People talk about their holiday in Mauritius and speak about luxury resorts, relaxing on beautiful beaches in the resort they chose, but that’s it, they miss out on all the facilities that this magnificent island has to offer.
The island is perfectly sized to explore in a week or so! To give you an example it takes under two hours to drive from the north to the south of the island. I explored Mauritius for seven days and I am so happy I didn’t stay in the typical “honeymoon” resort for the week!
On arrival at the airport we picked up our hire car which we had pre-booked on the internet, but beware Mauritius we joked about, is the island of roundabouts! Every 2km or so on a motorway a roundabout would show up, so you will not get around the island fast!! But if you can count them let me know because we are almost sure it has one of the most roundabouts on any island!!! They are all over the island along with stray dogs you should be particularly careful about at night, as their is limited streetlighting!
Where to stay
We stayed in a area called Trou Au Bitches, this is a very popular honeymoon area with luxury resorts stretching along the beautiful sandy beachfront.
From booking.com we found an amazing aparthotel called BeCosy which was across the road from the beach. It was US$65 a night, so if you are sharing its US$35 a night, can you get cheaper!!We had a very nice apartment with a fully equipped kitchen and beautiful balcony. We drove to the supermarket just down the road (10min) walk and bought breakfast, alcohol etc. The birds would come and join us for breakfast every morning on the balcony it was amazing! Their is lots of restaurants and bars around with very reasonable prices, a typical dinner would not cost you more than US$15.
The beach was across the road and as you walk along the beachfront you can have a look into all the amazing luxury resorts. The beach is the same from one end to the other so renting a bed on the beach is the same as walking on and sitting on the beds from the resorts. They offer water sports and you can go into the resorts grounds for a walk or to sit and have a drink.
The diving in Mauritius is a must. It has lots of colourful reefs, you will see all sorts of small fish and turtles etc, however if you are looking to see manta rays or sharks etc like myself, it is very rare to see this here! I went with a dive school called Pro Dive Mauritius. They were very professional friendly and supplied all the best equipment!
All around the north of the island stretches amazing beaches, each one more breathtaking than the last so it is definitely worth your while exploring the different beaches.
We organised a day tour which you can book online or from the hotel you are staying in to do a dolphin spotting tour, and a island tour. This is well worth doing, we did a catamaran dolphin tour, which I will warn you the speedboat is more effective to get up close to the dolphins as the catamaran is more slow but it is a beautiful experience to be out on the catamaran.
Seven Coloured Earths
The Seven Coloured Earths are a geological formation and a big tourist attraction found in south-western Mauritius. It is an area of sand dunes that have seven distinct colours. The main feature of the place is that since these differently coloured sands spontaneously settle in different layers, dunes acquire a surrealistic , striped colouring.
Another interesting feature of Chamarel’s Coloured Earths is that the dunes seemingly never erode, in spite of Mauritius’ torrential tropical rains. You can drive here through google maps, download offline maps as I have said in other blog posts, It is very nice and interesting to see.
If you are driving in the same day you can go to visit The Tamarind Falls or Tamarin Falls are a scenic attraction of southwest Mauritius. The falls are a series of seven cataracts located on the Rivière Tamarin. They are beautiful to see however I will warn all vulnerable that it is swarming in mosquitos so bring your repellent!
Even just driving around in Mauritius getting lost, you will find yourself in somewhere beautiful and new.
Crocodile and Giant Tortoise Nature Reserve
Last but not least my favourite place, as an animal lover is the Crocodile and Giant Tortoise Park and Nature Reserve. They have a museum of insects like spiders and beetles and butterflies of Mauritius and it is very interesting! Fair enough the crocodiles are not in the wild which I do not agree with, but they are kept like they would be in a zoo to give you an example. The real reason to visit here is to see the giant tortoise area of the park. They are adorable and in such a big open space, so you can go in and sit and spend time with them without a keeper watching you or someone timing you. They are lazy animals so they are mostly sleeping or eating but the experience with them is unforgettable!
Overall Mauritius is a beautiful, amazing place to visit and renting a car and exploring it will really satisfy you. Sitting in a resort with such a magical country to explore is almost a sin!!
I hope this post is some help to if you intend to visit Mauritius and please let me know what you think! 🙂