Moses Mabhida and the Beachfront
Moses Mabhida Stadium - North
Welcome to this audio tour of Durban, starting at one of Durban’s most prominent landmarks, the beautiful Moses Mabhida stadium.
You should be standing directly in front of the stadium, in between two raised rectangular pools. If you're facing the stadium, behind you is a grassed area with a few large trees.
This tour will be taking you past the stadium, under the Ruth First Highway, along the beach promenade and finally to Sun Coast Casino’s restaurant frontage.
Along the way, I’ll be telling you a little bit about Durban, the founding of the city and the history of some of its famous landmarks. And of course you’ll be walking along part of the Golden Mile, the beachfront that makes Durban what it is, the number-one seaside holiday destination in South Africa.
I'll briefly explain how VoiceMap works.
It uses your location to play audio automatically, at the right time and place. This means that you can put your phone away now. Don't worry if I'm silent for a while, when I'm not giving directions or telling stories. There's a map on your screen if you ever feel lost, and if you do get way off track without noticing, VoiceMap will let you know.
Before we get going, let's take in the architectural wonder that is the Moses Mabhida stadium. Stay here while I'll tell you a little more about it.
Completed in late 2009, in time for the 2010 Football World Cup, Moses Mabhida has become known for so much more than just a football stadium. It is a hive of activity in the city, with its sport facilities, restaurants and adventure activities, drawing locals and visitors alike all year round.
The stadium’s most prominent feature, as you’ve no doubt discovered, is of course its giant arch that holds up the ceiling of the stadium. All at once elegant and resolute, imposing and grand, the arch rises to a height of 106 metres above the pitch.
I’m sure you noticed there was a funicular carriage, or SkyCar, on the north side of the arch that takes visitors up to a viewing platform. I can definitely recommend a trip up to the top as there are stunning views out, over the city one side, and the sea on the other.
Let's get going now. Walk alongside the stadium keeping it on your right. I'll tell you more along the way.
As you make your way to the south side of the arch, you may just witness an adrenaline junkie or two screaming with a mix of delight and terror as they hurl themselves off the top of the stadium. This is the world’s largest rope swing. A death-defying 220 metre arc swing across the pitch. Definitely not for the faint of heart. It makes the 500-step harnessed-in adventure walk up the arch seem comparatively tame.
Yes, Mabhida stadium is impressive in many ways, but it is also what it symbolises that has special significance to the people of Durban and South Africa. The arch begins as two separate sub-arches before molding together and becoming one. Symbolising a divided nation coming together after the fall of apartheid and the birth of the democratic new South Africa. You’ll see this Y shape on the South African flag too, symbolising the confluence of a once divided nation.
Keep going in the same direction while I tell you about Moses Mabida the man.