Bahamas wedding photography
Having photographed weddings throughout the Bahamas, we believe there is no better place for a relaxed, beautiful island wedding on the beach. We’re excited to help you create the tresured memories of your special wedding day with the follow info about the area.
While the Bahamas wedding requirements are not as restrictive as some islands in the Caribbean, they are a little more restrictive than others. Nevertheless, it’s super easy to get married here if you’re prepared. First off, the bride and groom must be in the islands when they apply for their wedding license, and you have to have been in the country for 24 hours before you make your application. Once issued, the license is good for three months. That means that you can actually visit the islands for a venue tour or tasting, apply for the wedding application, and then come back within three months to get married. You’ll also need notarized proof that you’re not married or have been legally divorced (you can get the former at the US Embassy in Nassau), as well as a passport and airline ticket or immigration card. Blood tests are not necessary, and the marriage license costs $100 USD. It is recommended that you get several copies of your marriage certificate notarized while you’re on the island.
Well, you can have just about every type of wedding in the Bahamas, which is its biggest appeal. You can get married at some of the nicest hotels in the Caribbean, or some of the most remote little islands you can think of. You can go for barefoot elegance in a small resort far off the beaten path, you can get married at a cosmopolitan resort complete with casinos, cool pools and fireworks, or just about everything in between. I have photographed a wide, wide variety of Bahamas weddings.
Check out this one!
My first wedding in the Bahamas was back in 2003, and the bride and her family simply rented a vacation home on Eleuthera, and were married on the beach in a small ceremony. The next wedding I shot was at the Abaco Club on Winding Bay, where about 50 people came down and enjoyed a peaceful, serene time at a Ritz Carlton 5-star property. I’ve also shot at the Atlantis mega resort several times, which has casinos, gambling, underground aquariums, walk-through shark tanks, and water slides that rival Raging Waters. Atlantis is a creative feast for a wedding photographer. I’ve also shot at a number of resorts that vary from small and intimate, to medium sized but incredibly luxurious and well-appointed. What’s great is that your guests don’t necessarily have to stay at the same property as you do – you might choose to get married at the One and Only Ocean Club on Paradise Island, yet your guests can stay at the Atlantis, pay a lower room rate, and be in walking distance of you.
From a photographer’s perspective, the Bahamas is one of the easiest places to plan a wedding. It’s close to the States, it’s got a busy airport with lots of flights, and there’s well developed infastructure to support you and your guests. If you have the inclination to schedule your wedding photography on the outer islands, you can easily take a boat or plane to get whever you need to go. Puddle jumpers have quick access to Abaco, Eleuthera, and many of the other Bahaminian islands.
Best places to get married in the Bahamas
I suggest the following five star hotels that people rave about. First, there’s Tiamo, or Kamalame Cay on Andros, both of which are world class. Then there’s Sandals Royal Bahamian Spa Resort and offshore island, there’s the One & Only Ocean Club on Paradise Island, and there’s the Abaco Club on Winding Bay in Marsh Harbor. I have shot at a third of the 5-star hotels in the Bahamas and they’ve blown my mind. Other great places obviously include the Atlantis on Paradise Island (absolutely ginormous) and the Grand Isle Resort and Spa. Last, check out Cape Santa Maria Beach Resort and villas.
What to do in the Bahamas
There are about a zillion things to do in the Bahamas, the most enjoyable being perhaps sipping the fantastic rum punch that is so prevalent throughout the islands. What you and your wedding guests will find yourselves doing kind of depends on what island you’re on – if you’re in Paradise Island, you could be rafting in a water park, dancing to club beats next to an inifinity pool, gambling in a casino, or swimming. If you’re on one of the more out-of-the-way islands, like Great Abaco, you’ll probably find yourselves and your wedding guests sitting on the beach (drinking that tasty rum punch!), swimming, snorkeling, sailing, and generally relaxing.
Dreamtime Verdict: Bahamas
The Bahamas earns major points for the following reasons: it’s super easy to get to the big island of Nassau, and relatively easy to get to the outer islands like Eleuthera and Abaco. Flights out of Florida are a dime a dozen. It also earns cool points for its night life and opulence – there’s a ton of casinos, awesome pools, dancing, and great food at the Reef, Cove and other properties at the Atlantis. Last, the Bahamas gets major cool points for the sheer variety of wedding venues. As a Bahamas wedding photographer, I love the fact that I can shoot at a huge hotel, do a trash the dress session at a deserted beach all within a few minutes of each other. I would heartily recommend the Bahamas for couples planning a big destination wedding (lots of hotels, good wedding infastructure, and easy accesibility), or for couples who are looking for a cosmopolitan island feel.