Durban museums you can visit for free

Someone once said that if we know where we came from; we may know better where to go. With a choice of top Durban museums that you can visit for free, anyone can immerse themselves in the rich heritage of the beautiful province of KwaZulu-Natal, this country and our Rainbow Nation.


Kwa Muhle Museum

The Kwa Muhle Museum offers a provocative historical depiction of the struggle against Apartheid, a former South African political system that discriminated against people on the basis of race. We extract from its founding credo: ‘This is a museum about power and powerlessness and the struggle for human dignity by ordinary people.’

  • One of Durban’s four local history museums.
  • Name taken from JS Marwick who helped 7000 Zulus to flee Transvaal.
  • Designed by architect William Murray-Jones in 1927 & built in 1928.
  • Formerly the Native Administration Department, a body that enforced punitive Apartheid laws.

The museum can be found at 77 Samora Machel Street and is open from 8h30 to 16h00 from Mondays to Saturdays, except on public holidays.


Killie Campbell Africana Museum

The Killie Campbell Africana Museum tells the fascinating story of Natal and the Zulu people through a comprehensive and extraordinary ethnological collection of books, photographs, furniture and Zulu art. For this reason, it is considered by many to be the most important museum in Durban.

  • The Dutch-style museum was previously the home of Dr Killie Campbell
  • Dr Campbell was a great collector of South African historical items
  • The collection on display in the museum is his heritage

The museum is located at 220 Gladys Mazibuko Road and is open to the public from 8h00 – 23h00 on Tuesdays and Thursdays, except on holidays.


Old Court House Museum

Constructed in the mid-1860s, the 2-storey colonial style Old Court House Museum is the oldest public building in Durban Central and was used as a Court of Law until 1912. Today, it comprises a selection of exhibition rooms that portrays the city’s early history and showcases the life and times of the people in the early settlements.

The museum can be found at 77 Samora Machel Street and is open to the public from  8h30 to 16h00 from Mondays to Saturdays and from 11h00 to 16h00 on Sundays. It is closed on public holidays.


The Durban Natural Science Museum

The Durban Natural Science Museum offers captivating insights into the Earth, its history and life on Earth, with spectacular displays of wildlife. Famous for its realistic illustration of dioramas (habitat groups), it remains a firm favourite amongst locals and tourists, with an average of 295 000 visitors per year.

  • A life-size model of a T-Rex dinosaur can be seen at the museum
  • It has an almost complete skeleton of a Dodo, the extinct flightless bird
  • The mummy of Peten-Amena, who lived in Egypt 2300 years ago is on display
  • Boasts a wide collection of stuffed animals and giant-sized insect replicas

The museum is located at the majestic Durban City Hall and the entrance can be found on Smith Street. Opening hours are from 8h30 to 17h00 from Mondays to Saturdays and from 11h00 – 17h00 on Sundays and public holidays.





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