Boring Durban – 4 Myths Busted
*Loads of sarcasm included, have a laugh*.
Boring? Boring? If anything Durban is not boring, ladies and gentlemen let’s de-spell some of those myths for you!
I have proudly lived and worked in Durban, South Africa for most of my life. Travel is a huge passion of mine, and so I have had the opportunity to explore the surrounding areas, away from the city. A great frustration of mine is when visitors or people I have met online tell me they’re coming to South Africa, but not Durban because it’s boring!
The Boring Restaurants and Nightlife
Image: Station Drive Facebook Page
Durban is so boring at the moment, that there are hundreds of new restaurants, cafe’s, and pop-up society’s running amuck. Call them hipster, call them hippie, just do yourself a favour and make sure you call them. Book a table and book one now.
Durban’s boring people have gathered together and decided that their city was not boring enough and that the exciting retail chains were quite satisfactory. The outcome of that meeting resulted in all these boring entrepreneurs and go getter’s setting up shop and welcoming everyone with open arms. In fact, there is this one place in Durban called The Station Drive where several of these menacing entrepreneurs have acquired an entire block of boring together.
If fact, every Thursday in this boring block you can join the movers and shakers, the creative’s, the out the box dream makers on First Thursday’s and have a little fun, all while exploring the block and its various businesses, shops, and eateries.
Whether it’s home-made Gin at Distillery 031, with Nat and Jordan, with views out of their large wide windows on the second floor, or watching them brew their own spirits, on their brewing floor, about 20 steps from your table? Boring right?
Maybe you’d prefer to visit The Boiler Room? It’s called that because it literally is the old “boiler room”. The old Lion Match Factory is actually the location of this new block of boring, with newly repurposed and reused office spaces, restaurants, and chill zones. Isn’t it annoying when people create something beautiful out of something old?
And even worse is when they’re prepared for your morning hangover? Catch The Market at the same block every Sunday morning, where you can buy fresh veg, fruit and pastries, homemade jams and the likes, or have it served and prepared for you on site, while you wonder if your shades come in a darker tint.
Image: Morning Trade Press Release.
Now we call ourselves Durban, but really that means Kwa Zulu Natal. We’re lucky enough to have an incredibly diverse terrain an hour or two in any direction you travel from the city centre. Feel like hiking snow capped mountains? How about surfing the coastline? Not your thing? Then you must surely take a trip p to the famous Hluhluwe Imfolozi Game Reserve? But be warned, it’s all incredibly boring….
The Boring Berg
So you have your hired car? Your friends and your padkos (it’s a boring South African term)? Now the question is, where too? Let’s head to the cooler regions first. Travel along the famous Nottingham Road during winter, the stark contrasts of beige grass, red fields, and recently harvested lanes will intrigue, or bore you.
On your way up stop at the Piggly Wiggly, and advice is to buy ALL the cheese and wine. Nottingham Road is home to the home-made artisan, cheese, jams, preserves, wines, and yes even Craft Beer!
The Notties Brewery is making waves across South Africa with their Craft Beer, being one of the few breweries based in KZN opposed to Capetown and Johannesburg this little place is making us proud. Oh and they have mango, craft beer because that’s as boring as they get!
Image: Julian Carelson Photography
And, what is a night in Nottingham Road if you don’t spend the evening at Granny Mouse Country House & Spa?
With its wood fires in every room, fine dining and bistro options and wine cellar in the basement, do you really think “boring” is a word in their vocabulary? Granny Mouse is known among the local journalists and bloggers as being the place you call home.
The first escape away from the city centre, and why not? In winter you need no excuse to layer up, as snow often falls in the area, distracting everyone while you pour yourself another gluhwein and there are plenty of activities including Archery to be had in the area.
But that’s boring I suppose. *Sticks tongue out like a boring person*
Image: Al Nicoll Photography
The Boring Bush
Or maybe you prefer to go somewhere warmer? Somewhere a little sunnier? That’s cool too, boring but cool. Make your way to one of the world’s most famous Game Reserves and one of South Africa’s first Game reserves, the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Park.
Home to the BIG 5 several times over this is the perfect place to train your game spotting abilities and enjoy a stunning self-drive. Many people go straight to Kruger and miss out on Hluhluwe which saddens me, while Kruger is popular and there is a guaranteed chance of seeing an animal, I prefer the calmer, non-congested roads of Hluhluwe and Imfolozi. It’s all about the adventure, about not expecting to see something and the BOOM it’s there.
We recently had a day where we say, Hyena, Lion, Vulture, Wild Dog and Elephant all within the first hour of entering the park. An incredibly rare sighting and furthermore this gave us the chance to focus on other wildlife like the amazing birdlife that this park is famous for. Caution: Some people may find this boring.
The Boring Beach
I really have nothing left to tell you besides the fact that the most boring thing we have to do here in Durban, the one thing we have all been forced to do from childhood? The thought just gives me shudders! The Boring Beach! Oh yes, folks, it’s true, Durban has one of the best (boring) coastlines in the world. No, seriously it’s won a ton of those award things’ that, we as boring people don’t talk about.
In fact, we are too busy being bowled over by waves on our body boards, paddling out on our surfboards or wobbling on our stand up paddle boards to really talk about anything. We generally like to do these activities before work, sometimes at lunch time during work and most certainly after work. We are a city that wear slops and shorts as the general dress code (yes to that formal event with the mayor) and we kind of don’t trust anyone who doesn’t like water.
Oh and the city councils have come to realize how important and serious we are about this as they have spent a lot of time making this space, cleaner, nicer and more user-friendly for everyone.
Rocking up at 05h00 to catch the sunrise all the Instagrammers have clean beaches to walk on. Paddling out into the ocean with your instructor means, mom or dad can chill at one of the many eateries like Surf Riders Cafe on the beachfront, literally on the sand for some.
Or if you just need to get those blood cells moving before that big presentation you have at work, hiring a bike takes about 10mins, and you can ride along the promenade and with the wind in your hair. Meeting other cyclist’s on your way and rewarding yourself with a milkshake at Bike and Bean before making the return trip.
And yes, we swim ALL year round; Durban is one of the only places in Southern Africa where the waters are warm enough to be in the ocean 365 days a year, seven days a week.
So yeah, maybe we are boring, maybe we’re the most boring people on this planet, I for one don’t think so. And if we are then I like boring, then I want more boring because this boring is awesome!
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below means. And Jax, thanks for letting me share my home town with you and your readers
Cee is a digital and social media boffin! Twitter is my name and adventure is my game! I love working with brands who are into living life.
Let’s go snow boarding, mountain hiking, drag racing, or dancing under the moon!