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The 10 Best Restaurants In Durban, South Africa

The 10 Best Restaurants In Durban, South Africa
All too often overshadowed by the popularity of Johannesburg and Cape Town, Durban is at last beginning to establish itself as a go-to cultural destination. The city boasts a wide variety of international restaurants as well as many that serve up seafood and speciality dishes typical of South Africa. As Durban continues to develop as a foodie hub we have updated Coastal Cuisine: Durban’s Best Cultural Restaurants to highlight a few more exceptional eateries.
Durban City Hall © Chris Eason/Flickr
A signature dish at 9th Avenue Bistro Courtesy of 9th Avenue Bistro

h Avenue Bistro

Bistro, Mediterranean, $$$
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A signature dish at Butcher Boys Grill
A signature dish at Butcher Boys Grill | Courtesy of Butcher Boys Grill
A sophisticated bistro nestled in the heart of Durban’s entertainment district, 9th Avenue Bistro is run by husband-and-wife duo Graham and Gina Neilson. The restaurant serves fusion dishes with much emphasis on seafood specialities; for the most memorable dining experience, guests are encouraged to try the six-course tasting menu. 9th Avenue Bistro is an award-winning eatery, and the black-and-white décor and artfully plated up dishes showcase class, ensuring that the restaurant attracts the highest calibre of foodies through its doors. Dishes on offer are both creative and unique and are only ever made using the freshest of ingredients.
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Mon:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Tue:
12:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Tue:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Wed:
12:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Wed:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Thu:
12:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Thu:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Fri:
12:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Fri:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Sat:
6:00 pm - 9:30 pm
A signature dish at Butcher Boys Grill Courtesy of Butcher Boys Grill

Butcher Boys Grill

Restaurant, Seafood, Steakhouse, $$$
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The place to go for high quality meat just how the South Africans love it, Butcher Boys Grill serves both wet and dry-aged succulent steaks that are ‘grilled to perfection’. Diners here can choose their cut and how bloody they like their meat and then relax in the knowledge that the chef is preparing their steak with the utmost love and care, basting it in Butcher Boys’ famous sauce to ensure that it is served to the table tasting sensational. While grilling up South Africa’s best beef is this restaurant’s forte, the menu is also packed full of offerings for those not so easily excited by red meat. The seafood dishes such as the fillet of kingklip and the sesame-crusted tuna, as well as the chicken, avocado and bacon salad and the roquefort salad are worth trying too.
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Sun:
12:00 pm - 9:30 pm
Mon:
12:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Tue:
12:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Wed:
12:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Thu:
12:00 pm - 10:00 pm
Fri:
12:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Sat:
12:00 pm - 10:30 pm

Cargo Hold

Restaurant, Seafood, $$$
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A rare opportunity to dine with the sharks, a meal at Cargo Hold truly is a unique dining experience absolutely ideal for lovers of marine life. Situated within uShaka Marine World, guests of the restaurant are seated at a table in the stern of the phantom ship affording them unbeatable views of the ocean and the shark tank. Open for both lunch and dinner, reservations are essential and children under eight years old are not permitted to attend the dinner service. The menu is influenced by a number of exotic international cuisines and includes dishes such as succulent steaks, saucy chicken, crispy duck and raw fish salads.
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Sun:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Mon:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Mon:
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Tue:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Tue:
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Wed:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Wed:
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Thu:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Thu:
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Fri:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Fri:
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm
Sat:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Sat:
6:00 pm - 9:00 pm

Freedom Café

Bar, Cafe, Fusion, Coffee, Tea , Fast Food, $$$
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Gino's Sky Bar
Gino's Sky Bar | © Roma Revolving
An old cargo container-cum-hip and trendy eatery, Freedom Café has followed in the footsteps of many cafes aimed at a younger crowd and chosen a cheap venue guaranteed to attract diners for its novelty factor as well as its tasty dishes. Situated in the garden of Concierge Boutique Bungalows, the restaurant has been constructed using an innovative blend of glass and metal, making it hard to believe what it was once used for. A great place to stop by for a proper cup of steaming coffee or a delicious lunch or rejuvenating breakfast, the outdoor seating makes Freedom Café particularly appealing on sunny spring mornings.
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Harvey’s

Bar, Restaurant, Contemporary, $$$
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A Selection of Ile Maurice Dishes
A Selection of Ile Maurice Dishes | Courtesy Ile Maurice
The owners at Harvey’s believe that both cooking and menu design are art forms that should only ever be attempted with the utmost care and effort. This award-winning restaurant features a regularly changing menu specialising in contemporary and fusion cuisines. Seafood is aplenty here, alongside a number of sushi dishes and noodle main courses to choose between. The elegant, high-brow design of the restaurant’s interior features a number of original oil paintings and mounted buffalo trophies to be admired between courses too. Harvey’s also is home to a separate bar perfect for a pre- or post -dinner cocktail, glass of wine or beer.
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A Selection of Ile Maurice Dishes Courtesy Ile Maurice

Ile Maurice

Restaurant, French, Seafood, Vegetarian, $$$
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Restaurant Ile Maurice
Restaurant Ile Maurice | © Craft Trattoria
The ideal spot for enjoying stunning views of Durban’s seascape, Ile Maurice has been a firm favourite amongst the city’s locals for almost 40 years. With a strong focus on French-Mauritian cuisine, Ile Maurice specialises in serving fresh seafood dishes bursting with exciting flavours. Previously run by kitchen veteran Elsie Mauvis, after retiring at the respectable age of 90, the restaurant is now in the trustworthy hands of her son who continues the traditional way of practice and passion for flavour that his mother stamped so firmly upon the place before him.
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Moyo

Restaurant, African, $$$
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For anyone looking to experience a splash of African culture whilst they eat, Moyo is undoubtedly the place to go. With a focus that varies between different African countries, the décor is aflame with oranges, golds and bronzes, while live African music accompanies most meal settings. The restaurant is set on the seafront offering sweeping views out to the Indian Ocean, and the nearby Pier Bar, great for a cocktail whilst waiting for a table, actually has its feet in the waters. Signature dishes at Moyo include lamb tagine, braised oxtail and Ethiopian ostrich fillet but there are many other tantalisingly tasty dishes to choose from too. Handcrafted jewellery and pretty keepsakes can also be purchased from the restaurant as a memory of your visit to South Africa.
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Sun:
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Mon:
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Tue:
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Wed:
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Thu:
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Fri:
11:00 am - 10:00 pm
Sat:
11:00 am - 10:00 pm

Roma Revolving

Restaurant, Italian, $$$
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Durban’s only rotating restaurant, Roma Revolving sits 32 storeys above the ground affording diners exclusive views across this beautiful coastal city. The cuisine is mainly Italian but a number of seafood and fresh game dishes can also be found on the menu ready to be devoured among mesmerising panoramas. After dinner, guests are invited up onto the roof to Gino’s Sky Bar to sip a cocktail under the stars – the most romantic and memorable end to an exceptional meal in the metropolis.
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Mon:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Tue:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Wed:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Thu:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Fri:
12:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Fri:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Sat:
12:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Sat:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm

The Corner Café

The quintessential laid-back Durban café, The Corner Café serves great coffee and healthy, tasty dishes. Stop by for breakfast and choose between the nostalgic option of boiled eggs and marmite soldiers, go for something healthier like a bowl of seasonal fruit, organic yogurt and homemade muesli or get your morning protein fix with the breakfast hotdog. By lunchtime the menu fills up with salads, sandwiches, pasta dishes and homemade pies and tartlets. The Corner Café is completely unpretentious and welcoming, and the homemade breadsticks are an absolute must.

The Corner Café, 197 Brand Road, Glenwood, Durban, South Africa, +27 31 201 0219

The Oyster Box Grill Room and Ocean Terrace

Hotel Restaurant, Restaurant, Indian, Asian, African, Seafood, $$$
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Located within the luxurious 5-star hotel The Oyster Box, The Grill Room is one of the best fine dining restaurants in the city. With a focus on freshly caught seafood and perfectly cooked tender meats, every ingredient used and finished dish served is always of the highest quality. Wine aficionados will be happy to know that the wine list matches the calibre of the dishes and offers plenty of local and international bottles to choose from. Aside from The Grill Room, guests at The Oyster Box can also enjoy dining on the hotel’s Ocean Terrace from which they can enjoy spectacular panoramas whilst tucking into a flavoursome Indian curry or an authentic pizza.
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Sun:
7:00 am - 10:30 am
Sun:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Sun:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Mon:
7:00 am - 10:30 am
Mon:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Mon:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Tue:
7:00 am - 10:30 am
Tue:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Tue:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Wed:
7:00 am - 10:30 am
Wed:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Wed:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Thu:
7:00 am - 10:30 am
Thu:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Thu:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Fri:
7:00 am - 10:30 am
Fri:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Fri:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm
Sat:
7:00 am - 10:30 am
Sat:
12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Sat:
6:00 pm - 10:30 pm