British Airways began flying the only direct route between Europe and Durban last October. Flights operate three times a week (on Tuesday, Friday and Sunday) from Heathrow to Durban’s King Shaka International airport. Return fares start at £759 including taxes and charges.

top tip Take the South

African Tourism agent training at saspecialist.


African Pride offers a seven-night Safari, Battlefield and Beach itinerary in KwaZulu-Natal, from £2,025 per person based on two sharing. The price includes car hire and direct return BA flights to Durban from Heathrow.

Travelpack offers a 14-day self-drive with four nights in the Drakensberg, three in Nambiti Private Game Reserve, two overlooking Mount Isandlwana and ending with four nights in Durban, from £2,689 per person based on two sharing a double/twin room plus car rental and return direct flights to Durban with BA.

62 6 JUNE 2019

harness engages and you swing like a pendulum back and forth above the arena on what is the tallest stadium swing in the world. Victoria Street Market: If South Africa is the rainbow nation, this is where you’ll find all its colours. Stalls of bright costume jewellery, fabric in striking patterns, wood carvings and exotic fruit and veg stacked high like an art installation sit side by side with tables of spice. Golden Mile: Aside from its subtropical climate, perhaps Durban’s biggest selling point is its Golden Mile. Despite the name, this promenade runs for five miles along the broad sandy beach, past parks and playgrounds, picnic spots and paddling pools, volleyball pitches and cafes. Tour it on foot, Segway, rental bike or even on a rickshaw decked out like a mini carnival float. It’s also surf central: the warm waters of the Indian Ocean, hollow beach breaks and shark nets ensure there are always plenty of boards out when the surf’s up. Florida Road: For night owls and foodies, Florida Road is the place for post-sundowner pleasures. Pubs, clubs and music venues occupy restored Victorian and Edwardian buildings, while restaurants serve up South African wines full of character alongside succulent regional meats at very palatable prices.

ON DURBAN’S DOORSTEP Valley of a Thousand Hills: Leaving the city limits, you quickly reach the Valley of a Thousand Hills. Whether bathed in sunshine or semi-concealed by mist, this is a

If South Africa is the

rainbow nation, then Victoria Street Market is where you’ll find all its colours

sparsely populated, ever-green canvas that rises and dips into the distance. It’s also where you can get a taste of Zulu life. We stopped at PheZulu Safari Park and sat in a circle inside a traditional thatched hut listening to anecdotes and traditional tales while a flask of local brew was passed around. A raucous music and dance show followed, recounting a tale of romance and cattle. Drakensberg Mountains: The Drakensberg Mountains are around two and a half hours from Durban. This divine range stretches for more than 100 miles and lends itself to hiking, mountain biking, ziplining, abseiling and tubing, all offered at Dragon Peaks Mountain Resort. As if Drakensberg’s visual splendour wasn’t enough to give you a spiritual high, there’s a choir of angels tucked away up here too. Drakensberg Boys Choir ( performs in the school theatre on most Wednesdays. Starting with a classical repertoire, the show takes a contemporary twist in the second act. “It’s not just singing – it blows your mind,” says Helen Austin, senior product executive for touring at Kuoni.

CLOCKWISE FROM LEFT: Drakensberg Mountains; Segway tour, Golden Mile; surfers on Durban’s beach PICTURES: Shutterstock; Greatstock; Jeffrey Rikhotso

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