With a cosmopolitan vibe and stunning Indian Ocean views, Durban is a city with fun-loving locals, rich Indian and Zulu cultures and a year-round outdoor lifestyle. Known as “Surf City”, Durban invites you to embrace the South African coast, while also exploring Art Deco neighbourhoods, mall shopping and world-class marine attractions.
Things to do in Durban
Durban’s revamped waterfront, called the “Golden Mile”, uses soft sand, excellent surf breaks, market vendors and various piers to lure you to the water. You’ll also find various shops, restaurants and entertainment options, such as the dolphins and sharks at uShaka Marine World and live action at the Suncoast Casino and Entertainment World.
The city’s Indian and Zulu cultures can be experienced with a range of curries, seafood and fusion barbecue at beachfront restaurants and street-food stalls. Visit the Phansi Museum to discover South African tribal statues, fertility dolls and beadwork. The Sri Sri Radhanath Temple of Understanding, the Southern Hemisphere’s biggest Hare Krishna temple, boasts a golden facade, castle-esque moat and prized vegetarian restaurant.
Combine sport with sightseeing at Moses Mabhida Stadium, which not only hosts cricket, football and rugby but is also home to a 106-metre-tall arch that you can walk up, swing off and ride up in a SkyCar for panoramic Durban vistas. If you’re looking for a more tranquil ambience, wander through the Durban Botanic Gardens, home to rare cycads, orchids and bromeliads.
Shopping in Durban is best done at malls just outside the city, including the Gateway Theatre of Shopping in Umhlanga and the Galleria Mall in Amanzimtoti. Both of these are within 30 minutes from Durban, as is the Valley of a Thousand Hills, one of the world’s most unique rural landscapes steeped in Zulu history.
Getting around Durban
The Durban People Mover shuttle bus runs between the city centre and beachfront, giving you unlimited daily rides with a single ticket. There are also bus services around residential areas and traditional rickshaws for short trips. Use a metred taxi or hire a car for trips out of town.