Stately homes surrounded by ancient woodlands, a castle around every corner, the wild magic of the Highlands and vast glens just waiting to be explored, it’s no surprise that Scotland is a top pick for those wanting a wedding doused in romance.
Thanks to Scotland’s marriage laws, you can say your vows almost anywhere. But if you fancy a roof over your head and a guarantee that your pictures won’t be peppered with tourists, there are plenty of handsome Scotland wedding venues to choose from. From a castle on the rugged Outer Hebrides to an academic’s library in Edinburgh’s charming city centre, here are the best wedding venues in Scotland for 2023 and beyond.
Stemster House, Caithness
Just off the North Coast 500 route and a half-hour drive from John o’ Groats, Stemster House is a relatively new Scottish wedding venue that packs a big punch. Owner and wedding coordinator Jacqueline decided to make her home a wedding venue after hosting her nuptials there, and it’s now an exclusive-use venue surrounded by pretty gardens and woodlands with views across rolling green hills. With three wedding day packages available, we fancy the weekend package that offers exclusive use of the venue and grounds across a three-day weekend and space for 100 guests during the ceremony and 180 for the reception. This is also a great jumping-off point for a honeymoon road trip around the Scottish Highlands.
Guests: 100 for ceremony and up to 180 for reception
Address: Halkirk, Caithness, KW12 6UX
Dunskey Estate, Dumfries
In the Scottish countryside, just moments from the Irish Sea, a wedding at Dunskey Estate is perfect for those who want a relaxing wedding planning experience. Whether you want to get married in the Edwardian castle, among the estate’s walled garden, ancient woodlands, or on the banks of a loch, the team can arrange everything from your food and drink menus to the photographer and videographer. They even have an in-house florist and wedding coordinator too. With space for up to 50 guests to sleep in the castle’s modern rooms and suites and 30 to stay across the estate’s eight lodges, you can keep the celebrations going all weekend long.
Guests: up to 80 indoors and 120 outdoors
Address: Dunskey Estate, Portpatrick, Stranraer DG9 8TJ
Lews Castle, Outer Hebrides
On the quieter side of Isle of Lewis’s Stornoway harbour, Lews Castle is a prime spot for those who can’t decide between a castle wedding or a seaside venue. The castle has all the trappings of a fantastic Outer Hebrides wedding venue: glistening sea views, ample grounds, and a large helping of history. The Gothic revival castle dates back to the 19th century, and weddings here can be held in the chandelier-clad ballroom, the light-filled library or the morning room with views of the harbour. Guests can feast on hand-dived scallops, local salmon, or Highland venison before retreating to one of the castle’s 22 modern rooms once they’ve had a boogie or three. If you opt for a wedding between late autumn and spring, you might even be treated to a natural light display, as clear evenings often see the northern lights dance across the sky above the castle.
Address: Lews Castle Grounds, Stornoway HS2 0XP
St Mary’s Space, West Scottish Highlands
As far as micro weddings go, you’d be hard-pressed to find a more eclectic venue than St Mary’s Space for a Scottish elopement or an intimate gathering. Located in the west Scottish Highlands, just 25 minutes north of Oban, this converted church home sits on a glen flanked by towering mountains and dense woodlands. Inside, you’ll be greeted by unapologetic maximalism. Think high ceilings, gothic stained glass windows, deer antlers on every surface, and a space littered with trinkets. Your wedding breakfast will be made in-house, with local produce such as Highland beef, Loch Creran oysters and wild venison, but they can cater to all dietary requirements. Then, when you’ve had your fill, you can retire to The Sitooterie, a private hand-built wooden cabin with a log burner. Divine.
Guests: up to 17 including the to-be-weds
Address: St. Mary's, Fasnacloich, Appin PA38 4BJ
The Engine Works, Glasgow
If a blank canvas with an edge is your kind of thing, The Engine Works is a refurbished Victorian warehouse that may be the Glasgow wedding venue for you. Located in the trendy West End area, The Engine Works oozes character with its exposed red brick walls, cast iron columns, original timber, and a rich history dating back to 1837. It can cater for intimate and vast parties, with several stunning spaces to choose from. Planning your wedding here couldn’t be easier, as the team has several hand-picked vendors you can work with to bring your Pinterest-worthy wedding to life, and they can also supply everything from the glassware to the ceremony chairs and a curated furniture collection to choose from to add an extra something to your day.
Guests: up to 300
Address: 23-25 Lochburn Rd, Wyndford, Glasgow G20 9AE
The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh
Anyone who has spent time in Edinburgh knows that the Scottish capital is cloaked in romance. From its imposing castle to its old-world architecture, the picturesque Dean Village and cobblestone streets, there seems to be something more beautiful around each corner. The Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh is a no-brainer if you're looking for a wedding venue as romantic as the city. Wow your guests with a ceremony in the New Library, with its rich wooden bookcases, light-filled high ceilings, and antique fireplaces, before moving to the Great Hall, lined with beautiful columns, dreamy chandeliers, and a domed ceiling with gold detailings, for your regal reception. The venue is just off Queen Street, so you can head to the gardens for photos or bar hop once your reception finishes to keep the party going.
Guests: up to 170
Address: 11 Queen St, Edinburgh EH2 1JQ
Teasses Estate, near St Andrews
With roe deer, red squirrels, brown hare and Highland cows wandering its 1,100-acre plot, Teasses Estate is a nature lover’s haven. Located in central Fife, just 15 minutes from St Andrews, weddings are held in the light-filled Victorian greenhouse that grows peaches, figs, grapes, and the incredibly romantic walled garden. There are marquees for larger groups, and the venue can assist you in whatever your wedding dreams look like, whether teepees among the apple, plum, and pear trees or cocktails under the stars. Opt for a spring or early summer celebration to make the most of the garden and surrounding woodlands that come to life with roses, bluebells, and wildflowers.
Guests: up to 120
Address: Teasses, Leven KY8 5PG
Glencorse House, near Edinburgh
Those who have watched Outlander will agree that the wedding episode is one of the best of the series (if you know, you know). So it’s likely that you’d also be delighted to find out that you can get married in the exact spot Jamie and Claire did. Glencorse House, just 20 minutes south of Edinburgh and tucked away on a private estate at the foot of the Pentland Hills, is home to Glencorse Old Kirk. The stone-walled Old Kirk dates back to the 17th century and has been carefully restored into a quaint ceremony venue that retains that bygone charm. The ceremony can be followed by a marquee reception, but be sure to slip away to take some photos in the surrounding woodlands first.
Guests: 130 in the Kirk
Address: Milton Bridge, Penicuik EH26 0NZ
Glen Tanar, Aberdeenshire
Perched on the edge of the Cairngorms National Park, just down the road from Balmoral, the Glen Tanar Ballroom has been hosting weddings for over a century. A minimalist venue this is not: the ballroom’s vaulted ceiling is adorned with over 700 antlers, and historic paintings line the walls. Alternatively, you can hold the ceremony in the on-site Chapel of St Lesmo, a 19th-century stone chapel with a thatched roof and stained glass windows. If the weather allows, explore the site’s woodlands and loch during the day before dancing all night long on the ballroom’s original oak flooring. The luxury self-catering cottages on site can accommodate up to 47 guests, but the venue can also help to arrange hotel, and B&B stays with providers nearby. This spot is charming for a winter wedding in Scotland, as snow often blankets the grounds.
Guests: up to 160
Address: Glen Tanar Estate, Aboyne, Aberdeenshire, AB34 5EU
Skeabost House Hotel, Isle of Skye
Skye is the perfect setting for a Scottish elopement. Whether you want to get married among the wilds of the Fairy Glen, closer to the clouds at Storr, or at the postcard-perfect Eilean Donan Castle, there are so many beautiful spots to choose from. But if you’d rather have a more traditional setting or want somewhere to bunker down for the evening after saying “I do”, Skeabost House Hotel is an excellent pick. With 27 acres of private park, cosy lounges, and a conservatory filled with natural light, this is a charming spot for both elopements and larger weddings. The team at Skeabost can even arrange for your ceremony to take place at the nearby Dunvegan Castle before retreating to the hotel to dine on dishes such as the salmon and local langoustine terrine, a twice-baked soufflé and the honey oatmeal and whiskey tart. The hotel, one of the best in Skye, has space to sleep up to 84 guests.
Guests: up to 84
Address: Skeabost Bridge, Isle of Skye IV51 9NP