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Durban

Durban

 

Durban: Tourism, shopping and much more!

Known as the third most populous city in South Africa (after Johannesburg and Cape Town), Durban is also our country’s second-largest city with a population of approximately 3.1 million. The city, which is South Africa’s chief seaport, was founded in 1835 and named for the then governor of the Cape Colony, Sir Benjamin D’Urban.

In terms of weather, Durban enjoys a humid subtropical climate known for its warm and dry winters (free of snow and frost), yet very hot and humid summers. And thanks to its interesting history, the city sports an ethnically diverse population made up of Zulus, people of British and Indian descent, and others. In fact, the Indian influence has been so prominent in Durban that it has affected everything from its cuisine and culture to architecture and religion.

Durban’s tourism sector is a flourishing business, with numerous options catering to young and old. Those looking to experience Durban on their own should consider the ‘Golden Mile’, an oceanfront path flowing past high-rise hotels, shops and restaurants, and more. Or how about the Umgeni River Bird Park which features over 200 feathered friends and a family-friendly bird show? And for a unique blend of culture and cuisine, there’s the Indian Quarter that presents a rich collection of sights, sounds, and scents from Chinese, Pakistani, Indian, and other street vendors selling everything from spice and sandals to incense and handmade jewellery.

And speaking of shopping...

 

Durban: Map for shopping 

Although loved for its laidback surfer vibe, Durban also caters to those who are into some serious retail therapy. That means the city’s population has quite the compilation of shopping centres to try out – and The Pavilion is certainly one of the most popular.

Known as one of Durban’s oldest shopping malls, The Pavilion in Westville was modelled after European architecture. Located only 15 minutes from Durban’s CBD, shoppers can expect a rich variety of stores here including Incredible Connection, CUM Books, and Markham. Over at uShaka Marine World there’s the open-air Village Walk mall where parents can hunt for discounts and promotions while the kids are entertained by the aquarium, water park, and more. Some of the retailers located here include John Dory's, Once Upon a Toy, and SENQU. Watercrest Mall in Waterfall is one of the city’s newest attractions, yet fully knows how to draw a crowd. That’s thanks to its assortment of high-end boutiques, African-themed craft shops, and everything in-between (like Woolworths, Ackermans, and Sorbet). Shoppers venturing north of Durban are advised not to overlook The Gateway Theatre Of Shopping in Umhlanga. Comprising 400+ shopping options (such as Earthchild, Loads of Living, and Milky Lane), Gateway remains one of the 100 largest malls in the world (and, interestingly, was modelled after The Mall of America). For a more unique take on shopping, try the Victoria Street Market in Durban Central. This collection of 200+ vendors and stallholders (who make up an exceptional Afro-Indian vibe) is where shoppers can go to try the newest curry, get a henna tattoo, or scope out the range of Afro/Asian-inspired clothing and fashion accessories.

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