- The site the market is built on is one that comprised of the’ blood sweat and tears of those indentured labourers and our forefathers that have fought for the right to construct a place of trade that accommodates a multi-racial “melting pot of culture” destination that is rich in culture and heritage.
- The Victoria Street Market was based on the fight against the apartheid government against all odds that owed to the building Durban’s economy and trade.
- Many of the traders and stalls in the Victoria street market were part of the original market that burned down in 1973.
- It is built among many other historically significant structures with the likes of , The Juma Masjid Mosque, The Emmanuel Cathedral, The Early Morning Market and the Ghandi library to name but a few, and sites that were involved in the struggle that formed part of the building blocks of making south Africa a free and fair democracy.
The external architecture hints at the exotic wares within and the imagination conjures thoughts of Aladdin’s lamps, magic, and delectable food. The smells, sights and sounds of the cavernous halls housing the oriental bazaar spark a sensory rush, with the heady aromas of curry powders, spices and incense accompanying the shopper through the stores. There are a plethora of foodstuffs, fabrics and brass-ware on offer. Sacks of curry powder line the walkways, and here and there a glittering sari offers a swathe of bright colour.
The juxtaposition of Asian goods and a wide array of African curios is a microcosmic view of greater Durban society. There is also the famous fish market attached to the Bazaar, offering seafood fresh from the Indian Ocean. Friendly shop owners are keen to help with wide smiles and the combination of the location, atmosphere, and service is sure to enchant visitors. The oriental music in the background forms the soundtrack to an experience that combines shopping, culinary feasting, and sight-seeing in keeping with Durban’s heritage. As much an historical landmark as a contemporary shopping venue, the Victoria Street Market is a well-known and worthwhile addition to the itinerary of any traveler to KwaZulu-Natal.