With its remote feel, white sands and sweeping landscapes, the Isle of Harris has to be one of the most breathtaking places in not just Scotland, but the world, to tie the knot. Today we’re catching up with one of our favourite photographers, Margaret Soraya who fell in love with weddings in the Outer Hebrides over 10 years ago, and has been photographing love stories there ever since. Here’s her guide to planning your own Scottish island wedding…
When did your love of island weddings begin?
I started my business up 13 years ago, just after I had my youngest child. I was living in Ullapool at that time and was asked to go and photograph a wedding in Stornoway and I’ve been shooting on the Outer Hebrides ever since. I often photograph large weddings in Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis, which are fabulous in their own way – very family orientated and seeped in island tradition.
About 8 years ago, I took a solo trip through all the Hebridean islands and fell in love with the Isle of Harris. I have a love of landscape photography, so this island is perfect for me, with its stunning landscapes and open stretches of deserted beaches. I now spend a lot of time on all the islands, both for weddings and for landscape photography, often combining the two into one trip.
And what makes Harris such a special place?
Harris is a particularly fabulous place for couples to get married as it has a remote, quiet and stunningly beautiful feel to it. It is definitely for those who love remote places, the outdoors and amazing scenery.
There are options for larger weddings on Harris now, with the newly opened Talla na Mara and also Amhuinnsuide Castle. Both have the most incredible views from their doorstep. However, by far the majority of weddings I photograph are elopements to the Isle of Harris. Either couples only or couples with a small gathering of family and friends.
What’s your advice to couples thinking of eloping to Harris?
Most ceremonies take place on one of the island’s incredible beautiful beaches. It’s advisable to be prepared for an outdoor wedding and to fully embrace and enjoy everything that comes with that ! The Isle of Harris has many very special qualities but one very special lady on the island just makes it all wonderful and that is Helen Maher, the registrar, who really cares about each and every couple she marries. The island is small and friendly, and locals and suppliers really enjoy seeing couples marry on Harris – it’s a big event!
I’d always advise treating yourself to a really stunning place to stay. Sound of Harris has to be my favourite place, with the most spectacular views and total quiet all around. If you choose really nice accommodation like this, then it doesn’t matter if the weather doesn’t play ball the entire time.
Weekday weddings are always easier for suppliers as well. If you need any help or advice, I’d be delighted to help. My favourite subject is the Outer Hebrides and I’m always keen to talk about it!
In love? We don’t blame you! To see more of Margaret’s incredible photos, head over to her website. And she has just popped some really useful information on her blog, for those of you thinking of eloping to Harris. So be sure to have a read of that too!
This is a sponsored post, written by We Fell In Love on behalf of Soraya Photography. Margaret Soraya has been highly recommended, time and time again, by WFIL readers and we are very proud to have her as part of our handpicked wedding suppliers collection.
All images are copyright of Soraya Photography.