It was announced that Durban has been named Africa’s Leading City Destination while Table Mountain was named Africa’s Leading Tourist Attraction. The announcement was made at the Africa & Indian Ocean World Travel Awards in Mauritius on Saturday 1 June 2019.
Established in 1993, the World Travel Awards aims to acknowledge, reward and celebrate excellence in the travel, tourism and hospitality industries. It is considered globally as the ultimate hallmark of industry excellence and is voted on by travel and tourism professionals and consumers worldwide.
Durban competed against South Africa’s Cape Town and Johannesburg, Kigali in Rwanda, Egypt’s Luxor and Sharm El Sheikh, Marrakech in Morocco, and Nairobi in Kenya.
Table Mountain also had some stiff competition in the form of Tanzania’s Mount Kilimanjaro and the Ngorogoro Crater, South Africa’s Robben Island and V&A Waterfront , and the Pyramids of Giza in Egypt.
With its low crime rate, emphasis on cleanliness, subtropical climate allowing more than 300 days of sunshine year and one million international visitors annually, Durban certainly deserves the accolades.
Similarly, Table Mountain, which is one of the New 7 Wonders of Nature, also receives 1 million visitors a year and has a strict policy of exceptional customer service. Accepting the award, Table Mountain Cableway’s Managing Director Wahida Parker says that it is because of the staff’s commitment to providing exceptional customer service that they have secured this honour.
This is, however, not the only awards received by the two respective cities.
Cape Town received the award for Africa’s Leading Airport (Cape Town International Airport) and Leading Festival & Event Destination whereas Durban received Africa’s Leading Cruise Port and Leading Meetings & Conference Destination.
The awards are held throughout the year on each continent with a series of regional gala ceremonies. It eventually culminates in a Grand Final gala at the end of the year, where the ‘Best in the World’ are announced. This means that Durban and Table Mountain are automatically entered as finalists in their respective categories. The final will be held in Muscat, Oman in November 2019.