There are various ways to get married in the South African Drakensberg Mountains. You can hike yourself to the top, but when you ditch an expensive wedding venue, hiring a helicopter in South Africa can be within your budget. So that’s exactly what Rebecca & Chris decided to do. Spot the snow!
When Rebecca contacted me, her fiancé Chris was at work somewhere in Central Africa. He was going to be away for months, so we relied on modern comms with sketchy signal to plan an entire elopement while doing the distance. I can still remember one of the first calls we had. I was in The Netherlands at the time, Rebecca in Canada and Chris in a country of which I’m not sure I’m allowed to disclose. We planned it all, while spread out across the world.
Elopement wedding in the Drakensberg, South Africa
It started with a brainstorm about Uganda vs. Iceland but somehow we ended up in The Drakensberg Mountains of South Africa… How? I’m not completely sure anymore, but we did!
Rockeries hiking route
After diving into my network of Drakensberg experts we organised ourselves with stunning accommodation at the foot of the mountain and… a helicopter.
After only a few months time I found myself at OR Tambo Airport in Johannesburg, where I met my two travellers at Quills restaurant, part of the Intercontinental Hotel. Rebecca and Chris had met up in Uganda, seeing each other again for the first time in months. After spending time with gorillas and having an amazing safari experience, they continued their travels to South Africa to elope with me.
Meanwhile, I stayed in touch with our helicopter pilot about the next two days because the weather in ‘The Berg’, can get interesting which could have us end up stuck on ground level. Luckily the weather was looking fly, so that’s exactly what we did.
Helicopter flight to Mnweni, Drakensberg
I knew instantly where I wanted to fly to: Mnweni. It took about twenty minutes for the pilot to get us to our destination. On the way there, we flew over Rockeries, a hiking route to the very same Mnweni-area I used for a Drakensberg hiking elopement a year earlier. My feet felt it back then and now I could actually see from up above how far, steep, dramatic and overall ridiculously extreme that was indeed.
We landed. It had snowed a few days before, so we all got to experience our very first African snow. Bizarre, in all those years in Africa I had never seen snow up close on this continent before.
Time to elope!
What all that looked like, you can see for yourselves below 🙂