Port Natal Maritime Museum
The Port Natal Maritime Museum offers a panoramic view of Durban Harbor, and gives a great insight into the influence of maritime culture on local life whilst also reflecting on the rigors and romance of lives lived at sea.
There are a number of community theatres in and around the Durban area. They are run by independent production companies, which bring a whole new energy to the stage. The township theatre companies focus mainly on occupying the youth and getting serious messages across.
There is also the dynamic of the Indian Community theatres, which are driven by various issues and comedy dramas, which draw large crowds. These popular productions are often hosted at many different venues throughout the city.
An activity which has gained huge popularity in the last while is supper theatre. This popular entertainment form features mostly cabarets, compilations and revivals. The entry price to these theatres normally includes a meal and the show, but not the drinks.
Amazing voyages, dramatic tales and old, yet inspiring collections form the basis of an unforgettable experience with attractions including the multi-ton floating vessels. The exhibits include the 38-year-old steam tug ,“JR More”, which was driven by an oil-burning engine, also worked as a tugboat in the harbor, but was well equipped to brave the open sea during salvage operations. It also boasts the minesweeper “SAS Durban”, a 42-year-old naval minesweeper, and together with other exhibits like the 75-year-old “Ulundi” with its coal-fired engine, is the oldest of the ships on display, and “NCS Challenger” the Maritime Museum offers families and tour groups hours of exploration, fun and education.
The Port Natal Maritime Museum deals exclusively with the city's seafaring tradition. It serves as a reminder that Durban was, and still is, the busiest port in Africa.The Britannia Exhibition Hall offers exhibits that encompass the entire nautical experience, from weather prediction equipment to navigation by the stars, and communication equipment linking ships at sea to dry land.
How to find the Port Natal Maritime Museum:
From the Durban city centre travel down Aliwal street towards the harbor, if on foot cross the railway using the subway - the vessels yellow funnels and the entrance is directly ahead.When driving, drive along the Esplanade towards the Yacht mole. You will turn towards the yacht mole entrance, and turn left, passing behind the Point Yacht Club, continue driving down the small road keeping the railway line on your left and the harbor on your right. The Maritime Museum will be clearly evident on your right just after the parking area.Address:
Bay End, Aliwal Street, Durban.
Telephone: 031 311 2231
Fax: 031 311 2230
08:30 to 16:00 Monday to Saturday
11:00 to 16:00 Sundays and Public Holidays
Closed : Good Friday and Christmas Day
Entrance Fee: By donation
The museum has outdoor seating under blue umbrellas ideal for enjoying the museums refreshments - cool drinks and chips are on sale.
Toilets are of the portable unisex type.
The adjacent maritime parking space is a good venue for entertainment and other events, but arrangements must be made in advance with the museum.
Nearest refreshments and shops:
At the BAT Centre or in the central business district
The BAT Centre has an entertainment and refreshment area, with dedicated work areas and galleries for artists. The shops sell a variety of unique arts and crafts, many having been produced by the local artists. The BAT Centre is located about 200 meters from the museum.
Boat trips are also provided by local operators near the museum.