These idyllic locations are picture perfect for going down on one knee, or rekindling the feelings of that heady time.
Cape Point, Table Mountain National Park
The visitors that stream to the lighthouse at the tip of the peninsula seem to have no idea they are bypassing one of Cape Town’s prettiest beaches. A stretch of silvery white sand embraced by imposing cliffs, Dias Beach is seldom marked by footprints. Access to the beach is by a set of stairs but don’t worry, you’ll be walking on air when it comes to the return journey. Pack a blanket and something chilled that you can sip while you watch the Atlantic Ocean come rolling in. With such glorious surrounds you won’t need fancy words for your proposal. Afterwards make your way to the stylish Two Oceans Restaurant overlooking False Bay and order a sushi platter to celebrate.
Make it happen: Two Oceans Restaurant +27 (0)21 780 9200
Stone Camp, Mkhaya Game Reserve
Tables set out under the protective branches of a large sausage tree, the dinnerware bathed in the warm glow of paraffin lamps. It’s hard to imagine a more romantic setting than Stone Camp’s open-air dining area. Guests at this reserve in the east of Swaziland gather here for a three-course meal after the day’s sunset game drive. It’s a leisurely affair so you’ll have plenty of time to work up the nerve to ask the big question. And if you want to promise your beloved the moon and the stars, you need only look up. Should you find it hard to go to sleep after all the excitement, the semi-open cottages bring the sights and sounds of the bush that much closer. Let nature’s soundtrack call up a night of sweet dreams.
Make it happen: Big Game Parks Central Reservations +268 2528 3943
Augrabies Falls National Park
Not everyone will see the charm of this dry and seemingly desolate park, but a proposal is as specific as the couple involved. For lovers of big skies, desert plants and deep quiet, Augrabies offers a dramatic backdrop to pop the question. If there’s still any doubt, remember that the fall on the northern wall is named the Bridal Veil for its cascading white spray. Plan your proposal for late afternoon when the falls grow luminous in the setting sun. Follow the boardwalk to one of the lookout decks, where you’ll be surrounded by natural grandeur, a location worthy of such a life-changing moment.
Make it happen: SANParks Central Reservations +27 (0)12 428 9111
Golden Gate Highlands National Park
Was former president Nelson Mandela thinking of the Brandwag when he said, “The Free State landscape gladdens my heart”? If you declare your love in front of its honey-coloured sandstone, the sight of the Brandwag is sure to warm your heart in years to come too. If you want to enjoy breathtaking views of the buttress in comfort and style, make your way to the revamped Golden Gate Hotel. The cocktail lounge on the top floor has large picture windows that frame the mountain in all its beauty. A discreet conversation could arrange for the delivery of two tall drinks to your table, one concealing an engagement ring.
Make it happen: Golden Gate Hotel +27 (0)58 255 1000, SANParks Central Reservations +27 (0)12 428 9111
Albert Falls Dam & Game Reserve
Why not treat the love of your life to a picnic to remember? Laze on a rug, drink in the scenery and feed each other tasty treats. Then you think your happiness is complete, ask the big question. For a lovely al fresco treat, less than an hour’s drive from the bustle of Durban, make your way to Albert Falls. Situated between the folding Karkloof Hills, the glittering dam is a magnet for water babies and nature lovers. Picnic right at the water’s edge while you watch zebra grazing idly under the thorn trees nearby. It’s a beautiful setting to make a special memory. You could also start your future as a married couple by hosting your wedding at either the reserve’s intimate thatch gazebo or spacious hall.
Make it happen: Albert Falls +27 (0)33 569 1202
*Featured picture by iStock