The 5 best things to do in Durban, South Africa

As a based in Durban, South Africa I wanted to share what’s best about living in this vibrant and culture rich city that I now call home.

Durban is situated in the KwaZulu Natal province on the Eastern coast of South Africa. It is known for its African, Indian and Colonial influences and offers a range of sites and activities for both locals and tourists.

Here’s my top 5 recommendations for things to do in Durban.

  1. Hit the beach

Durban has beautiful stretches of beaches on the Indian Ocean. The main city beach called the Golden Mile, underwent a dramatic upgrade and transformation for the 2010 Soccer World Cup and is today still very well maintained and popular amongst day trippers, sun bathers, surfers and swimmers. There is also a lovely promenade for cycle rides and walks. 10 km out of Durban, Umhlanga Rocks offers another stretch of beautiful beach. As its name suggests, it is more rocky and provides a great place for children wanting to explore the rich sea life in the rock pools (be sure to check the tides).

  1. Take a trip to the Valley of 1,000 Hills

A 45 minute drive out of Durban is the beautiful terrain of The Valley of 1,000 Hills.  A typical visit to the area might consist of watching a Zulu ceremony and dance at PheZulu Cultural and Safari Park, having a pub lunch with a view, seeing crocodiles and snakes at the Crocodile and Snake Park and generally taking in the beautiful scenery and enjoying some relief from the humidity of Durban.

  1. Visit Moses Mabhida Stadium

The stadium was built for the 2010 World Cup held in South Africa and is now used for local soccer and cricket matches, live concerts and other performances. It is also home to the local soccer team AmaZulu. The stadium features an arch extending over the length of the field and offers visitors the opportunity to ride the cable cart to the top for fantastic views of the city. For thrill seekers, there is the Big Rush Swing which is a bungee free fall swing that hangs from the centre of the stadium’s arch.

  1. See Durban’s historic city centre

Although a lot of decentralisation has occurred over the last 20 years or so, the city centre is still worth a visit for the diversity of the markets, historical colonial architecture and an array of interesting museums. Of note is Durban’s City hall – also known as eThekwini City Hall where you will also find the Durban Art Gallery and Natural Science Museum.

  1. Enjoy fun in the water at uShaka Marine World

Last but not least, we are back to the water. uShaka Marine World comprise of uShaka Sea World Aquarium, uShaka Wet and Wild waterslide park, uShaka Village Walk (shops and restaurants) and uShaka Kids World (including Africa’s biggest jungle gym).  It is a haven for kids and the young at heart alike and offers a full day of entertainment for all.

These are just a small selection of what is available to see and do in Durban and although not as well-known as the cities of Cape Town and Johannesburg, Durban is well worth a visit for both local and overseas visitors.

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