Do’s and don’ts when travelling to Durban
Durban city and its surrounds is a magnificent place to visit in the warmest part of South Africa, especially in the winter, so it is a great favourite as a holiday resort for international tourists and locals alike.
This article is part of a series we have been publishing on ‘Do’s and Don’ts when travelling to South Africa’ which has a whole lot of great travel advice!
Durban is the primary city of Kwa-Zulu Natal and is often visited by international tourists as part of a whole safari, beach resort package. It has, like any other city in the world, certain travel don’ts attached to it and of course, many do’s, so let’s look at a few of these…
Not only Durban but all of South Africa’s major cities are split into three sections. The inner city, surrounding up-market suburban areas, and the surrounding lower-income ‘township’ areas. Generally speaking the surrounding upper-class areas, like in Durban’s case the North and south coastal resorts, are pretty safe to travel to and be in.
The inner city though is rife with petty crime like pickpocketing, car-jacking and the like, so obviously one needs to proceed with caution in this area. DO visit the inner city though, many parts of it are fabulous, but just don’t carry a lot of cash or be oblivious to potential criminal activities.
Keep your car doors locked and windows closed when travelling around there and when going somewhere lock any valuables in the boot of the car. It’s just a matter of being vigilant – for example when on the beach, ask someone to watch your bag or put it in one of the lockers (usually available on most beaches) when you go for a dip in the gloriously warm water!
Where you DON’T go
Don’t ever venture out alone at night in any part of the inner city, or for that matter even in the safer areas, except those places that are renowned tourist areas and you can always be advised on this by your hotel concierge. This is one of the reasons it is safer to be in a good hotel, than just a B and B or Airbnb.
Without any question DON’T visit any township areas except on an accredited tour and accompanied by tour guides. These tours can be enlightening and offer the opportunity to assist the locals, so DON’T discount them altogether.
Where you DO go
The best thing to DO is make Durban your base and take short trips to the many fabulous surrounding resorts. Whilst in Durban, there are beautiful beaches, colourful Ricksha rides and endless family fun to be had like a great Aquarium and playparks of all kinds.
Just to the North is the very up-market Umhlanga Rocks and to the South are numerous family vacation resort towns like Margate that all boast something different, and a day trip to any of these is a must DO!
Further afield, DO take a trip to the relaxing Natal midlands area and take a hike in the amazing Drakensberg mountains where the scenery is sublime – or to the Ingeli forest which is also superb, with fabulous accommodations.
An absolute highlight is a safari trip to the Kruger National Park or the nearby famed Hluhluwe Game park, where you can spot South Africa’s famed ‘Big five,’ – Lion, Buffalo, Elephant, Rhino and the elusive Leopard!
Here are a few DO’s and DON’Ts when in the bush on safari:
DON’T ever alight from the vehicle when on the Drive unless the Game ranger says it is safe to do so. Our Wildlife are wild animals and their ferocity can never be underestimated!
DON’T go on a night drive without warm clothes! Even in summer, a drive in an open-topped 4 x 4 can be very cold, so don’t be caught with this.
DO take a magnificent camera, you’ll be sorry if you DON’T – and DO use plenty of sunscreen on daytime drives.
There are many more places and wonderful things to do in Durban and its surrounds, so DO watch this space for more articles on this great area!
DON’T settle for poor accommodation!
Unfortunately, no matter how they look on the internet you never know what you’ll get with a B and B or Airbnb, so it is safer and more enjoyable to stay in one of the ANEW group’s well-appointed hotels or very affordable self-catering and long-stay apartments in this beautiful province.
See our nation’s wildest creatures at our Big 5 hotel or lodge in Hluhluwe. Experience the elegance of a bygone era at the edge of the Midlands Meander when you book your stay at ANEW Hilton Hotel. Head into the mountains and find ANEW Resort Ingeli Forest nestled between Kokstad’s impressive peaks.
Head to Zinkwazi’s golden sands on the North Coast and unwind at ANEW Hotel Ocean Reef. Or enjoy a picturesque country escape with a beautiful golf course near Newcastle, at ANEW Resort Vulintaba.
Also, remember that ANEW Hotels & Resorts has a beautiful variety of Self-Catering Accommodation options in KwaZulu Natal for the more cost-conscious traveller.
Yes, if you intend to visit beautiful, wild, exotic, fabulously colourful Durban the main thing you need to DO is book now – and DON’T miss out on one of the most unforgettable vacations you can ever experience!