Top 10 Best Beaches in Durban

South Africa boasts a coastline of almost 3 000 kilometres, with some of the best beaches in Durban specifically. The city of Durban has been South Africa’s premier holiday destination for decades.


2min read

Published 25 August 2022


South Africa boasts a coastline of almost 3 000 kilometres, with some of the best beaches in Durban specifically. The city of Durban has been South Africa’s premier holiday destination for decades.

Top 10 Best Beaches in Durban

South Africa boasts a coastline of almost 3 000 kilometres, with some of the best beaches in Durban specifically. The city of Durban has been South Africa’s premier holiday destination for decades. With its wide promenade and abundance of restaurants, B&Bs, hotels, luxury and self-catering establishments it caters for visitors from all walks of life, from those with tight budgets to those who have money to spare.

Can You Swim in Durban Beaches?

Like many South African beaches, you can swim in Durban’s beaches. KZN’s world class beaches bask in a host of Blue Flag awards and are therefore ideal and safe family beach destinations while others may, for instance, only have lifeguards on duty during the holiday seasons or weekends. The swimming beaches are shark net protected, some have a lot of the usual beach-based infrastructure, others minimal facilities and the more ‘wild’ beaches along the coast have nothing at all except sand, sea, shells, sunshine and sea breezes to welcome you.

It is therefore essential that you check what each beach has on offer before deciding which one you should unfurl your beach umbrella and spread your swimming towels on.

Is the water in Durban Beaches safe?

The City Fathers recognise the importance of the Durban metropole as essential to the area’s economy as well as that of the Kwa-Zulu Natal province (KZN) as a whole. They devote a considerable amount of time and money to make sure it stays that way. For example, during high-holiday seasons and selectively throughout the year, the water washing Durban's shores is tested to monitor its E-Coli levels to ensure they meet acceptable standards.

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What Are Some Of The Best Beaches in Durban?

From Scottburgh in the south to Umdloti to the north, the Durban Indian Ocean coastline has roughly 500 kilometres of beaches blessed all year round with fantastic weather and warm water. It goes without saying that central to this coastal city’s success as a vacation hub is the quality of its many beaches. Selecting the best beaches in Durban, depends on personal taste, of course. For example; some of the beaches are more popular with bathers and sun worshipers, whilst others are somewhat quieter. Some offer water sports and many of the beaches have rocky outcrops that are ideal spots from which avid fishermen can cast their lines or for families to explore the fascinating rock pools that abound.

Whatever the case they all boast gorgeous golden sandy beaches lapped (sometimes even pounded) with warm Indian Ocean waters.

In this article, we at Flight Centre briefly examine some of Durban's top beaches but while they may differ in what they have to offer by way of facilities, they are all top class, have abundant soft sands and warm ocean water and are really fun places to be.

Durban central beaches:

  • North Beach
  • South Beach
  • Ansteys Beach
  • Addington Beach
  • uShaka Beach

Beaches in the Durban wider metropole:

  • Umhlanga
  • Umdloti
  • Amanzimtoti
  • Warner Beach
  • Scottburgh

The most well-known of metropolitan Durban's beaches are North Beach, South Beach and Addington Beach. Set to the north of South Africa’s busiest harbour is the North Beach which runs from the Bay of Plenty and Dairy Beach.

It is in the heart of the Durban beach-front, now known as the "Golden Mile". This beach-front has seen many improvements and renovations since the early 1970s but received a major face-lift in time for the 2010 FIFA (football) World Cup and as a result, it is now home to a wide variety of restaurants, bars and cafes and, the world's fifth biggest aquarium housed in uShaka Marine World.

North Beach

The golden sands of North Beach are reached via a palm-lined promenade and the striking facades of the high-rise hotels and apartment blocks make Durban's beachfront instantly recognisable. North Beach offers great swimming and is also a well-known surf spot.

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South Beach

Also in Durban’s famous “Golden Mile” is the South Beach, which, as its name implies, is situated to the south of the city centre. As with other beaches in Durban, South Beach has golden sands and warm blue waters that lure beachgoers, swimmers, and surfers alike.

Ansteys Beach

While on the subject of surfing, the relatively unspoilt Ansteys Beach with its golden sands lies close to Cave Rock, home to the world-famous barrelling wave that draws surfers like a magnet to this part of KZN’s coastline.

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Addington Beach

A mere ten minutes from the city’s central business district and as yet another prime portion of the “Golden Mile” Addington Beach is easy to get to and here you will discover a large, flat stretch of great beach and great swimming.

uShaka Beach

Travelling a little further south you reach the end of the “Golden Mile” at the family-friendly uShaka Beach which is a fairly sheltered expanse of wonderful beach on the Point Waterfront and is ideal for family fun in the surf.


Further up the coast is the resort town of Umhlanga which is home to several luxury hotels and apartment blocks. Umhlanga rocks beach is a welcoming golden sand swimming beach blessed with all the amenities of a top-class holiday destination.


Travelling a few kilometres north of Umhlanga you will come across the small seaside town of Umdloti. This town’s beach is surrounded by native sub-tropical flora while slightly further inland the iconic KZN sugar cane fields greet the eye.  What makes this beach somewhat unique among Durban’s wonderful golden beaches is its natural rock pool which provides the “more mature” bathers and the very young the pleasure of swimming safely in the warm Indian Ocean waters.  But this beach has something special to offer its visitors and that is catching sight of the pods of dolphins that swim close to shore every morning.  Whale spotting can also be enjoyed from the beach during certain months of the year!

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Amanzimtoti, Warner Beach and Scottburgh

To conclude, it is worth mentioning a particular coastal jewel. Travelling south of Durban you, first of all, come across the Amanzimtoti and Warner Beaches (both of which delight in golden sands, warm seas and abundant sunshine as do all the beaches along this stretch of KZN's coast) and you will end your journey at the very popular Scottburgh Beach.  This is a golden, sandy curved beach situated some distance below the parking ground and is reached via an easily negotiable footpath starting at a well-grassed bank popular with picnic makers.  The sea here is fairly calm so is a joy for swimming in but an added attraction that complements this beach's charm is its quiet riverine lagoon.

With such a huge variety of beach destinations in and around Durban on offer from which you can choose, get in touch with Flight Centre’s expert consultants right away to get a quote and then book your holiday in one of the many accommodation options open to you.

Happy sunbathing!




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