Eloping in Africa can be described best by illustrating what it feels like. It is something you do when you truly, deeply long for an adventure.
A kind of adventure that will stay with you for eternity, one that creeps into your heart, bloodstream and fingerprints. One that will always, always has you come back for more. Because Africa is something you cannot shake or let go of, as she will never let go of you.
Favourite Africa elopement destinations
When researching a continent that is three times the size of the United States, you might be wondering where on earth to start looking for the best places to elope in Africa. I have photographed elopements in quite a few African countries and have many more on my bucket list. In this blog I’ll list some of my favourite Africa elopement destinations for you. Wherever you end up having your wedding celebration though, you will be guaranteed of the most friendly people and the most spectacular scenery.
Kenya & Tanzania elopement
Where the big herds roam. Separated by Mount Kilimanjaro, Kenya and Tanzania in East Africa are well known for their vast wilderness areas. To me, there is no ‘bad time of year’ for any African country. The dry season for this region starts in July and ends in October. If you want to see the great migration during your elopement wedding, then make sure to plan your adventure between mid June and early August.
Amboseli National Park, Kenya
Kenya’s Amboseli is home to incredible herds of elephant. Mount Kilimanjaro is watching over you, as Amboseli is located at the foot of the big mountain. Seeing her asks for quite an amount of luck though, as she’s often covered in clouds.
But when you do catch a glimpse, you are treated to an incredible safari scene with a snowcapped mountain in the background.
Arusha National Park, Tanzania
A hidden gem and therefore often overlooked, is Tanzania’s Arusha National Park. It is one of the most diverse National Parks I have ever had the pleasure to visit. From lush green forests with a cascading waterfall to grassy plains and lakes full of flamingos, it’s the perfect location for an elopement adventure.
Serengeti National Park, Tanzania
This needs no introduction. Vast savannah lands as far as the eye can see, that is the Serengeti. Home of the Big Five and the great migration where an average of two million zebra, antelope and wildebeest take on the annual brave journey in the search for greener fields.
What about a Mozambique elopement?
Pure, African coastal vibes. Mozambique has one of the most authentic coastlines of the African continent if you’d ask me. The Indian Ocean’s warm water is rich in nutrients which ensures an abundance of marine life. If you are looking for a pure African elopement experience that is all about the ocean, this is your spot right here.
The small coastal town of Tofo is a personal favourite of mine. It is one of the best places in the world to snorkel with whale sharks. The atmosphere is super mellow and diving is great (and professionally executed!) here too, although most spectacular life starts fairly deep at about 18-25 meters depending on the reef. The humpback whales give birth off the coast of Mozambique every year. Saying your vows with breaching whales in the background? Tofo’s got your back!
Larger than Tofo but beautifully located nonetheless, is Vilanculos. It’s the turquoise-coloured gateway to Mozambique’s Bazaruto Archipelago. This protected marine area is a chain of four large Islands; Benguerra, Bazaruto, Santa Isobel and Santa Carolina. The first two islands have a little handful of exclusive lodges on them, perfect for a Mozambique elopement. Snorkeling is a must-do here, if you’re lucky you might spot the endangered dugong or various species of turtles. Eloping on a paradise island, that is was this area in Mozambique can give you.
Elope in Namibia
Home of the Namib Desert, Namibia is the perfect location for eloping in Africa. The country is very easy to travel, with well maintained roads compared to other many other African countries. This means you can easily make a road trip adventure out of your elopement, like Christine and James did with me. The Namib Desert is the oldest desert in the world. Sossusvlei is a must-see part of it. I highly recommend booking a hot-air balloon flight. It’s an experience you will never, ever forget.
South Africa elopement wedding
If you want all the variety in the world for your Africa elopement location, then South Africa is your best bet. From beautiful coastlines to the opportunity to have a safari elopement, or celebrating your wedding in the Drakensberg Mountains and beyond, anything is possible here. Or how about saying your vows in Blyde River Canyon, the greenest canyon in the world? South Africa consists of nine different biomes with each their own climate, terrain and flora & fauna ensuring an incredible variety of environments to choose from.