Characterized by the verdant monolith that towers up to 556 meters (1,824 feet), the Morne Brabant peninsula is a treasure trove of nature and history. Located at the far southwestern end of the Indian Ocean and enveloped by a lagoon, the peninsula brims with an abundance of flora and fauna. Home to two rare species of plants, Mandrinette and Boucle d’Oreille, this peninsula is drenched in rich culture and history as well. While no official records of this incident have been found, the peninsula is associated with a heartbreaking legend from 1835. Out of fear of getting arrested and going back to the life of slavery, the refuge slaves of the island jumped from the massive monolith. They mistook the intentions of the policemen who arrived to free them from the bonds of enslavement. Mauritian Creoles celebrate this day as a reminder of the abolition of slavery and a tribute to the slaves who lost their lives. Designated a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, the glistening waters of this magnificent peninsula shine brightly, triumphing over the gloomy past of the island.
Nestled in the heart of Mauritius, the shimmering waters of the Ganga Talao surrounded by infinite verdant stretches form a spectacular canvas of colors. A revered site of Hindu worship in Mauritius, magnificent statues and temples characterize the pellucid waters of this lake. Formerly known as ‘Pari Talao’ due to the folktales associated with it, the lake was renamed after the sacred Indian river, Ganga. The alabaster Sagar Shiv Mandir on the lake shores is one of the most revered Hindu shrines in Mauritius. Home to the tallest statue in Mauritius, the 108 feet (33 meters) tall Shiva statue dominates other figurines of Hindu deities. Displaying spectacular vibrancy and devotion, thousands of pilgrims walk barefoot to the lake during the grand celebrations of Mahashivratri.
Mauritius connotes crystal clear beaches and unlimited fun while enjoying a host of activities and water sports. Pereybere Beach is one such popular destination abuzz with tourists and locals. Restaurants, nightclubs, shopping arcades and much more await you at Pereybere. Opt for snorkeling and explore the underwater world and exotic marine life; owing to the deep waters, it's an ideal spot to go diving. After a tiring marine excursion, you can simply sit at the promenade lined up with Casuarina and Palm trees or walk-in at the nearby dining outlets and relish local cuisine. Truly, Pereybere Beach is a great vacation destination!
Spread over a massive area of about 6,754 hectares (16,690 acres), the Black River Gorges National Park is a green haven and a testament to the island's biodiversity that constitutes nearly two percent of Mauritius' expanse. The national park is a rippling sweep of verdant foliage, like a spectacular ocean of green, its massive waves frozen in place, pierced sparingly by rocky outcrops. This park is home to several species of flora and fauna, including trees like the Trochetia Boutoniana, Cassine Orientalis, and Diospyros Tessellaria, as well as birds such as the Pink Pigeon, the Mauritius Cuckoo-shrike, and the Mascarene Paradise Flycatcher. The old-growth ebony forests are the haunt of giant fruit bats, macaque monkeys and wild boar, alongside nine endemic species of birds and hundreds of flowering plants. As it contains such a wealth of wildlife, it is protected by the Mauritian government and has also been recognized by UNESCO as a tentative entry to the World Heritage List. Visitors can enter this park at different locations, and one of them is located near the Grand Riviere Noire.
Located in the bustling northern part of the island, the Trou aux Biches boasts one of the most gorgeous beaches on the island. Lined by the splendid casuarina trees, this beach is usually crowded by tourists who come to admire the beautiful blue waters and the pristine golden sands. Home to several hotels, it can be difficult for one to find a peaceful and quiet corner where one can relax and enjoy the beauty in private. However, it is not impossible and, anyway, the view and scenery alone are so gorgeous that tourists can tune out of the crowded picture and tune into the harmony of nature. The blue waters of the beach also make it one of the favorite spots for snorkeling and diving.
Backdropped by the infinite waters of the Indian Ocean, the Notre Dame Auxillatrice is one of the most charming sites of Mauritius. Located in the village of Cap Malheureux, the whitewashed Roman Catholic church, topped with a striking red roof, is an embodiment of the tranquility that Mauritius offers. Intricate stone-carved altar housed in the interiors is a sight to cherish for many tourists. The church, built as a tribute to victims of an unfortunate shipwreck, is a popular photo-op destination for couples.
In sunny Port Louis, a series of crumbling stone ghats or buildings stand testament to a major diaspora that occurred during the 19th and 20th centuries. Between 1849 and 1923, a large Indian labor force was transported through this 'immigration' depot, and as part of the process, umpteen contracted laborers from across the Indian Ocean were relocated for work as deemed fit by the British. At this point, Mauritius became the earliest colony to receive such a sizable contracted labor force from across its waters. Formally known as the Immigration Depot, but also referred to as the Aapravasi Ghat in Hindi, the UNESCO-designated heritage ruins are symbolic of this momentous move in history, one that shaped Mauritius' sub-cultures as we know them today. While the depot was originally built along the Trou Fanfaron Bay, years of development has pushed its location beyond modern attractions like the Caudan Waterfront. Though only ruins and remnants are left of the original structure now, a palpable sense of history still lingers.
The Caudan Waterfront is filled with venues where visitors of all ages can find something worthwhile to engage in. But it is at the Family Leisure Centre that the entire family can find something to do together. There are arcades, simulators for race cars, trucks and planes and also video games. So do take your kids and head here on a Sunday, and create some fond memories. See the website for more information.
Located on the Marina Quay, in the Caudan Waterfront, the Blue Penny Museum holds a treasure of artifacts, documents, stamps, sculptures, and more, that detail the history of the entire island. Primarily known for its stamp collection, this museum boasts a splendid collection, which contains the rare Blue Penny and Red Penny stamps. So if you're curious to know more about the island's history, do plan a visit here. See the website for more information.
Le Caudan Waterfront is a must-visit tourist attraction while you are in Mauritius. It is an huge complex comprising variety of establishments and entertainment options. Shopaholics can splurge on luxury merchandise at the assortment of shopping outlets; fashion brands like Body One and Indya Vogue, jewelers like Vendome Prestige and much more; the choice is unlimited. The space also has an Artists' Corner that regularly hosts art and creative events. If you're tired after your shopping spree, the on-site food court, restaurants and dining outlets offer sumptuous and delicious fare. Le Caudan Waterfront also has world-class accommodation facilities, tourists can choose from Le Labourdonnais Waterfront Hotel and Le Suffren Hotel & Marina. For detailed information about the on-site facilities and services on offer, check their website.
An integral part of the heritage of the city of Port Louis, L'Observatoire was built on the spot where once stood a powder magazine. Constructed around 1832 by John Augustus Lloyd, the Observatoire is best known for being the first meteorological observatory in the entire Indian Ocean region. When it was operational, this observatory has helped seamen avert an encounter with cyclones and was instrumental in the weather forecasts at the harbor. Today, the Observatoire is an essential part of the history of the harbor of the city and is also one of the stops on the Parcours Culturel, or Cultural Walk, of organized in the city. Do see the website for more information.
There is much more to Mauritius than just beaches, and even the local galleries and museums are worth visiting. Didus Art Gallery is one such creative space that lays a platform for the local artists to display their exclusive art work. Located at the Caudan Waterfront, the gallery showcases paintings and other art forms; blending local art with modern ideas, the collection at Didus represents local life and folklore. Apart from permanent exhibits, it also features nouveau art by upcoming artists. Visitors can shop for postcards, painting reproductions and other art objects to take back home souvenirs of their lovely trip. For additional details and images, check website.