Port of Durban

The Port of Durban has been in operation since the 19th century and continues to provide an essential service to South Africa’s substantial import/export trade. Managed by South African Port Operations (SAPO), Durban’s port handles substantial volumes of cargo and received passenger ships from around the world.

It was in 1824 that the first European settlers arrived in the bay of Natal and, recognizing the potential of the natural bay, decided to establish a trading post to serve southern Africa’s east coast. A harbor master was later appointed, a sandbar blocking the entrance channel was removed, and Durban harbor soon became the busiest cargo port in Africa.

The central business district of Durban and the Point waterfront is to the north of the port, whilst Maydon Wharf is in the west and Bayhead ship repair area is in the south. Durban harbor boasts some 59 berths over and above those used for ship repair and by fishing vessels. VLCC (very large crude carriers) can dock at the Isipingo buoy mooring and 302 km of rail tracks make their way through the port.

Durban port is in operation 24 hours of the day, every day of the year, providing employment for many of the city’s inhabitants and contributing significantly to the economy of Durban, as well as the rest of South Africa.


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