Monthly Archives: June 2013

Short break at 9th Avenue Bistro

After a busy morning taking in the sights and scenes of the city of Durban, we were famished and ready to indulge in the delicious cuisine on offer at 9th Avenue Bistro.

Here, the food is superb and the atmosphere warm and inviting!

The décor at 9th Avenue Bistrois modern minimalist with soft lighting imparting a relaxed and intimate setting. Professional staff provides fast, efficient service and excellent meal recommendations.

9th_avenue Durban

The restaurant is known for its fresh fish dishes.The menu is updated daily and has two cuisine styles to choose from. The first is a selection of fresh, seasonal ingredients and the second offers a bistro-style menu with more traditional dishes.

For special occasions, there is also a six-course set menu with a beautiful selection of dishes on offer. To compliment your meal, choose form a carefully selected list of excellent wines bought from smaller boutique wineries.


Why XO Africa chose 9th Avenue Bistro?
This gourmet restaurant has three stars in the prestigious Rossouw restaurant guide and was awarded Best Bistro of 2012 Eat Out Awards.

XO advises you :
« Do not leave Durban without having tried one of the local specialities, Bunny Chow. This typical “Durban Indian community” dish is composed of half a loaf of bread, where the inner loaf has been scooped out and filled with curry sauce. It is simple, delicious, nutritious and cheap and you will find it in coffee-shops, restaurants and even along the beach…. Everywhere really!

Amélie Fages

Durban with National Geographic

This video explores the seaside city of Durban and its cultural and outdoor offerings.  From the beautiful national parks for a memorable safari to the Indian culture, or  a visit to one of the largest aquarium in the world, this video gives you a comprehensive picture of Durban.

The Amazing Race : ‘’The Sardine Run’’

Every year, between the months of May and July, billions of sardines spawn in the cool waters of the Agulhas Bank and frantically swim northward along the east coast of South Africa.


It’s often a suicide journey for the fish as they are preyed on by frenzied sharks, dolphins, whales, tuna and seagulls and gannets swooping down from the skies above. Yet, every year a new school of sardines set off on the journey again, undeterred by the dangers they face, a phenomena that has baffled scientists for years and for which there are two possible explanations.

The first is that, despite the dangers, the reproductive instinct forces the sardines back to the area they were hatched to lay their eggs – a behaviour pattern known as Homing.

South Africa Sardines Run

The second theory is that the run has something to do with a specific current of cool water that pushes the sardines closer inshore and the strong warm Agulhas Current which flows in the opposite direction, which they avoid. Whatever the reason, most years see these gigantic spawns that we know today. There are some years, however, when the sardines do not spawn at all.

It is the Sardines’ appetite for plankton and the cold currents along the stretch of coastline, that push them up close to the shoreline and to the surface and which gives us such a spectacular view of these amazing fish!

The Sardine Run is probably one of the most impressive migrations that we have ever seen in the marine environment and can rival the Great Migration of Wildebeest at Serengeti in Tanzania.


Come and enjoy this amazing experience with XO Africa!

XO Africa offers 7 days with dives or days at sea (depending on weather) with a team that have been based in Sodwana Bay for 12 years. Take in the awe inspiring beauty of the ocean with this expert group of experienced divers and nature enthusiasts and embark on a magical journey surrounded by whales, dolphins, seals, sharks and birdlife as they hunt the sardine.

Sodwana Bay

Sodwana Bay

request_enTo book this special offer please contact us and one of our travel consultant will assist you.

Bush & Beach Tour, Kwazulu-Natal


Day 1

Arrival at Johannesburg International Airport
Meet and greet with our local representative and hand over of travel documents
Domestic flight to Durban (excl)
On arrival in Durban, pick up your rental car: Toyota Corolla sedan or similar
Self-drive to your accommodation, +/- 45 min
Suggestions: golf, horse riding, micro lighting, snorkelling, kite surf, fishing, beaches, shopping and local markets, casino, guided tour of Durban city…

Zimbali Lodge : One of the finest places to feed your hunger for golf. Located in the heart of the Dolphin Coast in KwaZulu-Natal, among dense vegetation, the Zimbali Lodge – which means “Valley of Flowers” in Zulu – is situated 45km from Durban. Enjoy their golf course in a spectacular natural setting, designed by former British Open champion and South African Open champion, Tom Weiskopf. After a day of great golf in the hot sun, cool off spoil in the sparkling pool or enjoy the facilities on offer at the spa and finish the day with a meal of delicious Indian food inspiration.


Day 2&3

Morning : Golf or any other activities.
Self-drive to your accommodation, +/- 3hrs
Safari 4×4 Hluhuwe

The Zulu Tree Lodge is located in the centre of the Ubizane Reserve,adjacent tothe famous Hluhluwe-Umfolozi Game Reserve, the oldest in Africa and home to Africa’s famous Big 5 – lion, elephant, rhino, buffalo and leopard. Relax and enjoy the services of an experienced guide on a safari in the morning and afternoon. The Ubizane Reserve has a wide variety of animals: white rhino, giraffe, wildebeest, many antelopes and over 350 bird species. Set in the calm and peaceful forest, Zululand Tree Lodge consists of bungalows set on stilts and covered in a thatched roof with a private balcony overlooking the forest

Day 4&5

Breakfast. Suggestion: Safari 4×4
Self-drive to Thonga Beach Lodge (+/- 2hrs)
The lodge representative will meet you at either 12h00 or 16h00 for a 4×4 transfer to the lodge.
Activities: snorkelling, boat rides, fishing, beaches, kayaking, guided walks…

Thonga Beach Lodge has all the ingredients for an exotic beach holiday in awild, yet protected place, while still keeping all the luxury and creature comforts you’re accustomed to. At the edge of the ocean, take advantage of a really exceptional frame of dive to look for turtles, or discover a cliff rich in color. With his simplistic and warm decoration at the same time, Thonga Beach Lodge makes us good, free and serene.


Day 6

Self drive to Swaziland, +/- 5hrs
Suggestion: walks, horse riding

The Forester’s Arms hotel is set in 95 hectares of country estate in the Swaziland Highveld, a short scenic drive from the capital Mbabane. It offers a warm and rustic style, with a swimming pool and a garden redolent with the pure scent of wild flowers and fresh products that will be evident in your daily meals.Meals are served either in the restaurant or on the sun terrace and in the evening you can enjoy a drink at the bar next to the log fire if the weather calls for it. Activities include walking and horseback trails, fishing, golf, tennis, squash and mountain biking.

Day 7&8

Self-drive to your accommodation in the Kruger National Park
4×4 Safari

Rhino Post Safari Lodge is an eco-friendly lodge nestled on the boarder of the Kruger National Park and is the only wilderness concession in the Park. The all-natural luxurious accommodations are peaceful and provide a relaxing atmosphere. The beautiful swimming pools overlooking the river are a perfect place to unwind after a safari walk or enjoy sun downers. Your stay will include unforgettable game drives with experienced guides, superb meals and overall sense of relaxation at this wonderful and secluded game lodge.


Day 9

4×4 Safari.
Self-drive to your accommodation, +/- 3hrs
Afternoon spent at your leisure.Suggestions: walking, guided walks, swimming pool

Iketla Lodge is situated in the heart of a private nature conservancy. Each stone-built chalet is comfortable and cosy with great views of the mountains and its wildlife. The owners and friendly staff will make you feel at home and impart excellent advice and expertise of the area. Excellent personal service, beautiful surroundings, good food and great company make Iketla the perfect place to unwind and feel at peace with nature.

Day 10

Self drive to Johannesburg International Airport , +/- 4h30
Alternative: self drive to KMIA (+/- 2h), drop off your car rental and check in on a domestic flight to Johannesburg
Drop-off car rental.International return flight (excl)

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