Sitting in the middle of the Indian Ocean is the island paradise of Mauritius. Spanning an area of 2,040 square kilometers, this slice of heaven, is home to 1.2 million people. Except for the southern part of the island Mauritius is surrounded by white beaches, and protected by a coral reef. A short guide on vacationing in Mauritius is just what you need to help plan your holiday. Mauritius is made up of 9 districts, Port Louis being the capital of Mauritius. The more popular districts include the capital city, Grand Baie, Flic En Flae, Trou aux Biches, Pereybere and Tamarin.
On this small island, is a melting pot of different cultures, religions and languages. With a mixture of Indian, Chinese, African and European cultures as well as Hinduism, Christianity, Buddhism and Muslim religions, Mauritius is one island getaway worth visiting.
What to do
There are a lot of sights to see in Mauritius as well as an endless list of activities that are on offer on the island; tours, sailing and golfing to mention a few. One sight to see, on the southern part of the island is the underwater waterfall. When seeing it at first glance from the air, it appears to be a massive waterfall. But in reality, it is segments of sand being washed down the Mascarene Plateau, which is an underwater shelf that creates a huge drop which the sand is being dragged into and lost into the great depths of the Indian Ocean. The only company on the island that can offer you such wonderful sights and more is Island Wings, who offer 1 hour flights for around $267 USD.
One of the other must do activity on the island is diving. There are diving businesses everywhere that can assist in your diving needs. Diver’s Ocean is one business that offers you a whole range of diving activities, depending on what your expertise level is. For new comers, depending on which activity you choose, it can cost from $50 USD up to $134 USD.
Another activity that must be done is horse riding on the beach. On a 2.5km deserted beach, you can enjoy the seclusion of riding with the sun setting in the background. One company that offers this exact service is The Centre Equestre de Riambel which is housed on the southern part of the island. It is a small rustic stable, but it offers you a personal one on one experience, and they can cater to any level of riding expertise.
Kite-surfing is a sport that most people love on Mauritius. The love for action sports and the beach, together, make a great activity to try. At Air-switch Kitesurf they can offer courses from $50 USD. But it’s best to contact them directly through email as they can specialize a price just for you. It is completely safe, with an instructor for every 2 people and it’s highly enjoyable.
On top of the list on things to do in Mauritius, is to go to the Fish Spa. Locate in Pointe aux Canonniers, the Fish Spa offers you a service you would need to pay top dollar for elsewhere in the world. At this spa you will treat your feet to a world of good, by letting little fish remove the dead skin and naturally exfoliate the skin on your feet. For the ultimate in relaxation, this place is a must. This next activity is for those who love an adrenaline rush. Tandem skydiving over this paradise is a dream coming true for most people. At sky dive Mauritius you can enjoy a 10,000 feet drop for $385 USD, not including the handi-cam DVD and pictures which is an extra $194 USD.
Where to stay
Looking for somewhere to stay on the island, there are plenty of options depending on your budget. Mauritius caters for those on a budget, families, honeymooners and those who want to relax in luxury.
For those on a budget the ONS motel and guest house is a perfect choice. Situated 5 minutes from the airport, it offers a private deluxe double bed which includes an ensuite, TV, air-condition and a continental breakfast for only $21.34 USD per person, per night in Mahebourg. Another option can be found at Pereybere hotel located in Pereybere. For $97 USD a night the room includes a double bed, living and dining room as well as a kitchen and free wi-fi. Families are also most welcomed on the island. At the Four seasons resorts located in Beau Champ offers a 2 bedroom garden villa with a free breakfast and parking for 2 adults and 2 children for $1657 USD. The Constance Belle Mare Plage in Poste De Flacq can offer a family of 4, a garden view 2 bedroom villa with a private pool and kitchenette for $1195 USD per night.
When money isn’t a factor, the luxurious places to stay are the best places to choose. The Oberoi in Pointe Aux Piments is one of the most luxurious resorts on Mauritius. For $2614.30 USD per night you can relax in a 2 bedroom royal villa which has 2 extra-large double beds, 2 bathrooms and a private pool. If you find yourself wanting to stay in Poste De Flacq, the Constance le Prince Maurice is where you need to stay. For a beach pool villa and a free breakfast, this will cost you $1600 USD per night.
Where to eat
As Mauritius is a melting pot of cultures, it’s no surprise that it’s also a melting pot of flavours. With the flavours of India, Africa, Europe and China, these flavours together create the mix of food that is eaten in Mauritius. Located in a village called Moka, near Port Louis, Escale Creole offers home cooked meals at an affordable price. Escale Creole highlights the flavours from the different cultural influences. Foods such as chicken curry, salted fish, rougaille saucisse, as well as coconut, and banana cakes are available. Remember though, they are only open at lunch.
If you’re in the mood for fresh seafood, the place to go to is Cabane Du Filao. Found in Pointe Aux Piments, Cabane Du Filao is a small place set on the beach. Known for its great service and fresh, delicious food such a freshly cooked lobster, Cabane Du Filao is one place to try.
While walking down Grand Baie you might find a place called Botteghita. Known as one of the best Italian restaurants on the island, Botteghita serves up fresh Italian dishes such as pizzas and pastas at a great price. But beware; the restaurant is that well-known you will have to book before you taste their offerings.
The best time to go to Mauritius is during their winter months, between May and October. There will be less rain, and it would be a lot cooler than usual, but the sun is still shining. The people of Mauritius are conservative, friendly, and welcoming, and speak a variety of languages including English. To get the full experience of Mauritius, go and explore what there is to offer, you might find a little gem hiding around the corner.