If you’re looking for an outdoor elopement location that has a stunning mountain backdrop, convenience for your guests, and a private ceremony spot, Maroon Bells Amphitheater may just be the perfect place for you. Located just outside Aspen, Colorado, Maroon Bells is definitely one of my favorite elopement locations. Read on to find out why!
First of all, the location is absolutely breathtaking. Although this is one of the most photographed locations in all of Colorado, it still manages to thrill no matter how many times you’ve seen it. The ceremony location is perfectly framed by the mountains, and in the fall you’ll have the changing colors of the Aspens adding to your backdrop. The sunrise here is especially magical, with the sun casting a warm alpenglow on the peaks. Aside from the iconic view of the Bells, there are multiple other sites just a short walk away from the Amphitheater that are perfect for your unique elopement photos (your Colorado elopement photographer can help direct you to all the best spots!)
Unlike many other outdoor sites in Colorado, Maroon Bells Amphitheater can be reserved for weddings and elopements. Once reserved, you’ll have the designated amphitheater area completely to yourself. You won’t have to worry about beating the crowds or waiting for other ceremonies to end before yours can start. You’ll also have the best view of the lake and mountains, unobstructed by other visitors.
One of the best reasons to reserve your elopement at Maroon Bells: Your reservation not only includes parking for up to 5 cars, but special permission to drive right up to your ceremony site!
Normally, the road to the main parking lot near the amphitheater is closed from 8am-5pm, and visitors are required to take a shuttle from a parking area in another location. But, this is your wedding day, so you absolutely deserve the special treatment!
This is awesome if you are including guests, especially if accessibility is a concern. It’s also pretty dang cool even if it’s just the two of you!
A dedicated wedding ceremony site at one of the most gorgeous locations in the country, with special parking and access privileges. That must cost a fortune, right?
You may be surprised. You can reserve the site for the entire day (from 9am-3pm), have up to 50 guests, with special parking for up to 5 cars, for just $200. This is an incredible deal anywhere, but especially in the Aspen area!
Even if you are not planning to include guests, the cost makes it totally worth it to reserve just for the two of you to guarantee a private experience. The only caveat is that you’ll need to plan ahead to secure your reservation (more on this below).
The Maroon Bells amphitheater does not allow receptions, but you you can reserve the East Maroon Portal Picnic Site about 4 miles down the road for a reception up to 75 people.
The amphitheater is generally open from early June through October. I say generally because weather can impact the opening and closing dates. Just be aware of this if you’re planning an early June or late October event and be sure to have a backup plan.
The most popular time for weddings and elopements is in September, when the Aspens are at their peak. During September and early October, the amphitheater is only available to reserve Monday-Thursday. I recommend midweek elopements during this time anyway due to the large crowds on weekends.
Reservations for June, July, August are available Sunday-Thursday. Sunday reservations for these months are extremely popular and are often booked as soon as they are available, so you’ll want to plan ahead. (See below for more on how to reserve your day!)
Reservations can be made through recreation.gov. Reservations are available exactly one year in advance, and the dates go very quickly. The best way to ensure that you get a reservation is to have multiple date options in mind and be ready to reserve a year in advance.
The process is fairly straightforward – just search the available dates (or choose “Next Available”) under Campsite List. To book, click “Book Now.” You’ll need to create a Recreation.gov account if you don’t have one already. Then, you can pay the $200 rental fee and you’re good to go!
Maroon Bells is located approximately 10 miles southwest of Aspen, Colorado.
If you don’t have an amphitheater reservation with reserved parking, you have 2 options to get to the Maroon Bells:
From June-October, the only way to access the park from 8am-5pm is by shuttle from Aspen Highlands. You can take a bus from the Rubey Park Transit Center in downtown Aspen and other locations in the area (see more info here). Reservations are required for the shuttle.
Before 8 a.m. and after 5 p.m. you can drive your own vehicle, but you will still need a reservation.
I don’t believe in cookie-cutter elopements. That’s why from the moment you reach out to me, I’m invested in helping you craft your own unique day. I offer unlimited consultations as part of every package to make sure that your elopement experience is exactly the way you envision. This includes helping you find the right location for your ceremony, finding the right activities, and helping you plan out all of the logistics for your day. My goal is to make your elopement a hella fun and stress-free experience!
With all of my Colorado elopement packages, you’ll get:
Want to learn more? Schedule a free consultation and let’s chat!
Hi there! I’m Adam. Elopements are my thing and helping you find the best Colorado elopement photographer for you is what puts a smile on my face. If you’re thinking of a Maroon Bells Amphitheater elopement, I’d love to chat!
I can help you figure out the best elopement package and help you plan the day of your dreams. If you are ready to start creating your perfect day, or just have questions about eloping, reach out. I can’t wait to hear from you!