I decided to visit Durban because I've spent plenty of time in Cape Town and Johannesburg and thought it was time for me to see another part of my favorite country. South Africa's third largest city, Durban is a seaside oasis that has a feeling all its own.
About an hour flight from Johannesburg, I flew into Durban on a Friday and left on Monday. In my opinion, you only need about 3 days in the city. I did a city tour, which went to Victoria Market, Moses Mahbida soccer stadium, Botanic Gardens, City Hall and a few other historical sites. So, here's what I know and now sharing with you:
1. Outside of India, Durban is home to the largest Indian population.
People throw this fact around and I'm not exactly sure if it's true, but I would believe it if it is. South Africa is one of the most diverse places you'll go, but there was noticeably more Indians in Durban than in other parts of South Africa. That means there's traditional Indian cuisine everywhere!
2. Its major mall, Gateway Theatre of Shopping, is the largest mall in the Southern Hemisphere.
This mall was huge! There's a variety of stores that we as Americans are used to and then there are lot of South African stores. There's no doubt you'll find what you're looking for when you come here. There are also several restaurants and bars to choose from.
3. You want to go out? Give Florida Road a try.
Florida Road is to Durban as Long Street is to Cape Town as Bourbon Street is to New Orleans. All of these places remind me of each other. There are bars and restaurants to choose from to either chill or turn up. The choice is always yours.
4. It's close to the Kingdom of Lesotho.
While in Durban, I took a day trip to neighboring country, Lesotho. Lesotho is actually within South Africa (same as Swaziland) so it was easy to get to. If you have the time, take a tour to Lesotho and cross another African country off your list.
5. Sorry to say, it's not as flashy as Johannesburg or Cape Town.
While I enjoyed my weekend in Durban, if based on time and money, I had to choose it over Johannesburg or Cape Town, I wouldn't. You know we keep it real here at Will Drink For Travel, so I don't want any angry emails from Durbanites in my inbox. It's a great city but I think South Africa's other flagship cities have a leg up on Durban.