Did you know?
The Durban KwaZulu-Natal Convention Bureau was formed in 2010 and provides valuable information and assistance to meeting planners and incentive buyers.
KwaZulu-Natal is is known for its outstanding weather (320 days of sunshine per year), long coastline, rolling midlands and wildlife venues boasting the Big Five (lion, leopard, elephant, buffalo and rhino). Its varied cultural heritage makes it an interesting place to meet and enjoy experiences beyond the boardroom table.
Once home to legendary King Shaka and the Kingdom of the Zulu, today this coastal province is home to the largest Indian community outside of India and it enjoys a strong British colonial heritage. You'll see evidence of this colourful legacy in the streets of Durban and Pietermaritzburg, the province's two major hubs and primary meeting destinations.
Durban offers a diverse choice of meeting venues, starting with its award-winning International Convention Centre Durban (ICC Durban), a convenient, centrally located hub that adjoins the Durban Exhibition Centre. Collectively, the two venues are capable of hosting around 15 000 delegates within 33 000 square metres of floor space.
Durban's city centre and the Umhlanga business node 30 minutes' drive north along the N2 offer the businessperson a range of hotels of international standard, intimate boutique hotels, guest houses that offer on-site meeting facilities, as well as a good selection of standalone conference venues. Hotels like the Royal Hotel and Hilton Durban, located near the ICC Durban, offer first-rate meeting venues, as do the Sibaya Casino & Entertainment Kingdom, the Suncoast Conference Centre, and Makaranga Garden Lodge & Conference Centre – just a few of hundreds of meeting venues located in and around the city.
Heading away from the city up the North Coast, you'll find Big Five game reserves and the wonders of the iSimangaliso Wetland Park UNESCO World Heritage Site. Meeting venues located at bush lodges, country estates and country hotels offer options that combine work and relaxation.
For KwaZulu-Natal meetings further afield, you'll find the uKhahlamba Drakensberg Park, another UNESCO World Heritage Site, to the west of Durban. It boasts the highest mountain range in South Africa and is home to several country hotels and resorts that offer quality meeting venues. The Drakenberg Sun, a recent winner of two 2011 Umvelo Responsible Tourism awards for its environmental initiatives, is surrounded by breathtaking mountain vistas and offers meeting facilities for up to 250 people.
No visit to KwaZulu-Natal would be complete without taking time to explore the province's natural attractions and adventure activities, many of which lend themselves to great team building exercises. Among the KwaZulu-Natal adventures on offer are 4x4 tours, abseiling, canoeing, scuba diving, quad biking, zip-lining, boat trips, deep-sea fishing, paragliding, horse-riding, kayaking, river rafting and more.
A visit to a Zulu cultural village is recommended to become acquainted with the customs and traditions of the Zulu nation, listen to Zulu folklore, savour typical African cuisine and learn a bit of Zulu dancing.
Travel tips & Planning info
Who to contact
Tel: +27 (0)31 366 7500
Durban KwaZulu-Natal Convention Bureau
Tel: +27 (0)31 360 1168
Email: James Seymour on firstname.lastname@example.org
International Convention Centre – Durban
45 Bram Fischer Road, Durban
Tel: +27 (0)31 360 1000
How to get here
The only international carriers that fly into Durban are Emirates and Air Mauritius. Passengers generally fly into Johannesburg and then catch a one-hour connecting flight to Durban.
Best time to visit
Durban has year-round beach weather. In the higher-lying areas like the Drakensberg mountains, it can be cold in winter, with snow from June to August/September.
Tours to do
While in the province, book a township tour and enjoy a few hours experiencing the culture of Umlazi or KwaMashu.
There is much to see and experience in KwaZulu-Natal, which has an excellent road network. For the greatest flexibility, hire a car and drive yourself around.
Where to stay
There are world-class, award-winning accommodation options in KwaZulu-Natal. These range from luxury game lodges to golfing estates, hotels, country houses, B&Bs and guest houses.
What to eat
When in Durban, try a bunny chow – a hollowed-out half-loaf of bread filled with curry.