Getting married in France: How to find the perfect wedding venue in the champagne region?

We are getting married in France! Yes, the decision has been made, the wedding venue has been booked and the save the dates have been sent. Let the pre-joy of our wedding in the champagne region in France begin! But how does a destination wedding work? Why do we want to marry in France? In this blog, we tell you more about a destination wedding, how to find a wedding venue and why getting married in the Champagne region in France is a good idea. You will find tips for getting married abroad and we share our personal experiences with finding a suitable wedding venue!

We’re getting married!

Flashback to Thursday, March 7, 2019. We are in the middle of the snow in Lapland, together with good friends Thomas and Christine. Packed warmly, I walk unsuspectingly through the knee-high snow for a morning walk. When Ries supposedly wants to take a photo on a frozen lake, I struggle a bit, what if the ice (more than a meter thick) breaks? Luckily I walk behind Ries on the lake and I am completely surprised a minute later by the sweet words he says while on one knee. With a beautiful ring in his hands. Would I marry him?

My answer is, of course, yes and it will be a trip to remember!Proposal Lapland

Read more our engagement story here!

We wanted to stay engaged for a longer time!

“And then you will get married soon?” Was a common question after people learned that we were engaged. No, we will stay engaged for a long time! Ries consciously asked me to marry me before we would go on a world trip for a year. Enjoy the engagement and slowly start thinking about how, where and when we want to get married.

Halfway through our journey, as we walk through Nepal’s breathtaking mountain scenery, it starts to itch a bit. We fantasize and think in peace about where we want to get married and how we will approach it. This gave rise to the idea of ​​getting married abroad and later more specifically in the champagne region in France.

Champagne region France Ries and Charlotte vineyard

Charlotte Plans a wedding: a mini-series 😉

Now, more than 8 months later, we are already a long way in the preparations and our wedding weekend is starting to take shape. We are super excited about it! Friends are already hinting at a new site (Charlotte Plans a Wedding was already suggested as a name), but there are more than enough nice wedding sites and wedding blogs to be found. We like to share our experiences and therefore start a “Charlotte Plans a wedding”  mini-series with personal blogs about the run-up to our destination wedding in France marriage! Including our tips on how to arrange a wedding in France.

And as for that “plans a wedding” … we have two great wedding planners who take a lot of work off our hands so that plans are not too bad!

Proposal Lapland

Why do we choose to get married abroad (destination wedding)?

As a little girl, I was not someone who knew exactly what kind of wedding she would like to have later. In fact, I had no idea and was not at all busy with it. I (and luckily also Ries) always knew that I really like the idea of ​​getting married. Giving a party for love with family and friends: there is nothing more beautiful?

Jokingly, Ries and I had already said that if we get married, it will be abroad anyway. Take our family and friends on a journey and get to know our way of travelling. The weddings we had experienced abroad had always been so warm and sweet. And so, while we are walking over those mountain tops through Nepal, it makes sense to think about a so-called destination wedding.

Nepal Couple goals hiking the Annapurna Circuit

Getting married abroad: a commitment between all guests

The more we talked about it, the more confident we become: we wanted a weekend wedding at a location outside the Netherlands. As another bride put it very nicely:

“Marriage is not just a union between the bride and the groom. It is also a union between the parents, friends, brothers, sisters and other loved ones of the wedding couple”

A weekend with friends and family, who get to know each other better, become each other’s friends and family and experience something special together. We want to create that atmosphere. Plus, we want an intimate wedding. Not too big, relaxed and no differentiation between the guests (In the Netherlands, it’s quite common to make a distinction between day and evening guests). Everyone is invited for the full day, I mean weekend!

Champagne France Epernay vineyards

Benefits of getting married abroad | Destination wedding

Getting married abroad certainly has its advantages:

  • As a bridal couple, you have plenty of time to speak to everyone! With more than enough time you can talk, dance and have fun with everyone.
  • You do not have to differentiate between day or evening guests. Everyone is present everywhere, no difficult moments when the program ends and the evening guests come in while the day guests are still eating.
  • Because the guests get to know each other on a deeper level, it becomes a close group and that creates a special atmosphere!
  • You have a greater chance of good weather (depending on the location) or a setting such as you want to create.

Wedding Antalya

Disadvantages of getting married abroad

But of course, there are also disadvantages of getting married abroad:

  • You ask quite a bit of your guests: costs for the trip and accommodation, taking days off and of course the travel time. Things you should think about when getting married. It may be that some guests decide not to come.
  • You may experience language or culture barriers when you book a location or suppliers abroad.
  • Of course, it depends on the location, but chances are that you have higher costs for location, accommodation, transport and perhaps for suppliers that you want to come from the Netherlands.
  • You will have to be more selective in making your guest list. Because you (usually) cannot make a selection between day and evening guests abroad, you will not be able to (and want to) invite everyone. It can be quite difficult not to invite acquaintances or friends who are a little further away simply because it does not fit (on location or in your budget).

Getting married abroad tip: take the preferences of your guests into account in your considerations, but don’t let it be leading. This is your wedding and so you decide. The people who are really important to you will support you in your choice, no matter what. Keep that in mind.

Curious how we found our destination wedding photographer? Then read the blog, including photos!

Wedding Antalya

Wedding in France: Why choose to get married in the champagne region in France?

Well, then the search begins: where exactly will we get married abroad? Italy was reviewed, as were Spain and southern France. But soon we come to the conclusion that it is all too far away. One of the things we don’t want is to ask our guests to come by plane. Not good for the environment and higher costs for the guests.

Fortunately, we do not have to think long in which region we will look for a wedding location: both of us love the champagne region and let champagne be the most festive drink we know! And so the decision has been taken: we are getting married in the champagne region in France!Champagne region France Ries and Charlotte vineyard

Curious about the region where we are getting married? Read all about the southern champagne region here: Côte des Bar!

How do we find the right wedding venue in France?

There are beautiful castles in the champagne region, beautiful farms and luxurious vineyards where you can get married. But how do you find it? And how do we eventually get to our location?

For a few afternoons, we snuggled up behind our laptop to google in terms of “event location champagne”, “wedding location champagne”, “castle champagne region”, “wedding venues champagne region France” and “getting married in champagne France”. A lot of hits later we make a list of options and we start to request information.

During our search, we discover some useful websites with wedding locations in France. To help you, we have listed them below.

Champagne region France Castellana vineyard

Getting married abroad tip:

If it fits your budget, you can always consider taking a wedding planner in hand to help you find a suitable location. Of course, such a wedding planner does not have to plan your entire wedding at all, but can also only help in the search for the perfect location abroad.

Ultimately, we do not find our wedding location in the champagne via the website above, however, Ries spotted our wedding venue in France via exploring the champagne region via Google Maps. His initial idea was to find charming farms or castles on the map which were harder to find online. His assumption that lesser-known or relative new wedding venues struggle with getting picked up by Google (i.e. have a good SEO) due to heavy competition was correct.

Things you should know when planning a destination wedding?

When you request information about a wedding venue, you immediately notice that a number of things are important to know. Handy to check this in the first (mail) contact because you can quickly make a good selection of possible wedding locations:

  • An indication of the price? – Does this location fit your budget?
  • How many guests will fit on the location? – This way you immediately know whether your guest list fits or not.
  • What are the accommodation options? – Can you sleep on-site or are there hotels nearby for guests?
  • Is catering available or can you arrange this yourself? – And what are any additional catering costs?
  • Can there also be a party at the location? – If not, you will have to consider moving to a separate party location.
  • Does the location have tables, chairs, tablecloths etc? – So you know if you have to rent this yourself.

Do you like the answers? Then it is useful to schedule the first meeting with the wedding location.

Getting married abroad tip:

I recommend that you make the first call digitally (by telephone or via FaceTime / Skype) so that you do not have to travel directly to the location. Is there a click and does the location still fit your picture? Then a visit to the location is your next step.

Champagne region France Sunset vineyard

Physically looking for a wedding venue in France

It is also possible that you do not yet find suitable options online. For example, we recently spoke to a couple who are also getting married in France. They drove several times to the champagne region to physically search for a location. The advantage of this is that you may find a beautiful location that is not very present online, or where not many other people get married! Plus: you immediately have a mini holiday!

Are you considering visiting the northern Champagne region? Then read this blog full of tips about visiting the Champagne region in France!

How did we choose our wedding venue in the champagne region?

After an initial selection of options, we started emailing with locations. Soon a shortlist of wedding locations in the champagne region remains. Many accommodations are outside our budget, do not have enough space (or too much) or otherwise do not meet our needs. And sometimes you just don’t have a connection with the landlord of your wedding venue. Trust your gut feeling and don’t continue.

We are currently in Bali, so a visit is not yet possible. One location really stands out for us. We immediately set up an online meeting and had a very nice connection with the owners. Another additional advantage is that they are Dutch, which saves a lot of hassle.

Villages champagne region

Visiting a wedding venue in France

A quick visit to the location is not possible, because we plan to continue traveling for a few months at that time. Fortunately, our preferred location generously offers to put us in option, without having to make a deposit. For us, this is a great vote of confidence, which only reinforces our sense that this could be the match.

Finally, due to corona two months later than planned, we visit the wedding location in the champagne region that we have in mind. And it is even more beautiful, more suitable and more special than we have thought beforehand. Also with the good connection between the owners (who have also become our wedding planners), it turns out to be more than good in real life. We secretly did not expect anything else. In fact, the save the dates, including the location, were sent before our visit.

Champagne region France vineyard

Getting married abroad tip: If you are getting married abroad, send the save the date on time. That way, guests can take your wedding into account and possibly plan a holiday around it.

And so we find our perfect location, which completely suits the type of party we have in mind: relaxed, not rigid or perfect but warm and very beautiful!

And then: the location of our wedding…. We got married at Domaine Rennepont en Champagne. And what can we recommend this place! It is soooo nice location with great owners!! 

Part 2: getting married in the champagne region in France

So, this was part 1 of a mini-series about our wedding abroad. No idea how many blogs we will write about this, but there will be a second blog in which we will tell you more about getting married in the champagne region in France, our preparations, wedding planners and master of ceremonies and the budget if you get married abroad!

You can read about my experience shopping for wedding dresses and saying yes to my wedding dress in this blog!

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Finding the ultimate wedding Venue in France

More blogs on our French wedding:


  1. by Paula Heron Phillips on 29 July 2020  09:40 Reply

    Loving reading your blog! looking forward to reading the next one......

  2. by Chloe on 18 November 2021  00:58 Reply

    Great blog! Would love to know the venue?! And maybe even your shortlist!!😆😆

    • by Charlotte van de Sande on 24 November 2021  13:27 Reply

      Ofcourse! We got married at Domaine Rennepont en Champagne (have a look at their website).
      Kind regards,

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