What to do in Mauritius: The Beach and Beyond
October 24 2017
October 24 2017
The very mention of Mauritius conjures up images of pristine white sandy beaches and aquamarine waters bordered by luxury resorts and lush, tropical gardens. But with dramatic volcanic landscapes, a diverse culture, a rich history and delightful local dishes, there’s so much more to do during your stay in Mauritius than laze by the pool or sea, cocktail in hand (although, that is, of course, one of the ultimate options). For those interested in finding out exactly what to do in Mauritius, here are some recommendations:
Spend hours relishing the water activities
There’s no doubt that one of Mauritius’s biggest drawcards is the stunning array of beaches lapped by water so vivid and beautiful it has the power to render you breathless. Which is why you would be hardpressed to find a better place to indulge in a myriad of water activities. And while snorkelling and diving are absolute musts, here are some alternative activities to do during your stay in Mauritius:
When wondering what to do in Mauritius when it’s windy, this should be the first thing that comes to mind. The challenge is to not let the occasional windy weather in Mauritius impede your vacation, but instead, you should aim to embrace it. Windsurfing is incredibly popular the island over, and it’s well worth the effort. Those with little to no experience can opt for an introductory lesson on windsurfing, after which you will have the chance to put the theory to the test on the lagoon with the guidance of an expert. For those with a little more experience, there are many areas of the island that offer more challenging conditions to enjoy. (Many luxury resorts offer complimentary windsurfing as well as stand up paddle boarding, snorkeling and much more, so keep that in mind when you choose your resort).
For wildlife enthusiasts wondering what to do in Mauritius, there are few things as exceptional as encountering animals in their natural habitat, which is what makes the dolphin excursions so incredible. Afforded the opportunity to swim with wild dolphins in the ocean, guests are transported by speedboat to the areas where these incredible mammals are typically seen. Once the dolphins are spotted and conditions are safe, guests can slip into the water equipped with their snorkelling gear to experience something that is truly bucket list worthy.
Glass bottom boat trips
When researching what to do in Mauritius, one activity that you’re bound to see time and again, is the glass bottom boat trips, and for good reason. These wonderful (and self-explanatory) inventions offer an interesting and safe way to explore the coral and sea life without needing to go in the water itself (although some glass bottom boat excursions have a snorkelling element to them as well).
Another incredible thing to do during your stay in Mauritius is to explore the waters on a luxury catamaran cruise. For a truly romantic option, choose one that has a sunset cocktail or dinner option and watch as the soft hues of sunset illuminate the island while sipping on fine beverages and enjoying delicious, fresh, local cuisine. You might even have the good fortune of coming across a pod of dolphins or whales while you are at it.
Get a bird's-eye view
Mauritius from above looks as if it has risen majestically from the incredible waters of the Indian Ocean, and what better way to enjoy this island than from a different view? Hiking is certainly one option, but here are a few others:
If you only have a short time to spare and are wondering what to do in Mauritius that would help you to see as much of the island as possible, then going for a ride on a helicopter is an exceptional option. Pilots typically start by flying low over the ocean to give you unique views of the reef and then head into the dramatic mountains giving you front row seats to the artistic mountainous formations (that of Pieter Both Mountain, for example) that are scattered around the island.
Thrillseekers won’t need much convincing to see Mauritius from as close to a bird’s-eye view as it gets. Expect to see the gorgeous patchwork fields and dense forest unravel below you framed by the mesmerizing blue hues of the Indian Ocean.
For those who prefer something a little tamer and aren’t into extreme heights (or the idea of jumping out of a plane) but would still like to experience Mauritius from a different perspective, this option is perfect.
Explore the tea route
Found in the cooler inland regions of the island, the beautiful tea plantations in Mauritius owe their existence to both the French and the British colonialists as far back as 1760, and have ensured that tea has become an important element of Mauritian culture. Enjoy an excursion along the tea route which has three main stops. The tour begins in Forest Side at the Domaine des Aubineaux, an old colonial house that has been turned into a museum showcasing interesting items, from artworks to antiques from the East India Company. Nearby, in what was once a stable, you will find a distillery where you can find out more about essential oils.
The next stop is at the Bois Chéri tea plantation and tea factory, the biggest tea plantation on the island. Here the process of tea making (from picking to packaging) will be detailed. Then you will head to the Bois Chéri chalet where you can indulge in a tea tasting, while overlooking the expansive tea plantation itself and of course, the volcanic crater, which is now a small dam. Once you have finished here, you will once more be transported back in time at Saint Aubin—another of the few original colonial houses left in Mauritius. Here you will be educated on the old sugar cane plantation, you will be shown the process of making rum, visit the greenhouse and learn more about Mauritian vanilla.
Marvel at the botanical gardens
If you’re still not sure what to do in Mauritius, then the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Garden, also known as the Pamplemousses Botanical Garden, is an incredible outing for visitors interested in exploring the fauna and flora in the oldest botanical garden in the Southern Hemisphere. Behind majestic iron gates lies this tropical wonderland filled with unusual trees, magnificent flowers, giant lily pads and many other interesting sights, not to mention giant tortoises and deer. It’s also home to trees planted by Nelson Mandela, Indira Gandhi and Francois Mitterrand (among others). While you are able to explore the gardens in your own time, it’s highly recommended to go with a guide (you can hire the services of one at the entrance) so that you can get the full experience.
Chamarel and the Seven Coloured Earths
A day spent touring Mauritius would not be complete without a stop at Chamarel and the Seven Coloured Earths. The first thing you will come across after entering the Chamarel complex is the 100m high waterfall, which can be enjoyed from two viewpoints. From there, you continue on the winding road lined by palm trees, until you get to the Seven Coloured Earths. The sight is incredible: small undulating hills made up of multicoloured sand stands bare against dense forest and tangled vegetation. This natural phenomenon is created by volcanic rocks that have been eroded into sand over millennia, and due to the unique chemical makeup of the sand, it has formed into seven bands of colour (namely, red, brown, violet, green, blue, purple, and yellow). You can also admire the giant tortoises that have a small enclosure next to the Seven Coloured Earths.
If you are looking for an abundance of activities to do during your stay in Mauritius, consider a stay at Sun Resorts. Our phenomenal properties have a range of activities on offer—from beach volleyball to water sports, sunrise yoga, and much more—and for those looking to explore the island further, we can give you the best recommendations on what to do in Mauritius to truly make the most of it. Contact us to find out more, so that our dedicated team can help you to create unique and magical outings and experiences to ensure that the memories will last a lifetime.