While most couples look for some way to make their wedding day special, exchanging vows in scuba suits is certainly far from conventional. But if there’s a time for it, it’s now. Worldwide, the wedding industry is noticing a trend of scaling back, and of unique locations; Google searches for “minimalist wedding” have been steadily on the rise since 2015, while socially distanced weddings also became a thing during the pandemic.
Rather than blowing guests away with lavish events, couples opt to say their vows without a wedding party, in remote and beautiful natural locations like mountain tops, beaches and forests, sharing the moments with loved ones on social media. In Greece, a country affluent with such locations, all that’s needed for a legal wedding ceremony in terms of other people, are two witnesses and an officiant.
And now, there’s a new venue option for such occasions. On Valentine’s Day, the Municipality of Alonissos announced they are now hosting underwater weddings.
Already well-known among scuba enthusiasts for boasting Greece’s first underwater museum – the 5th c. BC Peristera wreck and its cargo of hundreds of amphoras of wine, Alonissos, in the northern Sporades, has been taking several inventive steps towards alternative tourism of late. The underwater weddings follow a previous promotional campaign by the municipality for “weddings in the sky,” set atop a hill with panoramic views of the sea. The announcement about the new service comes with a slogan, “Alonissos, I love you deeply!” and a video featuring a group of divers, including the island’s mayor, Petros Vafinis, who has been certified and is now able to perform the weddings under water.
“Underwater weddings on our island is a great way to exchange vows all year round and does not require special skills and knowledge from the couple, nor unreasonable expenses. The ceremonies will be unique, and feature many surprises,” he told newspaper Kathimerini. No previous diving experience is necessary: “The engaged couple will take some diving lessons before the wedding. The ceremony will take place at 6-8 meters depth,” he explained.
The first wedding in the sea at Alonissos has already been planned; an Athenian couple will be promising each other eternal love in August.