Escape on a safari getaway with former Miss South Africa, Adè van Heerden, and her fiancé, Alex Forsyth-Thompson, to celebrate their recent engagement at Safari Plains, Limpopo.

The Insider SA adventures with former Miss South Africa, Adè van Heerden, and her fiancé, Alex Forsyth-Thompson, to celebrate their recent engagement at Safari Plains: a tranquil resort against the backdrop of the magnificent Waterberg mountains in Limpopo.

Adè was crowned 2017’s Miss South Africa after Demi-Leigh Nel Peters won the Miss Universe Pageant. Adè is a medical doctor and second lieutenant at the South African Military Health Services in Johannesburg and also hosts her own show, Health Matters, on eTV.

Together with her entrepreneur fiancé, Adè and Alex set out on a safari escape to rejuvenate before the rush of the wedding planning begins. Safari Plains is the perfect romantic getaway with luxurious tented accommodation, outdoor silos for resting, and a host of activities for guests to enjoy, such as hot air ballooning, quad biking, and guided walks through the bush.

As Manager of the resort, Kevin Jeffery explains, “Safari Plains was built for luxury and opulence. All the tents are very spacious and give our guests privacy as well as the view out onto the savannah.” For a couple like Adè and Alex, this resort is just what they needed. Alex comments, “We love places that are secluded for just the two of us and Safari Plains gives us the chance to be spoilt and pampered for a bit.”

2021 started off with a bang for Adè and Alex after he proposed to her in Plettenberg Bay. While Adè reminisces on the romantic private dinner with a host of flowers and candles, Alex quietly laughs knowing there were about three to four other failed attempts that happened behind the scenes. At the end of the day, Alex is simply grateful he got a wholehearted, “Yes!” from the love of his life.

To kickstart their safari adventure, Adè and Alex join a senior guide on a game drive across the Mabula Game Reserve. This activity offers the potential for sightings of the Big Five, predators like the Brown Hyena and cheetah, and impala, zebra, and giraffe grazing on the open plains.

Next, the couple explore the bush on horseback. The added height and mobility that comes from being mounted on the gentle horses gives Adè and Alex a fresh perspective of both the Mabula Game Reserve and on their year ahead.

Alex explains, “2021 is quite a big year for both of us. We’re both starting businesses so we’re really excited about that. But, biggest of all, we’ve got to plan a wedding and try do it safely.”

Adè has recently launched The Collaboration Company (CoCo) as an extension of her passion for female health and wellness. Adè explains, “CoCo is a female hygiene subscription service where we provide organic, biodegradable pads, tampons and panty-liners to women. But most importantly, for every month that you subscribe to our service, we donate to a girl in need.” Shockingly, South Africa has an estimated 3,7 million girls who don’t have sanitary wear and therefore have to miss 60 days of the school year. Adè intends to help solve this crisis, saying, “Coco was founded to look after the female body, look after the environment, but most importantly, look after other women.”

After the day’s adventures, the couple unwinds and indulges in an exotic menu of time-honoured spa treatments at Safari Plains. Here, Adè treats herself the spoil of a massage. But, as Adè suggests, self-care is more than just beauty treatments – it’s also found in a good skincare routine or in looking after your body with exercise. “It’s just a part of good, holistic health”, she describes.

Dinner is seen as a safari for the palate with opportunities to enjoy meals under candlelight in the tranquillity of the bush. Executive Chef, John-Roy van der Struys prepares Alex’s pork belly with potato fondant, sweet baby carrots, beetroot, and a broccoli puree. Adè’s wildebeest loin is served with an onion chutney pie, butternut puree, sweet-glazed carrots, and beetroot.

Under the stars, Alex and Adè are given an opportunity to reflect on their relationship. While Alex loves Adè’s character, and their shared foundational beliefs and faith, Adè values Alex’s work ethic, his trustworthiness and loyalty. Adè shares the core of their strong union, saying “Ultimately, we’re best friends and I think it’s a big blessing that I get to marry my very best friend.”