Sourcing your wedding venue is where your wedding planning journey begins! By now you would have an indication of what time of year you would like to get married, and depending on how long in advance you start searching, your ideal venue's availability would be a big determining factor for the date of your big day.

The average wedding produces 400 pounds of garbage, and 63 tons of carbon dioxide according to "The Green Bride Guide", by Kate Harrison. The biggest impact on the environment comes from your venue and your food," said Charlene Smith, owner of Naturally Yours Events, based in Chicago.

When searching for your ideal eco-conscious wedding venue, I have put together some factors that you may consider that will lessen the environmental impact, as well as saving you money in the process.

1. Ceremony & reception at the same venue

Having your ceremony and reception at the same venue will reduce transport to and from various venues, which not only reduces the carbon emissions, but will save you time in the process! Our wedding was situated at the same venue, and it allowed the guests to relax straight after the ceremony on the lush lawns whilst they were served chilled refreshments and canapes. This also bought us more time with the photographer, a very important fact! There was no need to get into a car, time to get to a photographic location and then rush to get the best photos. It allows the freedom to enjoy your photographic shoot without having time constraints.

2. Outdoor ceremony & reception

Of course this depends on the time of year that you are planning to get married, but having an outdoor ceremony not only saves energy, but is beautiful. There are so many choices of outdoor locations such as a vineyard, farm, garden setting, beach and forest to name a few as these types of locations are just beautiful on their own.

3. Indoor ceremony & reception

Try and find a venue that has lots of natural light and large windows, as this will cut down on the need for extra lighting. For a modern city feel how about art galleries or museums? Some venues may only require donations! If you have guests from around the world they can also acquaint themselves with the local art and history, even locals can learn something new, and this may provide an interesting, sustainable and unique touch.

4. Composting & recycling

Its an added bonus if the venue that you are using composts and recycles. This is a great question to ask when searching for venues and if they aren't already doing it, you may prompt them to consider doing it and going green.

5. Daytime weddings

For those that would like to hold their ceremony and reception during the day, this will save tons of energy and resources and no need for lighting! There are so many beautiful alternatives!

Last week end I visited a farm with a quaint wedding venue, Dasbos Barn in Villiersdorp, outside Cape Town. This is a perfect venue for an eco-wedding. It has that old world charm in a gorgeous setting, with a mountain backdrop, small lake and vineyards.

It can hold a ceremony and reception, and various types of accommodation are on the property. There is airbnb accomodation, tee pee tents and camping facilities.

It is the perfect venue for outdoor, rustic, vintage or festival type weddings. The pictures that I have taken below are in late autumn, and I think the copper backdrop is gorgeous.

Built in 1913 and originally served as a blacksmiths smithy, it was later also used to store feed and farm equipment. In 2016 the barn was fully restored to the original style with the modern additions keeping its old world charm. The picturesque venue has a surrounding reception /ceremony area, outside bar, and a large kitchen for warming and prepping food. For more details and bookings please contact 072 363 1937 or 082 626 2181, or send an email to

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