Where to go during holidays in Mauritius – an exploration of the South

What to do in Mauritius - explore the south coast of Mauritius

Mauritian sea shore by Guillaume Laurent, on Flickr

The southern part of Mauritius is where tourists who seek tranquility and relaxation should definitely go. It is also the wildest part of the island and arguably the least developed. However, tourists will find quite a few interesting places to visit even there and should not worry about getting bored during their Mauritian holidays.

Along with a part of the district of Black-River, two more districts make the most of the south of Mauritius: the district of Savanne and the district of Grand-Port. Of course, one of the best-known landmarks in the district of Black River is Le Morne Mountain. This place has a lot of touristic appeal not only because of the really beautiful white sandy beaches that can be found in the area, but also for the other touristic activities that can be practiced there such as kitesurfing, big game fishing, golfing etc. One amazing natural phenomenon occurring in the area recently got widespread attention. It was named the “Underwater waterfall of Mauritius”. In reality it is just an optical illusion created by sand being carried away off the south-western shores and the lagoon of Mauritius towards the ocean floor. This phenomenon can only be seen from above.

The major Mauritian hotels of the area are: the Paradis Hotel and Golf Club and the Dinarobin Hotel Golf and Spa, Lux Le Morne, Berjaya Le Morne and Beach Resort, Les Pavillons Hotel Le Morne, Indian resort and Spa and Hotel Mornea. There are also quite a few private luxury villas in the area. Beyond the Peninsula, towards the South there is a small fishing village, called Le Morne Village. It is a nice place for tourists to visit to immerse themselves in rural Mauritian life.  Out at sea, people will be able to see Ilot Fourneau. For a fee, it is possible for tourists to ride horses not only around Le Morne, but also to Ilot fourneau.

At about 2 kilometers away you will then encounter La Prairie beach which lies between Le Morne Village and Baie du Cap. The lagoon off the beach is calm all year round and is perfect for snorkeling and swimming close to the shore. However on the east side of the beach, the seafloor drops to 2000 meters and there is a break in the coral reef. People who intend to surf, kitesurf or windsurf there should therefore always consult with the locals as the place is also popular with sharks. Further inland, the popular places to visit are the Seven Coloured Earths in Chamarel and the Black River Gorges National Park. Just before reaching the village of Baie-du-Cap tourists will inevitably encounter the Macondé hairpin curve.  People can climb up the observation post and take a good look at the panorama. There is a grotto at the base of the stairs in honor of the many victims of the various road accidents that occurred there.

Next along the road will be the fishing village of Baie-du-Cap and Bel Ombre which has many private luxury villa rentals available and Mauritian luxury hotels such as Heritage Golf Club and Le Telfair Resort, as well as the Sofitel, Tamassa Resorts, and Outrigger Mauritius Resorts. Before reaching the village of Riviere des Galets, tourists will be able to see Ilot Sancho, a tiny islet which is just a few feet off the main land. It is a very interesting place to visit since pirates and freebooters were rumored to hide their treasures there.

Just beyond the river, named Riviere des Galets because of its round pebbles that can be found in its bed, lies the village of Rivière des Galets proper. Further inland is the small town of Chemin Grenier, which translates to “Granary Road” in English. Still further inland is the Vallée des Couleurs Nature Park where locals and tourists will be able to partake in many activities such as zip-lining, quad biking, etc. And if you thought the seven colours of Chamarel were astonishing enough, you’d better brace yourselves for La Vallee des Couleurs’ 23 colours.

Closer to the coast you will find the beach of Saint Félix, a 1.5 kilometre stretch of white sandy beach. Further east is the beach of Riambel, which is really the most peaceful beach of the island because so few people ever go there. The lagoon however is not so peaceful and people should be warned that there are strong currents in the area.

The next big settlements further along the road are Surinam and Souillac. The town of Souillac was named after the Vicomte de Souillac, who once created a port there, where goods would be shipped back and forth from Port-Louis. Interesting places to visit nearby are the Telfair Garden, Gris-Gris, Le Batelage which was the old port itself, La Nef which is a museum dedicated to the poet Robert Edward Hart and Rochester falls. The little beach of Gris-Gris will be a welcome stop along the road after a visit of the town, as well as a popular local attraction nearby: the cliff of Le Souffleur.

The next big attraction along the road will be La Vanille Reserve des Mascareignes, which is a nature reserve and crocodile farm. Other interesting things to see at La Vanille Reserve des Mascareignes are the insectarium, the fossil museum, the aquarium, the giant tortoises, etc. There is a shop where tourists and locals can purchase items made with crocodile leather and a restaurant where people will be able to get a taste of crocodile meat, for a change.

The next major settlement along the road will be Plaigne Magnen, which will be further inland, near the airport. From Plaine Magnen and taking the A10, the next big town will be Mahébourg, the old capital of the island of Mauritius. Going back towards the south, the nearest beach will be Pointe d’Esny beach, although it is hidden behind some luxury villas, bungalows and houses, with only narrow pathways leading to it.

Out at sea, you will find the Ile aux Aigrettes nature reserve, where the last remaining trees of the forests which once grew along the coast of the mainland can be found, along with rare animal species. Further South will be the village of Blue Bay and Blue Bay Beach. The Blue Bay Marine Park will be a welcome attraction for snorkeling amateurs, as well as families wishing to take their children along for some sightseeing in glass-bottom boats. The beach, although beautiful, can also be quite noisy at it lies straight in the flight path of airplanes landing at SSR International airport. Still it is quite surprising to see a big airplane making its approach towards the tarmac at low altitude when you’re lying on the sand.  Across the bay, you will find La Cambuse Public Beach, a one kilometre stretch of white sand which remains mostly unpopulated throughout the year as it is not very well known, even among Mauritians, and access to this beach is very complicated. The major luxury hotel in the area is the Shandrani Resort and Spa.

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Interesting places and beaches to visit in the East of Mauritius

Where to go in Mauritius - visit the eastern coast of Mauritius

Speed Boat @ Île aux Cerfs, Mauritius!!! by Natesh Ramasamy, on Flickr

The island of Mauritius, located in the south-west of the Indian Ocean, is a small island that attracts about a million tourists each year from all over the world. It has been awarded several prizes as recognition for the quality of its tourism industry recently.

But more than being just about hotels and integrated resorts, the island of Mauritius is also about the cultures of its inhabitants and their friendliness. Also worth a look are the different places that you can visit while on holiday there. We will now take a look at the interesting places that tourists can visit in the East of the island of Mauritius.

One such place which is well worth a visit during holidays in the eastern part of Mauritius is the national park of Bras-d’Eau, which is located just after Poste-Lafayette, going towards the south. Its surface area is of about 500 hectares and it is home to several endemic species such as the Mauritian Paradise Flycatcher, the Mauritian White-Eye, the Kestrel, and several vegetal species. Other species that can be found there are wild boars and monkeys. An old sugar factory can also be found there as well as a lime kiln which date from the French colonial era. Nearby you can find a beautiful public beach near the Jalsa Beach Hotel and Spa.

Close to that region are the towns of Poste de Flacq and Central Flacq where you will find essential places like a hospital, post offices, banks and restaurants. The coastline is host to a bevy of hotels such as Coco Beach, Saint Geran, Belle Mare Plage and others as well as Mauritius Leisure Village Water Park where tourists will find restaurants as well as attractions such as giant water slides, giant pools, etc.

Further down is the village of Palmar which is home to more Mauritian hotels such as the Crystals Beach Resort and Spa and others. Next, tourists will find the village of Trou d’Eau Douce which was one of the original Dutch settlements of Mauritius. Nowadays it is a touristic and fishing village. One of the Mauritian luxury hotels that can be found nearby is Le Touessrok Hotel. The public beaches of Trou d’Eau Douce, Quatre Cocos and Belle-Mare will be welcome stops along the way. Most of the hotels nearby will offer various water sports such as scuba diving, kite surfing, snorkeling and many others for a fee. People may even take a boat to the nearby Ile aux Cerfs, which is a much-appreciated picnic spot among the locals. The island is also home to a golf course which is owned and maintained by Le Touessrok hotel. Nearby is Grande-Riviere-Sud-Est. It is the mouth of the longest river of the island. The region is also known for the several small waterfalls that can be found there.

Further down are the villages of Quatre Soeurs, Grand Sable, Bambous Virieux and Bois des Amourettes. The next big stop after that will definitely be Vieux Grand Port, which was also one of the original settlements of the Dutch. The bay of Grand Port is also the place where an epic naval battle between French and British fleets took place. It was the only naval battle in history where Napoleon Bonaparte’s fleets were victorious over British fleets.

Why Mauritius is even better than the Seychelles or Bora-Bora for your holidays

Why Mauritius is even better than the Seychelles or Bora-Bora for your holidays

Close to Le Morne by tomfellmann, on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/tomfellmann/

Mauritius holds a particular place among the world’s island destinations. It may not be as exotic as the Tahitian island of Bora-Bora or as pristine or glamorous as the Seychelles, but it is not as far-flung as the former and it is certainly more developed than the latter, meaning that while you can enjoy very relaxing holidays in the luxury hotels in the rural areas of Mauritius, you don’t need to feel out of touch with the rest of civilization either.

In fact, holidays in Mauritius might actually be preferable to these more glamorous destinations because the level of development allows for a range of touristic activities that may not be available in Seychelles or Bora-Bora.

During your holidays in the island of Mauritius, not only you will get the opportunity to relax on the white sandy beaches, but you will also have the opportunity to try various activities in nature reserves and parks such as riding quad bikes, mountain biking, archery, zip-lining, buggy rides, sky-diving, horse-riding excursions, safaris, etc. Furthermore, a lot of different activities can be practiced out at sea, including kite surfing, windsurfing, big game fishing, whale and dolphin watching, scuba diving and even going on submarine rides and explore the ocean floor.

Some of the nature parks and reserves that you can visit during your holidays in Mauritius are:  Rivulet Terre Rouge Estuary, Domaine de Lagrave, Domaine de l’Etoile, la Vallée des Couleurs, la Vanille Crocodile Farm, Chamarel Adventure Park, The Black River Gorges, Frédérica Nature Reserve, and Casela.

During your holidays in Mauritius, you will also have all the luxury to improve your golf scores at the numerous golf courses which dot the island. Some of the golf courses of Mauritius are : the Tamarina Golf Club, the Paradis Hotel and Golf  Club, the Touessrok golf course, The One 1 Only Saint-Géran Golf Club, the Belle Mare plage Golf Club, the Four Seasons Golf Club, the Golf du Château at Domaine de Bel-Ombre and the Mauritius Gymkhana Club.

Mauritius also has a rich culture, as you can find people of almost all origins living peacefully there. One of the ways you can discover the culture of Mauritius is through several museums such as The Martello Tower Museum in Black River, The Frederik Hendrik Museum in Vieux Grand Port, The Robert Edward Hart Memorial Museum, the Mahébourg National History Museum, the Domaine des Aubineaux in Forest-Side, the Eureka House in Moka, the Chateau Labourdonnais in Mapou, L’Aventure du Sucre in Pamplemousses, the China Heritage Museum in Port-Louis, the Mikado Shell Museum, the Postal Museum, the Photography Museum, the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Memorial Centre for Culture and the Blue Penny Museum, all in Port-Louis.

Spending your holidays in Mauritius also means that you will be able to go shopping and sight-seeing in its towns, so if you need anything during your holidays, you can be sure you’ll get it at reasonable prices. Finally, the range of accommodations available in Mauritius, from bungalows, to luxury villas and 5-star hotels will also ensure you can tailor your holiday experience according to your budget and that most of your hard-earned money won’t be spent on travel expenses alone.

 

Places and beaches of the west of Mauritius

What to do in Mauritius - go see le Morne Mountain

le morne° by ✰saïda✰, on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/106422534@N02/

The island of Mauritius is well liked as a tourist destination. In fact, just in 2013, the country has received seven prestigious awards in the field of tourism.  It’s a well deserved recognition as the island offers a choice of accommodations and activities for tourists.

The western part of the island is one of the most touristic areas of Mauritius with accommodations ranging from luxury villas to equally luxurious hotels. It also boasts some of the most beautiful beaches of the country. There are also quite a range of touristic activities that can be practiced there, such as hiking, horse riding excursions, SCUBA diving, big game fishing, whale and dolphin watching, golfing, etc. At the Casela Nature Park, more activities can be practiced such as going on photo safaris, zip-lining, hiking, quad and segway riding, among others.  The nearby Black River Gorges National Park will provide further opportunities to admire one of the remaining forests of the island of Mauritius.

Starting from Port-Louis, the first village which can be definitely considered being a western village is Pointe-aux-Sables, which is considered to be the suburb of Port-Louis. The area has two public beaches which are well appreciated by the locals. Further down, you will encounter Petite-Rivière, which is mainly a residential area.

The next touristic area will be the village of Albion which is known for its beautiful public beach. You will find that there are a lot of luxury villas there, as the region is generally very sunny and is appreciated by locals and tourists alike. After going through the busy village of Bambous, you might consider making a stop at Flic-en-Flac, another place known for its beautiful beaches, night-life and luxury Mauritian villas and hotels which can range from friendly family hotels like Villas Caroline to 5 star luxury hotels.

Before arriving at the village of Tamarin, you will surely pass the Tamarina Golf Club, which offers a golfing experience with an out-of-Africa feel. At the Riverland Sports Club, tourists will have the opportunity to practice tennis, golf swings, kayak, and archery, among other activities.

The village of Tamarin is mostly known for its ancient salt evaporation ponds and its public beach. Further down, tourists will go through the village of La Preneuse where the Martello Tower Museum can be found, as well as a beautiful public beach. There are no luxury hotels in La Preneuse, but tourists looking for a nice place to stay in Mauritius will find a lot of luxury villas for rent there.

The village of Grande Riviere Noire is known for being the point of departure for many big game fishing trips as an anglers’ club is established there.  Further down are the villages of Case Noyale and La Gaulette which can be considered to be fishing villages.

The last place of the West of Mauritius is Le Morne. It is mostly known for the mountain of the same name and for its beautiful public beach. Tourists will also find a few luxury hotels there, as well as an 18-hole golf course.

 

Villages and public beaches of the north of Mauritius

Villages and beaches along the North of Mauritius

Coconut trees by carrotmadman6, on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/carrotmadman6

Well-known for its long white sandy beaches bordered by coconut and casuarina trees and blue lagoons, the island of Mauritius is a favorite holiday destination among tourists which harbors several charming seaside villages and spectacular landscapes.

By staying in a villa rental in the northern part of Mauritius, it is possible to explore fascinating places and villages. But the best part of staying in a villa in Mauritius is having your choice of beaches where you can relax instead of being restricted to the hotel beachfront.

One of the first villages that you will encounter in the northern part of Mauritius is Baie du Tombeau which can be found near Port-Louis, the capital of Mauritius. There is a public beach nearby and another can be found further north, called Le Goulet.  Further up you will find Pointe-auc-Piments public beach which is about 4 kilometres long and extends from Baie aux Tortues up to Trou aux Biches. It is a favorite dive-site as the lagoon is protected.  Further north you will find Grand-Baie, which is a well known touristic centre of the island where several night clubs and bars can be found, as well as restaurants and villa rentals.

Next along the road is the village of Cap Malheureux, a traditional fishing village which is better known for its famous red-roofed church by the seaside.

Just a few kilometers away from the coast, tourists become immersed in the excitement of rural Mauritian life by visiting the village of Goodlands, which is known for being very lively on Saturday morning which is normally market day.

Going further east, tourists will mostly encounter Grand Gaube where life seems very quiet and peaceful. Its small beach is rather desert most of the time and the seabed may look rock-infested, but the place is definitely a good stop-over before going further. They will quickly pass the quiet village of Poudre d’Or, where there is a monument commemorating the shipwreck of the Saint-Géran ship which inspired Bernardin de Saint-Pierre to write Paul et Virginie, and move towards Roches-Noires, a beautiful village where luxury Mauritian villas can be found near the sea side and which also has a very beautiful white sandy beach.  Another beach worth a stop is the one which can be found in the village of Poste Lafayette, where quite a few luxury Mauritius villa rentals can also be found. Another quiet beach nearby is the one called Bras-D’eau public beach.

Holidays in Mauritius : an unmatched experience

Holidays in Mauritius - amazing holidays in Mauritian hotels

Mauritius 2008 by Selene Weijenberg, on Flickr http://www.flickr.com/photos/selene_w/

Until the 16th century, Mauritius was left alone my most countries. Except from a few Arab navigators who first put it on their maps, nobody knew about the island until the Dutch set foot on it.

Upon their arrival on this small island of the south-east of the Indian Ocean, they tried to build a settlement from which they exported precious ebony trees. They also introduced sugar cane, which has since been a pillar of Mauritian economy. However the Dutch left the island, to be later replaced by the French, who brought along African slaves. Later, after the Napoleonic wars, it was the British who took over the island and they abolished slavery and introduced indentured laborers from Asia.

Nowadays the island of Mauritius is quite multicultural and tourists can enjoy a bit of every culture, especially in the varied food that is served at luxury hotels and restaurants all around the island.

Over the years, the island has become a luxury destination for tourists all over the world. The numerous Mauritius hotels and luxury private villa rentals are proof of the success of Mauritian tourism. Tourists can partake in a wide range of activities during their holidays in Mauritius such as big game fishing in the tropical waters around the island, golfing on well-designed golf courses near the hotel resorts, kite-surfing and other water sports.

There are also a lot of activities outside of Mauritian hotel properties as well. There are several nature parks and reserves around the island of Mauritius that tourists can visit. The private-run ones offer activities such as quad bike riding, horse riding, via ferrata, hiking, walking with lions and cheetahs, zip-lining etc… The public ones will allow tourists to get to know the island’s fauna and flora better.

There are also a few museums that  tourists can visit during their holidays in Mauritius. another interesting activity is visiting factories around the island, whether they make tea, rum, recycled glassware, or ship models.