4 Chicago Elopement Sites for Unique Wedding Experiences

While it’s nothing new, elopement has become particularly popular in the past decade or so. Rather than spending thousands on a traditional ceremony and reception, couples are focusing on themselves by eloping. Elopement means couples are getting married suddenly and secretly, most likely without family or friends knowing. Additionally, a couple might decide to elope to have an intimate ceremony just between the two of them. Two people making a promise of commitment is really all a wedding should be about anyways. These gorgeous Chicago elopement locations will beautifully capture your love story, emphasizing the intimacy of this life-changing moment. 

4 Chicago Elopement Sites with Natural Beauty to Capture the Essence of Your Love

North Avenue Beach

Located in Lincoln Park, North Avenue Beach is one of Chicago’s most popular beaches. The beach features a 22,000-square-foot beach house that is permanently docked. Offering a unique, sleek ocean liner-inspired building decked out in blue and white, this beach house boasts one of the best views in the city. It possesses upper decks and portholes for looking at the horizon or the multitude of bikers, runners, walkers, and rollerbladers streaming down the lakefront trail.

North Avenue Beach offers a variety of amenities and recreational opportunities for beachgoers or elopers. Anywhere along the beach would be an excellent spot to say “I do” between the two of you, as long as it’s between 6 AM to 11 PM. After you’re officially married, you can stop at Castaways Bar and Grill, go on a bike ride with a rented bike, take part in a yoga class, or hit the waves on a kayak. This location offers everything needed for a great date night after those vows!

groom dipping his bride with the chicago skyline in the background during their Chicago elopement

Garfield Park Conservatory

Garfield Park Conservatory first opened in 1908 and was formed by a community nonprofit organization that envisions a world where people embrace and honor the importance of nature. The Garfield Park Conservatory will be perfect if you want a smaller ceremony and reception rather than a true elopement.

They have a variety of options when it comes to space rentals. Their Jensen room and community room are available for rent. Additionally, couples can rent the entire site, for both long and short events. The Garfield Park Conservatory also allows the use of the front room, show house, palm house, sugar from the sunroom, desert house, and aroid house pathways. 

bride and groom near the water with the chicago skyline during their Chicago elopement

Alfred Lily Pond

A part of the Chicago Park District, The Alfred Caldwell Lily Pool was adopted in 1997 and completely restored and reopened to the public in 2002. Called a cool, refreshing, clear place, this site earned the statuses of National Historic Landmark and Chicago Historical Landmark. It was initially part of an 1889 Victorian garden. This hidden garden designed to resemble a river meandering through a great mid-western prairie would be perfect for a secret elopement. It has a stone walk encircling the Lily Pool and a pavilion and council ring available to explore as well.

The Lily Pool has a lot to offer. Still, couples must obtain a permit in advance of the ceremony from the Lincoln Park Conservancy. The Lily Pool has a pretty strict set of guidelines for what it is. This Chicago elopement spot has rules in place for your event to protect this beautiful location. This venue is for the true nature lover, who would be overly happy with the greenery’s natural decor.

bride and groom touching foreheads near the water

Lincoln Park Honeycomb

The Lincoln Park Honeycomb is a nature boardwalk in a prairie-style garden filled with trails of native plants and home to birds, frogs, and other wildlife. This boardwalk resides at the Lincoln Park Zoo in downtown Chicago. The honeycomb itself sits on the Peoples Gas Education Pavilion just off of the south pond across from the farm in the zoo and main barn.

The nature boardwalk goes all around the south pond and Foreman Island. This location would be a truly beautiful and highly unique place to say “I do” with your loved one! Thinking about it now, what a dream it would be to elope inside of a zoo! If you love animals, wildlife, and nature and want to support an incredible resource, the Lincoln Park zoo would be perfect for you!

Chicago Elopement

While all of these locations offer an incredibly unique experience, they are all very different spots with varying features. These locations absolutely have everything from whimsical ponds to sandy beaches, blooming flowers, to stunning wildlife. Start planning your Chicago elopement today with these naturally picturesque and gorgeous locations as beautiful as your love story. 

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