destination wedding ceremony in thailand

Miskawaan wedding ceremony

With the cost of local weddings on the rise - and the dollar still relatively strong - marrying overseas is an increasingly popular option for Australian couples, and spectacular Thailand is one of our favourite picks.

Thailand has long been a hot honeymoon destination with Australian couples, but for some time now we've been observing a trend towards marrying and honeymooning in the one destination to extend the celebrations not just for the bride and groom but for the entire guest list.

Overseas ceremonies give your guests the ultimate excuse to plan an exotic holiday around your big day, and allow you all to enjoy each other's company in a laidback (and often luxurious) setting. There's also no huge rush the day after the wedding to pack up and head off - you're already there.

Picture yourself being pampered pre or post-wedding in one of Thailand's renowned spas, taking Thai cooking classes, flying through the jungle treetops on a thrilling zip line, shopping for designer labels and market bargains in Bangkok, scuba diving or surfing in the warm ocean waters or spending a few hours with baby tigers at a wildlife sanctuary.

Thailand's balmy climate means you can enjoy a tropical wedding at any time of year, avoiding the bottleneck of Spring wedding bookings you often come across in Australia - just be mindful to have plans in place if you choose to get hitched during the wet season!

Whether you want to ride down the aisle in the mountainous Thai hinterland on an elephant, or say i-do barefoot at sunset on a blissful beach, Thailand boasts a huge choice of islands, resorts and ceremony styles.

Large five-star resorts can accommodate your extended wedding party, giving you the option to enjoy varied restaurants, on-site activities (and cocktail parties), as well as coordinating your ceremony and reception - all without having to venture outside the resort.

Alternatively, Thailand is known for its boutique and spa hotels dotted around smaller islands such as Koh Samui, Phi Phi and Krabi where you'll find glorious beaches that will be picture perfect for a more intimate way to say 'I Do'.

Miskawaan - Luxury Villas Pool


Private villas with their own glorious gardens - and often stunning outlooks - are an increasingly popular pick for those keen to stay on site with a smaller group. This option also works well for accommodating the wedding party or immediate family and allowing friends and other relatives to choose their own accommodation nearby.

There are, however, a few formalities involved with marrying in Thailand which must be observed if you want your wedding to be accepted as a legal marriage under Australian law.

Firstly, your marriage must be registered with Thai authorities in Bangkok, in person. The first step is completing a pro-forma Statutory Declaration at the Australian Embassy in Bangkok. If you've been previously married, you must also provide an original divorce or death certificate to the Embassy and Thai authorities to prove you are no longer married.

All of your documents must be translated into Thai at a private translation agency which can be done on the ground in Bangkok within a few working days for a fee. Translated documents must then be authenticated by Thai authorities (this takes a couple of working days and a fee is payable. The final step in the bureaucratic process is visiting a District Office, known as an Amphur, to formally register your marriage. This can often be done in a location near your ceremony, not necessarily in Bangkok, but you do need to book an appointment in advance. Taking an interpreter along can ensure communication runs smoothly.

If you're marrying on-site at one of the larger resorts, the celebrant or wedding planner may be able to help you find the nearest Amphur office, and may even be able to accompany you.

Miskawaan - Luxury Villas View

To cater to the growing number of Australians marrying abroad, there are now a number of agencies with people on the ground both here and in Thailand to help coordinate everything from booking flights and choosing accommodation and ceremony locations to facilitating legal paperwork, coordinating flowers and photography and selecting a secluded spot for your honeymoon.

Speaking of honeymoons, the choice in Thailand is vast, from family-friendly fun-filled resorts to ultimately romantic island hideaways and super luxurious resort and private villas.

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