There are plenty of state park options here that offer an endless amount of hiking and adventures.

  • Palisade Head
  • Black Beach
  • Tettegouche State Park
Rocks and cliffs, waves crushing to the beach.

Schroeder, Minnesota

Schroeder, Minnesota, is just a short 30 minutes south of Grand Marais. I might be biased, but it has the most beautiful state park. This is my favorite state park to visit because you can watch the Lower Falls cascade through the bedrock under the lower bridge offering a breathtaking view (psst… It is the perfect spot to exchange your vows!)

  • Temperance River State Park
A bridge stands above the waterfall and surrounds the forest, with the river flowing to the other waterfall below.

Lutsen, Minnesota

The mountains in Lutsen, Minnesota, are the largest and tallest ski area on the North Shore, offering alpine skiers and snowboarders with 95 sweeping runs over four mountains. It is also the best spot to elope in the fall because of the beautiful birch trees that turn stunning shades of yellow and orange, creating beautiful fall colors. It also offers lots of options for stay, with plenty of resorts around it.

  • Eagle Mountain
  • Ullr Mountain
  • Mystery Mountain
  • Moose Mountain

Grand Marais, Minnesota

I will always encourage my couples to elope in Grand Marais, Minnesota. A town full of local and charming businesses, it is sure to be a favorite location in North Shore, Minnesota. This city vibe is on point! Head to the beach, go to Artist’s point, or if you want to go hiking, they have so many beautiful trail options. Maybe you are looking for more off-grid, the Boundary Water Canoe of the Area Wilderness is your place. There are endless options!

  • Grand Marais Lighthouse
  • Artist Point
  • BWCA
Couple walk down on the road through the forest.

Grand Portage, Minnesota

Grand Portage, Minnesota is the last town before entering the Canadian border. There is something a little different with the scenery there, with many rolling hills. The High Falls is Minnesota’s highest waterfall and it have easy and accessible trails to visit in Grand Portage State Park. Some hills are so high you feel like you are driving through the mountains. It feels like you are in an entirely different part of the world!

  • Hollow Rock
  • Grand Portage State Park
  • High Falls

The Superior Hiking Trail, Minnesota

If you are looking for a unique adventure experience on the North Shore, I would highly recommend going on the Superior Hiking Trail, Minnesota. With more than 300 miles of trail along Lake Superior’s North Shore, it is ideal for backpacking, day trips, hikes, and trail running.

  • Lake Superior
  • North Shore
The elopement couple hiking on the trails.

Isle Royale National Park, Michgian

FUN FACT: Isle Royal National Park isn’t technically a Minnesota national park. However, geographically, the island is closer to Minnesota than the state in which it belongs to (Michigan). Isle Royale is a National Park and the largest island in Lake Superior, a rugged, isolated island far from our connected communities. Although this island is across the border in Michigan, it’s a short distance from the Minnesota Lake Superior shores. It offers adventure for backpackers, hikers, divers, boaters, and many more.

  • National Park
  • Endless trails

Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota

If you are looking for other options other than the North Shore, I would recommend Voyageurs National Park, Minnesota. There are many water options because everything is on the water! It’s great for a houseboat, canoeing, kayaking, and fishing. It has more than 500 islands with four major lakes, Rainy, Kabetogama, Namakan, and Sand Point.

  • Multiple Lake Options
Waves crushing on the cliffs

Northern Minnesota Elopement Photographer | Payton Rademacher Photography

Documenting elopements in Minnesota was a moment I will hold close to my heart for a lifetime. Whether you’re dreaming of tying the knot in a forest of towering pines beneath Temperance River State Park, slow dancing atop Palisade Head, or exchanging private vows on the Artist’s Point, your dream elopement is attainable. My eyes swell up just knowing that these photos will continue to live on for years and years to come.

Ready to capture your favorite moments to treasure for a lifetime? LET’S CONNECT! And of course, you can keep up with my latest adventures over on Instagram (@paytonrademacherphoto). Until next time!

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