Kirsten & Derrick // Elopement in Norway
The adventurous couple, Kirsten & Derrick came all the way from New York to embark on their elopement in secret. Without telling family and friends, they set out for this adventurous elopement to the western parts of Norway.
The Trolls Road
Kirsten & Derrick stayed at Juvet Landscape Hotel in Valldal. A totally extraordinary hotel in the middle of nowhere. The hotel was used as the backdrop for the motion picture Ex-Machina and is a sought after venue. On the wedding day we did a mountain hike for the ceremony. Being in the area we could not pass up on doing a session by the dramatic and the world-famous mountain pass; Trollstigen (The Trolls Road)
Both, Kirsten & Derrick grew up in small towns, right next to each other in the New York area. Kirsten from Long Beach and Derrick from Island Park, but they didn’t meet until after college at a bar through a mutual friend. Derrick stated; “I can’t believe she was right over the bridge all those years…”
Why did you choose Norway as destination and what did you know about Norway before you came?
We were already planning a 2 week vacation in Norway to visit the fjords and waterfalls when Derrick asked me to elope. We do a big road trip every year and it’s our favorite time together. We were not even sure if we would do it in Norway or wait until the following year. But when I found our photographer on Instagram, the pictures were so amazing that we had to seriously consider Norway even though we only had a few months to plan. Turns out elopements don’t take much planning at all! That was probably the best part of the whole thing. We loved the idea of Norway because of the beautiful, moody landscape and the rich history and of course the windy roads and tunnels that we knew would make for the ultimate road trip.
Can Norway be recommended as an Elopement destination?
Yes of course. The scenery is more romantic than anywhere we have ever been. When you’re driving around Norway you pass a waterfall every few minutes, it’s a magical place. We were told we got married where the trolls live.
How did you find the Photographer?
I found our photographer, Christin Eide, on Instagram and her photos are unreal. Each elopement she does is more beautiful than the last. I showed her our itinerary and she told me which day we should choose and which location on our trip. It was a good thing we listened to her because the day I initially chose ended up being one of the rainiest. Christin was fun to hang out with for the day too, she is personable and easy to talk to. She scouted out locations the day before and brought us to the top of a mountain where a natural alter made of rock sat in a little pond of water. She has a great eye and knew how to make us comfortable. We had a lot of fun.
Why did you choose an Elopement instead of a big wedding with 200 guests?
We never wanted a big wedding. Most of our friends had them and while I love a good party, it seems like the bride and groom have less fun than their guests. We also wanted to write our vows and not feel like we were on stage performing them for a huge room of people. Just the two of us on a mountain in Norway was what I always pictured in my head. I cried the whole time so I’m really glad I didn’t have 200 people watching! Oh and we forgot the rings… Derrick had to run back to our backpacks on the mountain to get them. I guess we aren’t cut out for the spotlight!!
How did your families react to your elopement in Norway?
Our families were happy for us! We were together more than 8 years at this point so I know my parents were starting to worry that we would never get married. I’m sure they didn’t mind the cost savings either! We are still throwing a smaller party so the family can celebrate with us. We are really getting the best of both worlds.
You had a local celebrant/officiant, how was this experience for you?
Our photographer arranged with a celebrant to officiate our ceremony and he was perfect. He carried my dress up the mountain for me when the hike got steep. We sent him some details on our relationship, how we met and he really took the time to write a beautiful ceremony with that information. He had a couple of one liners that I will always remember and he sent us the ceremony so I can put it in our photo album. We got married on the day of his parents celebrated 50 year anniversary. The day was clearly special for him as well as us and we felt a nice connection with him.
Will Norway have the pleasure to see you again in the future, maybe as tourists?
Norway is soooo big! We still have so many places to see, like Lofoten and the northern lights. We will definitely be back!
This is a couple who loves traveling, especially doing road trips! So, this elopement to Norway won`t be their last trip for sure. They both have a dream to retire young and live in a new place every year, after they quit their corporate careers in NYC. In life, they have now embarked on most exciting adventure and journey together, as husband and wife…