WEDDINGS

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South African Wedding Venues: The Perfect ZA Destination Guide

When it comes to South African wedding venues you are spoilt for choice. From beachside villas to sprawling safari lodges, there is a wedding venue to suit every style. The country’s natural beauty provides the perfect backdrop for this special day, making it a popular choice for wedding celebrations. 

South African wedding venues are a mix of romantic vintage chic and modern minimalism. Since there are so many venues to choose from, it can be overwhelming when trying to decide. 

We’ve pulled together a list of the best South African wedding venues on offer to make choosing the perfect place to say ‘I Do’ easy. If you need even more ideas, take a look at this South African wedding shoot featured previously on BLOVED.

Say ‘I Do’ among the vineyards 

Babylonstoren, Franschhoek 

Babylostoren is the perfect wedding venue for the bride seeking a modern twist on the rustic aesthetic, with a ceremony outside among old oaks next to a beautiful stream. 

On the farm there are three wedding venue options, the Old Cellar, Wheat Barn and Studio depending on the style and size you’re looking for. The Old Cellar is where you can sit-down for a family-style feast with vegetables sourced from the farm’s garden itself. The Studio is a great option for smaller, intimate weddings.

Bosjes Estate, Worcester 

Bosjes is well-known as a South African wedding venue because of its striking architecture. The wedding chapel has a unique curved design, with glass walls making it an entirely one of a kind experience. This modern marvel works as the perfect backdrop for the ceremony and photos afterwards. 

After the ceremony, you can host your reception at the Bosjes Kombuis with up to 100 guests. Eat a delicious menu while taking in the beauty of the valley around you through the modern floor to ceiling windows. 

Photo credit: Page & Holmes

The Conservatory, Franschhoek 

This wedding venue offers you the best of both worlds. Set in the stunning Franschhoek vineyards, just outside of Cape Town, you can build the wedding of your dreams on this blank canvas. 

The venue offers the choice to get married outside among the vineyards or inside their beautiful glass function room. In both cases you’re close to nature and can custom build your look with your own unique style and taste. 

When it comes to the reception you can pick and choose your wedding as you like, rather than choosing a set package. This means you have more control over the look, feel and price of your wedding. 

Highberry Farm, Somerset West 

This sprawling wine farm on the outskirts of Somerset West, just outside of Cape Town, offers the classic vineyard wedding venue ambiance. Hold your wedding ceremony on the lawns or in the Pine Loft chapel if you prefer to be indoors. 

You can choose between the modern countryside barn or the lawns for your reception. The barn can seat 125 guests and you can get ready for the big day with your bridesmaids in the farm’s Tuscan Villa.

Bakenhof Winelands Venue, Wellington 

Just outside of Cape Town, the Bakenhof Winelands vineyard setting comes complete with an on-site chapel and grand reception hall. With a stark modern feel against the winding natural beauty of the surrounding vines, the chapel serves as the centerpiece of this venue. 

Celebrate with good, locally sourced food produced on site just for your guests. Bakenhof is all about impressive flavours presented well. While packages are planned, couples have the choice to tailor their experience to their liking. 

Married on Safari 

Khaya Ndlovu Manor House, Hoedspruit

The beautiful Khaya Ndlovu Manor House offers a wedding ceremony in the Rietspruit Big Game Reserve, and a way to experience a safari wedding with everything taken care of. From the venue to the food, the staff and planners will make sure your day is everything you are looking for. 

Hold your wedding on the terrace looking out over the Klein Drakensberg mountain range with sweeping views across the area. Then go into the bush with a wedding reception out in the open and enjoy the evening of your dreams under the stars. 

Buffelsdrift Game Lodge, Oudtshoorn 

A desert may not seem like the perfect location for a wedding but Buffelsdrift Game Lodge found in the Klein Karoo will change your mind. This wedding venue includes a small chapel on the edge of a natural water hole. You can even choose a package with elephants looking on as your witnesses. A deck extends from the chapel to accommodate more guests who can toast to your wedding as the sun sets over the Swartberg mountains. 

Lake Eland Game Reserve, Port Shepstone

A truly rustic wedding venue, Lake Eland Game Reserve hosts a beautifully restored chapel that was originally a stone dairy. Perched on a hill, the surrounds are filled with antelope and zebra with views out onto the game reserve. 

The reception hall overlooks a small dam and can seat 320 guests. The wooden ceilings carry through the rustic feel from the chapel and there is also a deck which provides the perfect backdrop for group photos and drinks before dinner. 

Palala Boutique Game Lodge, Groblersbrug

For those with more glamorous tastes, the Palala Boutique Game Lodge offers a bush wedding with exclusivity in mind. The chapel boasts high ceilings and floor to ceiling glass windows which look out over a large Baobab tree.

Host pre-event drinks and canapes on an island in the middle of a lake before heading into the Oryx ballroom for the reception accommodating 160 guests sitting down.

Wedding couples will favour the complimentary and uniquely decorated honeymoon suite as it is a haven of sophistication and luxury. It presents magnificent 180 degree bush views. At this luxury bush wedding venue they will create the most beautiful memories for you on your dream day.

Botlierskop Private Game Reserve, Little Brak 

Botlierskop Private Game Reserve is among the most versatile of bush wedding venues. You can choose to have the ceremony on the banks of the river running through the park, on the lawns under a marquee or under an arch beneath the African sun. 

The reception is hosted in the reserve’s main building and features a traditional safari buffet-style meal, including local South African meat options like Kudu and crocodile. You and your guests can dance the night away before retiring to the luxury tented camps, dotted along the breathtaking game reserve. 

A ceremony in the city 

The Living Room, Johannesburg 

This is the perfect big city wedding venue. The Living Room is situated in the heart of vibey Maboneng Precinct in South Africa’s biggest city. With panoramic views of the Johannesburg skyline, it offers you a break above the bustle, without losing the city’s energy. 

Hold your ceremony and reception in this relaxed, urban rooftop jungle environment. They can accommodate between 100 and 220 guests, also have a beautiful guesthouse and offer wedding services to provide a one-stop-shop for couples.

Rooftop on Bree, Cape Town 

Rooftop on Bree offers you a wedding venue which uses the city as its backdrop. Sitting in the middle of Cape Town city centre, it offers unrivalled views of the iconic Table Mountain. Hold your ceremony out on the balcony, with the cityscape behind you. 

The almost all white space works as the perfect canvas to create the wedding of your dreams. Choose to hold your venue inside or outside, as the retractable roof gives you the freedom of choice. 

The Oyster Box Hotel, Durban 

The iconic Oyster Box Hotel is well known as one of the top South African wedding venues. With a wedding planner involved from the beginning, this venue is all about offering bespoke events. Typically, couples say their vows in the garden under a Victorian gazebo before heading in to the reception , held in this opulent venue, with hand-blown venetian chandeliers and all-white furnishings which can seat up to 130 guests. These touches provide an elegant atmosphere, without having to overthink colour palettes throughout. 

Shepstone Gardens, Johannesburg 

If you want your venue to reflect a fairytale romance, this wedding venue is for you. Set in the bustling city of Johannesburg, this is a restored 20th Century house with on-site chapel, a glass marquee and a grand hall. Choose to hold the ceremony outdoors or inside the chapel, which features impressive stain-glass windows and a light, open feel. 

The glass marquee and grand hall are your options for the reception. If you like the idea of an outdoor wedding, then the glass marquee offers you the outdoors with enough protection. If you’re more traditional, the grand hall is for you. 

Zeitz MOCAA, Cape Town 

Getting married in a museum is an unusual choice, but getting married on top of one is even more unique. This architectural masterpiece sits at the Waterfront on the edge of Cape Town, offering a modern backdrop wedding venue choice.

Hold your ceremony on the roof top terrace, with guests seated on the glass ceiling covering the top of a transformed grain silo with the silhouette of Table Mountain in the background. Ocular Lounge and Events Space, managed by Zeitz MOCAA Events team, serves as the perfect reception venue with sweeping views of the city and unparalleled furnishings for a modern feel.

Dream seaside wedding 

Canelands Beach Club, Durban 

For the bride who wants the perfect beach wedding, the Canelands Beach Club is for you. Hold your intimate ceremony on the sand before making your way to the restaurant for the reception. 

The wedding packages on offer are comprehensive and come with destination wedding guests in mind, with exclusive use of the entire hotel. It can cater for up to 100 guests for a formal arrangement, with more if you choose a more informal cocktail option. 

Tintswalo Atlantic, Cape Town

Tintswalo Atlantic is a twist on the traditional beach wedding venue. Rather than saying your vows in the sand, you stand on the rocky shores below Chapman’s Peak. A secluded hideaway, this venue offers its own little paradise.

Host your reception in the lodge which has been built along the mountainside or on the deck overlooking the ocean. The venue is all about customisation and meeting every couple’s dreams for their perfect wedding.   

De Hoop Nature Reserve, Overberg 

The De Hoop Private Nature Reserve is the full destination wedding venue package. With all aspects thought through, you can relax as you and your guests enjoy the beautiful scenery and all the set-up and prep is done for you. 

Set alongside a beautiful vlei (Afrikaans for shallow lake), or under a sprawling fig tree, you are offered the finest in natural beauty for your ceremony. A true South African experience, the food speaks to the traditional delicacies of the area. 

The Venue @ Morgan Bay Hotel, Morgans Bay 

Found along the Wild Coast, this is one of our favourite South African wedding venues sitting on the shoreline of the beautiful Eastern Cape. Hold the ceremony on the grassy terrace with the sea as your backdrop for your vows, offering the benefits of a beach wedding without needing to step onto the beach.

The Venue offers a great neutral backdrop onto which you can express your personal style for the reception. Seating up to 120 guests and offering a plated meal service, you can sit, relax and dance the night away with those who have come to celebrate your big day. 

Brenton Haven Venue, Knysna 

This wedding venue up the Garden Route is the perfect escape among the dunes. Nestled right into the sand dunes, this venue is a beach wedding dream. You can decide to hold your ceremony right on the beach or on a cliff top overlooking the long stretch of sand. 

Hold the reception with up to 150 guests on top of a dune with panoramic views so you can dance the night away with the waves crashing below. The venue is versatile, with catering and drinks options ranging from a quaint cocktail to a sit-down dinner affair.

Emily Moon River Lodge, Plettenberg Bay

Okay, maybe more ‘riverside’ than ‘seaside’ but we couldn’t leave the Emily Moon River Lodge off this list. This quaint and quirky boutique hotel set on the banks of the Bitou River in Plettenberg Bay, is a fantastic choice for couples that want a stylish venue full of African charm with breathtaking views.

With two on-site venue options (The James Room and Emily’s Restaurant) able to accommodate both indoor and outdoor ceremonies and on-site accommodation, this stunning wedding venue can host up to 100 seated guests. Emily Moon also specialises in elopements (limited to a maximum of six people).

Photo credit: Page & Holmes

We hope you’ve enjoyed our list of South African wedding venues as much as we’ve enjoyed putting this together. If you haven’t visited, it really is one of the most amazing countries in the world and should be on the top of your list for possible destination wedding options.

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