Luchtfoto van Durban

Where to stay in Durban: best areas and hotels

Durban’s long stretch of beautiful beaches, famous for their warm waters and great surfing, are among the city’s top attractions. Collectively known as the Golden Mile , this area just east of the Central Business District offers tourist accommodations in all budgets, especially around North Beach. You will also find a boardwalk with shops and restaurants and uShaka Marine World. More hotel options can be found in the trendy suburbs, such as Morningside, Berea and Glenwood, which stretch north and west of the downtown area. The CBD itself, known for its colorful markets like Victoria Street, is best visited during the day, and not a place most tourists want to stay – although there are a few high-quality budget and mid-sized sleepers at just the right value. Durban is also famous for its Indian cuisine, especially curry, and a local specialty known as “Bunny Chow,” and Florida Road in the Morningside suburb is the city’s main dining district and a great place to eat locally. There are also accommodation options here.

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Where to stay for luxury

Aerial view of Durban

In a quiet Morningside location with sweeping views of the city, African Pride Audacia Manor Boutique Hotel is an elegant, old-fashioned, romantic five-star boutique hotel. Housed in a 1928 colonial-style mansion, the property features spacious rooms with balconies and antique wood furnishings. A delicious breakfast buffet is included. There is also a restaurant with seating for lunch and dinner, an outdoor pool and hot tub, and the option to arrange in-room massage treatments.

Right on the North Beach promenade , which is part of the Golden Mile , the Protea Hotel by Marriott Durban Edward is a lavish luxury option. In a building dating back to 1911, the hotel has a charm often lacking in chain hotels – check out the photos of old Durban in the stairwells. Rooms are clean and comfortable, many with direct ocean views from furnished balconies. There is an all-day buffet restaurant, a rooftop swimming pool and underground parking. Service is excellent.

Located between the CBD and the Golden Mile , right next to the International Convention Center, the Hilton Durban is a top luxury bet if you’re looking for a bigger brand with consistently great service and cleanliness. The rooms are modern, with comfortable beds, workstations and marble baths, as well as large windows overlooking the city skyline. Book a higher floor for the best views. There is a restaurant and swimming pool on site.

The Oyster Box is a little further out of town in the ritzy Umhlanga Rocks suburb, where Durban’s A-list hangs out. This area is the pinnacle of luxury real estate, it’s a nice mix of Mediterranean and Colonial European style, with porters in pith helmets and red and white striped cushions on sunbeds by the pool. The location is right on the beach near an old lighthouse and some rooms have a view of both. The hotel’s restaurant is excellent, serving a delicious buffet breakfast – watch out for monkeys stealing your food.

Where to Stay: Mid-Range

Durban Town Hall
Durban Town Hall

Royal Hotel, one of the most affordable mid-range properties, is located just on the eastern edge of the CBD and its location may turn some off. But once inside you will find a beautiful, old-fashioned hotel with Art Deco influences. Rooms are elegant, comfortable and clean with nice linens and city views. There is a swimming pool and a restaurant on site.

The Coastlands Musgrave Hotel is another well-priced hotel offering clean and comfortable rooms in the suburb of Musgrave, about 5 miles from uShaka Marine World. The rooms have free Wi-Fi and satellite TV. The best rooms have private balconies and city views (be sure to book on a higher floor). There is also an outdoor pool, coffee shop, gourmet restaurant and spa with three treatment rooms.

Slightly more expensive, but right in the heart of the Florida Road buzz , Quarters Hotel Florida Road, in an elegant Edwardian-style home, is another top mid-range choice. The luxurious rooms are furnished with French antiques and some have four-poster beds and a private patio. Breakfast is included and there is an airy restaurant with a terrace for other meals.

Where to stay on a budget

Golden Mile walkway
Golden Mile walkway

Durban has a number of budget options that are very similar in price and amenities. They are usually located near North Beach and the Golden Mile or on the edge of the CBD.

Right on the boardwalk in North Beach Just a few minutes’ walk from the ocean, the Parade Hotel offers clean budget rooms with sea views. The staff are cheerful and efficient, and the included breakfast buffet will give you fuel to start the day.

Slightly further west towards the CBD, yet only a 10-minute walk from the beach and within close proximity to numerous restaurants, Road Lodge Durban is another excellent budget choice. It features small but clean rooms and friendly service. The property is child-friendly and babysitting can be arranged.

The Riviera Hotel is located just a few blocks south of the CBD and opposite Durban’s harbour. It offers simple but clean rooms. The included breakfast is very good, and the staff is friendly. Taxis are waiting outside.

Where to stay for families

Durban Beach
Durban Beach

A favorite family splurge is the luxurious Southern Sun Elangeni & Maharani North Beach . There are family rooms and suites, some with kitchens to choose from, and accommodations are stylish and modern with flat-screen TVs, ocean views and Wi-Fi. You’ll be spoiled for choice with 11 on-site restaurants. There are also three swimming pools and a spa.

Also in North Beach , Belaire Suites is a more affordable family choice. Comfort suites come in a variety of sizes and bed configurations and are relatively simple but spacious and clean with a kitchenette. The included breakfast buffet is a plus, as is the location right next to the sand.

Where to stay for romance

Beach and skyline of Durban
Beach and skyline of Durban

Tucked away in the quiet suburb of Durban North, the Endless Horizons Boutique Hotel is further away from the main downtown attractions, but is perfect for a luxurious romantic break. Let them know you’re celebrating a wedding or anniversary before you arrive, and they’ll leave a message of love in rose petals on the floor. While it’s not right on the beach, it’s close by, and many of the stylish rooms in this contemporary boutique hotel have ocean views. Beds are super comfy and the rooftop infinity pool is fantastic. There is also a restaurant on site.

In the hip Morningside Suburb, home to the Florida Road entertainment district, The St. James on Venice is an excellent romantic choice. The luxury boutique guest house is located on a quiet leafy street opposite the historic St. James Church, in a building dating back to 1892. The rooms are elegant with modern touches such as a flat-screen TV and free Wi-Fi, and some have a view on the church or quiet gardens. The restaurant here is excellent, offering delicious, well-presented dishes and the option of dining on the terrace. Breakfast is included in the price.

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