Travel guide to flights & holidays in Durban.
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Durban Holidays Overview
Located on South Africa's east coast, Durban is Africa's busiest port and one of the largest cities. The extensive beaches and warm climate of the city attracts a lot of tourists. Durban was founded as Port Natal by British settlers that brought a lot of Indian workers for their plantations. Today the city has one of the largest concentrations of Indians outside of India.
The Golden Mile in Durban is the city's highly popular beachfront and its main attraction. The stretch is an excellent place for surfing and swimming with its snack bars and hotels. The city centre is known for its beautiful Art Deco and colonial buildings.
A popular attraction in Durban is the Suncoast Casino and Entertainment World located at the north of the Golden Mile. Other than the casino itself, the centre has several restaurants, a semi-private beach, cinemas and beach bar. The picturesque beach is listed in South Africa's top three beaches.
UShaka Marine World is a fairly new theme park spread over an area of 16 hectares. It is home to the uShaka Sea World, the fifth largest in the world. The aquarium has five underground shipwrecks and several restaurants.
Crocodile Creek is another popular attraction. The creek has a large number of Nile Crocodiles, reptiles, snakes and alligators along with tree top walkways, hill trails and a waterfall.
A number of festivals and annual events including many Hindu festivals are celebrated in Durban throughout the year. Some of the most important festivals are Durban July, Durban International Film Festival and Awesome Africa.
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holidays - Top Places To Go
|1. Francis Farewell Square
||What is it? This historic square in the middle of Durban
is the spot where the city originated as a tiny settlement of
itinerant traders and hunters in the early 19th century. It is
named for Henry Francis Flynn, one of the prominent inhabitants of
the time. Around the square are some interesting sights,
particularly the 1910 City Hall on the south side, which is an
exact replica of the City Hall of Belfast, Ireland. On the first
floor of the City Hall is the Natural Science Museum with an
interesting insect section; on the first floor is the renowned
Durban Art Gallery. Various musical, song and dance performances
are held on the City Hall steps every Wednesday at 1pm. Alongside
the City Hall is Durban's local history museum housed in the Old
Court House, which was the first public building ever erected in
Durban, in 1866.
Hours of Operation:
|2. uShaka Marine World
1 Bell Street
|What is it? In January 2004 Sea World closed its doors to
the public and reopened as uShaka Marine World, which has become
the largest marine theme park in Africa. The park is tastefully
themed with African imagery and has five zones offering
entertainment, dining, a retail village, water slides and access to
uShaka Beach. The Sea World zone incorporates an aquarium,
dolphinarium, a seal pool and penguin rookery, as well as
interactive activities in the dive tank, snorkel reef and touch
pool, while Wet 'n Wild offers heart-stopping, adrenalin-pumping
rides as well as water-based activities for the less
Hours of Operation: Sea World: Daily 9am to 6pm, closing at 5pm in winter
(Island activities closed Mondays). Wet 'n Wild: Wednesday to
Sunday 9am to 6pm, until 5pm in winter; open daily on public
holidays and during government school holidays
Phone:031 328 8000
|3. KwaMuhle Museum
130 Ordinance Road
|What is it? The notorious building that was once the
'Department of Native Affairs' where every black South African in
Natal was required to register in the days of Apartheid, now houses
a museum dedicated to tracing the history of racial laws in Durban,
including memorable video and photographic exhibits. Despite this
the building is known to all as KwaMuhle, meaning 'place of the
good one', the name honouring a white man who ran the department
but did his best to fight the system within its
Hours of Operation: Monday to Saturday 8.30am to 4pm; Sundays and public
holidays 11am to 4pm
Phone:031 311 2237
holidays - Top Events
|1. Music in the Mountains
|What is it? The annual Music in the Mountains festival
draws lovers of music and nature to the Drakensberg Boys' Choir
School where the exceptional voices of the world famous Drakensberg
Boys' Choir are showcased. Besides the choir there are also
performances by selected South African popular artists, and stalls
selling unique handmade products.
Where is it? Drakensberg Boys' Choir School, Champagne Valley, Central
|2. The Sardine Run
|What is it? Every year along the shores stretching from
the Cape to Kwazulu Natal, millions of sardines migrate from the
cold waters heading to the subtropical temperatures in an awesome
underwater spectacle. Comparable only to its land equivalent, the
Wildebeest migration in the Serengeti, this amazing occurrence is
one of the most unforgettable experiences for those brave enough to
get in the water with the predators, including dolphins, seals,
sharks and whales, that come out to feed on them. The best way to
view the Sardine Run is to get in touch with the many scuba diving
companies along the South African coast.
Where is it?
|3. Comrades Marathon
|What is it? The world's greatest ultra-marathon, the
Comrades is a gruelling test over 56 miles (90km) between Durban
and Pietermaritzburg every year. The race alternates between the
uphill run from Durban and the downhill from Pietermaritzburg, and
is a real test of physical endurance. The winners usually take
about five and a half hours to complete the course. In 2007 the
race will start in Pietermaritzburg and finish in
Where is it?
|4. Vodacom Durban July
|What is it? Usually held on the first Saturday of every
July, the annual Durban July is South Africa's equivalent of the
Royal Ascot in the UK, with superb thoroughbreds, but also high
fashion, fine cuisine and elegance. It is the premier horseracing
event in the country where the rich and famous go to be seen and is
the most talked about social gathering among racing
Where is it? Greyville Race Course