Yolandi and Chris Exchange Vows at Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve

Yolandi and Chris exchange change vows at Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve.

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

On Saturday the 22 June, Yolandi and Chris exchanged vows at a stunning ceremony at the picturesque Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve in Zululand in KwaZulu-Natal. Alana from Kiss and Make-up did hair and makeup on the bridesmaids, the bride’s mom and hair for the Yolandi. Sue Baxter did all the flowers and décor. Music was provided by Bottomless Coffee Band (Este and Lourens, you guys rock– I have downloaded all your music on Spotify). Lesley (an amazing coordinator) from Surene Bride coordinated the entire wedding – from guests arriving, to guest departures and everything in between. Lesley, you are truly one of the best coordinators in the industry.

What an amazing experience provided by Thanda Safari for Chris and Yolandi, family, guests and service providers. I went to meet Yolandi and Chris on the day before their wedding as we had last seen each other in March for their engagement shoot. One does not expect high temperatures in winter, but when we arrived at Thanda it was a cool 29 degrees.

On the morning of the wedding, I met Chris at the tented camp. Chris played water polo when he was younger and although the water was chilly, this did not stop Chris, Beat and Tobias having fun before going to get ready for the wedding.

 

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

It was then off to Yolandi and the ladies at Villa Izulu where Alana was still busy with hair and makeup. This provided me the opportunity to photograph Yolandi’s finer details. After hair and makeup, I spent time with the ladies and Yolandi getting ready and then we were off to the ceremony site, an opening in the bush.

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

I would just like to say that this reserve is home to the Big Five, so a wild animal can approach at any time.

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

The site was beautifully set out by Sue. There were some concerns of strong winds blowing, but the site was quite protected and it was a blistering 31 degrees out in the sun. Yolandi arrived while Zulu ladies sang and Chris shed a tear. Not long into the ceremony, Beat (the best man) fainted. Luckily there was medical assistance available. Beat said it was because he was overwhelmed by how amazing Chris and Yolandi looked and the ceremony. (shame Beat, hope you feeling much better mate).

There ceremony was amazing and the words spoken by both Yolandi and Chris were heart warming and something that I will remember for the rest of time.

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

The landscape of Thanda is spectacular with stunning photo opportunities.

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

On our return to the reception, Bottomless Coffee Band entertained the gusts and performed Yolandi and Chris’s first dance song.

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

The outdoor reception was stunningly decorated with fairy lights and lanterns.

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

Congratulations to you both – I loved shooting for you. Travel safely back to Zurich!

sean van tonder wedding photography thanda

Let me know what type of photo session you want, as well as the date and venue (if you have one in mind).