In this particular park, one of the central features is the Emmarentia dam. Both the dam and farm are situated on what used to be Louw Geldenhuys’s part of the original Braamfontein farm. The dam was built mainly to provide work for landless Boer farmers at the end of the South Africa war in 1902 and Louw named it after his wife, Emmarentia.
We decided to explore the northern section of the garden, strolling past the rose garden located next to terraced ponds and fountains, the herb garden and also a section called the Shakespeare garden. It seems that all the flowers here were noted by Shakespeare in the 16th century and all are labelled with names and quotations from his various plays.
And then, something quite unexpected happened. I was amazed to see not only one, but three different wedding parties using the park for their formal wedding photos during the hour or two we were there. I read afterwards that the park has its own wedding venue with a chapel garden and they can cater for 80 wedding parties during a weekend! Luckily for the brides, with over 30 000 trees in the park covering an area of over 81 hectares, none of them needed to be in danger of stealing the other’s thunder!
Image credits: All photography by me