The Royal Natal Yacht Club is the perfect place to sip on a gin and tonic as you watch the yachts in the harbour. Once known as the Durban Regatta Club, this esteemed yacht club is recognised as one of the stalwarts of the Durban social scene.

Did you know?

The Royal Natal Yacht Club is the oldest yacht club in Africa.

The Royal Natal Yacht Club is situated at the Yacht Mole in the Durban harbour. The club is synonymous with the early days of Port Natal, where the gentlemanly pursuit of yachting was high on the social and sporting agenda. Much of the history of early Durban can be linked to this club and the early regattas were always popular occasions.

The Royal Natal Yacht Club has a fascinating history that stretches over a few centuries. It was originally known as the Durban Regatta Club and was formed in 1858, when the first-ever sailing regatta was held in Durban.

Further down the line, it became known as the Natal Yacht Club and, in 1891, much to the delight of those who had settled in the port city of Durban, it was officially declared the Royal Natal Yacht Club. These days, the Royal Natal Yacht Club is an active yacht club with racing on offer. Wednesday evenings in summer are good for sundowner sailing, while dinghy racing takes place on Saturday afternoons and Sundays are for keelboat racing.

This yacht club in Durban is open to the public and these days guests can enjoy the grandeur of yachting with a modern twist as the Clubhouse is available for a delicious meal or drinks at the end of the day. The Britannia Room is situated on the upper level of the club with incredible views over the Durban Marina. Sunday carvery lunches here are legendary and the kitchen is known to serve a good Indian curry.

The Lower Deck is where diners can enjoy relaxed meetings, breakfasts or lunches and it opens onto the lawns, where visitors enjoy alfresco dining on the grass overlooking Durban's harbour.

There is also a swimming pool and a jungle gym for the children.

There are regular regattas and the sight of yachts in full sail out on the Indian Ocean or coming in to the harbour is certainly something to behold.

The good news is that the club is open to non-members (although members do receive significant discounts).

Travel tips & Planning info

Who to contact

Royal Natal Yacht Club
Yacht Mole, Durban Harbour
KwaZulu-Natal
South Africa

Telephone: +27 (0)31 301 5425
Email: club@rnyc.org.za

How to get here

From the M4, take the Victoria Embankment offramp. At the third set of robots follow the signage to The Yacht Mole.

Best time to visit

Breakfast starts at 7am on the Lower Deck. The Brittania Room opens from 11 am.

Tours to do

Take a cruise of the Durban harbour. Various operators offer boat trips and sundowner cruises.

What will it cost

Entrance is free to the yacht club. Meals are relatively inexpensive and good value.

Where to stay

Durban is a great holiday destination and there is a lot of accommodation available. You might want to stay at the famous Royal Hotel opposite the yacht basin.

What to eat

The Sunday carvery in the Brittania Room is a must. Or treat yourself to breakfast on the Lower Deck. The Royal Natal Yacht Club also boasts the best fish and chips in town.

What's happening

There's always a lot on the go in Durban – visit the Victoria Street Market, the race track at Greyville or the Bat Centre for a spot of arts and culture.