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Durban

 Cape Town | Johannesburg | Port Elizabeth | Durban | Pretoria | Bloemfontein


Durban is the second most populous city in South Africa, forming part of the eThekwini metropolitan municipality.
It is the largest city in KwaZulu-Natal and is famous as the busiest port in Africa. It is also a major centre of tourism due to the city's warm subtropical climate and beaches.

If Johannesburg has a business culture and Cape Town
has a culture culture, Durban has a beach culture.
Even the high-rise offices look out over the Indian Ocean, and busy executives hang up their suits and ties, slip into shorts, and jog along the beachfront at lunchtime.
Many keep a surfboard in their cars and catch a quick
wave before or after work (or both).

The Durban beachfront is a cultural experience. Here you will find holidaying families, young surfer brats (called grommets), Indian ladies elegantly walking the sand in flowing silken saris, traditional healers collecting bottles of seawater to use as muti (medicine) and young girls strutting their stuff in the skimpiest of bikinis.
Somehow it all works in one, pretty weird, decidedly heterogeneous whole.

Shopping is a special experience in Durban - the eastern influence
of the enormous Indian population adds a touch of spice, literally and figuratively. You can explore the Indian Market or just wander down Grey Street, where you'll find all kinds of interesting little shops.

At the beachfront itself, you will find wonderful examples of
traditional beadwork and basketry for sale at incredibly low prices.
For something more upmarket, and very interesting, you just have to see the Gateway Shopping Centre.
It's so much more than your average mall. It has a climbing wall and an enormous artificial standing wave - the first artificial double-point break in the world.

Of course, Durban is really about surf. Another fun thing to do is to paddle out on a sea kayak, or even do a short, gentle white water trip on the nearby Umgeni River.

Some of the hardest climbs in South Africa are at the Wave Cave at Shongweni, near Durban, and there are some fun bolted routes in the Kloof Gorge.


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