Scotland should do more to promote "marriage tourism", according to the Registrar General for Scotland.
Nearly a quarter (23%) of couples who got married last year came from outside Scotland, according the latest Annual Review of Demographic Trends.
"These are tourist marriages: people who choose to come to Scotland to get married," Registrar General George MacKenzie said. "The majority of those were to Gretna, while Edinburgh and Edinburgh Castle are also very popular places to get married.
"People come here on special visas if they're not EU citizens. It's part of our tourist trade and perhaps quite a significant one, and maybe Scotland could do a bit more to boost up. Gretna is historically very interesting. It's quite a romantic notion to get married in Gretna.
"It used to be the case that you got married in Gretna because you could go over the border from England to Scotland, where the marriage laws were different. And if you got to Gretna, you could marry and the wicked uncle couldn't get you. If you were caught before you got to Gretna, you were in a bit of difficulty. I think that romantic notion is still driving a lot of people to come here."
Gretna is home to one of the busiest registry offices in Scotland, Mr MacKenzie said.
Half of all marriages in Scotland last year (52%) were civil ceremonies, in contrast to 1971 when a third of marriages were civil and two-thirds were religious. Of the civil ceremonies, about half took place in registry offices and the other half took place in "approved places" such as hotels or castles.
Most of the religious marriages, 5,557, were Church of Scotland, with 1,729 Catholic.
Mr MacKenzie said: "Very interestingly, Humanist marriages are at 2,486. As Registrar General, I am able to authorise certain people to carry out marriages. We would normally authorise clergy of churches but Humanists also come into that category because they have a belief system, albeit it's not a religious belief system, and it seems to be very popular indeed.
"Registration is still a complex area. There have been 10 Acts of Parliament in the last 10 years and with the current debate, led by Nicola Sturgeon, about the Government's intentions on same-sex marriage, we expect further changes to the statutory landscape coming up fairly soon."