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Top 5 Best Places To Visit In Mauritius

Updated on March 2, 2013

Mauritius is a small tropical island located approximately 2400km off the South-East coast of Africa, just beyond Madagascar. Being in the South-West of the Indian Ocean and just under 2000km below the equator, it has a tropical climate and a beauteous variety of wildlife, beaches and landscapes.

The secluded paradise was originally a volcanic island and covers an area of 720 square miles (1,865 square kilometers). The dormant volcano, Trou Aux Cerfs is perfect for those with a taste for adventure, giving a panoramic view of the island.

This rapidly developing country is attracting around 100,000 tourists annually from Britain alone. Suffice to say, this blissful holiday resort is more than just intriguing...
- so where are the best places to visit in Mauritius?

1) Port Louis

Port Louis is the capital city of Mauritius and is a must see for anyone who wants to visit. It is a thriving city full of culture, entertainment and restaurants.

  • As the name suggests, Port Louis harbors an elegant variety of yachts and cruise ships. During the 1700s, the French had chosen this location in particular for international trading because of the shelter provided by the 800 meter high Moka mountain range surrounding it.
  • Port Louis is the second most important financial district in the whole of Africa (just behind Johannesburg) and is home to over 145,000 residents.
  • The natural history museum, fairly small as it is, has a fascinating collection of exhibits including replicas of animals, sea creatures and a reconstructed Dodo bird from the only complete Dodo skeleton in existence.
  • If you are more in tune with busy excitement however then ‘Le Cauden Waterfront’ in Port Louis is a hotspot for many visitors as it comprises a well rounded variety of commercial activities. This includes an extensive shopping experience; plenty of restaurants and a cultured night life to round off the day.
  • If nature and wildlife are of your favorite interests then Pamplemousses Botanical Gardens just North East of Port Louis would certainly raise an eyebrow. The gardens were established in 1735 and contain an incredible range of plants, boasting 500 different species. This includes the Victoria Regia giant water lilies, Talipot palms and a spice garden. There is also a neatly sheltered picnic area beside a relaxing stream, which from personal experience, is home to some breadcrumb loving ravenous fish.

2) Black River Gorges National Park - Nature Reserve

The black gorges national park is located in the South-West of the island and covers 3.5% of its entire surface. It is home to over 300 species of flowering plants and 9 species of bird that are unique to Mauritius, including the pink pigeon which was previously on the brink of extinction. Wild cats, bull frogs and monkeys are amongst other capturing wildlife to be seen.

  • This protected area of undisturbed rainforest has one of the most jaw dropping view-points that anyone could feast their eyes upon - Plaine Champagne. Presenting its visitors with a panoramic magnificence, this startling viewpoint descends your eyes upon a great jungle that thrives amongst an impressive mountain range. As your eyes gaze across the luscious greenery the horizon greets you with a silky gleam from the warm Indian ocean and to your immediate right, a graceful waterfall makes for a captivating spectacle that towers high above the forest floor. Plaine Champagne is purely one of the best places to visit in Mauritius.
  • There are hiking routes and tour buses available to help people navigate through this dense wilderness. The flowering season (Sept – Jan) is the best time to appreciate the spectacular growth and lushness deep within the forest.
  • Another tropical rainforest you might be keen to know about is Domaine du Chasseur, located on the coast directly East from the national park. The 200 acre mountainous park contains a beautiful variety of wild animals. From wild boar to Javanese Stags, Java dear and tropical birds, it’s everything an animal lover could ask for.

3) La Vanille Reserve - Crocodile & Giant Tortoises Park

Located on the center of the South coast, this park has a more zoo like appeal to it and has an abundance of 2000 crocodiles and 1000 giant tortoises amongst its surrounding banana trees, giant bamboos and palm trees.

  • The friendly park guides (inclusive of your entrance ticket) escort you for a stroll amongst the truly giant tortoises, making for brilliant photo opportunities that are complimented by the lush vegetation. Unfortunately for any adrenaline junkie however, the crocodiles are kept within their enclosures.
  • Being child friendly, the park provides a 'Jungle Adventure Playground' to keep the little ones amused.
  • The very impressive insectarium is highly recommended, as even alone it is one of the best places to visit in Mauritius. Allowing visitors to see the vast 23,000 species of insects native to Mauritius, the large variety of butterflies instantly engage your eyes as their wings glisten colorfully in the light. Meanwhile, giant beetles with tribal looking shells and spiders bigger than any man’s hand are sure to make your hairs stand on end! They are all however neatly presented in glass cases that line the interior walls. For those who aren't quite reassured by this, let’s just say the insects died of old age.
  • As for the live animals, there are iguanas, geckos, mongooses, huge fruit bats, monkeys, deer, wild boars, baby tortoises, terrapins, turtles and even more wildlife to capture your attention.
  • Food connoisseurs might want to take advantage of the Hungry Crocodile Restaurant which offers a variety of dishes that suspiciously taste like crocodile.

4) Beautiful Beaches In Mauritius

There’s no such thing as visiting Mauritius without spending some cherish-able time enjoying the islands purest beaches. The sand is fine and almost white while it complements the tranquil blue offered by the warm Indian Ocean. Whether bathing in the sun or swimming in the shallows, the beaches in Mauritius are the best I’ve ever seen.

  • The best place to find the most outstanding and famous beaches is in the North-West of the island known as ‘Mauritian Riveria’. These are home to a neatly situated spread of holiday resorts and it’s not hard to see why.
  • From Mont Choisy’s softly stretching shore to Blue Bay’s turquoise water and volcanic rock, Mauritius indefinitely holds one of the finest selections in the world. Grand Baie and Pereybere are also two of the most popular beaches in Mauritius.
  • Mauritius is in such a secluded location within the Indian Ocean, that gazing into the horizon from one of its beaches draws together a state of mind that is like no other. This feeling of freedom and peace of the island is only accented by the warm glowing sunsets that fill the night sky. They far exceed the genre of a ‘photo opportunity’.
  • Many intriguing sea creatures can be found within the islands' stretching waters including trumpet, clown and box fish. The beautiful corals are also home to such sea-life as octopus, porpoise dolphins, sting rays and turtles - just to name a few. There are many boat trips to choose from (some including seafood buffets) and the Submarine experience is a lifetime opportunity that will inspire beyond your imagination - especially in the Summer months when the ocean shows an abundance of colors. From personal experience, I would rate the ocean itself as one of the best places to visit in Mauritius.
  • Shark safe zones are found on a selection of both private and public beaches for those who enjoy a relaxing swim. This will also keep you safe from any stingrays, barracuda or marlin (swordfish).

5) Mauritius Leisure Village Water Park

The Leisure Village Water Park is one of the best places to visit in Mauritius because of the endless fun available to anyone that's lucky enough to visit. Located on the East coast of Mauritius near Belle Mare this 25 acre mass of tantalizing water rides is more than just a water feature.

  • The choice of water slides is irresistible to anyone who knows the meaning of fun, with the most tempting of all being ‘the black hole’. You could brave the mighty wave pool or take a relaxing venture around the lazy river which lets you peruse the whole park at the same time.
  • Special events can be viewed at the Pirate’s Plaza auditorium during the peak season. Seating 1000 people, the auditorium adds to the wonderful entertainment of the park. There are also several souvenir shops for gifts or something to bring back joyful memories.
  • Other highlights to this ideal water resort include restaurants, a games corner, paradise cove, a Jacuzzi and the thrilling mountain skull water ride.
  • Nearby hotels make the leisure park ideally situated and there is also a shallow area for the younger children, who can enjoy the friendly water cannons and mushroom shower.
  • During good weather, the floor can be so hot that footwear is a must!

Justifiably The Best Places To Visit In Mauritius

Amongst the endless fun and excitement that the small island has to offer, you have now read about the top best 5 places to visit in Mauritius. Of course these are only 5 of an endless variety of Mauritius attractions and there are many more places around the tropical paradise just waiting to encompass its visitors.

If you want to take the chance to explore some of natures finest qualities, then the pleasant beaches, inspiring wildlife, cultured history and pure refreshing waters of Mauritius are more than enough to satisfy your appetite.

Map of Mauritius

Aerial View of Mauritius
Aerial View of Mauritius

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    • profile image

      Camilla 17 months ago

      I think the waterpark is closed....

    • sparkleyfinger profile image

      Lynsey Harte 4 years ago from Glasgow

      I think you should list this in the Hubber challenge. travel the world on a hub... you just need to add a wee blurb and link to another travel hub in the blurb (see my top 10 free things to do in glasgow to see what i mean... There is a fbook page too... https://www.facebook.com/groups/Hubberchallenge/ You should do it! (and you could link to one of mine! lol the Amsterdam one? mibbe?

    • travelholidays profile image

      travelholidays 4 years ago from India

      Nice information " Port Louis" image here presented is really stunning :)