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Durban Tourism And Travel Guide
5° C / 41° F
May to September
3 to 4 Days
King Shaka International Airport (35 kms)
Durban Railway Station (2 kms)
Thanks to its wonderful reserve of glorious beaches and riveting African culture, Durban is slowly turning into a global tourism hotspot. If the beachfront offers splendid watersports to partake in, then the rich mix of African and Indian cultures intrigues all tourists who visit the city. If tourists are done with watersports, they also have the captivating Ushaka Marine World waiting to woo them with its reserve of aquatic life. Wandering further into Durban's mainland, it is the perfect mix of botanical gardens and wildlife reserves that can again allure a truckload of visitors. Let us walk through this travel guide to look at the factors that make Durban an ideal tourism site.
How to Reach
Located approximately 35 km away from the heart of Durban, King Shaka International Airport is the foremost airport in the city. It provides perfect connectivity to international centers such as Mauritius, Dubai, and Doha. With carriers such as Qatar Airways, Airlink, and British Airways plying through this route, airways form the quickest means to get to Durban.
Durban Railway Station is placed around 2 km away from the heart of Durban. This station offers appropriate connectivity options to domestic parts of the country such as Johannesburg and Pietermaritzburg. In addition, an internal Metrorail network plies trains in and out of the city on a daily basis.
Durban boasts of a sturdy network of road transport, with top transporters such as Greyhound, Intercape Mainliner, BazBus, and Translux plying their vehicles in and out of town. Some of them also have vehicles travelling to neighboring countries such as Mozambique. The BazBus passenger carrier also offers unique rides wherein tourists are free to explore tourist hotspots mid-journey and board the vehicle again post their visit.
The vibrant dockside of Durban has quite a few ships dropping anchor at its port. Between November and April, the popular MSC Sinfonia cruise docks at Durban's port. The sea waters lay out a captivating path for tourists who wish to use the sea route to Durban.
Weather and Best Time to Visit
Proximity to sea waters renders Durban with a tropical climate for most months of the year. The temperatures constantly hover between 15°C and 30°C. Let us understand how the different seasons manage to attract tourists to Durban.
Spring (August to Mid-October):
Durban's spring season brings with it a refreshing and cold climate to the city. The temperatures keep alternating between 13°C and 24°C. The pleasant weather of this season is however apt for tanning on the sandy beaches or swimming in the ocean.
Summer (Mid-October to Mid-February):
Durban witnesses humid and pulsating weather during its summer season. The temperatures stay between 17°C and 28°C for most parts of the season. Being the holiday season, summer brings many locals and tourists to the beachfront, with several watersports available to partake in.
Autumn (Mid-February to April):
Due to its tropical essence, Durban's autumn season experiences thunderstorms on a constant basis during the day. The climate remains humid with temperatures touching 30°C at times. This season is mostly avoided by tourists, however ardent fans of thriving greenery may still prefer to visit during autumn.
Winter (May to September):
Winter is the best time of the year to explore the ethnicities and wonderful shores of Durban. The climate turns chilly, with temperatures constantly hovering between 14°C and 24°C. The cold and dry weather allows tourists to venture into the wildlife reserves of Durban or learn about the friendly culture of the local tribes of South Africa.
Things to Do
Learn about Durban's rich cultural heritage:
Durban is home to the intriguing lifestyle of the Zulu tribe, who provide an insight into the rich cultural heritage of South Africa. The Gasa clan of this tribe provides tourists with a fascinating sneak peek into the many customs and traditions followed by the Zulus on a regular basis. One such cherishable experience includes watching the graceful moves of this clan from close quarters while they perform the traditional Zulu dancing act.
Wander into captivating sanctuaries:
Being a part of South Africa means that Durban naturally houses some exciting wildlife reserves within its boundaries. Some of the thrilling wildlife reserves that occupy Durban's vast expanse include Bluff Nature Reserve, Umhlanga Lagoon Nature Reserve, Phezulu Crocodile and Snake Park, and Fitzsimons Snake Park. Durban boasts of bird species such as herons, egrets, and swans along with intriguing animal species such as snakes, crocodiles, and tortoises.
Durban's shoreline boasts of pristine waters that provide an apt setting for activities such as scuba diving, snorkelling, and swimming. Clean beaches such as Umdloti, La Lucia, and Mount Edgecombe also form perfect resting grounds for those tourists who wish to rejuvenate under the glory of sunshine. Couples who visit on a honeymoon can also spend affectionate time together while embarking on a romantic Zulumoon gondola ride.
What to Eat
A trip to Durban would be incomplete without feasting on some traditional Bunny Chow. This street food consists of a hollow loaf of bread that is stuffed with some lip-smacking tangy vegetarian or non-vegetarian curry based on your preferred choice. During winters, hotels around the city are brimming with fresh sardines that are served on toast and along with a few onions. The Shisa Nyama locality offers perfect facilities for tourists to pick up any one of chops, steak, chicken, or farmer's sausage to stack atop a grill. This traditional South African style of barbeque or braai is something tourists shouldn't miss out on.
The Essenwood Market of Durban provides tourists with an apt mix of art, food, fashion, and decor shops to choose for their shopping ventures. With close to 220 stalls residing within the market, visitors are sure to spend at least an hour or two at this prime shopping center. The location of the market also promotes shopping activities, with thick foliage of trees providing ample shade for tourists while they shop away. The considerable shade provided by the trees allows people to get themselves lunch from one of the food joints and picnic under the trees in peace.