Best restaurants in KwaZulu-Natal

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Neo Cafe

    Portuguese food isn't a rarity in KwaZulu-Natal, but when it's done as well as it is at Neo Cafe it's worth getting excited about. The menu is simple: chicken and seafood dishes smothered in perfectly spicy peri-peri sauce. Instead of choosing surf or turf go ahead and just get a half chicken and calamari combo.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Habesha Cafe

    Durbanites rave about this casual Ethiopian spot that serves up traditional platters of food with plenty of injera. Everything on the menu is incredible, so it's best to go with a friend or two so you can sample all of the dishes. There are also plenty of veggie options, of course.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Umhlanga Rocks & uMdloti Beach

    Mundo Vida

    Enjoy seafood and bistro fare in unpretentious surroundings at this excellent coastal restaurant, where traditional recipes have a modern twist. For a taste of everything fishy try the seafood medley or, if your pockets are deep, tuck into the deluxe version. Excellent wine list.

  • Restaurants in Pietermaritzburg

    Tandoor

    Durban enjoys most of the glory when it comes to Indian food, but Tandoor helps Pietermaritzburg give it a run for its money. Takeaway is best as the dining area is nothing special, but the food is absolutely flavourful. Locals swear by the butter chicken.

  • Restaurants in Underberg & Himeville

    Pucketty Farm

    Beatrix Potter meets Jamie Oliver: there’s more to this extraordinarily cute place than meets the eye. There’s a huge selection of great-value gourmet products, plus an art gallery and a small tea garden. Perfect for self-caterers. The farm is 1.5km southeast of the Himeville turn-off.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Freedom Cafe

    An upmarket, colourful, funky place in an imaginatively converted space with a pebble-strewn courtyard. Asian-influenced food includes Vietnamese pulled pork; there are also vegetarian options and a kids' menu. The restaurant came under new ownership in 2017 and some loyal customers have reported a dip in quality during the transition. Note that alcohol is no longer served. It’s located on the grounds of the Concierge.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Market

    Breakfast, lunch and dinner are all a hit at this hip Durban restaurant. Imaginative dishes include the likes of calamari, quinoa, feta, red pesto and macadamia salad; produce is locally sourced, free range and organic, where possible. The cafe’s tree-lined courtyard and fountain are the perfect antidote to the hot weather and the craft beer is reasonably priced.

  • Restaurants in Margate, Ramsgate & Southbroom

    Trattoria La Terrazza

    Ask for a restaurant recommendation in the area and the answer is overwhelmingly this Italian option. It has a popular meaty and pasta-heavy menu, including the likes of tender, grain-fed beef fillet and seafood such as Norwegian salmon. The setting, on an estuary, is gorgeous. Reservations recommended.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Cargo Hold

    A seafood encounter of the most novel kind. On the Phantom Ship in uShaka Marine World, your dining companions are fish with very large teeth – the restaurant shares a glass wall with the aquarium's shark tank. Unlike many novelty restaurants, this one gets pretty high marks for the food and is well known for casting some high-quality fish dishes with Spanish flavours.

  • Restaurants in Royal Natal National Park

    Tower of Pizza

    Yep, there really is a tower, where very good wood-fired pizza is prepared. Grab a table on the outside decking and enjoy the clean air and mountain views at this excellent place near the Drakensberg mountains. Be warned: it doesn't accept cash – credit cards only!

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Cafe Jiran

    Temporarily located in the garden of the Bel-Aire Suites Hotel, this funky space is the spot for a post-dip coffee, fruit crush or breakfast, or just to mingle with Durban's hip elite. Dining options range from artisanal wraps and burgers to grilled fish and classic Durban curries.

  • Restaurants in The Midlands

    Cafe Bloom

    One of the nicest cafes in the area. Located in a small complex with a garden, this homely, funky place is decked out in a melange of retro decor. You’ll find great coffee, snacks and all-day breakfasts, and all products are made on the premises, from bread and cakes to the daily seasonal special (the likes of veggie curries and quiches).

  • Restaurants in Pietermaritzburg

    Rosehurst

    This delightful oasis, in a lovely Victorian house behind a rather chintzy gift shop, is a quintessential English garden in the middle of ‘Maritzburg – complete with topiary trees and quaint chairs and tables. Relax under blossoms and pink bougainvillea while enjoying fresh and very tasty salads, sandwiches and pastries. There are excellent breakfasts, too.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Spiga D’oro

    It looks like a typical cafe along this very popular strip, but Spiga serves up hearty helpings of Italian food, including delicious pasta dishes. It also makes a great place to grab a cocktail or glass of wine. On the weekends, this place is packed with locals enjoying some people-watching along Florida Rd. A dining section in the rear requires reservations.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Moyo

    Housed in the uShaka complex, Moyo is more novelty than quality cuisine, and makes for a fun (if noisy) night out. The concept is great – the decor features sculptures and decorations from recycled materials, and there’s face painting, fabulous table-side serenades and bands of a high quality. Food includes ostrich salad and Knysna oysters.

  • Restaurants in Monk’s Cowl & Champagne Valley

    Dragon’s Rest Pub & Restaurant

    Sit outside at this delightful place and drink in the dam-side and mountain views while enjoying some fine Berg cooking and a cold drink. Inside is a log fire and a cosy bar. Service is painfully slow but the food is tasty and the setting sublime. It's near the auditorium of the boys' choir.

  • Restaurants in Umhlanga Rocks & uMdloti Beach

    Ile Maurice

    For a special seaside splurge with a Gallic touch, try this chic eatery serving a variety of French and Mauritian dishes, including a range of fish and seafood, juicy steaks and a good selection for vegetarians. A meal here will set you back, but it's worth it to go all out; get some massive oysters or sizzling snails to start.

  • Top ChoiceRestaurants in Monk’s Cowl & Champagne Valley

    Valley Bakery

    Baguettes, croissants and a range of sticky treats are baked on the premises (the owners even grow and grind their wheat). A quaint wrought-iron veranda is the place for a wonderful selection of breakfasts, including eggs Benedict or muesli with fresh fruit. Wraps, sandwiches and homemade pies feature later in the day.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Cafe 1999

    This classy restaurant looks unassuming inside, but assume that you will get seriously good modern Mediterranean fusion food here. Tapas including stuffed and deep-fried olives, kudu carpaccio and chilli prawns all hit the spot. There are always lots of daily specials, and friendly waitstaff to run you through them.

  • Restaurants in Durban

    Surf Riders Food Shack

    Marking a resurgence of beachfront dining, Surf Riders has tables alongside the promenade where surfers, travellers and hip locals meet to chomp on gourmet burgers, wood-fired pizzas, tacos and a few seafood dishes. There's craft beer on tap, or for something healthier try a protein shake with your morning oats.