South African Wedding Venues
Location, Location, Location... Choose the Rainbow Nation.
Thinking about a destination wedding...South Africa offers the perfect backdrop for your fairytale wedding, with wedding venues overlooking the Indian ocean in the East and Atlantic Ocean in the West...not to mention the breathtaking mountanous landscapes, South Africa has it all. Wherever you choose, you can be expect to have amazing wedding photographs that will without doubt make you the envy of the town
The wedding venue is one of, if not the biggest expense with many elements to consider before finalising your decision. Questions ranging from pricing to will there be enough parking need to be considered. Here are a few things you should consider when choosing a wedding venue:
- How many people will the venue accommodate? It goes without saying the venue needs to cater for the number of guests you are inviting. An an example, traditional Indian weddings in South Africa average around 400 guests, so the garden wedding doesn't make sense. There are a number of stunning large capacity halls that cater for this requirement
- Does the venue offer packages that include food, decor, DJ etc. Depending on your proclivaties, you might want to choose your own service providers. Does the venue allow this?
- Is the venue easy to find for your guests? (Via GPS coordinates)
- Will there be other weddings taking place in the same vicinity? I have been to a few estate weddings where there were at least two weddings taking place at the same time. This can be restrictive if you wanted to use certain areas for your creative wedding photo shoot as well as for parking
- Are there dressing rooms/accomodation available?
- Is there a wedding co-ordinator? This might reduce your stress levels as you will be able to liaise with them freely and ensure proper execution of your wedding vision.
- Make sure to enquire about any venue restrictions
- If the wedding party and guests are travelling long distances to the venue, it makes sense to have the ceremony and reception at the same hotel/venue.
- If your wedding venue is a distance away from a metropolis then you will need to cater for travel and accommodation for your wedding photographer and videographer
Indoor and Outdoor Weddings
You need to consider the pros and cons of indoor versus outdoor wedding venues. An outdoor wedding ceremony can be very romantic and beautiful with venues chosen primarily for their scenic beauty. However, these venues typically accommodate a small number of guests and lack facilities for a large group. If the weather behaves, an outdoor ceremony can certainly be a great success.
An indoor wedding is the safer option given mother nature's unpredictability. For Hindu weddings, lighting the Hawan (sacred fire) outdoors might prove challenging. Most outdoor venues lack a stage and are done at ground level. Some Indian weddings have an outdoor Mandap and this works great. If you are having an outdoor wedding make sure there is minimal visual and auditory distractions.
The stage, seating arrangements and audio considerations must be taken into account. Outdoor weddings do pose more logistic challenges but if planned to perfection, an outdoor venue could offer the most romantic and serene wedding.
At the end of the day you need to do some research and find the venue that's right for you and fits your budget and creativity. South Africa has a wide array of venue options.
Kwa-Zulu Natal is a fusion of ocean and Midlands with summer weather all year round. You can take advantage of the sunny Durban beaches, stunning Midland plains or Drakensburgh with mountain silhouettes in your wedding photography. The Western Cape stretches across the Indian and Atlantic oceans with cities like Paarl and Stellenbosch offering lavish historical and traditional wedding venues. Gauteng is a mixture of city and chic, perfect for that opulant and regal feel.
So whether you're looking for a sea breeze or a historical colourful countryside wedding, South Africa is the best place to capture your fairytale wedding moments.