Do you want to elope at Dunluce Castle?
Dunluce Castle is by far one of the most popular spots for elopements. It's intimate & majestic, with a private view of the medieval castle ruins overlooking the Irish Sea. If you are wanting to elope in Northern Ireland, It's truly one of the most impressive views on our North Coast!
So how do I elope here, you ask?-
It's easy! In this guide I will walk you through exactly what you will need to elope at this enchanting location.
The land next to Dunluce Castle, which is perfect for elopements, is privately owned by a local farmer, Sean. To have your ceremony here, he charges a small fee of £350 to access his land & cottage for 2 hours, and truthfully, I haven't heard of a better deal! Sean drives you down to the view point in his 4x4 truck, and recently got a seated trailer if you have any guests!
Local planners & photographers will be able to arrange this for you!
If you are planning to elope here, I highly recommend planning as far in advance as possible as to not be disappointed. This location is the most popular elopement location in Northern Ireland, and gets booked out extremely fast!
Please note that this permit does not grant you access to the castle itself, so if you plan to visit inside the castle you will need to purchase tickets for that separately at the site. They do not allow ceremonies inside the castle and there may be a permit required for photography!
You can have a religious, legally binding, or secular/humanist elopement ceremony at Dunluce Castle.
To apply for a legally binding ceremony, you must give notice to the Registrar of Marriages within 12 months of your elopement and a minimum of 28 days before. The earlier you do this, the easier it will be!
You may be required to arrive a few days early for an interview with the registrar & to collect your marriage certificate in person.
You will have to bring some legal documents with you, such as your passports, birth certificates, divorce papers (if applicable) and possibly more. Make a check list of everything you need & tick it off as you go along!
Some couples opt for a symbolic elopement ceremony if they are eloping from abroad. This isn't legally binding so they decide to sign the legal papers back home & have their ceremony, vows & ring exchange at Dunluce Castle. This is a much easier option, as there isn't any paperwork involved & much less stress! But both are equally as incredible & worth it!
For more detailed information on how to elope in Ireland, check out this blog below.
If you are flying into Dublin Airport, it will take you roughly 2 hours 40 minutes to drive to Dunluce Castle. So arriving a few days before to settle in nearby is a better idea!
Dunluce Castle is situated on the North Coast in Northern Ireland. There are 2 local towns nearby that I would recommend staying in the days before and after your elopement, Ballycastle and Portrush. Ballycastle is around 20 minutes away from Dunluce Castle and Portrush is a mere 10 minutes away. Both towns offer plenty of local restaurants & hotels.
Public transport is much easier from Portrush however. A bus from Portrush to Dunluce Castle will take around 18 minutes. I don't believe there is a direct bus to Dunluce Castle from Ballycastle. So if you are planning to use public transport, this is something to consider.
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Hiring a car, if possible, is much advised, as the public transport from Belfast to the North Coast is not brilliant, truthfully. From Belfast you will have to take a train to Coleraine, then from Coleraine you will need to take a bus (maybe several) to your destination.
If you'd prefer to rent an Airbnb during your stay, I have a list of the best Airbnb's on the North Coast you can check out below!
Places to eat & drink!
Just a snippet
- Ramore restaurants, Portrush
- 55 Degrees North, Portrush
- Babushka kitchen café, Portrush
- Urban Restaurant, Portrush
- Ocho Tapas Bar, Portrush
- The Tourist, Portrush
- Harry's Shack
- Bothy, Portrush
- Lost & Found Café, Portrush
- Guilt Trip Coffee & Donuts
- The Giant's Barn
- The Quays Bar & Restaurant
- Kiwi's Brew Bar
- Harbour Gin Bar
If you're staying in an Airbnb, ask your hosts where their favourite places are! locals know best.
Fancy a nice dinner & reception at your airbnb?
there are plenty of caterers & Deliveries here that will sort you. Here are my favourites:
- Six by Nico
- Gourmet Grazing NI (Grazing boards)
- Pomegranate & Fig (Grazing boards)
- Streetza (Stone fired Pizza)
- Brooke Avenue (Gelato)
- The Mallow Makers (Artisan Marshmallows)
- The Fudge Club
- Tones_ (Instagram)
- Yellow Door