Ushaka Marine World Durban – a World-class Entertainment and Tourism Destination
At the end of Durban’s Golden Mile is the beginning of uShaka Marine World, Africa’s largest Marine Theme park.
uShaka incorporates fresh & sea water, natural materials and the recreation of a 1920s shipwreck, all drawn together by indigenous African imagery, lush vegetation and maritime images of the Port of Durban. Sea World has a saltwater aquarium with indoor and outdoor exhibits, the cargo shipwreck, seal stadium and penguin rookery. 1,200 seat stadium for Sea World’s dolphin acrobats, with specially designed windows providing a view of the animals both above and below the water.
Lots to do, from taking the wild water rides, visiting the huge aquarium, watching dolphin displays, sampling excellent cuisine at the restaurants, shopping in uShaka Village Walk retail village, fun-filled water slides in Wet ‘n Wild – or simply a lazy day sunbathing on uShaka Beach. uShaka Sea World brings the interpretation and display of marine animals to a new level. While focused on education, it offers visitors fun interactive experiences. Sea World includes the marine research facilities of the Oceanographic Research Institute (ORI), which was previously accommodated in the old Durban Sea World premises, giving uShaka an important scientific and environmental function.
Sea World is located in the centre of uShaka Marine World. In addition to this, Sea World offers daily edutainment tours behind the scenes and special interactive activities such as snorkeling through the coral reefs and grottos and dive tank. This freshwater entertainment facility offers thrilling water rides, swimming pools and adrenaline pumping action. Rides include kamikaze speed slides, Stuka freefall slides, a five-lane racer, supertube open rides, children’s rides, sunbathing areas on sand, grass or decking, and a 750-metre lazy river ride around the centre of uShaka Marine World.
Phantom Ship – Explore the life size 1920s era cargo steamer run aground between rocks and lagoons – the centrepiece of uShaka MARINE WORLD. Wind your way below deck and become an intrepid explorer of the shipwreck’s culinary delights in the shark-infested waters of South Africa’s east coast. Make your way carefully through the passenger steamer – the structural damage she suffered twisted some of her part upside down.
Offshore Rocky Reefs exhibit
Rocky Reef’s tank – Dive with the rare and magnificent reef fish found off the KwaZulu-Natal coast.
Rocky touch pool – Touch a starfish, feel the skin of a sea cucumber and more with the help of a specially trained guide.
The Open Ocean – Gazing through an enormous eight-by-three-metre window, you’ll feel you’re actually underwater with the many fish associated with the open ocean such as tuna, pompano, dorado and rays.
Dangers of the Deep – Sharks, sea snakes, devil fire fish and stone fish occupy this area, where from the surface you may even be able to touch a shark as it swims past the balcony at feeding time.
Coral Gardens – Bright yellows and reds, oranges and blues … the richest and most diverse ecosystems on earth have been recreated within Sea World.
The Deep Zone – This is a window into the lives of some of the weirdest and most spectacular animals inhabiting a world hundreds of metres below the surface of the ocean, often in total darkness.
Snorkel lagoon – Float gently over the lagoon filled with a huge variety of marine life and maritime effects such as a 16th century ship’s cannon before entering the bowels of a shipwrecked cargo vessel and facing up to the predators of the deep through glass so clear you’ll imagine the nibbles on your toes long after leaving the water.
Mini super tube – Designed for kids up to six years old, but wide enough for mum or dad to share the twists and bends, the mini-super tube will help build confidence for the bigger, faster slides in the park.
Play area – The water cannons and water mushrooms will keep youngsters busy for hours.
Open-body ride – Sometimes referred to as the washing machine, this is a ride for all ages. The high water volume accelerates you through the bends at four to five metres per second, exiting into a safe pool at the bottom.
Tunnel ride – A rollercoaster enclosed ride, not for the claustrophobic, sending you speeding round curves at a gut-wrenching four metres per second – in the dark.
uShaka Village Walkis market-like, lively and characteristically Durban. The structures give the impression of a village, with articulated shop frontages and interdependent roofs, yet interlinked within. Retail and food and beverage outlets lie close to the main entrance to uShaka, encircling the southwest area of the park. These include bars, kiosks and shops selling clothing, outdoor gear and equipment, arts and crafts and other indigenous and tourist-focused goods and services. Then there are the great restaurants, including the remarkable Cargo Hold and the amazing Shark Restaurant.