The ships dock at the Passenger Terminal.
An attractive harbor Expo Market is mounted in the air-conditioned N-Shed while cruise ships are in port. Long- term plans foresee a new cruise terminal in Durban, being built at A berth on the Point, near the Point Waterfront. Opening expected January 2021.
The city center can be reached on foot in about 10 minutes. However, walking is not recommended. Metered taxis are generally available at the pier.
Most ships run a shuttle to Shaka Marine Park which is close to the waterfront. It also offers an aquarium, water park, a shopping village and several bars and restaurants. You can also catch the local People Mover bus here to go to the Indian and Witch Doctor Markets.
In the afternoon, before heading back to the ship, a local dance troupe put on a very interesting free display of Zulu Warrior Dancing.
Printable map to take along on your cruise.
Watch a destination video.
The great natural harbor of Port Natal, on whose shores the city of Durban now stands, was thought by early Portuguese navigators to be a lagoon at the mouth of a large river.
Durban became a municipality in 1854 and a city in 1935. Today it is one of the principal cargo ports on the African continent, a center for industry and a major holiday resort. With a population of almost one million people, Durban is a bustling, subtropical city with a warm, more often hot and sultry climate that favors the luxuriant growth of trees and gardens. It is considered to be the Asian capital of South Africa with a massive Indian population.
Durban's 21st-century economy can largely be credited to the immense
amount of cargo passing through its huge port, as well as to the thousands
of Transvaal holiday makers who, since the 1930s, have turned the city's
beachfront into a popular playground.
Its most dominant landmark is the handsome Grey Street Mosque, the largest of its kind in the Southern Hemisphere.
There also is a lovely waterfront promenade featuring street performers and is a great place to people watch.
It pays to compare your cruise line shore excursions here.
Ushaka Marine World This new marine center is open on weekends. Its shark tanks and dolphin show are fast becoming popular attractions. Dolphin shows are at 10:30 a.m., 1:30 p.m. and 3:30 p.m. Admission fee 80 rands. The complex also has a variety of shops.
Beaches Durban boasts a stretch of golden beaches. Most offer facilities including changing rooms, shark nets, lifeguards and fast-food outlets.
Shopping offers an exciting pastime in Durban, although some shops
downtown are closed on Sundays. Shopping malls offer one-stop shopping
and are usually open on Sundays as are the shops at Ushaka Marine World.
In the Passenger Terminal, stands display a wide range of curios and handicrafts. Intricately woven baskets and beadwork make for especially attractive souvenirs. Bargaining is expected.
The currency is the Rand (ZAR) Automated teller machines (ATMs), linked to all major international networks, are available throughout the country. It is best to use only ATMs that are inside a mall or other building. Always be careful to make sure no one is watching you enter your PIN, and be vigilant about scams (e.g. machines that seem to eat your card and won't give it back after you enter the PIN).
Most retail stores accept credit cards.
South Africa has 11 official languages. Most people other than rural black Africans speak English, although not many as a first language. Afrikaans is also widely spoken, especially by the white and colored population.
Shopping hours Mon-Fri 0900-1700, Sat 0900-1400, although there is an increasing trend to open later and all weekend in major tourist spots. Shopping malls often stay open til' 9PM.
January 1. New Years' Day
March 21. Human Rights Day
Easter weekend. ("Good Friday", "Easter Saturday", "Easter Sunday" and "Easter Monday"): a four day long weekend in March or April set according to the Western Christian dates.
April 27. Freedom Day
May 1. Workers Day
June 16. Youth Day
August 9. Woman's Day
September 24. Heritage Day
December 16. Day of Reconciliation
December 25. Christmas Day
December 26. Day of Goodwill
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