The King Shaka International Airport (DUR) is a modern facility, having only been opened in 2010. It is the primary hub for the city, and is sometimes called the La Mercy Airport. Passengers will be able to access free WiFi, information desks, ATMs, a variety of eateries, a duty-free shopping section, and porter services.
The airport is located 35km from downtown Durban, and is usually accessed by shuttle buses or taxis. If you go with the latter, then expect the journey to cost you about 500ZAR ($50).
Making your way to Durban can be done with airlines like Qantas, South African Airways, Air Namibia, Air Botswana, and British Airways.
Why visit Durban?
Pretty, seaside Durban is oft overlooked for the beachy climes of spectacular Cape Town, but this city is one of the country’s largest, and most dynamic, and should be a staple on every South African itinerary. The history here is moving, and you should learn about its indigenous Zulus whilst you are visiting. You can find any type of entertainment by seeing exhibitions in the museums, strolling through the gardens of the city, lying back on the glorious beaches, surfing in the Indian Ocean, or diving into the Asian infused local cuisine. Meet Durbs, the unassuming coastal city of South Africa.
Things to do in Durban
Known as eThekweni in the Zulu language, the city of Durban is much loved by its residents, and it’s easy to see why. The outlook out to the Indian Ocean is impressive, and you’ll find much of the city’s entertainment takes place along the water here, with lots of restaurants and bars placed here. Though if you are a foodie, don’t forget to go to the Indian Quarter where you can taste some of the best Indian cuisine in the city.
The Indian community in Durban is large, so large it was once home to one of India’s most famous sons, go on a walking tour where you can see where Mahatma Gandhi spent many of his days, in the Court House Museum, and then see the Phoenix Settlement just outside the city, where Gandhi established a peaceful community, before taking his political vision over to India.
Beyond the city borders there are two must-see activities, the first is to go to the Zulu Village of Phe-Zulu, where you will be able to see the traditions of this fascinating people. The second is to be awe-struck by the Valley of a Thousand Hills, a landscape of gorges, rivers and mountains.
Best time to visit Durban
· For beachside tanning, and warm weather, the summer season (December-February) promises sunny days averaging 30°C.
· Spring and autumns dip in temperature, but not by much, as the days reach around 25°C. However, there is a far higher chance of rainfall, so pack your raincoat.
· Winter is the best time to be in this city because of all the popular events that hit the city around this time of year, in particular food, wine and film festivals. Be prepared for highs of 23°C, and lows round 12°C.
Arriving in Durban by plane
· You will most likely be routed through Dubai (DXB), Johannesburg (JNB), or both for flights to Durban.
· South African Rand (ZAR).
· You will not need a visa to travel to South Africa if you’re an Australian citizen. Normally, you will be granted a stay of 90 days, but you will need to ensure there are 6 months remaining on your passport. Please note, restrictions have changed with regards to travelling with children, and for further information it is important that you visit the South African Department of Home Affairs website, and the Smart Traveller page on South Africa for to get all the pertinent details you need for travel to this country.
Please note that information is correct as of December 2016
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