In Croatia a civil ceremony is the only legally recognised marriage ceremony
It is still possible to have a religious ceremony however you must also have a civil ceremony either in Croatia or your home country. The format of a Croatia wedding ceremony is very similar to those conducted in the United Kingdom and Ireland.
If you choose to have a civil service as your Croatia wedding ceremony it can be conducted in the town hall of the town where you are staying or in any outdoor location of your choice, provided it has approval from the Registry Office.
A civil ceremony takes approximately 25 minutes and is conducted in Croatian. If either of the couple does not speak Croatian a court-appointed translator must be present to translate your ceremony into English. The cost of this is paid by the couple.
If you wish to personalise your civil ceremony you have the option to choose your own music and readings.
If you wish to have a religious Croatia wedding ceremony, the following ceremonies can be performed:
- Catholic ceremony – can only take place in a church,
- Evangelistic ceremony – can take place in a church or outdoor location of your choice,
- Orthodox ceremony
- Muslim Ceremony
As the population of Croatia is predominantly Catholic, there are many churches and little chapels where you can choose to have your wedding ceremony. Croatians are very proud of their town church and try to keep it well maintained.
It is possible to find an English speaking Priest to conduct your wedding ceremony, which will usually consist of a full mass of 50 minutes. If you are using a Wedding Planner they should be able to help book an English speaking Priest.
The following documentation is required:
- Copy of Baptismal certificate (not older than 6 months)
- Permission to get married outside your local parish
- (If couple not legally married) Certificate from the local Registry Office (Maticar), confirming they can enter into a religious marriage.
- Pre-marriage Course Certificate
- (If the couple is already married) Marriage certificate
- Discharge certificate
For a full list of the documentation required for all other religions you should contact your local religious institution in Croatia.
My husband and I “secretly” got married in the United Kingdom prior to our wedding abroad and had a Humanist wedding ceremony on our wedding day. Our civil ceremony in the United Kingdom was purely to take care of the legalities and our wedding day is when we considered ourselves married. Our guests were not aware that our civil ceremony had taken place and our very personalised wedding ceremony is when we and our guests felt that we became husband and wife.
For information on the legal requirements and documentation required for getting married in Croatia click here.
To find out more about having a wedding abroad in Croatia, see the Croatia Wedding Guide.
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Note: Whilst every effort has been made to ensure the above information is current and accurate, please check with the local authorities to ensure that you have the most up-to-date information for having a Croatia wedding ceremony.