Imagine exchanging your vows in an African dry river bed at sunset, the bridge being serenaded in by African dancers amidst tribal song. This is just one of the ways weddings can be catered for at many of the Thornybush Nature Reserve lodges or at Simbambili Game Lodge.

Few experiences can be as personalized as a wedding and we therefore realize that each experience will require attention to the finest detail. From Thornybush Nature Reserve, nestled in the heart of big five country, to Simbambili Game Lodge, set among magnificent Knobthorn trees along the meandering Manyeleti River, we can promise you unrivalled big game viewing, complemented by exquisite accommodation and sublime cuisine and above all, a day you will never forget. Your safari style wedding will be a celebration of love, tradition and lasting memories.

Weddings are catered for by Thornybush Game Lodge, Thornybush Waterside Lodge, Simbambili Game Lodge, Chapungu Tented Camp and Shumbalala Game Lodge. It is however advisable to book the lodge of your choice and request exclusive use (depending on the size of your party) ensuring the lodge’s full attention.

Arrangements can be as glamorous or as understated, according to the bridge and groom’s wishes. Consideration needs to be given to weather conditions and the fact that we are in a nature reserve so certain restrictions do apply (i.e. no fireworks). Ministers from most denominations are easily accessible, as are photographers, cakes, hairdressers and florists. Special menus and dining venues can be set aside for the wedding party, when the lodge is booked exclusively.

All you need to do is sit back, relax and leave the wedding preparations up to someone else whilst you enjoy Spa treatments, sunset cocktails and game drives. Our wedding venues are renowned for their beauty and excellent service.

The Standard Wedding Package includes

  • Dedicated Lodge Wedding Co-ordinator: A dedicated lodge Wedding co-ordinator will be assigned to the bridal party to ensure the smooth flow of all aspects and to assist in the set-up and layout of both the ceremony area as well as the dinner; whether it is a private dinner or a large reception event.
  • Wedding Official (local multi-denominational): The minister’s time and travel costs.
  • Wedding Venue: There are various options available, details to be discussed with the Bridal Party. The most popular being the Bush Venue (weather permitting).
  • Ceremony: The dedicated lodge Wedding Co-ordinator will discuss options available. An example of choices; Classic Wedding Ceremony or an African Traditional Wedding which includes the swapping of skins, drinking beer from Ostrich Egg Shells and swapping of beaded bracelets – depending on the wedding couple’s choice. Additional costs may be incurred.
  • Flowers: This includes: 1 x bridal bouquet & 1 x corsage and Groom’s lapel. Additional costs may apply subject to requirements.
  • Wedding Cake: Choice of traditional fruit cake, scrumptious chocolate or carrot cake; all decorated in an African / nature theme.
  • Classic Wedding Reception: This includes standard lodge facilities / equipment. Should the bridal party wish for any additional equipment etc. this may be at an additional cost.
  • Honeymoon turn-down: During the course of the bridal party’s stay, they will be treated to a romantic honeymoon turn-down with complimentary bottle of South African Sparkling Wine, and private in-suite dinner should they choose. In the event of a superior suite being available, the lodge will upgrade the bridal party at no additional cost.

It is requested our reservations department be contacted for an individual quotation based on the bridal couple’s requirements.

Additional chargeable items

  • Hair: Bride’s hair to be done at the lodge. In addition to bride – Bridesmaids/mother of bride.
  • Make up:
  • Spa Treatments: Available at Thornybush Game Lodge and Simbambili Game Lodge
  • Decorative candles & stands:
  • Hiring of additional décor : Pending the requirements of the bridal party, should additional décor be required, additional costs will apply.
  • Additional Guests: Should the bridal party wish to include non-residing guests, additional costs may apply
  • Corkage: Should the bridal party choose to cater their own drinks (alcoholic or non-alcoholic) a corkage charge may be levied per item.
  • Photographer: A photographer can be arranged to cater for individual requirements.
  • Tribal dancing:
  • Marimba Band, DJ / music (sound restrictions may apply), Choir, additional staff :
  • Hot Air Balloon Excursion:
  • Confetti Option: Showers of Blessing – Bubble Confetti
    Notes: no paper confetti, streamers, feathers, rice or butterflies are permitted at any of The Thornybush Collection Lodges.

Thornybush Luxury Game Lodge Collection shall not be held liable for any interruptions of services (i.e. water, electricity, sanitary services).

Whilst every precaution will be taken to ensure the safeguarding of your belongings, Thornybush Luxury Game Lodge Collection will not be held liable for loss or damage to any property whatsoever (décor props, wedding gifts, valuables, etc.). We recommend that all personal and valuable property be removed directly after the wedding.

Any independent wedding co-ordinator assigned by the client to c-ordinate their function will be responsible for and ensure that all deliveries and collections are counted themselves and are present to attend to such deliveries and collections.

Thornybush Luxury Game Lodge Collection will not be held responsible for providing a marquee due to unforeseen weather conditions. The client will be encouraged to discuss a rain plan.


We will require copies of both the bride and groom’s ID books and/or Passports, depending on their nationality as well as any copies of death certificates or divorce certificates should either of them have been married before.


The standard cancellation policy will apply with respect to accommodations dues. In the event that Thornybush Luxury Game Lodge Collection is required to acquire or procure goods and services intended for the event, payment in full for said items will be required from the client prior to ordering.

Cancellation requests are to be forwarded in writing to the Thornybush Luxury Game Lodge Collection.