On Friday 14 February, Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden welcomes all love birds and nature lovers to enjoy Valentine’s Day in the Garden. The breath-taking backdrop of nature will be open for an extended hour, until 20h00.

Sarah Struys, Events & Tourism Manager of Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden says that Kirstenbosch has always been a popular place to enjoy a romantic picnic. We find that couples visit after work and by extending the Garden entrance for an extra hour, they have a little bit more time to spend with that someone special. “Fortunately, bookings aren’t required to picnic in the Garden as there are 36 hectares to find the perfect spot to savour your picnic and enjoy the beautiful backdrop,” says Struys.

What to do

Early birds can make a day of it by starting at either Gate 1 or 2 and exploring the Garden with a map from the info desk.

Kirstenbosch includes the Fynbos Garden, Forest Braille Trail, Fragrance Garden, Useful Plants Garden and a Conservatory – a desert house with a majestic baobab tree in its centre surrounded by succulent treasures from the Namib Desert. The famous Tree Canopy Walkway (AKA ‘The Boomslang‘) takes the visitor from the forest floor through the trees and bursts out above the canopy, giving spectacular panoramic vistas of the surrounding mountains, Garden and Cape Flats.

You can also browse the Garden Centre, Botsoc Bookshop, Gift Shops with botanically-inspired homeware and curios. Tickets to the Garden also grant visitors free access to a once in a lifetime botanical art exhibition currently at the Richard Crowie Hall. The exhibition features a collection of over 60 botanical art pieces by renowned artist Lady Cynthia Tait brought to South Africa from Guernsey, as well as contemporary ones by local Botanical Artist Association of Southern Africa members.

Picnic and dining options 

If you are in a rush or just prefer convenience, pre-order a picnic from Moyo (Gate 1). A variety of options including vegetarian and gluten-free picnics are available from R220 (pre-order picnics five days in advance). Or book a seat for a Moyo Lunch; the Valentine’s Buffet Dinner is unfortunately booked out. Email kbfunctions@moyo.com or call 021 762 9585.

You can also pre-order a gourmet picnic from The Kirstenbosch Tea Room (Gate 2) 24 hours in advance online or pop in on the day and choose from our picnic or main menu before 17h00. A vegetarian picnic option is also available and packed in an environmentally friendly bag at R250. Email fynkos@ktr.co.za or call 021 797 4883.

Kirstenbosch National Botanical Garden, Rhodes Drive, Newlands is open every day of the year from 08h00-19h00 in summer with the exception of 14 February, when it’s open until 20h00. Entry fees to Kirstenbosch are R75 for Adults, R40 for South African Students (with student card), and Children under 6 years enter free. BotSoc members with a membership card also enjoy free entry

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