How to get married in Italy

Nowhere is more magical than Tuscany for a wedding. The heartland of the Renaissance is dotted with beautiful towns, little chapels, romantic castles and luxurious villas. And your photographer will be over the moon with the choice of backdrops – cypress-lined driveways, sprawling vineyards and hilltop villages abound. Looking for a villa for your wedding? Try our Five Best Wedding Villas in Tuscany

Montestigliano Wedding
Wedding in Montestigliano, photo by LuisaStarling

Below is an introductory guide to getting married in Tuscany, from the paperwork and process for a legally binding ceremony, to a celebration of a wedding already formalised in your home country.

Legally binding wedding ceremony in Italy

Having a legally binding ceremony will require both preparation and paperwork. The first document you will need is a “Nulla Osta” document. This is a document to prove that you are not currently married. Here’s a handy guide to what this means and how to arrange it:

Nulla Osta for UK Nationals

For UK Nationals, the government website has a useful tool to help determine which documents you might need: What will I need to get married in Italy. You can also download the the necessary documents, including any needed for same-sex civil ceremonies: Download Nulla Osta Documents

Nulla Osta for US Nationals

For US Nationals, the US embassy has a good sheet of guidance here: Getting married in Italy?

If you're based in Australia, the Australian embassy in Rome has put together a very useful guide: Marriage in Italy for Australian Nationals.

In all cases the advice is similar - you'll need a form of ID like a Passport, a Birth Certificate plus evidence that any previous marriages have been declared null.

For nationals of any country, it's worth remembering that under Italian law, all public documents -- regardless of their origin -- are considered valid for only six months from the date of issue. So it's important to make sure that all documents to be submitted to Italian authorities have not been issued more than six months ahead of the marriage.

The minimum documents you will need for a legal wedding ceremony in Italy are:

  • Valid passports
  • Original birth certificates
  • Divorce papers or death certificates to prove the end of any previous marriage
  • A Nulla Osta or Dichiarazione Giurata, sworn certificates of no impediment, from your own country
  • An Atto Notorio (required only for Canadian or US citizens), further confirming the lack of legal impediment to your wedding
  • A declaration of intent to marry that will go to the civil registrar

If at least one of you is Catholic and you plan to marry in a church, you will need additional documents from your home parish, like certificates of baptism and confirmation, letters of no impediment to marry and proof of attendance at pre-wedding courses. Your local parish will be able to help getting all of this together, but it can take around two months, so speak to them in plenty of time.

Once this is in place, you can get married in a civil ceremony in a town hall or have your ceremony in a Catholic church or other religious venue. Most town halls have a number of venues available in the area for you to choose from, although the town halls themselves are often quite beautiful anyway.

But remember: A full church ceremony can take longer to organise, so it’s worth starting the process early.

Get in touch to start your wedding planning here:

Contact us

Wedding in Borgo Rinnovato
A beautiful venue for a wedding is Borgo Rinnovato, just south of Florence

Symbolic ceremony in Italy

The legal system can be long-winded so many opt for a small legal ceremony in the home country, followed by a symbolic wedding in Tuscany. Because this isn’t legally binding, this eliminates the bureaucracy and widens your choice of venue. You can have more say about your ceremony and have a layperson celebrant who conducts the proceedings in your own language. Many people also choose to renew their vows in this way.

Can I have a same-sex ceremony in Tuscany, Italy?

Absolutely yes! We have had lots of same sex ceremonies in our properties and there are no local problems - Italy is a very accepting and LGBTQ+ friendly country.

Gay Weddings

Since 2016 same-sex couples can apply for a Civil Union Ceremony in Italy. Civil Unions are similar to Marriages but have a few differences in the procedure; currently, in most cases, couples need to bring the same documentation as for a hetero-sexual wedding, but often are asked to meet the town-hall officer in person AT LEAST 30 days before the wedding.

Gary and Mike wedding in Montestigliano
Gary and Mike wedding in Montestiglino - photo by Luisa Starling

Get in touch to start your wedding planning here: Contact us

Best weather for Italian Weddings

The warmest weather in Tuscany is from May to late September, but July and August can be quite hot and also more costly – so May, June, September and October are ideal. April and November are good choices, too, albeit slightly riskier for sleeveless dresses as these months can sometimes be a bit chilly. However, even in winter, the landscape is alluring and the churches beautiful.

Tuscan Wedding
Getting married outdoors can make for a wonderful ceremony.

Where to get married in Tuscany

If you have been dreaming of a Tuscan Wedding, we have some wonderful locations you might like to consider – estates with sweet chapels on-site, large lawns and plenty of room for your guests. Whether you prefer an ancient castle, a gracious villa or a charming country home, we can help you organize everything, from food to flowers, music to hair-dos.

We don’t do fixed formula weddings, but can listen to what you want to achieve and give you as much or as little help as you need. Some of our guests have wanted help organising a church ceremony followed by a celebration for more 100, while others have just needed help selecting menus and finding a charming place suitable for 10 friends.

See our Five Best Wedding Villas in Tuscany.

Goga-driveway
Villa Goga is close to Siena and has its own chapel

To get married surrounded by the Tuscan hills is a unique experience, in the heartland of the renaissance, with vistas of cypresses, olive trees and vineyards stretching into the distance – all the better when seen from the terrace of an old villa, or a rambling converted farmhouse with a glass of prosecco in hand.

Get in touch to start your wedding planning here: Contact us

Tuscan wedding in the 1970s

Wedding near Volterra in 1976
A wedding in Tuscany in 1976. I'm the one in the knee socks on the left.

Honeymoon Villas

And when the dancing’s done, it might be time to disappear to a smaller, more private property for your honeymoon – find your dream honeymoon hideaway here.

Honeymoon cottage in Ameglia
Casa Guelfi sleeps 2, has a private pool and was featured by Conde Nast Traveller