While there are umpteen number of tropical islands each promising the most brilliant holidays ever, the charm and attractiveness of Mauritius is quite a few notches higher. While cobalt blue skies and powdery sandy beaches are a staple, the historical sights, cultural artifacts, geographic variation and limitless activities is sure to leave every visitor spellbound, so much so that a second trip to this island nation cannot be too far away.
Discovered by Arab sailors around the 9th century, Mauritius is a small, multicultural island in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar and southeast of the Seychelles.
Mauritius enjoys a year-round tropical climate with southeast trade winds helping to keep the heat low. The summer months range from December to April while May-November are the winter days in Mauritius. Coastal temperatures can range between 25°C-33°C in summer and 18°C-24°C in winter. While the best months to visit Mauritius are May to early December, it is best advised to avoid the months of January-February due to high cyclone frequency.
Mauritius offers its admirers a chance to view some of the most breathtaking beaches. The tropical paradise is dotted with a variety of beaches, each having a distinct flavor of its own. The country's northern beaches are famous for adventure water sports while the eastern ones are less developed, giving a feeling of wilderness with ample time to laze around soaking in the spirit of the place. The beaches in the south-east and western shores of the country are a photographer's delight with awesome scenery and sights on offer. While numerous beaches mark Mauritius' shores, some of the finest beaches are Grand Bay, Pereybere, Belle Mare, Blue Bay, Le Morne, Tamarin and Flic en Flac.
Culture and heritage
Mauritius has a rich tapestry of culture and heritage strewn over in the form of museums, monuments and other historical sites. Mauritius is probably the only country in the world where two sites have been dedicated to the harsh side of cultural history, slavery, in the form of Le Morne Cultural Landscape and the Aapavasi Ghat. Le Morne, other than being a majestic natural spectacle, runaway slaves used to hide here. The Aapravasi Ghat is the only surviving remnant of an immigration depot typical of those established in the 19th century to welcome indentured laborers. Other heritage highlights include the Place D'Armes Avenue, Theatre of Port Louis, the Champ de Mars to name a few. A visit to Mauritius won't be complete until you visit some of its famed museums, each designed to appeal to different fields of interest. Some of the most popular ones are The Natural History Museums, Port Louis and Mahebourg.
Sega and the Mauritian people
The populace of Mauritius comprises of a multitude of people hailing from varied ethnicity. There are people of Indian descent (Tamils, Marathis, Muslims), those of Creole lineage (with Malagasy and African origins), families of sino-Mauritians (from the Far East) and finally groups of Franco and Anglo-Mauritians. Together, they present a colorful spectrum to the visitors strolling the nation. Every Mauritian, irrespective of their ethnicity, is brought up with the Sega dance. A dance that reflects freedom and joi de vivre, the rhythmic lively music and vivacious lyrics, expect to find local spontaneous Sega parties around a bonfire in a remote village or the beaches. The youth of the country are now creating a new form called the Seggae, which is local Sega rhythms combined with Reggae. Do join in the revelry to experience a true Mauritian phenomenon.
How to get there
Mauritius has only one airport which is extremely well-run, Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport which operates well-known flights from around the globe. Air Mauritius also offers helicopter tours and charters to travel within the country.
A honeymoon laced with beaches, historical relics and the joyful Sega... the perfect recipe for paradise!