A Travel Price Comparison for South Africa Durban vs. Cape Town for Vacations, Tours, and Honeymoons

Should you visit Durban or Cape Town?

Which is cheaper to visit? Which is more expensive for vacation?

Which city should you visit? Read on to compare the activities as well as the prices of travel for Durban and Cape Town. We'll break down costs for accommodation, food, transportation and more to help you learn more about these two destinations. Then, you can figure out if either of these two places are accessible based on your travel budget, schedule, and interests. So, let's dig into it.

Where Should I go: Durban or Cape Town?

Durban

The third largest city in South Africa, Durban sits on the east coast of the country in the province of KwaZulu-Natal. The city also has the country's most active port. The city's comfortable weather and vast beaches make it one of the country's major tourist centers. There's a population of about 3.5 million in the entire metropolitan area that spreads over 2,295 square kilometers.

Cape Town

Picture your travel bucket list. Is Cape Town on it? Yes, most people dream of visiting the "Mother City" of South Africa. As one of the most iconic places in the world, Cape Town is a world-class cosmopolitan city full of bustling nightlife, historical backdrops and a large gay community.

Cape Town is the most southern city in Africa with seasons turned upside down. In the southern hemisphere they experience the summer from December to February. During these months days can be hot and dry so be sure to gather in the shade and wear plenty of sunscreen. The winter from June to August is full of rainy days and cold nights.

Which city is cheaper, Cape Town or Durban?

These are the overall average travel costs for the two destinations.

The average daily cost (per person) in Durban is $46, while the average daily cost in Cape Town is $84. These costs include accommodation (assuming double occupancy, so the traveler is sharing the room), food, transportation, and entertainment. While every person is different, these costs are an average of past travelers in each city. What follows is a categorical breakdown of travel costs for Durban and Cape Town in more detail.



Accommodation
  • Accommodation Hotel or hostel for one person
    Durban $22
    Cape Town $33
  • Accommodation Typical double-occupancy room
    Durban $44
    Cape Town $66
Compare Hotels in Durban and Cape Town

Looking for a hotel in Durban or Cape Town? Prices vary by location, date, season, and the level of luxury. See below for options and compare which is best for your budget and travel style.

Hotels in Durban


Hotels in Cape Town


Kayak helps you find the best prices for hotels, flights, and rental cars for destinations around the world. Compare prices for multiple destinations when planning your next trip.


Our Analysis
We've analyzed the average and typical hotel prices based on guest reviews, star ratings, and hotel amenities here: Durban Hotel Prices and Cape Town Hotel Prices.

Local Transportation
  • Local Transportation Taxis, local buses, subway, etc.
    Durban $12
    Cape Town $15

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Durban

Also for Durban, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Private Transfers - Minibus - Durban Arrivals and Departures: $35
  • Private Durban Airport Departure Transfer: $55
  • Private Arrival Transfer: Durban International Airport to Umhlanga: $86
  • Departure Private Transfer: Durban City to Durban MSC Cruise Port by Minivan: $75
  • Departure Private Transfer: Durban City to Durban Airport DUR by Business Car: $76
  • Departure Private Transfer from Durban City to Durban Airport DUR by Minivan: $79
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Durban MSC Cruise Port to Durban City by Minivan: $75
  • Arrival Private Transfer from Durban Airport DUR to Durban City by Minivan: $82
  • Airport Shuttle / Transfers: $30
  • 1-3 Passenger Private Durban Airport Transfer: $42

Hired Cars and Shuttles in Cape Town

Also for Cape Town, here are a few examples of actual transportation services:

  • Cape Point Tours,Airport transfers,wine testing, garden route tours and safari: $168
  • Airport Transfers To Hermanus: $137
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Cape Town Airport CPT to Cape Town by Business Car: $114
  • Cape Town Safari Transfers: $104
  • Private Transfer to Safari Aquila from Cape Town Full Day Excluding Entry Fees: $86
  • Cape Town Airport Transfers: Cape Town to Cape Town Airport CPT in Luxury Car: $82
  • Departure Private Transfer: Cape Town to Cape Town Cruise Port by Minivan: $73
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Cape Town Cruise Port to Cape Town by Minivan: $73
  • Arrival Private Transfer: Cape Town Cruise Port to Cape Town by Business Car: $69
  • Departure Private Transfer: Cape Town to Cape Town Cruise Port by Business Car: $69
  • Franschhoek Private Transfers: $68
  • Departure Private Transfers from Cape Town City to Cape Town Airport CPT: $67

Is it cheaper to fly into Durban or Cape Town?

Prices for flights to both Cape Town and Durban change regularly based on dates and travel demand. We suggest you find the best prices for your next trip on Kayak, because you can compare the cost of flights across multiple airlines for your prefered dates.





Food
  • Food Meals for one day
    Durban $14
    Cape Town $36

Food Tours and Cooking Classes in Cape Town

For Cape Town, here are some samples of tours and activities related to meals and dining experiences:

  • Private Virtual Cooking Class Live from Cape Town: $23
  • Cape Malay Cooking with a Chef Founder: $34
  • African Cooking with a Chef Founder: $34
  • Cruise and Dine Dinner / Sunset Champagne Cruise and 3-Course Dinner: $53
  • Withlocals The 10 Tastings: Cape Town Private Food Tour: $54
  • Sunset Champagne Cruise and 3-Course Dinner: $57
  • Your Tailored Cape Town Private Food Tour: $65
  • Private Authentic Cape Malay Cooking Class in Manenberg with Locals: $67
  • The Cape Town Essentials Food Tour: $67
  • African Dinner and Drumming Experience: $70
  • African cooking experience: $91
  • Private South African Cape Malay Cooking Class: $98

Entertainment
  • Entertainment Entrance tickets, shows, etc.
    Durban $14
    Cape Town $20

Tours and Activities in Durban

Also, here are some specific examples of entertainment, tickets, and activities for Durban.

  • 12-Day Coast to Cape Town Adventure Accommodated Tour from Durban: $1,713
  • 12-Day Coast to Cape Town Adventure Camping Tour from Durban: $1,376
  • 5 Day Zululand – Lion & Elephant & Drakensberg Safari Tour from Durban: $1,336
  • 6-Day Guided Cultural Tour of Mbotyi Coffee Bay and Cintsa: $997
  • A Full Day Safari Tour to the Hluhluwe Imfolozi Big 5 Game Reserve: $162
  • Battlefield Tour, Duration : 14hrs, Cost : R3127pp - 2 or more pax travelling: $182
  • Battlefields Private Day Tour from Durban: $233
  • Big 5 Safari Durban Day Tour from Durban: $178
  • Culture Walking Tour of Durban: $34
  • Day Tour of Rorkes Drift and Isandlwana: $155
  • Discover Inner City Jewels Walking Tour in Durban: $37
  • Drakensberg & Nelson Mandela Capture Site Half Day Tour from Durban: $164

Tours and Activities in Cape Town

For Cape Town, here are a few prices for actual activities, tours, and tickets provided by various companies:

  • 1-Hour Cape Town Bo-Kaap Photo Shoot Experience: $53
  • 1-Hour Cape Town City Center Photo Shoot Experience: $53
  • 11-Day Cape Desert Safari Adventure Accommodated Tour from Cape Town: $2,540
  • 11-Day Cape Desert Safari Adventure Camping Tour from Cape Town: $1,330
  • 12 Days Cape & Namibia Accommodated Adventure: $2,799
  • 12 day - Meander to South Africa's best kept secrets and experience Lesotho: $2,890
  • 19 Days Cape to Victoria Falls Accommodated Adventure: $4,541
  • 19-Day Desert Tracker Adventure Accommodated Tour from Cape Town: $3,955
  • 19-Day Desert Tracker Adventure Camping Tour from Cape Town: $2,116
  • 25 Days Cape to Vic Falls to Johannesburg Accommodated Adventure: $6,105
  • 3 Day Adventure - Hike and Wine Pilates: $359
  • 3 Day Adventure - Hike and Wine Pilates: $359

Alcohol
  • Alcohol Drinks for one day
    Durban $11
    Cape Town $18

Sample the Local Flavors in Cape Town

Also in Cape Town, these are the prices for nightlife and alcohol related activities from various tour providers:

  • Experience South African Craft Rum tasting and distillery tour in Cape Town: $10
  • Cape Town's Only Craft Rum Tasting and Distillery Tour: $15
  • Wine Tasting & Storytelling with SA Tapas add-on: $34
  • The Fringe Secret Bar Crawl: $34
  • Franschhoek and Stellenbosch Wine Tour from Cape Town: $39
  • Cape Point Full Day Tour With Wine Tasting: $41
  • Cape Town Pub Crawl: $44
  • Cape Winelands and Wine Tasting Full Day Tour: $57
  • Nightlife Experience Pub Crawl: $58
  • Vintage Kombi Wine Tour & Local BBQ: $77
  • Cape Point/Boulders Beach/Wine Tasting- Best Of Cape Town In A Day: $86
  • Tour to Cape Town Peninsula with Wine Tasting: $94


When we compare the travel costs of actual travelers between Durban and Cape Town, we can see that Cape Town is more expensive. And not only is Durban much less expensive, but it is actually a significantly cheaper destination. So, traveling to Durban would let you spend less money overall. Or, you could decide to spend more money in Durban and be able to afford a more luxurious travel style by staying in nicer hotels, eating at more expensive restaurants, taking tours, and experiencing more activities. The same level of travel in Cape Town would naturally cost you much more money, so you would probably want to keep your budget a little tighter in Cape Town than you might in Durban.


When is the best time to visit Durban or Cape Town?

Both destinations experience a temperate climate with four distinct seasons. And since both cities are in the southern hemisphere, summer is in January and winter is in July.

Should I visit Durban or Cape Town in the Summer?

The summer attracts plenty of travelers to both Durban and Cape Town.

Durban is a little warmer than Cape Town in the summer. The temperature in Durban is usually 25°C (76°F) in January, and Cape Town stays around 21°C (70°F).

People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Cape Town this time of the year. Durban usually receives less sunshine than Cape Town during summer. Durban gets 184 hours of sunny skies, while Cape Town receives 338 hours of full sun in the summer.

Durban gets a good bit of rain this time of year. In January, Durban usually receives more rain than Cape Town. Durban gets 134 mm (5.3 in) of rain, while Cape Town receives 14 mm (0.6 in) of rain each month for the summer.


  • Summer Average Temperatures January
    Durban 25°C (76°F) 
    Cape Town 21°C (70°F)

Should I visit Durban or Cape Town in the Autumn?

The autumn brings many poeple to Durban as well as Cape Town.

In the autumn, Durban is a little warmer than Cape Town. Typically, the autumn temperatures in Durban in April are around 22°C (71°F), and Cape Town is about 18°C (64°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Cape Town. People are often attracted to the plentiful sunshine in Durban this time of the year. In the autumn, Durban often gets less sunshine than Cape Town. Durban gets 206 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Cape Town receives 233 hours of full sun.

Durban usually gets more rain in April than Cape Town. Durban gets 73 mm (2.9 in) of rain, while Cape Town receives 41 mm (1.6 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Autumn Average Temperatures April
    Durban 22°C (71°F) 
    Cape Town 18°C (64°F)

Should I visit Durban or Cape Town in the Winter?

Both Cape Town and Durban are popular destinations to visit in the winter with plenty of activities.

In July, Durban is generally a little warmer than Cape Town. Temperatures in Durban average around 17°C (62°F), and Cape Town stays around 13°C (55°F).

The sun comes out a lot this time of the year in Durban. Durban usually receives more sunshine than Cape Town during winter. Durban gets 230 hours of sunny skies, while Cape Town receives 193 hours of full sun in the winter.

In July, Durban usually receives less rain than Cape Town. Durban gets 39 mm (1.5 in) of rain, while Cape Town receives 83 mm (3.3 in) of rain each month for the winter.


  • Winter Average Temperatures July
    Durban 17°C (62°F) 
    Cape Town 13°C (55°F)

Should I visit Durban or Cape Town in the Spring?

Both Cape Town and Durban during the spring are popular places to visit.

Durban is a little warmer than Cape Town in the spring. The temperature in Durban is usually 21°C (69°F) in October, and Cape Town stays around 16°C (61°F).

In Cape Town, it's very sunny this time of the year. In the spring, Durban often gets less sunshine than Cape Town. Durban gets 169 hours of sunny skies this time of year, while Cape Town receives 278 hours of full sun.

Durban usually gets more rain in October than Cape Town. Durban gets 98 mm (3.9 in) of rain, while Cape Town receives 33 mm (1.3 in) of rain this time of the year.


  • Spring Average Temperatures October
    Durban 21°C (69°F) 
    Cape Town 16°C (61°F)

Typical Weather for Cape Town and Durban

Durban Cape Town
Temp (°C) Rain (mm) Temp (°C) Rain (mm)
Jan 25°C (76°F) 134 mm (5.3 in) 21°C (70°F) 14 mm (0.6 in)
Feb 25°C (76°F) 113 mm (4.4 in) 21°C (70°F) 16 mm (0.6 in)
Mar 24°C (75°F) 126 mm (5 in) 20°C (68°F) 21 mm (0.8 in)
Apr 22°C (71°F) 73 mm (2.9 in) 18°C (64°F) 41 mm (1.6 in)
May 19°C (67°F) 59 mm (2.3 in) 15°C (59°F) 68 mm (2.7 in)
Jun 17°C (62°F) 28 mm (1.1 in) 13°C (56°F) 93 mm (3.7 in)
Jul 17°C (62°F) 39 mm (1.5 in) 13°C (55°F) 83 mm (3.3 in)
Aug 18°C (64°F) 62 mm (2.4 in) 13°C (55°F) 77 mm (3 in)
Sep 19°C (67°F) 73 mm (2.9 in) 14°C (58°F) 41 mm (1.6 in)
Oct 21°C (69°F) 98 mm (3.9 in) 16°C (61°F) 33 mm (1.3 in)
Nov 22°C (71°F) 108 mm (4.3 in) 19°C (65°F) 16 mm (0.6 in)
Dec 24°C (74°F) 102 mm (4 in) 20°C (68°F) 17 mm (0.7 in)


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Durban vs. Cape Town Travel Comparison

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