Couples seeking a destination wedding location that’s new and exciting should consider all that Cape Town, South Africa, and Nairobi, Kenya, have to offer. From warm hospitality to luxurious accommodations, plentiful activities and stunning natural beauty, these cities provide everything a couple could want.
There’s something special about getting married in the Motherland. As gorgeous as the continent is, don’t forget, there are many things to consider planning a destination wedding in Africa. Still, with a little know-how, you can create a memorable getaway for you and your guests. Follow these recommendations to help you pull off a destination wedding to remember in South Africa and Kenya.
Activities in Cape Town for Your Guests
Join one of the many daily tours offered by Free Walking Tours and explore the city with a trusted guide. Tours last 90 minutes and depart from Motherland Coffee Company. If you’re seeking an experience that goes beyond the traditional touristy stops, book an excursion with Kiff Kombi Tours. Immerse yourself in South African culture, food and outdoor attractions.
A Cape Town City Pass offers your guests flexibility. One pass can provide admission to more than 90 attractions around the city. Don’t miss seeing Nelson Mandela’s former home and statute on the grounds of Groot Drakenstein Correctional Centre.
For a more upscale experience, book a winery tour with Franschhoek Wine Farms Experience or a helicopter tour with Uyaphi. The scenery of the Winelands from vineyard grounds or landscape features like Table Mountain from the air are dazzling. Stroll the Victoria and Alfred (or V&A) Waterfront for shops, cafes, galleries and small museums.
After your Cape Town adventures, relax with a beachside meal at Surfshack or explore international cuisine at the super-modern and minimalist Janse & Co. The nearby Commissary restaurant is well-known for traditional favorites prepared with a fresh and local twist. In contrast, Salsify — known for its famous Roundhouse locations — offers fine dining with a local emphasis.
The Best Cape Town Locations to Wed
For a small, intimate wedding, book The Marly Hotel in Camps Bay. It’s elegant, sophisticated and cozy, with less than a dozen suites. Birkenhead House in Hermanus is a luxury cliff-side estate. And the historic Cellars-Hohenort has beautiful gardens under mountain views, ideal for saying a romantic “I Do.”
Just steps from the Victoria & Alfred Waterfront, The Silo has majestic views and eclectic, modern decor with touches of luxury. Consider a high-end Winelands experience had at La Residence in Franschhoek. And for a more private celebration, consider the quayside Cape Grace across from the V&A Waterfront; elegant accommodations, dining and spa experiences enable couples to host the wedding of their dreams.
Activities in Nairobi for Your Guests
No trip to Kenya would be complete without experiencing the area’s beauty and history. Walk the nature trail at the Giraffe Center, or visit the David Sheldrick Elephant Sanctuary located in Nairobi National Park. Visitors can learn about elephants while observing elephant feeding and bathing. Learn about the country’s rich cultural and natural heritage at Kenya National Museum, and don’t miss the botanical gardens and nature trail.
Visit Nairobi National Park to see lions, rhinos, hyenas and more. And depending on the time of year, plan to see the great migration of animals moving across the Masai Mara National Reserve. If you have time, visit the seaside city of Mombasa. The new Nairobi-Mombasa train makes it easy.
Eat well at Talisman Restaurant, with its menu of dishes prepared with organic and sustainable ingredients, and served in a space that doubles as a local art gallery. Try the famed Thorn Tree Cafe — named after one of the oldest landmarks in Nairobi. And Trattoria is highly recommended for a family gathering over homemade Italian dishes.
The Best Nairobi Locations to Wed
Consider making your wedding a truly once-in-a-lifetime experience by booking the Mara Ngeche Safari Camp, Basecamp Masai Mara, or Leopard Hill Camp. These locations offer all the comforts you’ll find at high-end hotels but with the serenity and beauty of Kenya at every turn — a lovely way for you to begin life together as a married couple. Guests can enjoy immersive cultural experiences, game drives, and more.
For a more traditional hotel experience, the Sankara Nairobi has rooms and suites to accommodate a large group of guests, who can also enjoy on-site dining, the rooftop pool, and several lounges. Nearby amenities like shopping, museums, and spa services offer everything you and your guests could want.
For a one-of-a-kind destination wedding experience, book your wedding in Cape Town, South Africa, or Nairobi, Kenya. Each of these African cities offers plentiful amenities, accommodations and picturesque locations for meaningful ceremonies and celebrations.
Getting There: Kenyan Airlines serves international cities around the globe, directly or with connecting flights. Comfortable seating and attentive service designed to meet the needs of passengers make this airline stand out. And once you arrive in Cape Town or Nairobi, Blacklane’s airport concierge service can get you through customs and luggage pickup stations quickly and efficiently. Professional drivers will safely transport you and your guests from the airport to the hotel of your choice.
Getting Around Town:
- Uber – Be sure to update your location for quick service
- Hop-on Hop-Off Sightseeing Bus allows you to see the city safely on your own time.
- Blacklane professional car service offers to and from destinations.
Language: South Africans can speak more than one language, with English the most common, followed by Afrikaans and Xhosa.
Currency: The rand
Visa Requirements: None
Passport Requirements: Open page for a stamp and at least 30 days left on the passport; yellow fever certificates are required if the journey starts from or passes through a country with yellow fever.
Vaccinations: Per the CDC, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, typhoid, yellow fever, rabies, meningitis, polio, measles, mumps and rubella (MMR), Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis), chickenpox, shingles, pneumonia, and influenza.
Getting There: Kenyan Airlines serves international cities around the globe directly or with connecting flights. Comfortable seating and attentive service designed to meet the needs of passengers make this airline stand out. And once you arrive in Cape Town or Nairobi, Blacklane’s airport concierge service can get you through customs and luggage pickup stations quickly and efficiently. Professional drivers will safely transport you and your guests from the airport to the hotel of your choice.
Getting Around Town: Privately owned Matatus has shared minibus taxis that can carry several people at one time—not recommended unless you are an ex-pat who knows how to travel. Bus routes in Nairobi converge in the city center. Uber/taxis are always an option. Blacklane professional car service offers to and from destinations.
Currency: Kenyan Shilling
Visa Requirements: None
Passport Requirements: A passport with at least two blank pages, six months’ validity, and a visa are required to enter Kenya. Single-entry visas are available online and upon arrival at Kenyan airports; however, Kenyan Immigration plans to end visas upon arrival in the future.
Vaccinations: Per the CDC, hepatitis A, hepatitis B, typhoid, cholera, yellow fever, rabies, meningitis, polio, measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR), Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis), chickenpox, shingles, pneumonia, and influenzas.