Mauritius

Maurice, a postcard travel destination? Absolutely, it’s an awfully touristy island, but if you go out of this way to explore it, it’s much more interesting than that

 
Mauritius is one of those travel destinations that are called paradise destinations. One imagines white sandy beaches, coconut palms and turquoise sea.
All of this is true: the sea is crystal clear, the sky is azure and the palm trees sway gently in the breeze. But are these ingredients enough to make Mauritius a great travel?
In my opinion, no. Mauritius, if I may dare to compare, is a beautiful woman who is only beautiful. No conversation, no character, no impetuosity. If you are satisfied with it, then that’s OK. But that would be a shame.
 

Bonzour Maurice, mo apel Christine, mwen se franse, kontan rankontre ou! Hello Mauritius!

 

Once the beach has been walked, sunbathed, rum tasted and the mines frits swallowed, to truly appreciate this destination you must discover the everyday life of Mauritians. And to do this, you have to stay there for a long time. More than a honeymoon, more than a week of sunbathing and cruises.

An exceptional blend that makes the trip to Mauritius unique

 
The Indian market in Goodland is teeming with overflowing garishly colored glitter saris, the market in Port Louis is full of local crafts and vegetables. The peculiarity of this island, which makes it really endearing lies in its cultural diversity. Discovered by the Arabs in the 10th century, it will welcome in turn Portuguese, Dutch, French, English … until 1992, when this island becomes independent. The people of Mauritius are Indian, European, Chinese … We speak Mauritian Creole of course but also Tamil, Hindi, Hurdu, English, French and many other languages.
In short, here everything is mixed: styles, traditions, religions, gastronomy, etc.

 

Tourism, yes but not too much!

 
This island is so small that you can go around it in one day. The interior of the country shelters some inactive volcanoes and a pretty tropical forest, beautiful panoramas on the sea along the paths.
The Chamarel garden and its hills of 7 colors may be disappointing for backpackers, but the Pamplemousses garden (Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam botanical garden) is a park that is worth a visit. You can discover the bleeding trees, the giant water lilies, the vacoas all roots outside and all possible species. The tone is set as soon as you cross the magnificent white wrought iron gate crumbling under the exuberant bougainvilleas.

 

Visiting the Labourdonnais castle, while luxury and refinement is bathed in voluptuous calm: that is the spirit of Mauritius!

 
We can feel the gaiety of the big families from Europe here. We taste the rum in a refined restaurant, then walk in the orchards to identify the ingredients of the recipe for absolute happiness: a beautiful house, far from noise, surrounded by trees, open to the outside, bathed in light . Simplicity and elegance, children, affection, space.

 

To enjoy this travel to Mauritius, you must choose places where you can taste your bol renversé straight out of a local food truck

 

To love this trip to Mauritius, choose beaches where Mauritians meet with family

 

How about, glaçon rapé (fresh drinks) to the bicycle salesman, scented mangoes? Watching children play on the beach, climbing tamarisk trees, getting exhausted by splashing around in the water.
The adventure is more in the spectacle of families gathering on the beach on Sundays. They sing religious songs in chorus, play the guitar, cheerful and fraternal.

The adventure in Mauritius is travelling by public transport, in run-down buses

 

Getting off the tourist paths of Mauritius is easy. It’s getting lost, picked up by a tired car, stopping on the road to drink sugar cane juice from the stalk, just by going to cut a “thatch” at the edge of the field.
The pleasure of tasting a coconut opened with an expert hand armed with a huge knife. To eat it without a spoon, with a piece of cut bark.
Mauritius is to be discovered in the heart of the villages little frequented by tourists. So let’s stop at a crowded shop, full to the ceiling, to buy a packet of kleenex and stay there for a few hours chatting with the Mauritians. That is much better to buy your vindaye in a shack and flee the luxurious restaurants with artificial decorations.

Discover Mauritius root, explore Mauritius by foot!

 

But above all, in Mauritius, you have to walk on the paths, along the beaches, make many detours. And when tiredness comes, you just have to lift your thumb and get hitchhiked by any car and go home to drink one last deliciously rum-tinged blend. Then lie down under the fan, sleep well and wake up at dawn, with the sun… and start again.

Salam, mersi bokou, orevwa, wè ou talè!

The most beautiful hotel in Mauritius is the Elysée!

 
Of course here are plenty of hotels here. However, finding a nice place to stay is not that easy.
Not too close, not too far from the beach, and a real Mauritian place, with soul. A fresh and sweet room, good morning coffee and people to greet you as a friend.
My favorite hotel here is in Trou aux Biches and is called Elysées Résidence.
You are greeted by Virginie, so professional and so friendly that it is difficult to leave without a warm hug! I don’t have a habit of promoting hotels, but I make an exception because I had such a good time there that I can only share the information.
 
Résidence Elysée, Chemin Père Laval, Trou aux Biches – Telephone: +230 265 54 95
 

Île Maurice, Best Of

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Next travel: why not South Africa?

South Africa is certainly one of the most emblematic countries on the continent. There are many other beautiful ones in Africa, but South Africa deserves a travel library!