Elopement in Istria: Lacy and Tyler’s Castle Ceremony and Hiking Adventure

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Lacy and Tyler wanted something different for their elopement in Istria. They wanted to elope in an old historical place with visible ruins as Tyler is a history buff. Croatia is full of such places, some of them are more and some less preserved, but you should have no problems finding such historical places for your elopement in Croatia.

After some emails exchanged with Lacy and Tyler, we discussed the best options between the 2 of us. In the case of elopements, we also partly act as the elopement planners and help the couples who hire us to find the best possible location for their elopement. This time, we had to find something special, easily reachable, yet with a remote feel.

‘Andrea and Mario did an INCREDIBLE job with our elopement in Croatia. They were fast to respond and very easy to work with. From the start, they got to know our interests and recommended the perfect location for our ceremony and a hike afterwards. They also provided guides for other local vendors that made planning a ceremony internationally a breeze. The previews they’ve shared with us are absolutely incredible, and they were made available so fast (less than a week after the ceremony!). If you’re considering booking with them, DO IT. We will be booking more time with them for an adventure session the next time we are in Croatia for sure!’

Lacy and Tyler
elopement in istria

Petrapilosa castle won

We sent a few venue options to Lacy and Tyler with the description of each. We needed to find something that will look mighty in the photos too and a location where the couple will be alone, far away from people and noise.

After a thorough search, we sent them a few of our favorite locations that were scattered all across Croatia. We were kind of cheering for the Petrapilosa castle and, to our delight, they chose it for their elopement in Istria. We knew from the beginning that it will be a great location, but it proved much more than that.

The picturesque town of Grožnjan

For a great elopement experience, you should make a few good choices and the elopement venue is just one of them. People usually tend to focus only on the venue and kind of ignore other important aspects of the elopement.

What is also important is the place where you are staying, the type of accommodation, the photo session location, choosing the right vendors, etc. You can think of an elopement as a puzzle in which you must get all the pieces right in order to get a good image. That’s why we have a special guide with all the small details you should take care of and it really all makes sense once you read it.

Lacy and Tyler chose the small town of Grožnjan to be their base for the elopement in Istria. It’s one of the picturesque towns located on the top of the hills of central Istria. Driving the narrow windy roads to it feels like meditation with reaching nirvana once you set foot on the old rocky street of any of these towns.

Read more about Istria as a potential place for your elopement or wedding

Istria Wedding Elopement 002 | Croatia Elopement Photographer and Videographer

Getting ready in a traditionally renovated house

For their elopement in Istria, Lacy and Tyler chose a nice traditional accommodation in the center of Grožnjan. It’s owned by a famous San Canzian hotel and you have a hotel service while staying in a house with hotel staff delivering you everything you might need during your stay. It’s all wood inside and it really gives a relaxing and natural feel to everything. House is made of 3 floors with the kitchen being on the bottom one, the living room on the second, and the bedroom on the top floor.

Once we arrived, Lacy was just starting with the makeup so we decided to take a walk around Grožnjan, just to explore it a bit and find the best places for a photo session later. When we are photographing a wedding or elopement we always make hundreds of small decisions in order for everything to run smoothly with the best possible outcome.

It was early April, nature just started waking up from the long winter and Grožnjan was very peaceful. We took a walk around the town, fell in love, and chose a few of our favorite spots for amazing photos, we connected these spots in a way that it won’t be too much of a walking and it won’t be only shooting so a couple can have some rest from it too. We also needed to decide where Lacy’s and Tyler’s first look will take place and we found the perfect location just a few steps from their Gržnjan Residence.

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The photo session with Istria vibes

After the getting ready part and the first look, it was time for a photo session. Our photo sessions are always relaxed with enough time for shooting and for a rest from it. A good photo session is a mixture of shooting and natural breaks. Each couple is different and we always adapt to everyone so trust us, we know when you had enough and need to rest a bit. It’s completely normal and we always incorporate breaks in our photo sessions. You’re welcome.

For this elopement in Istria, we used the town of Grožnjan as our backdrop for one of the most romantic urban photo sessions we have ever had. Scroll through the photos below and you’ll see why. Grožnjan is made of narrow streets paved in stone tiles, buildings heavily influenced by Roman architecture, and facades engulfed by ivy…

Elopement in mighty Petrapilosa castle

Our usual photo session lasts around 40 minutes in total. As we already said, it’s relaxed and well-balanced. After the photo session, it was time to leave Grožnjan and head to Petrapilosa castle which was Lacy’s and Tyler’s ceremony venue for their elopement in Istria. The couple paid a small fee to have the whole castle just for themselves. Imagine having a place like that just for yourself.

Once we arrived, Lacy and Tyler took a walk around the castle to find the best spot where they will say their vows. They wanted complete privacy while they were exchanging them and they found the perfect spot on the top of the castle.

After the ceremony, it was time for yet another short photo session, this time with a different setting and vibe.

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Living as king and queen

San Canzian hotel prepared a picnic for Lacy and Tyler and Studio Brzak did amazing floral decorations and a picnic set up in the middle of Petrapilosa castle. This was a time when we left a couple alone to enjoy in picnic and privacy. It’s always a good option to incorporate some free time right after the elopement. It’s a time just for you and your partner.

Elopements are emotional events and both of you need some time to go through these moments with no rush. Lacy and Tyler decided to use this time to privately read the letters from their friends and family. Reading the letters from your loved ones is a beautiful way of including them in your elopement, especially if you don’t plan on having anyone present at your elopement ceremony. It always brings lots of happy tears and laughs and you can keep the letters and include them in your album later.

A picnic is also a great option after the elopement ceremony and it’s usually done right at the elopement venue.

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The hiking part – 7 waterfalls trail

At the end of the day, Lacy and Tyler wanted to have a short hike together since they are both hiking lovers. That’s what we had to incorporate into our search when looking for potential elopement locations. Hopefully, Istria is full of places for great adventures and Petrapilosa castle was near one of the most famous hiking trails in Istria.

Seven waterfalls trail (in Croatian, Staza 7 slapova) is a canyon hike and it’s a great place to visit while you are staying in Istria. It features many old mining shafts, some Via Ferrata parts, hanging bridges, etc. With Lacy and Tyler, we reached 3rd waterfall before we decided to head back since the trail has some very steep parts ahead and it would be hard to pass it in a wedding dress and suit.

And that’s how this elopement in Istria ended, we said our farewells at the canyon’s entrance and headed into 2 more days of Istria exploration.

Istria Wedding Elopement 105 | Croatia Elopement Photographer and Videographer

Are you dreaming about an elopement in Istria?

If you are, we’re here to help you plan it and document all of its moments so you can get reminded of your elopement in Istria every once in a while. We are mainly an elopement photographer and videographer, but when it comes to smaller elopements, we are here to help you during all the stages of elopement planning.

We work with the best wedding and elopement vendors in Croatia and Istria and we’ll easily connect you with the ones that suit your vision. We’re here to answer any questions you might have about an elopement in Istria so feel free to contact us if you have any or just want to see our elopement packages.

Have a great day!

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We are Mario & Andrea, a photo+video team, specialised in elopements and intimate weddings all across Europe. Contact us if you plan an elopement or intimate wedding with a pinch of adventure.