Kenya by Royal approval
There’s a reason why Prince William proposed to Kate Middleton in Kenya – they were enchanted by the romance of this wild and wonderful country, and you can be too!
Its wide open plains, tropical Indian Ocean beaches, romantic camps, exotic colonial hideaways and opportunities to get up close and personal with magnificent game and rare birds are amongst the reasons that Kenya is becoming increasingly popular as a wedding and honeymoon destination.
Kenya is not only renowned for its incredible safaris, it is equally popular for its beautiful white sand beaches. You can have the best of both worlds and combine a safari wedding amongst Big Game and wildlife and a ceremony embracing the local native traditions with a relaxing seaside honeymoon. Alternatively you could opt for a beach ceremony followed by a safari honeymoon. For those who want something a little different, what could be more spectacular than getting married on the equator with the backdrop of the magnificent Mount Kenya? You can even take a hot air balloon tour of the breathtaking landscape to celebrate your special day.
Of course, nothing beats the beautiful tropical waters and white, palm fringed beaches of Kenya’s coastline, which stretches for 500 kilometres along the tranquil Indian Ocean. From the pretty 14th century town of Kilifi on the north coast, which boasts some of the best beaches in the country, to the bustling resorts of Mombasa and Malindi, the coastal resorts offer luxury accommodation, unparalleled scuba diving and snorkeling, sumptuous local cuisine and some of the world’s best hospitality. And the icing on the cake is that the African climate guarantees sunshine most of the year, with only a very short rainy season between April and May.
Marry in Kenya
What could be more romantic than celebrating your wedding in a stunning African safari setting, surrounded by nature and the sounds of the bush? No wonder this idyllic location proved to be the inspiration for Prince William to propose to Kate – you will be inspired too will be treated like Royalty if you choose Kenya to host your destination wedding. Your celebration can be as intimate or as grand as you choose, with just the two of you or with friends and family to share your Kenyan safari experience.
Wedding ceremonies in Kenya can be arranged at private, scenic viewpoints with stunning vistas across the game-filled landscape, and in romantic camps and lodges of luxurious beachside resorts. With its seemingly endless savannah plains, rugged mountainous interior, ancient rainforests and beautiful coastline you will have no problem in finding the perfect location to suit your individual style to begin married life together.
Weddings in Kenya are relatively simple to organize, with very little paperwork and documentation required. Your tour operator or wedding planner will be able to advise on the legal requirements. Kenya offers a variety of wedding options – from religious ceremonies in a church, civil ceremonies in a Register Office to civil ceremonies, blessing and renewal of vows in a beautiful setting such as a luxury safari camp amid the Savannah plains or barefoot down on a gorgeous white sand beach. If you choose to have a blessing ceremony there is very little paperwork necessary and although you will not receive an official wedding certificate it will be a truly spiritual experience.
A couple would normally need to notify their church and the office of the Registrar General at least 21 days before the wedding date. However a special license can be issued from the Registrar of Marriages if this requirement cannot be met (i.e. if a couple are due to arrive in Kenya just a few days before the wedding). This enables the marriage to still be recognised under the Marriage Act.
A special license is also required for a civil ceremony at a venue other than a Register Office. Before travel you will need to send certain documents (see below) to the Registrar of Marriages in order to apply for the special license. You will then need to arrive in Kenya at least four days in advance of your wedding in order to finalise all the paperwork.
The following documentation is required:
- Valid passports/identity cards and visas
- Birth Certificates
- An affidavit from a solicitor or notary declaring that you are both single and eligible to marry
- If under 21 years, written permission from parents
- If divorced, a Decree Absolute
- If widowed, previous Marriage Certificate and spouse’s Death Certificate
- If adopted, all adoption papers
- If you have changed your name, all relevant paperwork
- If you plan to marry in a church it is helpful to supply a supporting letter from your home priest/pastor