Content and photos courtesy of KwaZulu-Natal
- Area: 226 km² (87 sq mi)
- Calling Code: 031
- Currency: South African Rand (ZAR)
- Population (EST): 595,061
- Official language: English, Zulu, Xhosa, Afrikaans
- Time Zone: UTC/GMT +2
Durban – Getting Around
The most convenient way of getting around Durban is to hire your own car. The more expensive, yet favourable way of travelling the streets of Durban, is to hire a chauffeur driven car.
Alternatively, the more adventurous can opt to rent a motorbike or the fitness enthusiasts can rent a bicycle.
Overseas travellers should familiarise themselves with South Africa’s rules of the road and traffic signs and always remember to drive on the left when driving around Durban!
Durban has a very efficient city bus service, People Mover is a safe, reliable and popular option with tourists and locals alike. The People Mover busses are wheelchair friendly, very reasonably priced and travel through the city and beachfront every 15 minutes. The city route includes stops at the City Hall, Durban mosque and cathedral, Tourism Information Centre, the Playhouse Theatre, the Victorian Street Market and Inkosi Albert Luthuli ICC Complex. The beachfront route starts at the Suncoast Casino and ends at uShaka Marine World.
Metrorail station is conveniently located close to the Moses Mabhida Stadium and trains depart every 10 to 15 minutes during peak hours. Eight different routes passing through 101 stations provide transport between the CBD and suburbs, up the north coast as far as Stranger and Kelso on the south coast and inland to Cato Ridge. Tickets are quite affordable.
Although minibus taxis are a highly affordable and popular mode of transport for locals, it is not always advisable to make this your first transport choice when getting around Durban. They are often unroadworthy and driven by reckless drivers but if you are looking for a truly South African experience then this is the way to travel. As well as regular stops, they can be easily hailed at almost any point in the city with a simple hand gesture.
Although more expensive than the minibus taxi, metered taxis are safer and more reliable. They will be take you directly to your destination of choice. They are not as prevalent as minibus taxis so will need to be phoned in advance to arrange pickup. Popular choices include: Mozzie Cabs, Zippy Cabs, Ucabs.
For more detailed information on how to travel through Durban by bus, train or minibus taxi; visit the Ethekwini Public Transport site for prices, routes and timetables.
For those looking for a fun, bird’s eye experience, you can indulge in a helicopter ride through Durban and its outer laying areas. Choose from a variety of tour packages:
BAC Aviation: Coastal flights, River Run Picnic, Valley of 1000 Hills
JNC Helicopters: Coastline flights, Wild Coast Sun flight, lunch excursions to The Lynton Hall, Salt Rock or Midlands
Air Safaris: Tala Private Game Reserve, Drakensburg Mountain Charter including lunch at Sani Pass Hotel and many more tours
Prices are expensive but this is definitely a way of getting to see Durban that you don’t want to miss.
It is possible to reach a number of tourist attractions by foot if you are staying in Durban Central (e.g. Durban Playhouse, Maritime Museum, Durban Art Gallery, and African Arts Centre) or if you are staying on the Durban Beachfront (e.g. Ice rink, Mini Town, Amphitheatre Gardens and Sea World Aquarium).
As in any big city it is important to exercise precaution, keep your valuables safe and hidden, dress to blend in and don’t venture out alone after dark.
Experience Durban’s Golden Mile (Beachfront) on board an authentic Zulu rickshaw. This is a cheerfully decorated two-wheel cart pulled and steered by a festively dressed “driver” who runs and leaps through the air. A rickshaw ride is an enjoyable and affordable experience for any tourist.
With our Durban travel advice you will be cruising this coastal city in no time. From sugar cane fields to sun soaked beaches and a rich cultural heritage, there is so much to see and do in this vibey city.
Now that you’re well equipped for getting around Durban all that is left to do is go and experience it for yourself!