How to Have a North Georgia Wedding [Micro Wedding Edition]
The north Georgia mountains are such an amazing location for couples who are wanting to have a intimate wedding. Most of North Georgia is part of the blue ridge mountain chain. There are many hidden gems throughout the mountain range.
As a North Georgia Wedding Photographer, I have spent many years exploring and finding these ‘hidden gems’. The landscape offers a variety of different options from lush green forests, beautiful lakes, hidden waterfalls, and mountain-top overlooks. The options are really endless.
If you’re looking to have a North Georgia wedding with your closest family and friends, look no further! This is your How-To guide on all things micro weddings.
If you’re looking for more information on what is considered a micro wedding check out this resource here.
North Georgia Wedding Logistics
I know, I know. This is the part that no one likes. However this is a SUPER important part in making your marriage official! You will first need to obtain a marriage license. If you are a resident of Georgia you can get one at any local county probate court. If you are coming from a different state you will need to find the probate court in the county you are getting married in.
No matter your living situation, you’ll likely want to schedule an appointment before going to get your license. Some offices allow for walk-ins, but you may run into long lines and wait time. Overall it’s best to make an appointment ahead of time. Marriage licenses do not expire in the state of Georgia. You are welcome to get the license as soon as you want. If you do get it early, make sure you have a safe place to store it. You don’t want to be scrambling to find it the day before your wedding (trust me, this has happened before!).
Below is a list of what you’ll need for your appointment when you go to the county probate court. You both will need to be in attendance at the appointment with these items.
What you’ll need:
Both parties must be 18 years or older.
Both parties need a valid ID to obtain marriage license.
Divorce decree (if applicable).
Fee for the marriage license is typically $56. However, it’s only $16 if the couple does premarital counseling prior to getting married. A qualified premarital program must include at least six hours of professional instruction by a licensed counselor, social worker, therapist, psychiatrist, psychologist, clergy member or clergy’s designee who is trained in premarital education.
The best part, you ask?
Georgia is a same day state! What exactly does this mean? It means you will be able to obtain the marriage license the same day you apply for it! So there are no long waiting periods for it to come in the mail or anything like that. If you’re coming from out of state, you won’t have to extend your trip to get this piece of paper. Keep in mind that in Georgia you will need an officiant of some sort, as well as two witnesses. All three will need to sign your marriage license.
After you are married and the papers are signed, you have 30 days to turn it into the probate court. Once that is complete you should receive the official marriage certificate within 30 days of filing! Yay!
Where to Have your North Georgia Wedding
Having a micro wedding is special because you’re choosing to have an intimate wedding experience with your closest family and friends. This consists of typically 30 or less, and usually those that mean the most to you. It’s unique because you aren’t limited to a select few wedding venues where you can host your family and friends.
This is your chance to be creative and look into accommodations that would work for not only hosting your group, but a location (or a location close by) that would be ideal for your wedding ceremony and photos.
VRBO and AirBnb are the most common option I see my couples choose when looking to have a Micro Wedding in North Georgia. They both have plenty of options that are absolutely incredible and often times can accommodate up to 30 people!
Tips to keep in mind when you are looking for homes for your North Georgia Micro Wedding
Make sure the place you choose has plenty of natural light + windows. This is so important if you are wanting great photos indoors of getting ready, reception, etc. This is also important for potentially having your ceremony inside incase the weather becomes bad and you need to shift indoors.
Choose a place that has a good outdoor ceremony location with good views (if applicable). If you’re wanting to have your ceremony outdoors and you have up to 30 guests for your micro wedding, it’s always my suggestion to keep the ceremony on your vacation home site (or at least have it be close by). It’s always possible to travel elsewhere for couples photos after. It’s easiest not to have your guests driving all over and just have a ceremony location that is on property. Most VRBO and AirBnb listings will have photos of the property. This is a good indicator of if it would be a good fit or not.
Double check with the home-owners about rules and regulations for having small gatherings/micro weddings before booking the home. All homes have different rules for what is allowed and not allowed on their property. Some rules may be listed and some may not. So I always, always recommend reaching out to the owners prior to booking and explain what you are wanting to do before booking. It’s important that there is full-transparency with your plans and expectations.
For Micro-Weddings (up to 40 guests):
For Elopements (up to 5 people):
While Airbnb and VRBO are great options to host a micro wedding, sometimes it may not be practical to actually have the ceremony or reception there. In this case there are several other options you can do to accommodate your small wedding in North Georgia, check out this guide here for the best North Georgia Wedding Venues.
North Georgia Wedding Outdoor Locations
There are so many places in North Georgia that are secluded and breathtaking. If you’re looking for an outdoor ceremony without actually having a venue, I recommend AT MOST 20 people attending. If it’s more than 20 you are going to want to find a small venue that accommodates more. The reason for this is because logistics can become tricky if you have a larger group. Trying to find a secluded place in the mountains (often times there isn’t a physical address), can be tricky. You always want to keep in mind leave no trace principles when having a ceremony in the wilderness.
The good news is, when choosing your location you don’t have to stress – leave that up to me! I send out an extensive questionnaire to all couples after booking that goes in depth about your vision for your dream locations on your wedding day. Once that’s completed, I send a location guide about a month later that has incredible, unique locations fit specifically to your vision. From there you are able to choose from those locations for us to go to on your wedding day! It’s a really fun process and takes a lot of the stress away from you having to do the research yourself.
North Georgia Wedding Venues [Micro Weddings]
If you are planning on having a North Georgia micro wedding where you’re expecting anywhere from 20-40 guests there are many quaint venue options in North Georgia that are available for these smaller weddings. Here is a list of just a few options you could look into:
These are just a few options of what are possible when planning your micro wedding in North GA. For more info and help click the button below to get started!
When is the best time to get married in North Georgia
Weather and seasons of the year is always one of the most important parts to factor in when you’re planning your dream micro wedding. Georgia is great because you truly do get to experience all four seasons in a relatively equal amount of time. To make it easy, I am going to break it down by seasons so you can decide what would be the best for you and your love. For reference – I broke it down by my least recommended season to my most recommended.
Winter (December – February)
Winter is definitely my last recommendation, as far as seasons go, for having your micro wedding in North Georgia. To be totally transparent – everything is dead. There’s no leaves, it’s cold – it’s just not the vibe. The only exception to this would be in you’re wanting snowy photos, there are places that will have snow in the mountains, but it’s never guaranteed with the fluctuating weather. So keep that in mind when considering winter in North Georgia for your wedding.
SUMMER (June – August)
Whew, summer can be HOT! HOT! HOT! This season is my third recommendation for what season to have your micro wedding in because of just how hot it can get. Nobody likes to be uncomfortable sticky and sweaty, so when choosing a day to get married in the summertime it’s important to note that you’ll have to have an evening-centric day because the sun won’t be as much of a killer (figuratively speaking). The great part about having a summer wedding in Georgia is that the days are long, and the nights are warm. So if you’re wanting those cool, trendy night-time star/lantern/twinkly light photos, then summer is definitely going to be a good option for you!
SPRING (March – May)
The bird are singing, the flowers bloom, spring has sprung! Spring is such a beautiful time to get married – this is my second recommendation when considering having a micro wedding. The flowers are just so pretty and the feel of everything having new life gives such a romantic vibe. The only downside would be that it can be very rainy in springtime (if you live in GA you know). So, make sure you have those clear umbrellas on hand because a little rain never stopped nobody! However, if you’d rather make your chances of rain smaller, the next two seasons might be for you.
FALL (September – November)
Last but certainly not least – fall. Fall is hands-down one of the prettiest times in North Georgia. The trees are changing and the weather is cooling down just enough to be able to be outside for more than 15 minutes without feeling like you’re going to have a heat stroke. As a North Georgia Wedding Photographer this is my all-time favorite season to photograph weddings in. The colors are creamy, warm, and overall just *chefs kiss*. While this is the best time of year (in my opinion) to get married, I’m definitely not the only one who thinks this way. So, my biggest tip for planning your micro wedding this time of year is book your desired vendors sooner rather than later. This is the busiest time of year for most wedding vendors (all over the U.S.) , so if you have any that are your must haves do not wait!
Overall, you can’t go wrong with whatever season you pick. The season you choose is going to be a reflection of who you are a couple and the focus will ultimately be on that! I am so excited for you and hope you found this information helpful. For more info, fill out the contact form linked on the button below and let’s make your wildest wedding day dreams come true!