I photograph NYC elopements year-round, and one of the most common questions I get is: what are the best places to elope in NYC?
In my opinion, there’s an NYC elopement location for everybody: the bride who wants a romantic garden party, the couple who wants non-traditional modern, the pair who wants old New York glam. Here’s some of my go-to places to elope that cover a variety of aesthetics and group sizes… and as a bonus, all of these spots will cost under $100 for your ceremony, making them, in my opinion, the best NYC elopement locations.
1. CENTRAL PARK
If you’re dreaming of a ceremony with greenery, Central Park is one of the best NYC elopement locations, simply due to its sheer variety. Spanning 2.5 miles, Central Park has over a dozen ceremony “locations,” and they all offer a different look: Cop Cot is a rustic wood structure covered in lush greenery during the warmer months, Ladies Pavilion is a romantic metal pergola with a beautiful bluish patina, Gapstow Bridge offers grassy spots with views of the stone bridge, a small stream, and skyscrapers in the background. And that’s just the start — see here for a more complete list of ceremony locations within Central Park.
Free for groups under 20. For groups 20+, you will need to obtain a permit, which costs $25.
Varies; 3/10 t0 10/10, depending on the spot. Certain locations offer more privacy — if this is important to you, mention this when you inquire!
2 to 50 people, depending on location
2. BROOKLYN BRIDGE PARK
Wanting that frame-worthy shot with the iconic city skyline and Brooklyn Bridge in the background? Don’t be afraid of leaving Manhattan; Brooklyn is one of the best places to elope in NYC for that big city look, and Brooklyn Bridge Park is just a short cab ride over from Manhattan.
The promenade snakes along the East River, with plenty of (non-official) ceremony locations that will give you that postcard-worthy view. However, since this is a public space and there are no designated “locations,” there will likely be other people in the shot at times.
Free for groups under 20. (For groups 20+, you will need to obtain a permit, which costs $25, along with a $400 site fee.)
3/10 to 7/10. Varies depending on exact location and time of day.
Since there are no designated locations, it’s much easier to have a guerrilla ceremony with two people than with 10.
3. TOP OF THE ROCK
For that bird’s eye view of New York, there’s no other place to get it other than Top of the Rock. Perched 70 floors high on the top of Rockefeller Center, this observatory is an indoor/outdoor spot with crazy views. Morning sessions (at 8am, right when Top of the Rock opens) can comfortably accommodate groups up to 15 or so, and you’ll also likely have the whole outdoor terrace to yourselves, giving you privacy and the feeling that you’re on top of the world. As time goes on and more people show up, it may be harder to accommodate a large group. Sunset is the most popular time, so this isn’t recommended unless you plan to say your vows while mobbed by a bunch of phone-toting tourists.
2/10 to 10/10. Varies depending on time of day.
Up to 15 or so
4. ST. ANN’S WAREHOUSE
St. Ann’s Warehouse is an industrial performing arts space that also has a beautifully landscaped courtyard with views of the Brooklyn Bridge towering over it. Although it’s a public space and will have other visitors wandering through, there are certain spots backed up against the exposed brick that will allow you a bit of privacy as you say you’re vows. Added bonus: this location is right in the middle of Brooklyn Bridge Park, with perfect skyline and Brooklyn Bridge views for portraits after the ceremony, making it a solid contender for one of the best NYC elopement locations.
7/10. Varies depending on time of day.
Up to 8 or so.
5. FORT TRYON PARK
Looking for fewer crowds? Head uptown and you’ll find some of the best places to elope in NYC that offer more privacy. Fort Tryon Park is up in the Inwood neighborhood, but offers stone arches and other Gothic Revival architecture interspersed with greenery and colorful blooms. Plus, since it’s further away from tourist attractions, there is a lot more privacy to be had here.
$0 for groups under 20. For groups 20+, you will need to obtain a permit, which costs $25.
9/10. Varies depending on time of day.
Up to 25, depending on exact location.
Thinking of eloping?
- Guide: How to Elope in NYC
- Best Small Central Park Wedding Locations
- 5 Best No-Mess, Eco-Friendly Wedding Send-Off Ideas