Sustainable Locations for Your Destination Wedding

Many people have dreamed of having a luxury destination wedding since they were children. A historic castle in a green hinterland, a star-filled sky over a perfect sandy beach, or a five-century-old cathedral in a European village. Any of those will start your marriage off with a strong flair that will keep glowing for the rest of your and your partner’s lives.

Of course, that means moving your entire wedding entourage thousands of miles. If you’re eco-conscious, you know how much of a disaster that is for the environment.

However, there are ways to counterbalance that negative impact. Some locations take special care to give back to the environment and make their arrangements more sustainable and eco-friendly.

Here are some venue ideas for a wedding that will both wow your guests with their magic atmosphere, as well as make sure that your carbon footprint stays at a minimum.

Wild Basin Lodge, Colorado, USA

The Rocky Mountains are a sight to behold and definitely a location worthy of taking friends and family to. In Allenspark, Colorado, the Wild Basin Lodge offers the perfect vista of Mount meeker, the St. Vrain River, and Mount Copeland. These incredible natural landmarks will be the perfect witnesses to you and your partner’s first kiss as a married couple.

The Lodge offers a zero-waste wedding package for the eco-aware. The package includes a car-pool shuttle to the location, which greatly diminishes carbon emissions. It also donates any leftover food to the Wildlife Animal Sanctuary. The Lodge also supports local businesses and agriculture, with food and beverage being locally sourced for the most authentic experience.

Bio-Schlosshotel Wartegg castle, Constance, Switzerland

With around five hundred historic castles sprinkled across its mountainous landscape, Switzerland offers a classic, fairy-tale experience wedding. The historic and astonishing Bio-Schlosshotel Wartegg is nestled in the lake region of Constance. Windsurfers, sailors, and other water-loving individuals flock to this region for a different kind of Switzerland – a sun-bathed, beachy resort contrasted to the usual image of snow-locked mountain peaks.

The castle keeps its own garden, with organically grown and sustainable produce sourcing the masterfully sculpted menu. It also participates in the all-green electricity movement, with electric bikes on demand for site exploration and a hydroelectric power plant on the premises powering the entire venue. It is also one of the last keepers of an endangered breed of sheep, the Bündner Oberländer.

The Retreat by Heaven, Kigali, Rwanda

Eastern Africa is one of the cradles of civilization. You can feel the ancient stature of the earliest cultures which permeates the land. In this oasis of primordial wisdom, The Retreat by Heaven in Kigali, Rwanda is a premiere luxury location for your perfect wedding.

From traditionally crafted interiors and incredible accommodations, this venue will tick all the boxes of a luxury getaway. The food is all locally sourced Rwandan produce and ingredients, prepared according to traditional recipes. The fact that the retreat chooses ingredients organically farmed by local farmers makes this an eco-aware person’s dream wedding destination.

The Brand, Tetiaroa, French Polynesia

Perhaps the most luxurious addition to our top destination wedding venues list, The Brando is what you would call a luxury paradise. With its pristine nature and white sand beaches, the venue is located on the French Polynesian island of Tetiaroa. You and your guests will get to enjoy the company of exotic sea birds, sea turtles, and manta rays, which will become an unforgettable memory of an incredible getaway.

The resort is remote and you and your wedding entourage will be transported via private airplane to the luxurious beach property. Their Sea Water Air Conditioning system is an incredibly sophisticated way for reducing environmental damage by providing highly efficient cooling. This makes your stay at the resort sustainable and green while retaining all of the amenities for a perfect tropical island getaway experience.

Genießerhotel Die Forelle, Weissensee, Austria

You and your family will definitely get a taste of old-world luxury and splendor in Genießerhotel Die Forelle. High atop the Austrian Alps, the lake of Weisensee is a sun-bathed private resort that will take your breath away. The nature park surrounding it will add to the completeness of your special day with its incredible scenic vistas.

If you opt for the hotel’s unplugged evenings feature, all of the food for you and your guests will be prepared without electricity, using only a wood stove. The heating materials are sourced from the hotel’s private forest, which is carefully curated and managed. All of this combined makes Genießerhotel Die Forelle a perfect eco-friendly destination wedding venue.

How to make sure your wedding is sustainable

Here are a few tips on how to plan an eco-friendly wedding, no matter the location of the event.

● Choose who you work with carefully. The vendors, food providers, and produce growers need to be on the same green page as you are. Surround yourself with a team of like-minded individuals and your wedding will be that much more sustainable.
● Keep the guest list short. The more private the wedding – the smaller the carbon footprint it will have.
● Send out invitations made from recycled materials. This one is kind of self-explanatory – invitations are a one-off thing and, as all paper products, should be crafted from recyclable materials.
● Make sure your wedding rings are ethical. Do you know where the gold and gems are sourced from when buying your wedding ring? Educate yourself before you add to the suffering in the world.
● Rent out the attire. From the wedding dress to the groomsmen’s tuxedos, all attire becomes more eco-friendly if you get it used. Pay attention to the materials as well.
● Source the food locally. Nothing supports a sustainable way of living as using locally grown produce. Make sure you add a vegan or vegetarian option to the menu. Donate any leftovers to a local charity.
● Cut out plastic decorations. Confetti, balloons, and plastic flower decorations, all add to the total pollution of the planet. Make sure you choose eco-friendly materials when decorating your wedding venue.

About The Author

Stacey is a freelance writer living in Minnesota with her cat, and she’s passionate about yoga, languages, home improvement, and drinking strong coffee. Find her on Twitter @StaceyShann0n