| October 7, 2019

Adventurous Elopement in the Faroe Islands

Table of Contents

Faroe Islands Elopement

Elaura + Daryn

Have your ever heard of the Faroe Islands? If not, I can’t blame you. They’re barely even visible on a map, tucked delicately between Iceland and Norway. I had been to both Iceland and Norway many times, shooting several intimate small weddings and adventure elopements there over the years. But with the spike in tourism, crowded trails, and destroyed habitats — Iceland wasn’t on the top of my favorite places to shoot anymore.

Last year, a sweet couple reached out to me about an adventure elopement, and they had their Australian hearts set on eloping in Iceland. They wanted mood. Elaura and Daryn, the soon to be bride and groom, wanted views that would take their breath away. They wanted that glorious, foggy, epic Iceland beauty they’d seen in images dotting the internet.

I absolutely understood why they were so captivated by the idea (it truly is otherworldly in Iceland). So, the planning began. For months we all went back and forth — planning, creating huge google docs of possible location lists, sending feedback to each other over and over to create the perfect, intentional day that would mean the absolute most to them.

But over the course of this elaborate planning, I simply wasn’t convinced Iceland would be the quiet, stress-free place of their dreams. What Elaura and Daryn really wanted was the beauty of Iceland, the adventure of it, the views that they’d never found in Australia. But the tourism in Iceland was (and still is) running rampant. So if I could offer them a different location that met everything on their list, but also exceeded the expectations of privacy, intimacy, and opportunity for adventure, why wouldn’t I?

So one day, I asked them, “Have you ever heard of the Faroe Islands?”

All it took was some extra research, Google Maps, and a little online scouting and they were absolutely hooked — they set their date for their Faroe Islands elopement.

This wasn’t the first example of how absolutely go-with-the-flow Elaura and Daryn are and it wouldn’t be the last. They both had such a free-spirited air about them, a sort of, anywhere-the-wind-takes-us-so-long-as-we-get-married vibe to them. This attitude set the tone for the entire trip, but it was obvious from the very beginning — these two were wholly in love, wholly ready for whatever comes their way, and wholly meant to be married to each other.

After all the planning, the back-and-forth, and finalization of all the details, the day was finally upon us — their elopement day. I met them for the first time outside their Airbnb — a  location so epic even pictures don’t do it justice. (To put it in perspective, the owner of the Airbnb said he often sees whales in the fjord outside his window while he’s doing dishes).

Being there with Elaura was truly remarkable — she was simultaneously incredibly stunning and absolutely adorable. She unwound her pastel hair, which she’d pin curled, and it fell just below her cheekbones. Her vintage-lace-styled dress (which had two, custom-made sections) was entirely unique. And of course, her bright pink Justin’s hiking boots were the ultimate final touch. She’d created a wedding look that was entirely her — equal parts vintage pink and adventure-seeking.

The little details of their day were so beautifully and flawlessly put together. Daryn sported a pink flower on his suit (complementing Elaura’s hair and boots) and a handmade pocket square. They’d packed a vintage polaroid camera to bring with them on their hike so they could capture photos of each other after their vows, sign them, and keep them forever — as if to say, look, we really did this, we really got married here in this beautiful spot.

Their first look took place right outside their Airbnb. The entire thing was heartwarming and emotional and all-together amazing. Tears were shed by all, myself included.

Unfortunately, the hike we initially planned to take on — the tallest mountain in the Faroe Islands — for their vows wasn’t an option. A very late season snow happened, and we decided to play it safe by finding a drop-dead gorgeous hike nearby (again, that go-with-the-flow-attitude really shown again here).

From the very start, Elaura and Daryn had been very direct about their hiking abilities — they enjoyed it, but they weren’t the world’s most experienced hikers. (As a little side note here, that absolutely does not matter — you can have an adventure elopement that’s epic and gorgeous and amazing without hiking if you want. I can tell you all about it). So, we’d planned for that — but even so, the trail we ended up on was pretty steep.

Watching them conquer this hike together was unreal. The entire time they were side-by-side, encouraging each other the whole way up. It was beautiful watching them — they climbed a gorgeous ridge, water on one side and fjords on the other, sheep dotting the mountainside, fog rolling in. As the fog began to swirl around us, we were briefly afraid of a white-out, but luckily, it just created an incredible cloud that circled us, making it all the more magical.

I’ll be the first to tell you that I’ve seen a lot of beautiful places in my life — but I have never, ever seen anything like the Faroe Islands, and I’ve especially never seen anything like the view from the top of that ridge with Elaura and Daryn.

It was private and intimate — they read their handwritten vows to each other out of the same book, popping glass bottles of Coke to celebrate, and taking their own polaroid photos to remember their day.

When we hiked down from the ridge (after spending hours up at the top), we bought gas-station hot dogs (which, sounds weird, but trust me, there’s something about the hotdogs in the Faroe Islands and in Iceland — they’re absolutely delicious) and donuts. After, we explored another gorgeous location with steep-sided valleys surrounded on almost every side by waterfalls. 

Elaura and Daryn are, without a doubt, an amazing couple. Every tiny detail of their elopement day reflected who they are, what they mean to each other, and what’s important to them as a couple. Couples like them continue to amaze me — they’re so brave, so intentional, and so in love.

Even though Elaura and Daryn admitted they weren’t the most experienced hikers in the world, they wanted to do something exciting, new, and adventurous — they wanted to conquer something together as they stepped into a new chapter of their lives together.

I’ll probably remember everything about their elopement for a long time, but even if I lose the details in my busy brain, there’s one thing about their day I will never, ever forget. As we climbed down the ridge after they said their vows, I overheard Elaura tell Daryn how much fun she had and how excited she was to do something similar again.

He looked at her. He smiled. “We have a lifetime to do it together,” he said.

Maddie Mae

Elopement Photographer

& Planning Consultant

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Adventure Instead

Your Elopement Photographers & Planning Consultants. We are Maddie Mae, Amber, and Tori. We're your photographers, your elopement consultants, your cheerleaders, and your go-to adventure buddy on the day you say your vows.

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