South Africa Honeymoons
Picture a honeymoon in South Africa and let your imagination take you to a place of saffron-tinted sunsets, out of this world vistas and the thrill of seeing the Big Five.
This is a destination for dreamers and adventurers; those who want to get off-grid and drift away from reality, and those who want the electric buzz of a cosmopolitan city. Honeymoons in South Africa really do have it all.
Cape Town’s rugged coastline and lush Winelands are a major draw for honeymooners, but venture further and you’ll be rewarded with some of the world’s best game reserves. For those looking for off-the-beaten-track adventures, there are still lesser-known seaside towns and corners of the country to be uncovered. The very active will not be disappointed either; reconnect with nature by hiking up dramatic mountains or kayaking in the Atlantic Ocean.
You’ll find accommodation to suit every taste – from hip, boutique hotels in the cities and coastal villages, to elegant, luxury safari lodges. This is a honeymoon destination where memories are made.
Top South African Honeymoon Destinations
Cape Town, with its dramatic coastlines and strong design and food game, is an obvious place to start a South African honeymoon. You could easily spend several happy days here eating your way around the city, taking trips out to the Winelands and enjoying the vibrant V&A Waterfront.
Stepping off the plane after your wedding, a few days relaxing might be in order. Check-in to one of Cape Town’s majestic, colonial-style hotels near the V&A Waterfront, or a more boutique offering deeper in the city. Then, fill your days eating seafood, sipping South African wine, people watching at Camps Bay and browsing artisan shops and galleries. When you’re rested and ready for action, hire a classic car to head in search of vines and fine-dining in Constantia, Franschhoek or Stellenbosch.
Staying in the Winelands is another option for those who want to explore the region at a leisurely pace. You’ll find Cape Dutch manor house hotels sitting alongside uber-modern wine cellars, with restaurants that pack just as much of a sensory punch.
Naturally a safari needs to be included in your itinerary – there’s plenty of safari honeymoon packages to choose from. Perhaps the best-known destination is Kruger National Park, in the northeast of the country. The Kruger is famous for its superb Big Five sightings. In particular, the popular Sabi Sands private concession within the park offers outstanding leopard sightings. Other game to be seen includes large prides of lion, buffalos, herds of elephants and the elusive wild dog amongst others. Here honeymooners can really slow down and experience the rhythm and sounds of the bush. What's more, in the intimate game reserves you can see for miles and never catch sight of another person.
Madikwe Game Reserve in the northwest province, close to the border of Botswana, is something of a hidden gem. Madikwe is a 76,000 hectare malaria-free reserve, which boasts the Super Seven – adding cheetah and the endangered African wild dog to the already illustrious Big Five. Quiet and secluded but incredibly luxurious private game lodges are surrounded by breathtaking scenery making this a magical honeymoon safari destination.
Few places on earth are as wild or dramatic as KwaZulu Natal's Elephant Coast. Flanked on one side by the Indian Ocean’s empty beaches and on the other by lush, green coastal forest, open plains, dense sand forests and high, rocky boulders. It is here that you will find the remarkable Phinda Private Game Reserve, home to the Big Five where you’ll encounter close-up sightings of the rare cheetah and black rhino. Between November and February loggerhead and leatherhead turtles lay their eggs on the nearby beaches. KwaZulu Natal will appeal to the adventurous honeymooners, looking for the kind of honeymoon safari experience that will last you a lifetime.
Ideal Honeymoon Activities For You and Your Loved One
Days can be full and active or slow and lazy. Our honeymoon packages in South Africa are tailored to your needs. On a South Africa safari honeymoon, there are game drives at dawn, boat trips where hippos pop up surprisingly between the reeds, rare bird watching, guided treks and nature walks to be had.
But if you have visions of a more languid honeymoon, you won’t be disappointed, safari honeymoon packages will deliver just that. Spend your time watching herds of elephants amble past a watering hole from the comfort of your safari lodge’s infinity pool. Soak up unparalleled views across the wilderness from private viewing decks. Embrace your dreamy honeymoon daze over candlelit dinners under the velvety stars. Or sprawl out under the trees with an alfresco picnic or leisurely afternoon tea. And, after the thrilling game drives spotting the Big Five, make the most of the lodges’ incredible spa treatments, which rival the best in the world.
Sea-dwelling couples will be in their element around Cape Town and the Western Cape, where pods of captivating whales and bottle-nose dolphins flirt with the waves. The best place to see them is in Hermanus (between November and December) where you can take a helicopter tour over Walker Bay for an epic aerial view. Try stand-up paddle boarding along the coast to Boulders Beach’s famous penguin colony.
Climbing up Table Mountain’s 3,500-foot plateau is an absolute must for keen hikers and can be done within two hours, with a cable car waiting to swiftly bring you back down. There’s also neighboring Lion's Head, which has a trail leading straight to the peak. Seeing sunset from the top of either is a sight that no honeymoon in Cape Town should be without.
On the Western Cape, nature reserves such as De Hoop, Grootbos and Bushman’s Kloof offer spectacular scenery for horse riding or walks. Explore ancient caves set amongst fields of cloudy-pink fynbos and look out for springbok and zebra hiding in the bushes. Break up your walk with a delicious hillside picnic in the shade.
Few people can resist the allure of the Western Cape’s Winelands. Sun-soaked days can be spent cycling between the best wineries in Franschhoek or Stellenbosch, stopping for wine tastings and memorable meals made from locally-sourced produce. Foodies will be in heaven.
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Top honeymoon hotels in South Africa
On a luxury honeymoon in South Africa you will be blown away by the quality of the hotels. There really is something for everyone, from sustainable safari lodges to slick and modern five-star hotels. The accommodation options take luxury to the next level, thinking of every detail to make your honeymoon truly memorable and personal.
Belmond Mt Nelson, Cape Town
Belmond Mount Nelson Hotel is an elegant hotel with 197 rooms and suites and is situated within a sprawling lush garden estate in the heart of Cape Town. The hotel is fantastically located to explore the attractions in and around Cape Town.
Cape Cadogan, Cape Town
The Cape Cadogan is a boutique hotel in a beautiful Cape Dutch property in the heart of the City Bowl area of Cape Town. The hotel has a traditional feel with a contemporary twist. The 15 rooms are decorated with a mixture of modern and antique furniture.
Babylonstoren, the Winelands
Babylonstoren is a beautiful and unique boutique hotel located within vineyards and orchards in the Drakenstein Valley. Envision converted Cape Dutch farm buildings as your own person cottage or enjoy a luxury suite in the converted farmhouse.
Leeu House, the Winelands
Leeu House is a contemporary and stylish luxury hotel in South Africa's Cape Winelands, with just twelve guest rooms. Located in the heart of the charming town of Franschhoek, the emphasis is on fine food and superb service.
Kwandwe Great Fish River Lodge, Eastern Cape
Kwandwe Game Reserve is situated in the non-malarial Eastern Cape. Great Fish River Lodge comprises nine luxurious thatched suites, each with its own private plunge pool, which are linked to the lodge by wooden walkways.
Lion Sands Tinga, Greater Kruger
Lion Sands Tinga Lodge is a nine suite lodge on the banks of the Sabie River in the Kruger National Park. This is a beautiful safari lodge in one of the most notable big game viewing areas in South Africa.