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Things to do in May around Durban with a rental car.

Granby, Colorado
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Things to do in May around Durban with a rental car.

I will be spending a week by myself as a 50 year old male in uMhlanga Rocks in the middle of May. I will have a rental car and am looking for advice on things to do. I am looking to drive into the 1000 Hills for one day and spend a night in St. Lucia and then visit Hluhluwe-iMfolozi for a day long safari. May spend some time in a casino. So what else should I look Into? Authentic markets, old architecture, good meals, and nature are things I am very interested in. Also, how careful do I need to be driving and parking? Should I drive into Durban or better to take taxi's? Are there crooked traffic officers and where are they most common? Should I drive to park or take shuttle? Any advice would be appreciated and any alternatives to my plans are welcome as nothing set in stone except the rental car and lodging. Thanks!

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Long Island, New...
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1. Re: Things to do in May around Durban with a rental car.

One night is not enough in St Lucia. It's a fun town with lots to do in the stunningly beautiful iSimangaliso Wetland Park. If you kayak, the kayak with hippos is an adrenaline rush, if you ride, riding horses on the beach or with impala and wildebeest is cool and the drive to Cape Vidal might be my favorite scenic/wildlife drive anywhere. I'd also spend a couple of nights in Hluhluwe-iMfolozi. It's one of the top three game parks in S Africa. The southern half of the park has better game viewing. Mpila is a fine place to stay in the park. You can drive yourself around all day and also do ranger led game drives from Mpila. It's all on the KZNWildlife website.

I've never experienced crooked cops in S Africa (though I have in Georgia). Pay attention to speed limits and be careful on secondary roads with children walking with no sidewalks and livestock grazing with no fencing. Not sure what shuttles you refer to and parking is fine. If you are approached by a "parking guard", give him a few Rand when you return to your car. Leave your valuables at home and take your camera with you, lock your luggage in the boot/trunk.

There is a craft market on the N2 just north of Hluhluwe town. It has lots of crafts made by locals - just be careful of the mass produced stuff mixed in. I've met a few of the craftspeople and I have some beautiful pieces I've bought there (including my beautiful dark wood hippo). No haggling (which I prefer).

Have fun. You're going to love it.

Granby, Colorado
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2. Re: Things to do in May around Durban with a rental car.

Thank you. Will be coming from a safari in Botswana so only considering park as a not to miss and if I didn't see one or more of the big five there.

Long Island, New...
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3. Re: Things to do in May around Durban with a rental car.

There's so much more than the big five...

You won't likely see rhino in Botswana. HiP is a great place to see them but it's not a zoo. You'll learn in Botswana that the best times to spot wildlife is early and late. If you don't stay in the park you miss the best times.

Sydney, Australia
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4. Re: Things to do in May around Durban with a rental car.

We have just returned from Durban. It was our second visit. The game park is excellent. Ushaka Marine World is also a fun day out. Some people think Shakaland is a little cheesy but I found it interesting and gave me a good insight into the Zulu culture prevalent in Kwazulu Natal. We drove everywhere and parking wasn't a problem in fact it's probably safer. We ignored the fake parking attendants this trip unless they found us a parking spot. In that case we would give them about 5 -10 rand for their assistance. They hang around the beachfront mostly. This trip we also took a walk downtown which we were too frightened to do 3 years ago. There are lots of market-type stall in front of the shops. Just make sure you avoid looking like a dumb tourist and keep your wits about you as you would in any foreign city. Be careful when crossing the streets as the minibus drivers drive like madmen. Durban has cleaned up its act since we were there last. We ignored the beggars on the street corners, taking our cues from the locals.

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