Mauritius

Overview

A Garden of Eden with a population of just over 1 million, Mauritius is unique for its diversity:  Indians, Creoles, Muslims, French, Chinese, all working together while still preserving their traditional cultures.  Once a destination only for the very wealthy, Mauritius is now more affordable, and much more accessible from Australia, with direct flights from Perth.

This beautiful island has a central plateau with impressive mountains and is skirted by white sandy beaches.  Offshore are coral reefs and crystal clear turquoise waters.  An idyllic holiday destination for both families and those looking for romance or peaceful retreat.

Mauritius is also renowned for its picture perfect weddings, romantic escapes and golf holidays.

Best Time To Go

There is no clearly defined wet/dry seasons in Mauritius, however the highest rainfall is in February and March.  The east coast is cooler in Summer/Winter and quite windy from May to August.  Summer season is October to April and Winter is May to September.  There is a slight risk of cyclones January to March.

Best Bits

Activities and Sightseeing
There are plenty of things to do in Mauritius, apart from the obvious lounging around the pool or on the beach.

Port Louis
The capital of Mauritius is good for shopping, as this is a duty free haven.  Cashmere and linen are particularly good buys here.  There are also several cultural attractions.  The Blue Penny Museum has the world’s first Colonial stamp and the Natural History Museum houses an ancient Dodo skeleton.  Take a walk to the top of Signal Mountain to watch the sun set over the city.

Catamaran and Sea-Faring Cruises
There are a wide range of daily full day cruises available, some meandering along the coast and others striking out for outlying islands.

Deep Sea Fishing
Mauritius has a large fleet of charter vessels which take visitors out to fish for marlin, skipjack, yellow-fin tuna, sailfish and dorado.

Submarine and Underwater Walk
Take a submarine dive or a helmeted underwater walk at an average depth of 3 metres.

Horse Racing
On Saturdays between May and November, the track at Champs-de-Mars rings with the sound of hooves.

Trekking
Through woods and forests, lakes and rivers, mountains and waterfalls.

Mountain Bike Riding
Ride through forests and past lakes.

Canyoning
For the adventurous, gear up and abseil down under a waterfall.

Kayaking
Journey among mangroves, sea birds, dolphins and up rivers.  Visit neighbouring islets and snorkel over exquisite coral reefs.

Eating
Mauritian cuisine is adapted from three continents, creating a fantastic combination of international delights.  Many of the resorts boast restaurants with celebrity chefs and Michelin stars.  Lunch tends to be the best time to dine out.  Some of the restaurants worth visiting on the island include Le Château de Bel Ombre, Domaine Anna Restaurant, Le Fangourin, Le Barachois, Chez Tante Athalie and La Chaumière Masala.

Holidays with Kids
Mauritian resorts offer an unparalleled family holiday experience with kids clubs, activity and babysitting services.  Parents and grandparents can relax knowing their youngsters are in good hands.

Tips & Tricks

Getting Around
Public transport (yellow buses), hire cars and taxis are readily available. Always be sure to agree on a fixed price with the taxi driver before embarking on your journey. Taxi drivers are notorious for charging exorbitant prices and before you know it you’re doing a full-day island tour you really don’t want to do!

Mauritius is an ideal environment for self-drive as there is plenty to see and do. Being an ex-British colony, Mauritians drive on the left hand side of the road and observe the give way to the right rule.

Visas
Australian passport holders do not require a visa prior to arrival in Mauritius. It’s always a good idea to check visa requirements with the appropriate embassies or consulates.

Money
The local currency is Mauritian Rupees. Most credit cards are accepted at resorts. We recommend changing your spending money at the airport upon arrival where the rates will be better than at hotels and resorts. ATMs are easily found in shopping areas and tourist districts.

Language
English is the official language, however Creole and French are more widely spoken by the locals.

Beaches
The stunning beaches of Mauritius are the main drawcard of this holiday destination. The northern part of the island has the best variety and concentration of beaches. The most famous and glamorous beaches are found in the east.

Île aux Cerfs
This is the most popular beach in Mauritius, with its talcum white sand and translucent water.

Belle Mare Plage
There is 10km of white sand here and lots of water sports to keep you occupied. It can be a little windier here and the currents a bit stronger.

Grand Baie
This is the perfect spot for swimming as it is in a sheltered cove. Plenty of water sports and you can do the underwater walk here.

Trou aux Biches
Perfect for families as there is very calm, flat water and plenty of trees.

Blue Bay
This is a marine national park with plenty of sightseeing under the water. Head out in a glass bottomed boat to explore the area.

A special thanks to Asia Escape Holidays for their contribution to the content on this page.

Download the full Mauritius Destination Guide. Available from the right hand side of this page.

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