Did you and your honey spend your first weekend getaway picking apples & sipping cider in the Catskills? Or perhaps you've always dreamed of mini lobster rolls & a windswept ceremony on the beaches of Montauk?
Whatever your dream may be, there are plenty of beautiful & unique wedding destinations that will transport your guests from the hustle & bustle of New York to your wedding getaway – no flight necessary.
With Covid-19 travel restrictions in flux, why not plan a “destination wedding” within reach? All within three hours by car (and often quicker by train!) your guest list will easily find their way, whether they plan a weekend vacation, or need to head back to the City after the big shebang.
The Catskills & Hudson Valley
Up there in my top two NYC getaways (looking at you too, Montauk) the Catskills & nearby Hudson Valley fills the fancy of any New Yorker that loves farm to table restaurants & idyllic countryside views.
Every Catskill wedding (& weekender) I've been spoiled to attend has been pure magic – imagine farmhouse venues, roasted pig, live music, and late night bonfires amongst the fireflies.
The Hamptons & Montauk
We're dreaming of a sunrise surf sesh in Montauk with your soon-to-be-spouse, followed by a casual roadside lobster roll then swap into your chic city wedding attire for an elegant Hamptons wedding party – this is what the end of Long Island has in store.
Whether you're an old-school New Yorker, or new-school Brooklynite, both Montauk & the Hamptons offer a range of venue styles.
Old Greenwich provides a posh seaside getaway without any need to book hotels for a weekend away. Technically in Connecticut, this quaint commuter (and yacht) filled town is so close to the city your New Yorker guests could slyly use Uber to get home.
Balking at New York City venue prices? We wholly understand, with the average NYC wedding costing $77k (double the country's average according to The Knot) we bet venue hunting in the city on a budget may provide a few heartbreaks.
But if you've got your mind set on city chic wedding, why not consider neighboring Philadelphia? Only 90 minutes out of the city, with trains & buses aplenty, the City of Brotherly Love provides historic American backdrops, a buzzing modern cuisine & serious cool factor for the city couple.
The Jersey Shore's southernmost town – Cape May – will charm the pants off any prideful New Yorker. Rows of colorful Victorian homes line an iconic beach filled with surfers & classic food stalls. Boasting old-school Americana vibes we can already imagine the Fourth of July fireworks lighting over a barbecue wedding, filled with ice cream, sparklers & classic white wedding cake.
Oysters, mussels, scallops, lobster, calamari – shall I go on? Rhode Island has all the best seafood & coastline New England has to offer without turning the trek into a massive road trip. Just under three hours driving from NYC, the country's smallest state offers a myriad of venue styles from small beachside towns to upscale estates. Plan photos aside lighthouses, spoil your guests with decadent oysters while saving big on local beer, Narragansett.
Looking for more New York City wedding planning advice? We've started an online support group for New Yorker couples with access to local pros & fellow engaged couples offering their own sage advice. Whether you're planning a wedding in the City or New Yorker getting married abroad, you'll find help to all your budding questions in our group.
For more wedding venue inspiration, visit our Real Wedding section.