Travel & Tourism
Named after the Dutch prince Maurice Van Nassau, Mauritius is one the world’s most beautiful island nations. The turquoise waters, beautiful landscape, and amazing cultural heritage make this country unlike any other in the world. Mauritius’s location in the southwest Indian Ocean, some 500 miles east of Madagascar, gives the country a unique history that includes both African and Asian elements, not to mention lasting European colonial influence. Mauritius is certainly a top destination for anyone looking for a taste of secluded paradise, and the country boasts a diverse population, including English, African, Indian, and Creole elements.
What to Do in Mauritius
1. Tamarin Falls: The journey to reach this beautiful series of seven falls is an experience and an adventure in itself but definitely worth it. One of the most beautiful waterfalls in the world, it should be seen by anyone visiting Mauritius.
2. Domaine du Chasseir: Covering about 2,000 acres, this beautiful site is the island’s heart. It also is a lively natural hunting ground with about a thousand deer and hundreds of wild boar. If hunting is not your thing, you may opt for a relaxing and tranquil walk, observing all the various trees, some of which are protected species.
3. Mauritius Aquarium: This aquarium allows tourists to view about 200 indigenous species, including corals, sponges, and invertebrates. It also offers an opportunity to view the fauna and flora of the Indian Ocean, all in one spot.
4. Colored Earths of Chamarel: Thanks to the weathering of volcanic rock, seven different-color dunes have grown from the soil of Mauritius. The Colored Earths make for a sight you’ll have trouble surpassing while you’re in the country.
5. Black River Gorges National Park: With one of the most exquisite hiking trails in the country, the park features indigenous wildlife and plants and the highest mountain in Mauritius. On your way back from the mountain, make sure to check out the park’s amazing gorges.
6. Rodrigues Island: This northeastern part of Mauritius is also referred to as “the antistress island.” Very small and volcanic, it has a large Creole population. This part of the island has much to offer, from deep-sea diving to delicious native Creole dishes.
7. Domaine Les Pailles Nature Park: Take a tour of the Moka Mountains by four-wheel drive, horse, or quad bike. While on the exciting tour, traverse the Domaine Les Pailles Nature Park andhead to the sugar mill. At the end of your journey, enjoy one of the four restaurants you will pass during the tour.
8. Pamplemousses Gardens: One of the oldest botanical gardens in the world, this one was created in the 18th century and is home to an impressive international collection of plants, including massive lilies and tailpot palms, which are very rare, as they flower only once every 60 years.
9. Cable Rides: Do Something Different, an adventure sports company that operates in many parts of the world, has organized cable car rides in Mauritius. Take in a splendid view of banana plantations, beautiful forests, and waterfalls. Halfway through this fantastic journey, have a relaxing swim and rest in a natural pool. Native Mauritian dishes are also a part of this package: savor a delicious lunch with fresh ingredients that will boost your energy level.
10. Northern and Eastern Island Sailing: Choose either the northern or the eastern sailing route. Take a ride aboard a spacious catamaran, and discover the islands’ beaches and underwater beauty.
11. Albion Light House: It is the exceptional architecture of the light house which makes it quite interesting to be looked at. Since the historic times, it has provided navigational help to many sailors. If you are good at photography then it is one of the best place to take sunset photographs. You can definitely spend some peaceful time there to make your trip worthwhile.
12. De Bogt Zonder Eyndt: It is an excellent bay for swimming, sailing, windsurfing and sailing. Some people also consider it to be an ideal place for boat excursions to Gunner’s Quoin, Flat Island and Serpent Island. It is a popular destination for many shopaholics too since the bay has shopping centres focussing both on fashion and crafts. Some of the shops are 50 year old too.
13. Grand Bassin: It is one of the famous temple of Lord Shiva is located some 1800 feet above the sea level. Not just Lord Shiva, you will also find temples of Hanuman and Lakshmi. You will be completely sold by the calm and peaceful nature of the place which makes it worth visit while in Mauritius.
14. Mauritius National Botanical Garden: The botanical garden is spread over sprawling landscape which has approximately 650 varieties of plants. You will get a chance to see endless variety of Baobabs, the Palmeir Bouteille and Giant Water Lilies too.
15. Trou Aux Cerfs: Get the chance to witness the dormant volcano. Trou Aux Cerfs is a german word which means (Hole of the deer.) The last eruption took place around the year 1200 and one can find many oak trees in and around the place. You can get to see most amazing view of landscape Curepipe and even the surrounding places.
When to Go
Mauritius is blessed with a very mild climate: temperatures usually remain stable throughout the year, and rainfall is only occasional. The temperature in Mauritius usually remains around 75 to 80 degrees Fahrenheit (24 to 27 degrees Celcius.) The best times to visit the island are between April and June and between September and December. Stick to those months, and you’re almost guaranteed sunny skies and great weather.
Getting In and Around
Visas: American citizens do not require a visa to enter Mauritius, but people from other countries do. Check the requirements for entry from your particular country in order to prevent any confusion.
Transportation: The laid-back atmosphere of Mauritius allows tourists to choose from a number of different modes of transportation. Public transportation is not only safe but also efficient and common. Several regular and express bus companies operate throughout Mauritius.
Taxis are another option, for more-individual and independent transportation. Taxis are available from any bus station, hotel, and from the airport.
Car and bike rentals can also be had. Many people choose to rent bikes at some point during their holiday so that they can take in the beauty of Mauritius at a slower pace.
Safety and Security
Concerned about your safety as you plan travel to Mauritius? We at Africa.com, together with our friends, family and colleagues, travel extensively throughout the continent. Here are the resources we consult when thinking of our safety in Mauritius:
Africa.com comment: Very timely and frequently updated. Perspective assumes that you ARE going to travel to Mauritius, and seeks to give you good guidance so that you understand the risks and are well informed.
Africa.com comment: Can sometimes be considered as overly conservative and discourage travel altogether to destinations that many reasonable people find acceptably secure. On the other hand, they have the resources of the CIA to inform them, so they know things that the rest of us don’t know. See what they have to say about Mauritius.
1. Don’t be surprised if you hear a few different languages being spoken while you are there: Mauritius has a cultural makeup that’s reflective of its history. The Dutch originally settled the island; they were followed by the French, who transported Africans from Senegal, Mozambique, Guinea, and Madagascar. British and Chinese interests were also dominant in Mauritius at one point. The Mauritian Creole population derived from slaves moved from the Caribbean.
2. The local cuisine is fantastic, largely for the reasons cited above. The varied history of Mauritius has influenced local food to the point that travelers need not worry about finding dishes that they’ll like. French and Indian dishes are particularly popular here.
3. Make an effort to become acquainted with some of the locals. They are extremely friendly and will be willing to tell you about some great places that you should visit.