I only discovered beautiful Durban in my 20s when I started dating a guy from Durbs. Over the last 5 years, I’ve fallen in love with the beach vibes, the relaxed way of the people and the eclectic mix of food and people. These are a few of my favourite things to do in Durban when visiting.
6. Cycle on the Promenade
I recently discovered the joy of cycling on the promenade of Durban North Beach. The Promenade is long, very long, and walking it can be quite tiring, but renting a bike is not only a great form of exercise but also allows you to see the promenade and its people at a whole new speed. My favourite is renting an old (green) style cruiser from Xpression on the Beach. They’re right by the skate park and you can choose between R60 for an hour or R90 for 2 hours (I’d opt for this one cause you’ll just enjoy it that much!).
Cycle all the way to UShaka and back and stop somewhere along the way for a beer at one of the many cafes.
5. Have Breakfast at Circus Circus on the Promenade
Probably one of the nicest beach breakfast stops you’ll ever visit. Choose between sitting right on the beach, under an umbrella on the promenade or with your feed in the sand at the back where the kiddies can play on a jungle gym to their heart’s content. Every table gets a jug of cold water (which is really needed in Durban, especially after a nice bike ride) and their breakfasts are super yummy with a diverse menu.
Note, they do get really busy almost all day long, so be prepared to wait a little bit. Take in the scenery and enjoy the waves.
4. Visit UShaka Marine World
I’m referring to the actual USkaka Marine World Aquarium (or Sea World) here, not the water park. You might think, “o just another aquarium”, but I was blown away by the detail that went into creating this aquarium. As you move from room to room you are transported into a sunken ship, underwater wonder world. The décor and theme inside the aquarium are incredible and the exhibitions are beautiful. Personally, I am not a fan of the Shows as you are never sure what methods are used to have these animals preform the tricks and that is not their true nature, but there haven’t been any reports of animal abuse about UShaka which is encouraging. There are also a number of other activities at the Sea World including meeting dolphins and seals.
3. Have Cocktails at Moyo on the Pier
After exploring the deep oceans, walk across to Moyo which is built right on the pier in the ocean. Sit on the balcony that surrounds the restaurant to get a magnificent view of the ocean, beach, harbour and even Moses Madiba Stadium in the distance. Moyo is well known for their twits on traditional African cuisine and have an exceptional cocktail menu. Why not also have your face painted by one of the waiters with small dots and flowers for the full experience.
2. Parkrun at North Beach
We love Parkrun and have done this one twice already. It really is one of our favourites simply because it’s not tough, just a nice run next to the beach with a couple of like-minded people wanting to keep fit. The scenery is beautiful, the course is flat and the people are so friendly. Get there early though cause it’s the Parkrun with the biggest attendance in South Africa, a testament of its popularity. If you’ve never done a Parkrun, why not give this one a try. Every Saturday at 8:00, starting at the Sun Coast Casino at North Beach, and it’s completely free! What more motivation do you need.
1. Eat a Chip & Cheese Roti at House of Curries on Florida Road
I was never a fan of Indian food before I visited Durban, but I have fallen in love with the roti and no Durban trip is complete without one. House of Curries on Florida Road is the spot to go to. It has a really nice outside deck where you can sit and watch the beautiful buildings and cars pass by. With craft beers to wash down the burn (Indian food yes) and a great selection of rotis, bunny chows and other curries, it’s simply an experience. My favourite is the Chip and Cheese Roti with Bean Gravy. It’s a taste bud sensation, but please don’t try it if you are counting calories or on a diet cause the roti will throw you off completely. It is the most amazing indulgence Durban can offer any visitor.
I hope you’ll give some of these a try when you’re in Durban next and experience a different side of the beautiful beach city.