Posts tagged with "Durban"

BEYOND YOUR BUCKET LIST × SOUTH AFRICA

Go Beyond Your Bucket List in South Africa

With United Airlines’ new direct flight launching from Newark to Cape Town this December, South Africa is becoming more accessible than ever before. As an increasing number of travelers move beyond typical bucket list trips and seek out meaningful, unique experiences, they will find South Africa has everything they’re looking for. The South African Tourism Board has launched the #MeetSouthAfricaMondays campaign to introduce travelers to some of the country’s lesser-known but most compelling experiences, curated by long-term citizens and lovers of South Africa.

• Accessible Art in Woodstock

• Rediscover Durban

• Johannesburg’s Revitalized Art Scene

• Marine Life of the South African Coast

• Adventures in Drakensburg

• Panoramic Views on the Panorama Route

• World-Class Winelands

• Tastes of a Township: 4Roomed eKasi Culture

The Urban: Arts and Culture Redefined

Accessible Art in Woodstock
All across Woodstock, a suburb of Cape Town, buildings are covered in colorful art, painted by local and international artists. “The movement was founded by a longstanding group of artists that were painting in Woodstock but who wanted to take their art from the studios into the streets,” says Juma Mkwela, a tour guide who leads visitors on street art walking tours of the area. “We wanted to inspire, we wanted to educate, and we wanted to tell stories that hadn’t been told. Today, we have more than 100 pieces here by local and international artists.” High-end restaurants like The Test Kitchen and bustling, artsy watering holes like Casa Woodstock Bar populate the neighborhood, creating a vibrancy to match that of Woodstock’s colorful painted buildings. 

Rediscover Durban

Undergoing its second wave of urban revitalisation, Durban has elements that appeal to every kind of tourist — everything from beautiful beaches and perfect weather to high-caliber musicians, fusion food, and world-class distilleries can be found along the city’s streets. According to Jonas Barausse, urban storyteller and Durban local, “Durban really appeals to someone who wants to discover, who wants to peel back the layers of a city. Entrepreneurs are doing some really amazing stuff.” Florida Road, one of Durban’s main strips, is full of life, energy, and color, embodying the city’s spirit. The road is lined with local coffee places and Durban dining staples for travelers who love the bustling atmosphere of city life. Durban’s proximity to coastline, mountains, and some of the world’s best game parks and wildlife make it a perfect stop on a South African vacation.

Johannesburg’s Revitalized Art Scene

One of South Africa’s more well-visited areas, Jo’burg is known for its social life, spirit, and history. Maboneng is the modern center of the art scene in Johannesburg, populated by galleries, boutiques, bars, and restaurants. For a lesser known side of Jo’burg, Charles Nbube suggests visiting his home township of Soweto. “Despite past struggles, it’s a very progressive township, full of historical sights and activities and reignited life,” Charles says. “There’s bungee jumping and quad biking at the Soweto Towers; cycling and tuk tuk tours from Leto’s Backpackers. And there’s Hector Pieterson Memorial, where you can learn about the 1976 Soweto Uprising. The wounds are the scars of the past are still open in this township, but nobody’s crying here.”

The Wild Side: Pursuing Natural Splendors Beyond the Safari

Marine Life of the South African Coast

Take a safari path less traveled by hopping on a boat. Voyage around the Dyer Island system in Gansbaai to spot the Marine Big Five: the great white shark, African penguin, southern right whale, cape fur seal and dolphins. “I challenge anyone to find another place on Earth that can offer such diversity so close to shore,” says Alison Towner, marine expert and guide with Marine Dynamics. For the ultimate shark cage diving experience, try to visit from May to September when they’re in the highest density. Also according to Alison, “peak season for southern right whale watching is October and November.”

Adventures in Drakensberg

South African topography is much more than its famed safari plains. The mountains and valleys of the Drakensberg contain the largest concentration of hiking trails in South Africa, as well as around 300 species of plants that aren’t found anywhere else in the world. Beyond hiking, the mountains are the perfect host for adventure activities such as rock climbing, ziplining, horseback riding, paragliding, whitewater rafting, hot air ballooning, and abseiling. According to James Seymour, a South African mountaineering guide, the mountains’ most “unmissable” activity is a helicopter trip over the Drakensberg. Unique flora and fauna, dense population of antelopes, and ancient rock art hidden in stunning vistas make the Drakensberg one of only 20 places in the world that have been recognized twice by the UNESCO World Heritage Committee.

Panoramic Views on the Panorama Route

The most scenic and diverse geographical features of South Africa can be found along the Panorama Route, an aptly named 1,242 miles of road in the often-overlooked province of Mpumalanga. The road passes around the Blyde River Canyon, the third largest canyon in the world and provides access to unique geographical features such as Lisbon Falls, Graskop Gorge, and Bourke’s Luck Potholes. From God’s Window, a viewpoint 2,297 feet above the lush forest below, it is said that on a clear day you can see to the ocean in Mozambique. Beyond natural marvels, the Panorama Route allows a glimpse of local culture outside of urban centers. “Support the local community by buying their arts and crafts that they sell at sights along The Panorama Route,” suggests David Quihampton, who has been a Mpumalanga tour guide for fifteen years.

The Gourmet: Wine and Food

World-Class Winelands

Less than an hour’s drive from Cape Town, South Africa’s Cape Winelands are “the best wine destination in the world,” according to Andre Morgenthal, who has worked in the wine industry for nearly thirty years. Within a three-hour radius visitors can easily see ten different wine regions, from Constantia to Stellenbosch, each with their own specialty varietals. Like other wine power-houses of the world, the Winelands have a long history of excellence. In recent decades, however, the Winelands have redefined themselves, bringing together European influence with their own country’s flair. “Pinotage is our national grape,” says Andre, claiming the grape as the region’s flag bearer for red wine. “It’s producing beautiful, world-acclaimed wines.”

Tastes of a Township

For authentic South African cuisine, visit the Cape Town restaurant 4Roomed eKasi Culture. The restaurant’s founder, Abigail Mbalo, a contestant on Master Chef South Africa, named her restaurant in  honor of the standard four-roomed homes found in townships across the country. “With our cuisine, we want to tell stories about growing up in a township. We want to evoke nostalgia and pride,” Abigail says. Her restaurant revamps traditional recipes with fresh ideas and fresh ingredients from the backyard garden. Guests enjoy offerings such as a pumpkin and pap dish called umqa, to which Abigail adds butternut, nutmeg, and truffle oil, or the dessert, amkhekhe, based on a popular scone and made modern with citrus, chocolate, and a yuzu syrup. Surrounded by fast food and frantic lifestyles, the restaurant allows guests to slow down and get a delicious taste of South Africa’s history and culture.   

South Africa

A Long Walk to Freedom

By Chris Phan, Krishan Narsinghani, and Vaughn Lowery.

Recently, 360 Magazine traveled to South Africa during one of the largest travel conventions on the continent. One hundred journalists from Northern America joined Indaba Media in celebration of Nelson Mandela’s 100th birthday.

Nelson Mandela is respected as the “Father of the Nation.” He was an anti-apartheid revolutionary, political leader and philanthropist, who served as President from 1994 to 1999. Mandela also served as the President of the African National Congress (ANC) party from 1991 to 1997.

Mandela was the country’s first black head of state and the first elected in a fully representative democratic election. His vision was to dismantle apartheid (a system of segregation based on race) by tackling discrimination and fostering reconciliation. Mandela looked ahead and realized the law must change in order for a better future. Twenty-four years after the corrupt system was terminated, South Africa has been in overdrive to establish a firm democracy.

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, South Africa

Indaba Convention

The great city of Durban took the 360 team by storm with Indaba – a meet and greet of media and travel agents to express their lives views and attractions on what the city and South Africa has to offer.

Day one of the Indaba Convention, journalists met at the Maharani Hotel for an opening ceremony. Later, trade show floor booths opened for business at the Durban International Convention Center in addition to presentations from various industry professionals. During the press conference, it was said that the trip’s airline, British Airways would now offer direct non-stop flights between Heathrow Airport and Durban.

Indaba also touched on other tourist attractions. South Africa offers an unbelievable amount of restaurants, markets, bars and lounges, but take pride that they surpass expectations in their food & drink festivals. The Whisky Live Festival and South African Cheese Festival are two major events – just to name a few.

Human rights were another important topic discussed at the convention. The South African people continue to exuberate equality and fairness along with an effort to amend the ways in which the LGBT and minority communities are treated while traveling.

As the evening winded down, an opportunity for networking commenced. Soon after, journalists engaged in conversation while devouring traditional eats coupled with a small beer/wine reception followed by a brief fashion presentation.

On day two of Indaba, Durban Tourism celebrated a dinner cruise on La Vue Floating Restaurant. The 85-foot luxury catamaran (200-person capacity) features two amazing decks, two full bars and a dance floor. Cozy with great cocktails – it’s perfect for groups.

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, South Africa

Durban

Durban’s population is just over 595,000. The metropolitan area has a population of over 3.8 million and is known for its golden beaches, relaxed surf culture and vibrant culinary scene (some of the best spicy curry dishes said to rival India’s). Culture stems from the blend of Zulu, Indian, European and remnants of British roots that make up the city’s diverse heritage. South Africa’s Station Drive Precinct, once a rundown warehouse district has been transformed to a major tourist attraction with exceptional fine dining, drinking and shopping. Thanks to a collaborative group of artistic individuals, businesses range from homegrown distilleries and breweries to local art galleries. I Heart Market is a good and design market held on the first Saturday of each month. Presented with locally produced goods and artisanal creations such as ceramics, crochet toys and original prints – shoppers will not be disappointed. Nearby tourists can partake in an exquisite gin tasting at Distillery 031 along with lunch at Lion’s Match Factory.

The feasting does not stop there – Durban’s own, House of Curries restaurant, blends bold Indian spices and flavors for extravagant curry dishes. House of Curries has been a staple on the Florida Road strip since 1999 and a perfect attraction for relaxation on their patio deck.

Much like a market, BAT Centre is a place where local artists and crafters work on-site, exhibiting and selling their works in a vibrant complex. This nonprofit arts center is dedicated to the preservation, promotion and celebration of the visual arts, crafts, music, dance and literature of the Province.

Street art has found new life in redevelopment projects across various neighborhoods. These street artists were inspired by their surroundings with many exploring themes of politics and nature, all whilst using their work for social activism.

Travelers in search of nighttime adventures can visit Cubana Havana, a popular cigar/hookah lounge featuring handcrafted cocktails as well as a simple menu located on the highly revered Florida Road. Tourists shouldn’t miss Mahatma Ghandi Road in downtown Durban for an evening of fine music at a world – class Jazz bar known as The Chairman. Not only is there an assortment of signature cocktails and cigars, but also a gallery and sophisticated atmosphere that believes in justice for all.

Fun fact. Over 85% of all BMW 3 series vehicles are produced at the Rosslyn plant just outside of Durban and are shipped to various markets worldwide, including the USA, Taiwan, Japan, Singapore, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Australia, Sub-Saharan Africa and Canada.

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, South Africa

Johannesburg

The expedition kicked off in Johannesburg aka “Joburg,” (approximately 8 million in population and largest city in the country), the epicenter of South Africa who’s currently in a state of revival. The team then headed to Nelson Mandela Square, a must-see tourist spot. The campus includes the DaVinci Hotel, indoor and outdoor shopping malls, upscale boutiques, a movie theatre, grocery stores, restaurant/bars and a casino.

In order to achieve a local feel, stop by Neighbourgoods Market for purchases of South African eats and assorted libations distributed from multiple vendors.

The following day we departed for Constitution Hill and embarked on a full tour of the visitor’s center. Constitution Hill was former fort site transformed into a prison. “The Robben Island of Johannesburg” included notable prisoners Mahatma Ghandi, Joe Slovo, Bram Fischer and Nelson Mandela. Mandela was imprisoned for more than twenty years at this location. “As an African American being able to stand inside the actual cell of Mandela was life-changing. The dark, ominous confined space gave me a newfound appreciation of what it means to be free. No human should ever have to endure such injustice because they yearn for social equality and justice for all,” says Lowery, President of 360 Magazine.

Lunch at Lebo’s Backpackers Outdoor Restaurant was set outside in various cabanas at a local Soweto hostel within its community park followed by the Soweto Tuk Tuk Tour. The team enjoyed riding in these three-wheeled taxis, while sipping on craft beers and witnessing the city’s rich history. Stops included Vilakazi Street, where Nelson Mandela’s house still stands, as well as Hector Peterson Memorial.

Art lovers be sure to drop by CIRCA Gallery which stands beside Everard Read headquarters, parading some of the most important contemporary art collections from around the world.

With regards to nightlife, music lovers can head to Taboo Night Club and News Cafe to discover local and international DJ’s. News Cafe combines its food, services and venue into a coffee bar, cocktail bar, restaurant and entertainment venue all-in-one. It’s the perfect destination for relaxation or clubbing with a modern aesthetic.

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, South Africa

Cape Town

From Johannesburg, the voyage shifted to Cape Town, a world renown entertainment and prestigious modeling hub for some of the industries top talents. With just under 4 million in population, it’s considered the second most populous city in South Africa. The group checked in at The Table Bay Hotel and visited Nobel Square for a photo opportunity followed by lunch at V&A Waterfront’s The Yard Restaurant. Just adjacent in the Silo District is the highly acclaimed Zeitz Mocaa Museum. It exhibits twenty-first century contemporary art from Africa and its Diaspora with over 100 galleries throughout 9 floors, showcasing art from still photography to moving art installations.

Our local guide incorporated “Footsteps to Freedom” walking tour Mandela in Cape Town: From prisoner to President. “Dinner at Crypt Jazz Club was a personal favorite from the team as they feasted into the night while being enamored by some of the nation’s most prolific local musicians.

Table Mountain’s Cable Car Ride offers 360 degree spectacular views of the coastal town while being hoisted to the top. At the summit, clouds draped the surrounding view while journalists snapped selfies for Instagram. On the other hand, if winds are too strong for the cable ride, adventurers can hike alongside of the mountains during park hours to witness this landmark backdrop engulfed by condensation – similar in type to dry ice bucket. Just below, you can take in Bo-Kaap township, an area filled with colorful homes and cobblestone roads. Subsequently, lunch was served by famed chef Abigail Mbalo (from MasterChef South Africa) at 4ROOMED Ekasi Culture. She’s widely known to take indigenous delights and fuse them into gourmet bites fit for the Food Network. The day ended with a night of laughter at the Cape Town Comedy Club, a must-visit for all who enjoy pizzas infused with locally sourced ingredients coupled with barrel of laughs.

360, 360 Magazine, Vaughn Lowery, South Africa

Port Elizabeth

At Port Elizabeth, history unfolded. In 1820, it was established to house British settlers and boasts a population of 1.3 million, as its now a part of the newly formed Nelson Mandela Bay. This Vegas-style resort town is home to Sun International’s The Boardwalk Hotel that includes tons of shops, eateries, bars and casinos within walking distance. Named The Public Art City Tour: Route 67, stops included a visit to Voting Line Sculpture and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan Art Museum. Lastly, dinner at Asada/Fushin was a meal to remember. The restaurant fabricates South African fusion flare with scrumptious fresh seafood and sushi.

Within two weeks, we received a first-hand account of the history and culture behind Nelson Mandela and his legacy in South Africa. With an intricate four major city tour, we were able to experience an amazing arts and culinary scene in the ever changing country of South Africa. Given the plethora of outdoor activities, architectural gems, gorgeous landscapes and tender-hearted people, this destination should be at the top of everyone’s bucket list if it’s not already.

A Taste of South Africa

Short on vacation time but still have the tendency to get out and explore before the summer ends? Look no more!

Discover how a trip to sundrenched South Africa can be an exciting and fun-filled getaway over just a long weekend.

With an unparalleled combination of nature, culture AND an exciting adventure, South African Tourism highlights how you can explore the destination in just 72 hours. That’s right.

With direct flights from major cities in the US, a favorable exchange rate and affordable packages it’s never been easier to explore the beauty that South Africa has to offer you.

Here are just some of the most to-do attractions for any visitor planning a quick getaway to this captivating yet marvelous country:

  • Bunny Chow & Beaches. Durban and KwaZulu-Natal. Visitors looking to experience the natural beauty South Africa has to offer should head on over to the KwaZulu-Natal region. It has a wealth of scenic and cultural attractions, stunning hot beaches, and also offers a unique blend of African-Indian influences.
  • Durban. A coastal city with a laid-back lifestyle and a favorite amongst you sun-lovers, It has the most beautiful sandy beaches along The Golden Mile. Serving as a popular destination for locals and tourists alike.
  • The Drakensberg region in the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park. A World Heritage Site that is only a two-hour drive from Durban, visitors will find a lush green countryside brimming with charming historic towns. Guests can catch a glimpse of The Big Five at the Hluhluwe-Imfolozi Reserve, which is one of the best places in the country to see the endangered rhinos along with other members of The Big Five.

History and Wine adventures:

  • Cape Town. Known as the Mother City, it is renowned for its scenic beauty, bustling downtown, and old charm makes it a favorite destination for international travelers. Table Mountain and Robben Island are two of the most famous landmarks and are important stops for any first timers.
  • Constantia Valley. Nestled beneath the Table Mountain National Park, this stunning region is home to eight award-winning wine estates and miles of lushes vineyards. The most perfect place to indulge in some of the country’s best wines.

Culture and Nature adventures:

  • Johannesburg. Known as South Africa’s booming urban playground, packed with cultural sites, shops, and boutiques, it is a trendy culinary scene and contains vibrant art galleries.
  • The Mandela House. Located in the township of Soweto, it can’t be missed. A guided tour of the home of the iconic former President Nelson Mandela and his family, it provides guests with an insight into his life during the apartheid era. The house continues to stand as an unwavering symbol for the right for human rights.

So, what are you waiting for? Grab your suitcase and get packing!

 

 

Travel to South Africa in Honor of Mandela’s Centenary 

2018 is a momentous year for South Africa with the Nelson Mandela Centenary marking what would have been 100 years since the iconic leader’s birth. Officially July 18, 2018 – Mandela Day – marks this historic milestone as throughout the nation, and across the world, people celebrate South Africa’s first black President. Mandela’s legacy as an inspirational anti-apartheid revolutionary and one of the greatest human rights advocates the world has ever seen, cemented his place as one of the 20th century’s most important political figures. This year, South African Tourism invites US travelers to explore this legacy.

In Mandela’s honor, national celebrations will see a series of high-profile events and memorials. On July 17, a day before Mandela Day, former US president Barack Obama will deliver the 16th Nelson Mandela Annual Lecture in Johannesburg. The theme will be “Renewing the Mandela Legacy and Promoting Active Citizenship in a Changing World,” and will honor the centennial of Mandela’s birth.
In Cape Town’s City Hall, a life-sized statue of Madiba will be unveiled on July 24 in the place where he gave his first speech upon release from his 27 year imprisonment.
Internationally, the world’s largest musical tribute will also take place on Mandela Day through a series of charitable concerts held live across the world in support of improving literacy among children. This musical tribute is organized by Mandela Concertswith the goal of raising millions of dollars towards various projects including building 100 new library units in South Africa’s most vulnerable schools, developing a high school skills program, and providing 200 Toddler Trolley library programs for 5 to 6 year-old South African children by 2021.
Often respectfully referred to by his Xhosa clan name Madiba, travelers interested in following in Mandela’s footsteps can download the Madiba’s Journey app. South African Tourism, in collaboration with the Nelson Mandela Foundation, recently re-launched the app to include 100 historic landmarks and sites that influenced Mandela’s life. From the Eastern Cape to Johannesburg to Cape Town and beyond, the app allows users to customize their own itineraries and helps guide them through key landmarks, offering context, photos and curated audio narration about Mandela’s life and the 27 years he spent as a political prisoner. A few notable landmarks are highlighted below:

  • The Eastern Cape: Explore Nelson Mandela’s birthplace – an area of outstanding rugged beauty with pristine coastline, virgin bush and subtropical forests.
  • Robben Island: Tour the jail cell where Nelson Mandela spent 18 years of his life, through the eyes of those who experienced it first-hand. Many tours are led by ex-political prisoners.
  • Constitution Hill in Johannesburg: Formerly used as a prison, it was here where hundreds of political prisoners were held, including Nelson Mandela and Oliver Tambo. Constitution Hill is now a living museum and home to South Africa’s Constitutional Court.
  • The Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg: Acknowledged as the pre-eminent museum in the world dealing with 20th century South Africa, the museum tells the apartheid story.
  • KwaZulu-Natal: Visit this province to see the Nelson Mandela Capture Site. After being on the run for 16 months, Madiba was captured and arrested here in August 1962.
  • Voting Line Sculpture in Port Elizabeth: A tribute to the thousands of South Africans who participated in the nation’s first democratic elections in 1994.

South African Tourism encourages travelers to celebrate, honor and explore the legacy of Mandela through Mandela themed travel packages. A selection of curated experiences are included below:

  • Gate 1 – 8 Day South Africa Tour with Game Drives & Flights — 8 days and 6 nights Enjoy the best of Cape Town by exploring Table Mountain and then visit either the Winelands or Cape Peninsula. After a few days in the “Mother City,” head on to Johannesburg to transfer to the safari portion of your trip in Limpopo Province. You’ll be able to spot all kinds of wildlife while enjoying South Africa’s natural beauty. $1799/ Per person sharing (includes $280pp savings with promo code SATD280) *Terms and conditions apply
  • Africa Answers – Celebrating Mandela’s 100th — 8 days 6 nights On this cultural journey to South Africa, discover Nelson Mandela’s struggle, perseverance, and determination to lead South Africa to Freedom. Explore the bustling city of Johannesburg and spend 3 amazing nights in the cultural rich city of Cape Town. From US $2,499* Per Person Sharing (add a 4th Night FREE in this air-inclusive, 8 night package) *Terms and conditions apply
  • Goway Travel – Walking in his Footsteps – Mandela’s Centenary –10 days and 9 nights Explore the life and legacy of Nelson Mandela with this unforgettable journey into in South Africa. Traveling between Johannesburg, Durban, and Cape Town, you’ll have the opportunity to trace Mandela’s journey from freedom fighter to president and learn about the hardships of apartheid as well as its collapse and the birth of the new Rainbow Nation. From US $3,197* Per person sharing *Terms and conditions apply

For more Nelson Mandela themed packages, visit SouthAfrica.net/deals

For more information about Madiba’s Journey app, visit madibasjourney.southafrica.net

DURBAN × SARDINE RUN

DIVE INTO DURBAN DURING THE SARDINE RUN

Mother Nature provides a spectacular experience for adventure seekers on land and sea

It’s time to start planning for one of the ocean’s most captivating phenomena. In May – July each year, nature enthusiasts around the world anticipate the annual Sardine Run which takes place off the shores of Durban and the beaches to its south. When conditions are right, millions of silvery sardines make their way up South Africa’s eastern coast chasing cold currents.

Visible even by satellite, the mass migration can form up to nine miles in length and is followed by large numbers of predators that provide the main attraction for divers, snorkelers, and those viewing by boat.Thousands of dolphins are largely responsible for rounding up the sardines into densely packed masses of fish known as bait balls that can be up to 65 feet in diameter. Once a bait ball has been formed, sharks, game fish, birds, and the occasional whale take advantage of the opportunity to get in on the action – which is the most desirable time for divers and snorkelers to experience true underwater theater.

Those with their feet planted firmly on solid ground will not miss out on the excitement, as the feeding frenzy can be viewed from the shore as well. Swarms of Cape gannets and cormorants dive bomb the ocean while other hungry sea creatures breach the surface. As an added bonus, ragged tooth sharks congregate to mate during this period, while humpback whales and southern right whales also migrate during this time of year. Curious spectators can join the crowds on Durban’s beaches to watch commercial fisherman haul sardine-filled nets onto the sand while locals bargain to buy the fish as they are sold by the basket. Anglers also closely monitor the Sardine Run as excellent game fishing takes place during this time from local beaches and rocks. For a birds-eye view, sightseeing airplanes and helicopters are a great way to view the run from above.

DURBAN × SPORTING EVENTS

DURBAN PLAYS HOST TO TOP-NOTCH SPORTING EVENTS IN COMING MONTHS

Comrades Marathon, Vodacom Durban July, and Vodacom Origins of Golf bring the best in sports and entertainment to world-class venues

Top athletes from around the world will descend upon

Durban in the coming months when the best in marathon running, thoroughbred horse racing, and professional golf come to town. Along with Durban’s year-round sunny climate and breathtaking landscapes, its beachfront promenade and the ultramodern Moses Mabhida Stadium, which was constructed for soccer’s 2010 World Cup, and outstanding golf courses make the city an attractive destination for spectators and athletes alike. Here are the city’s most notable sporting events taking

place in the coming months:

COMRADES MARATHON

An ultramarathon of approximately 89 kilometers (56 miles), Comrades Marathon is the world’s largest and oldest ultramarathon race attracting up to 20,000 runners each year. Taking place June 10, the race course winds between the cities of Pietermaritzburg and Durban. For the first time ever, the race will finish in the heart of Durban at Moses Mabhida Stadium. The Comrades Marathon 2018 theme is “No Turning Back,” which encapsulates the grit, perseverance, and determination it takes to complete.

VODACOM DURBAN JULY

South Africa’s premier horse racing event, Vodacom Durban July is held annually on the first Saturday of July at Greyville Racecourse, the city’s first and longest-running sports venue. Local celebrities, politicians, and more than 50,000 spectators gather to experience “July Fever,” which

is as much about the fashion and parties as it is about the thoroughbreds. This year’s theme, “It is Time,” captures the excitement of one of South Africa’s largest social occasions. Leading up to race day, the Vodacom Durban July Fashion Experience features a series of competitions and fashion shows including a Young Designer Award, Invited Designer Showcase, and Raceday Fashion Awards. Race tickets go on sale starting April 23 for $18.30 US and can also be purchased at the event.

VODACOM ORIGINS OF GOLF

One of South Africa’s most prestigious golfing events, Vodacom Origins of Golf is a series of six pro-am tournaments offering amateurs the chance to play alongside some of South Africa’s leading golfers. It is part of the South African based Sunshine Tour which visits top courses throughout the country. The tournament takes place at Durban’s posh Zimbali Country Club August 31 – September 2.

DURBAN × EATS

BRAAI AND BEYOND: WHAT TO EAT IN DURBAN AND WHERE TO EAT IT

South Africa’s melting pot swirls with a sophisticated and contemporary culinary scene that gives a nod to its cultural heritage

Durban, South Africa, the seaside gem of KwaZulu-Natal Province, is best known for its golden beaches and relaxed surf culture which is about to heat up in the summer months of November through March.

Beyond the waves, Durban’s vibrant culinary scene offers a mix of classic dishes that are a delightful blend of the Zulu, Indian, and European cultures that make up the city’s rich heritage. From flavorful hometown favorites like Bunny Chow, to the regional barbecue known as braai and traditional afternoon tea, visitors can eat like locals with thefollowing culinary experiences that give Durban its unique flavor.

Indulge in braai & Zulu cuisine at Max’s Lifestyle

V1328 Mbe Road, Umlazi

Meat is at the heart of Zulu cuisine, so it is no surprise that South Africans love a good barbecue, known as braai throughout the country. The legendary Max’s Lifestyle in the heart of Umlazi Township is the best place to enjoy a traditional shisa nyama, Zulu for “hot meat,” while listening to local Kwaito music and sipping a cold drink. People from around the world mingle over drinks and traditional food at this hotspot, which also boasts a VIP lounge and Sunday dance parties. The onsite butchery offers a variety of meat prepared braai style and served on a wooden platter in the traditional Zulu way.

Grab pub grub & a craft beer at Robson’s Real Beer

72 Mahatma Gandhi Road, Point Waterfront

Maize starches are another staple of Zulu cuisine and are often used in porridges, or in the liquid form as beer. Robson’s Real Beer brewery and restaurant, located on the reclaimed Point Waterfront, is home to one of the oldest craft beers in South Africa. A family-owned business, Robson’s pioneered bottle conditioned beers, made by a method similar to champagne that produces beer with remarkable complexity and taste. The eatery located inside Robson’s brewery pairs natural, locally inspired beers like the Robson’s Pale Ale and East Coast Ale with sophisticated pub fare, like panko crusted prawns and grilled peri-peri chicken. Robson’s also brews up an immersive experience for visitors by offering beer tasting tours for those wanting an inside look at the craft brewing process.

Catch some rays and fresh eats at a beach shack

Surf Riders Café (17 Erskine Terrace, South Beach)

Afro’s Chicken Shop (2 OR Tambo Parade, South Beach)

After working up an appetite with a stroll along Durban’s popular Golden Mile promenade, visitors can kick back at one of the beach shack-style eateries where the views and food can’t be beat. The laidback beachy vibe at Surf Riders Café captures Durban’s quintessential surf culture, offering burgers, pizza, and more, along with breakfast served in biodegradable cartons for visitors to enjoy at a table or on the beach. Afro’s Chicken Shop offers up simple and affordable chicken takeaway in an iconic bright yellow refurbished shipping container. Known for its chicken and “tjips” (chips), Afro’s Chicken also serves post-surf fare like egg and bacon rolls.

Hop over to CaneCutters for Bunny Chow

53/55 Helen Joseph Road, Glenwood

Durban’s top culinary delight is its signature dish of Bunny Chow, Indian curry housed in a hollowed-out loaf of white bread that serves as a portable bread bowl. Not to worry, no rabbits were harmed in the making of this dish. The name “bunny” originates from an Indian term referring to merchants. Highly recommended by locals and known for its award-winning Bunny Chow, CaneCutters is an authentic Indian restaurant that uses recipes handed down from generation to generation. Visitors can enjoy freshly prepared curries, like their popular “bean bunnies,” traditionally served with crushed chili pickles, carrot sambals (a simple carrot salad), and coriander.

Kick back with a golf legend at Big Easy Winebar & Grill at Hilton Durban

Echoing champion South African golfer Ernie Els’ laidback style, Big Easy Winebar & Grill at Hilton Durban is an unpretentious yet sophisticated spot to enjoy perfectly executed South African cuisine among friends. Dishes like oxtail and marrow fritters; grilled ostrich; and a braai platter for two with lamb chops, boerewors, sirloin steak, and peri peri chicken wings bring a true South African spirit to the table. Diners Club Winelist Awards has recognized the restaurant’s stock of Ernie Els’ signature and other carefully selected wines with its highest accolade, the coveted Diamond status.

Delight in quality steaks & wine at Butcher Block

140 Florida Road, Windermere

2 Ncondo Place, Umhlanga

Butcher Block prides itself on serving the best steaks in the country with locations on Florida Road, Durban’s bustling culinary and entertainment epicenter, and the upscale beach resort area of Umhlanga Rocks. The menu includes meats aged to perfection, like tender fillet stack with herbs and spicy butter, and steak with bacon and biltong, a dried, cured meat that originated in South Africa. Nestled inside of each Butcher Block location is a celebrated wine cellar, featuring some of South Africa’s best-known wines.

Experience the decadent high tea or famous curry buffet at The Oyster Box

2 Lighthouse Road, Umhlanga Rocks, 4319

An ode to its colonial past, the tradition of high tea is still celebrated in Durban. Visitors can step into The Oyster Box hotel’s charming sunlit Palm Court and enjoy the grandeur of the past surrounded by ceramic chandeliers purchased from the Savoy Hotel in London, natural sunlight, and towering palms. This leisurely affair takes place each afternoon from 3 to 5 p.m. and features live piano music and lavish baked scones, pastries, quiches, cakes, and finger sandwiches. Visitors will also want to take their time savoring the bold flavors of the renowned curry buffet in the hotel’s Mediterranean-inspired Ocean Terrace Restaurant with stunning views of the Indian Ocean. Foodies seeking to spice up their life can indulge in more than 10 meat, fish, and vegetarian curries accompanied by homemade chutneys and a selection of Naan.

ABOUT DURBAN

Located an hour southeast of Johannesburg by air, Durban is the beachfront gem of KwaZulu-Natal Province (KZN). A bustling harbor city and popular surfing spot, Durban lies on the Indian Ocean and is South Africa’s third largest urban area.

Remnants of British colonialism and a mix of Zulu, Indian, and Afrikaans traditions give the city a rich cultural heritage, while outdoor activities abound on the signature Golden Mile beachfront and in the lush rolling hills that encompass Durban’s suburbs. For more information, visit http://visitdurban.travel.

DURBAN × ART SCENE

DURBAN’S CREATIVE SCENE IS BUZZING IN THE STATION DRIVE PRECINCT AND BEYOND

In just a few short years, Durban, South Africa’s Station Drive Precinct has grown from a rundown warehouse district to the go-to spot to eat, drink, shop, and play like the city’s creative class. Thanks to a collaborative group of artistic individuals, businesses ranging from homegrown distilleries and breweries to locally produced home décor stores, art galleries, and coffee shops line the area. Station Drive Precinct is also home to the Morning Trade market on Sundays and a family friendly First Thursday open gallery program.

Station Drive Precinct is an ideal place for visitors to be inspired by Durban’s innovative energy, and there are plenty of other art-infused experiences that capture the spirit of this seaside city and its people, both past and present. The following attractions are great ways to experience a truly cultured take on the destination:

DURBAN STREET ART

Originally associated with local gangs, street art has found new life in redevelopment projects across various Durban neighborhoods. Durban’s street artists are inspired by their surroundings, with many exploring themes of politics and nature and using their work as a form of social activism. Louis de Villiers aka Skullboy, Sakhile Mhlongo, and Daniel Chapman aka Mook Lion are just a few of the prolific street artists to look out for. Tour companies like Street Scene provide visitors with plenty of context during half-day graffiti tours that come complete with lunch at a local pub.

I HEART MARKET

I Heart Market is a food and design market held at Moses Madhiba Stadium on the first Saturday of each month. It is a great spot to shop for locally produced goods and artisanal creations ranging from ceramics to crochet toys, original prints, home goods, and more.

THE BAT CENTRE

At Durban’s BAT Centre, visitors can meet local artists and crafters who work on-site, exhibiting and selling their works in a vibrant, harbor-site complex. Founded in 1995, this nonprofit arts center is dedicated to the preservation, promotion, and celebration of the visual arts, crafts, music, dance, and literature of KwaZulu-Natal Province. It has become a must-visit spot for visitors seeking to learn about the region’s cultural heritage, enjoy performances, and shop for original artwork. The BAT Centre is also home to a drum shop selling a variety of African instruments.

AFRICAN ART CENTRE

Founded in 1959, the African Art Centre on Florida Road is designed to preserve traditional forms of arts and crafts while promoting financial empowerment and self-sufficiency among underprivileged South Africans. The African Art Centre helps those in townships and rural areas hone their crafting skills including beadwork, ceramics, traditional Zulu baskets, textiles, and more. The colorful works of art are on display in the gallery and available for purchase at the on-site gift shop. Every purchase made helps provide a sustainable income for some of the more than 1,000 crafters associated with the African Art Centre.

South African Airways Offer

SOUTH AFRICAN AIRWAYS OFFERS “SIZZLING SUMMER SAVINGS” FOR PEAK SEASON TRAVEL

Low Summer Fares from New York to South Africa, starting from $1,099* round-trip for travel June 1-August 10, 2018 (restrictions apply). Fort Lauderdale, FL (May 30, 2018) – South African Airways (SAA), the leading carrier from New York to South Africa with the only nonstop daily flight, offers “Sizzling Summer Savings” featuring the hottest fares of the summer for travel from New York (JFK) to Johannesburg, Cape Town, or Durban, South Africa. The fares start from $1,099* roundtrip (restrictions apply) and are available for purchase through June 06, 2018 for travel from June 1 to August 10, 2018. “It’s always a good time to visit South Africa, but SAA’s Sizzling Summer Savings has made it even better with affordable fares from the Big Apple to the Big Five,” said Todd Neuman, executive vice president, North America for South African Airways. “For those that have not made their summer travel plans yet, these low fares combined with our daily non-stop flights from New York makes South Africa the perfect vacation destination.” South African Airways is one of Africa’s most awarded airlines, honored with a 4-star rating for 16 consecutive years by Skytrax. South African Airways offers the most daily flights from the U.S. to South Africa with nonstop service from New York-JFK Airport and direct service from Washington, DC-Dulles Airport to Johannesburg via Accra, Ghana or Dakar, Senegal. Onboard, SAA offers an in-flight experience designed for pure comfort for long-haul travel. Our customers enjoy a spacious Economy Class cabin, gourmet cuisine and a selection of complimentary spirits and award-winning South African wines and generous checked baggage allowance. Also included are individual audio / visual entertainment systems that deliver an extensive menu of first-run movies, music choices, and games. Via our Johannesburg hub, SAA links the world to over 75 destinations across the African continent and Africa’s Indian Ocean islands.

To book the “Sizzling Summer Savings” or for additional information, travelers should visit www.flysaa.com, call SAA Reservations at 1-(800) 722-9675 or contact their professional travel consultant. As one of the leading airlines in Africa, SAA also offers other low fares to over 75 other exciting destinations throughout continent.

About South African Airways

South African Airways (SAA), South Africa’s national flag carrier and the continent’s most awarded airline, serves over 75 destinations worldwide in partnership with SA Express, Airlink and its low cost carrier Mango. In North America, SAA operates daily nonstop flights from New York-JFK and direct flights from Washington D.C.-IAD (via Accra, Ghana and Dakar, Senegal) to Johannesburg. SAA has partnerships with United Airlines, Air Canada JetBlue Airways, and American Airlines, which offer convenient connections from more than 100 cities in the U.S. and Canada to SAA’s flights. SAA is a Star Alliance member and the recipient of the Skytrax 4-Star rating for 16 consecutive years.

*RESTRICTIONS: Fares are valid for roundtrip travel in economy class, and include all government and airline imposed taxes and fees. Valid for travel 06/01/2018 – 08/10/2018. The $1099* fare is valid for midweek travel (Monday to Thursday) from New York (JFK) to Johannesburg (JNB). Fares must be purchased within 72 hours of reservation being made, or by 06/06/2018, whichever is first. Minimum stay: Must stay over one Sunday for fares to apply. Maximum stay: 3 months. Seats are limited and may not be available on all flights. Cancellations before/after departure: fares and carrier imposed fees (YR/YQ/Q) are non-refundable. Date change fee: $300 plus any applicable fare difference. Administrative fees may also apply. Infant (not occupying a seat) discount -Pays 10% of the adult fare. Baggage and optional service fees may apply. Reservations made 7 days or more prior to scheduled departure may be canceled without penalty up to 24 hours after the reservation is made.

DISCOVER SOUTH AFRICA x TAX REFUND

It is that time of the year again, when Americans start preparing their tax returns, but there’s good news as most taxpayers can expect to receive an average refund of $2,895 according to the IRS. This year, South African Tourism is once again launching its Tax Refund campaign to encourage savvy travelers and adventure seekers to make the most of their refund with an out-of-this-world trip to South Africa. Partnering with the top US travel trade partners South African Tourism unveils six new exciting packages priced between $1,700-$3,200 to reflect the average tax refund. The packages offer a variety of experiences focusing on romance, adventure and culture throughout South Africa.

 

Today’s favorable exchange rate also guarantees US travelers’ hard-earned refund money goes further than ever in South Africa. South African Tourism is also excited to collaborate with TurboTax® this season on a blog post inspired by South Africa’s 10 most Instagrammable locations which will be live onwww.blog.turbotax.intuit.com/.

 

Whether a history buff, art and culture enthusiast, foodie, adventurer or nature lover, South Africa has something to offer every discerning traveler looking for an affordable vacation. This year’s exclusive deals include:

 

 

  • Gate 1 – 8 Day South Africa Tour with Game Drives & Flights — 8 days and 6 nights
Enjoy the best of Cape Town by exploring Table Mountain and then visit either the Winelands or Cape Peninsula. After a few days in the “Mother City,” head on to Johannesburg to transfer to the safari portion of your trip. You’ll be able to spot all kinds of wildlife while enjoying South Africa’s natural beauty. From US$1699/ Per Person Sharing (includes US $260pp savings with promo code SATD260).
This week, you’ll take a deep dive into exploring Cape Town’s gorgeous sites and vibrant culture. Whether biking through Cape Point, whale watching from the golden shores, or hiking Table Mountain, you’re sure to fall in love with Cape Town. From US $1,999* Per Person Sharing.
  • Great Safaris – Zululand Express Safari — 6 days and 4 nights
Explore the beautiful coastal town of Durban to see a different side of South Africa. Here, you’ll experience the historical melting pot of Indian and African cultures or spend a day relaxing on the beach. Afterwards, you’ll transfer to Thanda Safari Private Game Reserve to partake in game drives and learn about the Zulu tribe members that originally lived there. From US $2,195 Per Person Sharing.
  • Indus Travel – Super South Africa & Dubai — 13 Days and 9 nights
Guests can explore the vibrant city of Johannesburg and a guided tour to the Soweto Township, a cultural melting pot with a wealth of heritage sites that will fascinate any visitor. Visit Kruger National Park before continuing on to Stellenbosch in the heart of the Cape Winelands. Then Visit Cape Town, regularly voted one of the most beautiful cities in the world. From US$2,799* Per Person Sharing.
Enjoy scenic beauty, culture and world class restaurants in Cape Town. Marvel at spectacular views of the Atlantic seaboard from the top of Table Mountain. Explore the Cape Peninsula, on a full-day tour that offers dramatic scenery and endearing penguins. From US $2,999* Per Person Sharing.
Experience the perfect mix of safari and city with this trip to South Africa. After 3 nights of game drives in malaria-free Pilanesberg Game Reserve, couples can retreat to the beach suburb of Cape Town to relax. From US $3,199* Per Person Sharing.

 

 

“South Africa is blessed with breathtaking natural scenery, world-class safari experiences, and adrenaline pumping adventure activities; and with celebrations around the Nelson Mandela Centenary planned throughout 2018, now is the ideal time to visit,” said Bangu Masisi, President of South African Tourism, Americas. “These packages from our partners showcase the variety of exciting travel experiences that are made possible by using your tax refund”. To book these packages or view additional South Africa travel deals, please visit southafrica.net/deals. For more information on South Africa’s rich and diverse offerings visit www.southafrica.net, follow @SouthAfrica on Twitter and @VisitSouthAfrica on Instagram and Facebook.