Mauritius is everything you ever imagined, and more. Dreamy beaches. A pleasant climate. Flora and fauna. Lush scenes. Indulgent hotels for every budget. Rich history. A hospitable people. Everything you might have heard about Mauritius is true, but the reality is the real thing.
Mauritius conjures up the image of golden sandy beaches and days spend on the shore just soaking up the sun. That is part of it, but the Indian Ocean Island offers so much more. I bring you the best highlights of my one week stay in Mauritius!
Chamarel: This little-known village in Riviere Noire District packs several scenic sights. First is the Seven Colored Earths, a sand dune – a geological surprise which somehow merges seven colors – red, brown, violet, green, blue, purple and yellow. Another fascinating fact about the dune is they never erode despite the heavy rains that occur in the area.
Black River Gorges, also in Chamarel, is two worlds apart from the beach setting which Mauritius is mostly famous for. The Black River Gorges is nature at its rawest – hills, thick greenery, waterfalls, rare animals are all found here.
Casela: Here is one activity you should not miss while in Mauritius – communing with lions in Casela, one of the main attractions to Casela National Park was truly exhilarating. I got to touch and play with lions and cubs and observed them in their natural setting. However it’s not just the lions – the park is also packed with plenty of activities – giraffe feeding, camel rides, quad biking and many more. Casela also features an aviary replete with beautiful birds, some only endemic to Mauritius.
Grand Bay: Situated at the north of Mauritius, you will discover why the Dutch called this place ‘bay without end. Here, private, beautiful beaches are in endless supply. I liked the public beach, it’s a really lively scene with all nature of water sports – snorkeling, white water rafting, deep sea diving. There are plenty of mini stores on display –with really nice local outfits and souvenirs too.
Try some rum: Apart from the delicious Mauritian cuisine, the island boasts a proud rum heritage. The island is awash with sugar plantations, some with distilleries on site.
Beaches: I’d be remiss not to include beaches since they are almost synonymous with Mauritius! The island is endowed with some of the best beaches the world over – with talcum-white sandy beaches and clear, endearing turquoise waters. Some beaches have lagoons, others have coral reefs with colorful fish and other gorgeous marine life. Most of my week was spent at Mauritius’ east coast’s Ile Aux Serfs beach. This beach has a beautiful lagoon and numerous water activities including skiing, glass bottom boating, scuba diving, swimming, snorkeling and more. If you love kite surfing, be sure to check out Le Morne beach at a peninsula at Mauritius’ West Coast!