Think Mauritius, and think sun, sea, sand, stunning sunsets, fabulous food and minty mojitos, and indeed all this is entirely true. It’s a wonderful country for all ages; whether you’re on a honeymoon, a family holiday with children or a relaxing break for two. But, after a week of visiting the whole perimeter of the island, we can report that there is much more on offer than a perfect beach holiday. Think Mauritius, and think much, much more.
Due to the volcanic formation of the island, it has a diverse topography with a backdrop of dramatic mountainous peaks leading down to sugar cane fields, pristine beaches and into clear, calm, crystal lagoon waters before the island’s reef.
All hotel water-sport centres have a vast menu of activities to fill your day with fun. Guests in search of more leisurely exploration can go out on kayaks, pedalos, glass-bottom boats or, for a unique activity, try their hand at water-biking at the One&Only Le Saint Géran – it has to be seen (and tried) to be believed!
Those wanting a spot of exhilaration can make the most of complimentary water skiing (at nearly at every hotel on the island), take a hobie cat off into the lagoon, go snorkelling and diving to see the underwater marine life, or test the winds off the shores of Le Morne in the south, home to one of the best kite-surf spots in the world! Day trips can be arranged on a private catamaran that takes you beyond the reef and into the ocean. Another unique experience awaits those staying at 20 Degrés Sud, where guests can sail to Il Plait with its exclusive beach and restaurant set up in a ‘Robinson Crusoe-style’ experience. Couples in search of romance can set sail from the bay of Paradise Cove – a stunning boutique property in the north of the island.
Mauritius is a haven for food lovers, with cuisines from every corner of the world and a vast array of wines from the sun-drenched vineyards of South Africa. Each and every hotel boasts fantastic restaurants but some certainly stand out from the rest and are definitely worth a visit if you are staying in a hotel nearby.
On the east coast at the Constance Le Prince Maurice, nestled amongst the mangroves and the lagoon, you’ll find Le Barachois, a restaurant serving the most amazing seafood. Stroll along its mysteriously winding, lantern-lit gangplank to your table above the floating decks. Unforgettably romantic!
St Regis has a floating market offering some mouth-watering Asian dishes and an amazing sushi restaurant serving some of the best sushi you’ll ever taste, all prepared right before your eyes!
For a more authentic Mauritian experience we highly recommend a trip to La Case du Pecheur for some of the freshest seafood caught in the nearby waters. Its location among the mangroves not far from Anahita The Resort makes it an idyllic lunch spot. Its name means ‘fisherman’s hut’ and you can choose from oysters, octopus and fresh local fish, delicious meat curries and potjie- a traditional African stew! It is not just an ocean-side restaurant but also a shell museum with a unique global collection on display. The beautiful, eye-catching shells are also used decoratively.
High up in the mountains in the south-west lies the village of Chamarel, home to the Rhumerie de Chamarel, which has been producing rum for the last eight years. Take a tour to see how rum is made from the sugar cane in the fields, finishing your 30-minute tour with a warming shot (or seven!) of the different varieties. Along the road from the Rhumerie is the charming boutique hotel of Lakaz Chamarel, offering a wonderful experience away from the beaches, stunning views of the coastline below and the perfect sunset-viewing location. For those wanting to explore more, visit ‘Seven Coloured Earth’, where just like the name explains, has different coloured soils, evolved through conversion of basaltic lava to clay minerals.
For a family day out, head to Casela park where quad-biking, zip-lining, canyoning, segway-ing, a petting zoo and many more activities await. Wannabe Tarzans in search of an adrenalin rush can fly high above the canopy at great speed with the longest zip-line measuring 400 metres, and if you’re daring enough, upside down is the way forward!
After a 7-day journey around the island and enjoying a number of activities in the name of research, we can see that there is much, much more to Mauritius. Do make the most of the beaches and ocean but don’t forget about the mountains and the landscape.
Call one of our Mauritius Consultants on 020 8682 5020 to find out more, or visit our website at scottdunn.com