A Safari Destination Wedding at Maasai Mara in Kenya

Nina and Sebastian shared their wedding day on the gorgeous Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya, surrounded by wild animals, captured by the talente

Nina and Sebastian shared their wedding day on the gorgeous Maasai Mara National Reserve in Kenya, surrounded by wild animals, captured by the talented Jonas Peterson. “The last couple of years I have spent many months in the Maasai Mara following one pride of lions on my project about the world’s last wild lions. During this time I have become very close friends and almost family with the Maasai who have welcomed me into their lives. Therefore and because we were planning to hold our ceremony on the land of the Maasai it was very important to us to incorporate some of the traditions of the Maasai culture into the ceremony; for example the arch built is a traditional symbol of the entrance to a boma-–the typical house construction of the Maasai, and after the announcement a traditional Maasai song and dance followed according to tradition. Also, the bride of the Maasai normally wear a lot of jewelry where the necklace, called enkarewa, is especially important. When I first told my closest friend in the Maasai community about our wedding early in 2014, he came back to me with a necklace and bracelets as a special gift made for me by his family. The stick carried by Sebastian was also a gift from the local Maasai community. But even more generously, my friend then offered to bring warriors from the Maasai community to the celebration. So in the end our two cultures and nature merged in the perfect moment and the best day of our lives,” Nina says.

A small brown box carried the invitations suite, which had a letterpressed lion at the top and was tied with leather string.
Nina wore a vintage Elie Saab gown that she found on etsy.
Wild giraffes roamed the gorgeous Maasai Mara park.
The couple shared their first dance to classic 1920s jazz played by DJ Daniella Johnsson.
Safari vehicles were used for transportation for the couple and their wedding party.
Elephants and other wild animals roamed the Maasai Mara park, adding a wonderful wildlife element to the ceremony and reception.
The couple held their reception beneath a tent at the Governors Camp, inside Maasai Mara Park.
Low, lush arrangements of roses, ranunculus, stock and eucalyptus made up the centerpieces.
The intricate Maasai necklace complemented the clean lines of Nina's Elie Saab gown.
The couple said their vows underneath an acacia tree, overlooking the plains.
The place cards were small gift tags were tied around the linen napkins with leather string.
Lion illustrations played a central role in all the wedding stationery, including the table cards.
Nina and Sebastian incorporated local Maasai traditions into their wedding attire--Nina accessorized her gown with a traditional Maasai necklace and bracelets and Sebastian carried a beaded Maasai stick.
Maasai warriors surrounded the couple as they walked down the aisle.
The bridesmaids wore two-tone, floor-length Diane von Furstenberg gowns.
The couple incorporated many Maasai traditions into their ceremony--their officiant wore a Maasai shuka as a stole as he performed the ceremony.
Lions roamed freely around the Maasai Mara park, so the couple gave out notes how how to handle wildlife encounters.
The three-tier, chocolate-iced cake featured a cascade of fresh flowers and a giraffe cake topper.
Small illustrations of wild animals were used as table numbers.
Nina was given a traditional Maasai enkarewa necklace to wear during the ceremony.
During Nina's time in Kenya, she became very close friends with the Maasai. She incorporated many Maasai traditions into the ceremony and reception--one of her friends brought Maasai warriors to join in the celebration.
The couple incorporated many Maasai traditions into their ceremony--Nina wore traditional a Maasai necklace and bracelets and Sebastian carried a beaded Maasai stick.
The couple was married on Paradise Plain on the Maasai Mara Park grounds.
Giraffes and other wild animals roamed the Maasai Mara park.