How to get married at Lily Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park

Lily Lake is one of the best wedding locations in Rocky Mountain National Park because

  • It’s easily accessible, and outside the main entrance to Rocky Mountain National Park
  • The lake offers a 3/4 mile handicap accessible trail that loops the entire lake
  • There are numerous hiking trails around here including Estes Cone and Twin Sisters just across the street
  • You have easy access to picnic tables and a fishing dock
  • There’s lot of unique wildlife here including moose, muskrats, and tiger salamanders
  • It’s incredibly scenic

Look one way and you’ll see the perfectly framed Longs Peak, one of the tallest mountains here in Colorado! Around the lake you’ll also spot truly unique rock formations, aspen groves, dense pine forests, and plenty of big mountain views.

How to apply for a wedding permit for Lily Lake (or anywhere in Rocky Mountain National Park)

Each year a limited number of wedding permits are available. It’s important that you apply for your permit as soon as possible. You can apply for a wedding permit up to one year in advance from your desired wedding month. For example, if you would like to marry on November 15, 2025, apply for your permit on November 1, 2024. Lily Lake is a favorite wedding ceremony site in Rocky Mountain National Park and can accommodate up to 30 guests. This number includes yourselves and any on-site vendors.

When you’re ready to apply for your Lily Lake permit, here’s what to do:

  1. Check the website to make sure there is still availability for your desired month
  2. If so, download a Special Use Application
  3. Email your completed application to
  4. Once approved, they will send a Special Use permit to you with instructions for signing and payment.
  5. Make sure you have the approved permit with you on your wedding day!

It only costs $300 for a wedding permit to get married in Rocky Mountain National Park. And I mean, can you think of a more affordable wedding venue that is this scenic?!

Find out more information and apply for your wedding permit here.

Getting There

Lily Lake is conveniently located just minutes outside of the town of Estes Park, as if you’re driving toward Allenspark. Since it’s located outside of the main entrances to RMNP, there is no entrance station or lines! The parking lot is just off the road, and the lake itself is just a 30 second stroll beyond that. Parking can fill up quickly here, especially during the peak seasons May-October. If necessary, here is overflow parking just across the street at the Twin Sisters trailhead.

What is the best time of year for a Lily Lake wedding?

Lily Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park is open and accessible year-round! So, with a valid wedding permit, you can have your wedding here any day you wish.

Lily Lake and the National Park in general are busiest between the months of May and October. If seclusion is important to you, consider eloping at sunrise or in the early morning hours. Weekdays are generally less busy in the National Park than weekend dates too.

You can expect the fewest visitors in the National Park between November and April, but we do experience a lot of winter weather during these months! Prepare yourself for cold temperatures and potential snow during this time of the year. Plan to bring lots of warm layers that you won’t mind being in photos.

Photos of Lily Lake in Winter and Early Spring

View of Lily Lake wedding ceremony site in May after a fresh snow

This is the view just a short walk from the parking area, looking toward Lily Mountain

View of snowy Longs Peak from Lily Lake wedding site in Rocky Mountain National Park

Amazing views of Mount Meeker and Longs Peak from the parking lot!

Couple standing at edge of Lily Lake with a snow covered scene about to have their wedding

When you first walk up to Lily Lake, this is the view you’ll see! Believe it or not, these photos were taken in May. As you can see, the weather can still be quite wintery this high in the mountains at that time of year.

View of snow covered mountains and a calm lake at sunrise in Rocky Mountain National Park at Lily Lake wedding ceremony site

Lily Lake in the Summer

Lily Lake in July
Lily Lake looking toward Twin Sisters

The view looking toward Twin Sisters.

view of longs peak from lily lake

This is the best spot to see moose, especially in the early morning hours! They like to graze in this marshy area beside the boardwalk portion of the trail.

Fisherman in the morning at Lily Lake in Rocky Mountain National Park

Unique rock formations known as “Jurassic Park” amongst rock climbers. Look closely, and you may see some people scaling these rocks!

Lily Lake in the Fall

View of Lily Lake in the fall time with yellow fall foliage
View of Longs Peak from Lily Lake wedding site in Rocky Mountain National Park

Longs Peak poking out from the clouds with Autumn foliage in the foreground.

Couple on the shore of Lily Lake after their wedding ceremony
Lily Lake Dock

This dock is located very close to the parking lot.

Lily Lake wedding photography

Additional information on getting married in Rocky Mountain National Park

You can have your own Lily Lake elopement ceremony! And as a local, I can help make it a little less intimidating. Learn more about all the wedding options in this how to elope in Rocky Mountain National Park article here and find more information on permits as well as updated availability at the NPS site here.

Lily Lake Wedding Photographer

Fill out the inquiry form below and let’s see if we’re a good fit.

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