Durban cruises

Durban is an attractive city, whose long beach front and glass buildings look out onto the Indian Ocean. Inland, spectacular landscapes and Africa’s unique wildlife are waiting to captivate you.

Durban is a wonderfully multicultural gem of a city, which is home to the largest Indian population outside of India. The Victoria Street Market feels like its epicenter. Mostly just known as ‘Old Vic,’ its colourfully painted stalls are piled with red and yellow spices, while incense adds a heady fragrance to the air. You’ll no doubt find various food outlets offering ‘bunnychow,’ half a loaf of bread hollowed out and filled with curry.

The serene magnificence of the Juma Masjid Mosque is found in this part of the city too, a vast building with golden domes on its minarets, which has stood on this site in some form or other since 1881.

Durban resides on the edge of the KwaZulu-Natal province, and it could be the springboard for an adventure inland to experience the stunning scenery and rich local customs. One excursion could whisk you into the evocatively named Valley of a Thousand Hills, with its rippled ridges and green slopes in the heart of Zulu country. There you can pay a visit to a cultural village for traditional demonstrations of beadwork, spear making, drumming and dancing.

In the city itself, the Phansi Museum is another way to delve into the local artistry. You can admire the ceremonial tribal costumes from across the region and, indeed, the nation, as well as all manner of objects from pipes and Zulu pots to wood carvings and fertility dolls.

Highlights.

Durban can be thought of as South Africa’s Riviera, basking as it does in a pleasant subtropical climate. Its enticing beachfront, known as the ‘Golden Mile,’ actually offers over three and a half miles of sandy shore where surfers and swimmers flock to waters warmed by the Mozambique Current. 

A striking feature at the north of the Golden Mile is the Moses Mabhida Stadium. Built for the 2010 World Cup in South Africa, it features a large arch which is more than simply decorative: you can climb the steps or ride the SkyCar for sensational views. If you’re a cricket fan, the ground at Kingsmead, which first hosted a test match in 1923, may also be on your personal itinerary. Another way to sample the mild weather here is at the Durban Botanic Gardens, home to the orchid house, Japanese Garden and its rare Cycad collection.

Of course, one of Durban’s great attractions is what lies all around. This part of the world is an invitation to set off on a game drive at one of the many reserves in the area. It’s a thrilling experience to see giraffe loping gracefully across the savannah, herds of zebra or elephants, or to scan the brush for majestic lions, leopards and rhinos.

Excursions

Please note: The shore excursions listed are typical for this port. The full programme of shore excursions available for your cruise will be displayed on Cruise Personaliser at least 12 weeks prior to departure.

  • Howick Falls & Ardmore Ceramics

    Discover the spectacular Howick Falls as well as visiting the award winning Ardmore Ceramics Studio.

    Howick Falls & Ardmore Ceramics

    In the heart of the Natal Midlands is Howick, where you will find the magnificent Howick Falls, a fantastic display of over 300 feet, almost in the centre of the picturesque town itself. Known to the Zulu people as KwaNogqaza - Place of the Tall One - the Falls were first seen by European adventurers in the early 19th century.

    Luncheon will be served at the Granny Mouse Country House and includes a choice of house wine or a soft drink.

    In 1985 Fèe Halsted-Berning lived on the farm, Ardmore, in the Champagne Valley under the shadow of the Drakensberg Mountains. Her first art student was Bonnie Ntshalintshali whose natural aptitude for ceramic art soon attracted other students. This led to the creation of Ardmore Lavendula, the largest ceramic art studio in South Africa, situated close to Nottingham Road and Mooi River. The large group of sculptors and painters who produce ceramics under the Ardmore label amply demonstrate the diversity of talents that has emerged under Fèe's tuition. There will be time to visit the ceramic shop to see some of the prestigious handcrafted designs.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. This tour involves walking over some uneven ground. Comfortable non-slip walking shoes are recommended. A donation will be made to the Ardmore Excellence fund from the sales of this tour, which helps increase the opportunity of training for artists. In order to avoid congestion, the order of sites visited may be rotated.

    Tour code

    DUR_013

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Meal included

      Meal Included

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    7 hours

  • Valley of a Thousand Hills

    Take in the spectacular views of the Valley of a Thousand Hills and enjoy a tribal experience at a recreated Zulu village.

    Valley of a Thousand Hills

    Journey to the Valley of a Thousand Hills to see modern and olden day African tribal cultures in the traditional and spectacular homeland of the Zulu. First shaped by the flow of the great Mgeni River, then by the culture of the Zulu tribes, and finally by the coming of European man, the Zulu drum still beats in these hills.

    Phezulu, a recreated Zulu village, is a ‘must-see’, where you can enjoy a small taste of Africa. Dancing and singing are important parts of the Zulu culture and you will get a feel for their power as you watch a spirited display of traditional tribal dancing, complete with beating drums and Zulu dress. Afterwards, explore the Zulu cultural huts and gain fascinating glimpses into African tribal culture.

    Become introduced to Phezulu’s impressive reptile park. Take home vivid images of Africa’s most renowned snakes and learn more about the country’s crocodiles.

    Refreshments will be served during the tour and there will be time to browse through the curio shop for Zulu crafts and souvenirs.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. Comfortable, non-slip shoes and a sun hat are essential. The tour involves steps and uneven ground. Highlights may operate in reverse order. It is Zulu custom for unmarried women to go topless. There are paved pathways and some uneven, sandy terrain, where the show will be held. The village has mostly gravel ground, which can be slightly muddy after heavy rainfall. There is a wooden boardwalk, with a few steps, through the snake & crocodile enclosure. In order to avoid congestion, the order of sites visited may be rotated. The village visited is a recreated village as there are no longer any authentic Zulu villages to visit.

    Tour code

    DUR_004

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    4 hours

  • Durban Coast & High Tea

    Take in the stunning scenes of the coast including Durban highlights, Ballito and then onto Umhlanga for high tea.

    Durban Coast & High Tea

    Follow the palm tree-lined Victoria Embankment, towards the Golden Mile and pass by the Juma Mosque, famous for its massive golden dome and turrets. Continue, north up the coast to Ballito, a small holiday town located 25 miles north of Durban, that was originally a sugarcane farm. This stretch of the North Coast shoreline is known as the Dolphin Coast and sightings are commonplace, but not guaranteed.

    Umhlanga Rocks is situated just north of the vibrant city of Durban on the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, and has the fantastic accommodation, up-market office parks and shopping centres. The golden sandy beaches stretch northwards for more than 125 miles, all the way to the spectacular world heritage site, Greater St Lucia Wetland Park. Inland from Umhlanga, endless fields of sugarcane give way to the tumbling area of the 1000 Hills, the massive Inanda Dam and mystical hidden valleys of Zululand.

    Visit a local hotel for high tea before departing back to Durban, stopping briefly at Currie Hill to take in the panoramic views of the city including the Old Market Square, representing the City Hall in Belfast and serving as Durban's municipal offices. Glimpse the Natural History Museum and Post Office before continuing past the Old Inland Revenue Building and Reserve Bank.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. To avoid congestion the order of sights may vary.

    Tour code

    DUR_015

    Features

    • Activity low

      Activity Level: Low

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    4 hours

  • Tala Game Reserve

    An opportunity for some excellent game viewing on this highly popular tour to Tala Game Reserve.

    Tala Game Reserve

    Tala Private Game Reserve spans more than 7,000 acres. Located 1¼ hours’ drive from Durban, Tala is where you may be lucky enough to catch sight of big game such as rhino, kudu, hippo, and giraffe. You will perhaps see some of the 16 species of antelope, including the rare Sable Antelope.

    Relax with welcoming refreshments and soak up the views from the open veranda before your adventure begins.

    During your game drive, travel in open vehicles with experienced game rangers, who will provide information on the animals and give you an insight into this exciting area.


    ACTIVITY EXCURSIONS
    You and all those in your party should be aware that, in undertaking activity excursions, you will be involved in a degree of physical exertion and/or activity such as hiking, biking, snorkelling, kayaking, diving etc. By booking the excursion you confirm that you and all those in your party are in good physical and mental condition, with no history of conditions such as seizures, dizziness, fainting, heart condition, respiratory problems or back/neck problems (by way of example only). You should also ensure that no one in your party is taking medicine that carries a warning about impairment of physical or mental abilities. If you are pregnant this type of excursion may not be appropriate for you. It is your responsibility to ensure that you are fit and well enough to take part in the activities booked and you are reminded to take care for your own safety. Because of the risks associated with activity excursions, you may be asked by the excursion provider to sign a document which may affect or limit the excursion provider’s liability. Comfortable flat walking shoes are recommended.

    LIABILITY
    Cunard will arrange for the excursions to be performed by the relevant excursion provider. Cunard does not provide or supply the excursion services. Cunard will exercise reasonable care and skill in the selection of the excursion provider, but will not in any circumstances have a greater liability than the excursion supplier and Cunard shall not be responsible for the negligent acts/omissions of the excursion supplier. Please note that in relation to all excursions Cunard is not responsible or liable for any loss, damage, or injury sustained by you unless such loss, damage or injury arises out of a breach of legal duty of Cunard.

    TRAVEL INSURANCE
    Before booking any activity excursions it is essential that you ensure your travel insurance extends to cover the specified activity. It is your responsibility to obtain adequate insurance.

    This excursion will operate by coach and open vehicle. From the coaches, you are required to walk 500 yards, over rough ground and up a few steep steps to board one of a variety of ten and 30 seated game-drive vehicles. Sunscreen, sunglasses and hats are essential. This tour is not suitable for those with injuries or conditions, which may be affected by the bumpy ride. The roads in the game reserve are gravel with inclines and certain parts of the game-drive can be bumpy. Guests are not permitted to use cellular phones or smoke during the game drives. Pregnant women and children under 12 may not participate. Due to extremely limited capacity, early booking is recommended. Guests are advised that the 4x4 vehicles do not have seat belts fitted, it is not permitted for participants to stand up whilst the vehicles are in motion. Wildlife sightings are not guaranteed.

    Tour code

    DUR_009

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    Duration

    5 hours

  • Scenes of Durban

    Become acquainted with the many faces of Durban, including the Botanical Gardens, Golden Mile and Moses Mabhida Stadium.

    Scenes of Durban

    Diverse cultural influences from Asia, Africa and Europe have each contributed to Durban's development and unique character. Enjoy a sightseeing tour of this sub-tropical city from the comfort of an air-conditioned motor coach.

    Follow the palm tree-lined Victoria Embankment, passing the Vasco Da Gama Clock, the Dick King Statue, the imposing Durban Club and the Yacht Club en-route, reaching Currie Hill, stopping briefly to take in the panoramic views of the City.

    Continue onto the Durban Botanical Gardens to enjoy a leisurely stroll through the gardens, which house a wide variety of local flora. Drive past the Old Market Square, which represent the City Hall in Belfast and serves as Durban's municipal offices. Glimpse the Natural History Museum and Post Office before continuing past the Old Inland Revenue Building and Reserve Bank, before driving to the Moses Mabhida Stadium for a photograph stop.

    Drive along the Golden Mile beachfront, where Zulu’s, resplendent in their colourful regalia, transport visitors in their colourful rickshaws. Pass by the Juma Mosque, which is reputedly the largest in the Southern Hemisphere and is famous for its massive golden dome and turrets.

    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. To fully enjoy this tour, some walking is required at the Botanical Gardens. Please take care of personal belongings at all times in Durban. The sequence of highlights may vary to avoid congestion. Flat, comfortable walking shoes and sun hats are strongly recommended.

    Tour code

    DUR_006

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    Duration

    3½ hours

  • Shakaland Zulu Village

    Discover the lifestyles and customs of a unique tribe, at a recreated Zulu village, during your visit to the heart of Zululand.

    Shakaland Zulu Village

    Shakaland began life as a film set for the television epic 'Shaka Zulu' and is the largest operation where one can experience the traditional Zulu lifestyle, at a recreated Zulu village. Upon arrival at Shakaland, you are invited to join the Nandi experience. Re-live the excitement and romance of the days of King Shaka, the King of the Zulus, in this authentic recreation of the Great Kraal, overlooking the Umhlatuze Lake in the heart of Zululand.

    Experience the fascinating rituals and the intriguing customs and beliefs that form the fabric of Zulu life. Walk through the village and see displays of Zulu women creating beadworks, weaving mats, sculpting pottery, baking bread and even brewing beer. Zulu men show you how to make spears and shields and build a hut. Zulu dancers perform rhythmic drum dances and tribal members recreate a ritual by the Sangoma traditional healer.

    This tour will also include a short audio-visual presentation and time at leisure to visit the curio shop.

    A traditional buffet luncheon will be served in the Kwabonamanzi Restaurant overlooking the Umhlatuze Lake.


    This excursion will operate by coach and on foot. Journey time to/from Shakaland is approximately two hours each way. Comfortable, non-slip shoes and a sun hat are essential. The tour involves a total of two hours’ walking / standing including steps and uneven ground. It is Zulu custom for unmarried women to go topless. The village visited is a recreated village as there are no longer any authentic Zulu villages to visit. The village has mostly gravel ground, which can be slightly muddy after heavy rain. Most of the tour takes place outdoors and involves quite a bit of walking. No photographs or videos may be taken of the Sangoma (traditional healer).

    Tour code

    DUR_010

    Features

    • Activity medium

      Activity Level: Medium

    • Meal included

      Meal Included

    • Refreshments included

      Refreshments included

    • Shopping

      Shopping

    Duration

    8 hours