Summertime is now upon us. This month, let’s all enjoy the sun complemented with an exceptional view of the ocean in Mauritius Island.
Located in the Indian Ocean exactly southeast of Africa, Mauritius is part of the Mascarene Islands along with other outer islands nearby. Mauritius is also home of a vast diversity with their coral reef system, considered to be the third largest in the world. Its capital and by far largest city is Port Louis.
The capital city of Port Louis
Visiting Mauritius Island brings you straight to its capital city, Port Louis. The metropolis has serve as the country’s main harbor point transporting various products in and out of the city. One of the famous waterfronts found within is the Le Caudan. The area offers a large shopping district where travelers can buy authentic Mauritian textile, clothing, and accessories. Have a taste of the combination of various spices in the Namaste Restaurant serving Indian cuisines of Cheese Naan, Kulfi Malai, and more. Another restaurant worth dining to is Kebz, serving Lebanese cuisine of Fellafah and kebabs. All of these restaurants and café are found within the premises of the L’Observatoire, the first ever meteorological observatory in the country.
While just walking at the Le Caudan Waterfront is enough to enjoy your stay, there are still a lot to see in Port Louis. Among the top favorites are the Blue Penny Museum displaying over a thousand pieces of blue and red penny stamps as well as the “Paul and Virginia” statue; the Natural History Museum where the fossils of the now extinct Dodo, a flightless bird only found in Mauritius, is displayed in their gallery; the Aapravasi Ghat also known as the Immigration Depot is both a national monument and a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Moreover, find Mauritian art pieces, glassworks, fresh seafood, herbal medicines, and essential oils in the Central Market and the Craft Market located just within the city. Don’t forget to take a photo of the statue of Bertrand-François Mahé de la Bourdonnais, a famous naval officer of French descent, located at the heart of Port Louis.
Port Louis also offers hotel stays for their visitors. Two of the most visited are the La Suffren Hotel and Marina and the Le Labourdonnais Hotel. Both located at the Caudan Waterfront, the said hotels offers various amenities from lounge bars, catamaran cruises, spa and gym services, as well as swimming pool areas overlooking the sea. Restaurants like the La Boussole and Yuzu serve sumptuous meals and bar such as The Post Box offers authentic Mauritian beers and wines.
Off to Mahébourg
Another city worth visiting is the Mahébourg. A small fishing village located within the Grand Port district. Unlike Port Louis which is considered as the country’s main financial, cultural, and tourism hub, Mahébourg boasts of a simple yet charming way of living with its few waterfronts and harbor points.
Traveling to Mahébourg means a day spent for a gastronomic food adventure as the city is brimming with endless restaurants to choose from. Among the most popular are the Les Copains d’Abord serving rougail saucisses, or sometimes called the spicy sausages; the La Vielle Rouge serving cuisines such as the fish curry wrapped in a banana leaf; and the Saveurs de Shin with their specialty of pecking ducks.
Furthermore, explore Monday Market, a public market offering Mauritian silks and textiles as well as local delicacies of dhal puri or lentil pancakes, gâteaux piments or chili cakes, samosa, Creole curries, and a whole lot more. Lastly, take a tour inside the Rault Biscuit Factory prominent for their Manioc Biscuits.
A paradise of white sand beaches
After visiting the different landmarks of the country and eating your share of unique dishes from several restaurants, it’s now time to fully enjoy your stay in Mauritius—that is beach hopping.
First stop is the Preskil Beach Resort located in a private island just southeast of Mahébourg. Aside from having a state-of-the-art rooms that provide an overlooking view of the ocean, Preskil Beach Resort offers recreational activities such as scuba diving, sauna, spa treatment, pedal-boating, windsurfing, snorkeling, beach volleyball, catamaran cruises, and island hopping. Moreover, dine along the beach area in the Tapas Grill and Beach Bar or have a meal in the Spices Restaurant serving international cuisines. Enjoy a sip of your mojitos and taste cuts of steak imported from South Africa in the Indigo Bar and Charka Steak House and Bar.
Second stop is the Blue Lagoon Beach Hotel located also in Mahébourg. Blue Lagoon boasts its swimming pools, spa, lounge bars, fitness center, and restaurants. Enjoy walking in the resort’s white sand beaches and swimming in their clear blue waters.
Lastly, enjoy a day in the Le Surcouf Hotel and Spa. The establishment has also swimming pool for private parties, restaurant, bars, and spa. The hotel offers a garden perfect for meditating as well as recreational water activities of deep sea fishing, speedboat cruises, parasailing, undersea walk, and glass bottomed boat rentals.
Living an Islander’s Life
American writer Mark Twain once said, “Mauritius was made first and then heaven; and heaven was copied after Mauritius.” And I believe he was right. Brimming with fine white sand, crystal-clear waters, Mauritius is an absolute tropical paradise. For anyone who would love to get a taste of the simple yet delightful island living, Mauritius is the destination to go.