Monday, September 8, 2014

The Beach! Durban, South Africa

Over labor day weekend we took a road trip to the coast. Durban sits on the Indian Ocean about 6.5 hours away from Pretoria. Being on the Indian Ocean it typically has mild, warm, tropical weather year round. A few weeks before our trip I made arrangements for Paul and I to spend a day diving as Durban is supposed to have numerous amazing ship wrecks to explore.

As it happens, the weekend of our trip there was a large storm off the coast, bringing temperatures down into the 60's, winds around 30 mph, and 12+ foot waves. If we were surfers we would have been thrilled, as divers, not so much.

Waiting on the beach outside Ushaka Aquarium for our dive

Making lemonade out of lemons, we dove in the Ushaka Marine World Aquarium. That was a unique experience! Lots of fish, 4 hound sharks, and we were never deeper than 10 feet (really we didn't need to be diving, but when we can, we do!). I was super excited for Piper and Grace to go to the aquarium and see us diving, but unfortunately the aquarium closed for a function. I begged the supervisor to let them in, but I have lost all ability for sweet talk (or rather I never had the ability) so unfortunately no photos of us diving in the aquarium.

We rented an apartment in Umhlanga, about 15 minutes north of Durban. It was fantastic! We were right on the beach. Piper was so excited to stand at the windows and watch the boats, waves, and people walking by below.

Our apartment balcony overlooking the ocean

 Piper showing Kitty the boats

The beautiful beach was just steps from our apartment building. Out the door, across the promenade, down the steps, and there we were. No having to worry about Piper running into a road in front of a car, it was great! She loved the freedom of being able to walk around!

Walking to the beach!

It was a beautiful beach, except that the winds were blowing so hard the sand was flying around, which for Piper, being only 2.5 feet off the ground, can sting pretty badly. So unfortunately she wasn't a big fan of the beach this time. 

 Watching the waves

We were hoping to go swimming with Piper, but the ocean had other ideas. The waves look deceptively small in these photos. We had to be very careful standing down where they were coming in, some would come in and barely touch our toes and then suddenly a huge one would appear that was up to our waist! 

 She did like to get her feet wet in the waves

With the very strong wind Paul was able to get out his trick kite and give it some air time! It was a bit like walking a very strong dog, the kite was actually pulling Paul down the beach!

We attempted a couple afternoons at the beach, the wind just wouldn't let up though!

But we did find a bit of a lull and a wind break and enjoyed some sand castle building!

Piper has stories to tell about this weekend trip to Durban. She'll tell you about the boats, the waves, daddy flying a kite, and especially the sand in her eyes. But overall she, and we, had a great time!

If you want to see all our Durban pictures, visit my smugmug gallery here!

1 comment:

Marie said...

Eeeeeeeeeee! I love her little sunglasses! How I miss the beach. Looks like such a lovely time!