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Mauritius is known as ‘The Gem of the Indian Ocean’ and is renowned for its idyllic beaches, making it a great choice if you’re looking for a slice of paradise for your 2019 / 2020 holiday. Mauritius was formerly home to the Dodo bird, a now extinct species, and is famous for its stunning natural beauty. Certainly, one of the main draws of Mauritius is its exquisite landscapes, making any activity memorable and special. Many of the top attractions in Mauritius make use of the picturesque surroundings, taking you closer to the natural world.

Some of the top nature-based attractions include the Frederica Nature Reserve, Le Morne Brabant Nature Reserve and the iconic Trou d’Argent Beach. Naturally, the lovely weather makes it the perfect place for sunbathing, deep-sea fishing and dolphin watching. Just because Mauritius is famous for its beaches, it’s not to say that’s all you can do here. For more hustle and bustle, head to Mauritius’ capital city, Port Louis, where you can shop ‘til you drop and enjoy the buzzing nightlife scene. If you’re happy to keep things chilled, visit Poste Lafayette for peace and tranquillity. Whether you’re looking for a restful destination for a couples’ retreat or your next family holiday, Mauritius has the stunning surroundings, rich heritage and top-class attractions to earn a place at the top of your list.

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Top attractions

Top attractions

Mauritius is known as ‘The Gem of the Indian Ocean’ and is renowned for its idyllic beaches, making it a great choice if you’re looking for a slice of paradise for your 2018 holiday. Mauritius was formerly home to the Dodo bird, a now extinct species, and is famous for its stunning natural beauty. Certainly, one of the main draws of Mauritius is its exquisite landscapes, making any activity memorable and special. Many of the top attractions in Mauritius make use of the picturesque surroundings, taking you closer to the natural world.

Some of the top nature-based attractions include the Frederica Nature Reserve, Le Morne Brabant Nature Reserve and the iconic Trou d’Argent Beach. Naturally, the lovely weather makes it the perfect place for sunbathing, deep-sea fishing and dolphin watching. Just because Mauritius is famous for its beaches, it’s not to say that’s all you can do here. For more hustle and bustle, head to Mauritius’ capital city, Port Louis, where you can shop ‘til you drop and enjoy the buzzing nightlife scene. If you’re happy to keep things chilled, visit Poste Lafayette for peace and tranquillity. Whether you’re looking for a restful destination for a couples’ retreat or your next family holiday, Mauritius has the stunning surroundings, rich heritage and top-class attractions to earn a place at the top of your list.

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Eating out

Eating out

Mauritius cuisine is vibrant and delicious, with elements from Creole, Indian, Chinese, English and French gastronomy. Dining out in Mauritius, you’ll come across a number of familiar dishes from other cultures including English bacon, curries reminiscent of India and the staple French dish of coq au vin. Creole dishes tend to be based on ginger, mild spices and tomatoes, making them ideal for families with young children and those who prefer milder dishes.

Mauritian cuisine is full of bold flavours and unique blends of textures and tastes, embodying the same diverse heritage and culture the country is famous for. You’ll find unique blends of ingredients in Mauritian cuisine, such as splashes of vanilla and locally-sourced exotic fruits.  Some of the iconic dishes of Mauritius include gateau piment (chilli cakes), which you can grab on the run in little paper bags. Rougaille is one of the most famous dishes, a tomato-based Creole dish with spices, garlic and onions. Luckily, fruit salad is often served as a desert or side dish, with a number of exotic fruits including lychees, guava and pawpaw to cool your mouth and cleanse your palette following a spicy curry.

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Families

Families

If you’re eager to get away from the grind of daily life at home and treat your family to a relaxing break in paradise, Mauritius may just be the place for you. The long, pristine beaches of white sands, warm sea waters and dramatic landscapes are a dream for families that enjoy a more nature-based holiday. Mauritius gives you the opportunity to explore the heritage of this wonderful country without hordes of tourists. The vast majority of restaurants, hotels and attractions in Mauritius offer child-friendly facilities including high chairs, kids’ menus and affordable prices. To top it off, Mauritians are wonderfully welcoming and kind, making you and your family feel right at home as soon as you set foot on the island.

Some of the best attractions for families include the Solar Sea Undersea Walk, a one-of-a-kind attraction that gets you up close with coral reef and fish at 3 metres deep in a tropical lagoon, with the help of a nifty diving helmet. The Domaine d’Anse Jonchee nature park is nestled in the mountains and plays host to many spectacular animals including wild boar, monkeys, windhover kestrels and Javan deer, giving you the opportunity to make some incredible memories.

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Action & Adventure

Action & Adventure

Mauritius’ huge expanses of clean white sands and clear waters make it the ideal location for water-sports, whether you are a seasoned water-sport aficionado or a complete beginner. Mauritius has a number of schools and hire shops for water-sports including parasailing, kayaking, water skiing, windsurfing and deep-sea fishing. With so much beautiful scenery you’ll want to get out and see it all, and with a variety of transport methods you can choose the way that suits you best. Explore the coastline for pretty inlets at your own pace with a hired boat, or keep active with a bicycle rental.

Some of the best attractions for those who like to keep active include the Crocodile and Giant Tortoise Park to meet some of the world’s biggest tortoises, or take a trip to the Mauritius Safari and Bird Park, close to Rempart Mountain. The Underwater Sea Walk may sound scary, but once you don the helmet and take the first few steps you’ll feel right at home among the colourful fish around you. If you’re looking for some serious fun, try a Sea Hover, a sort of personal Hovercraft. Sea Hovers are great for enjoying fun as a family as they’re unsinkable and impossible to flip, while qualified instructors give you an added layer of protection.

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Beaches

Beaches

Simply step off the plane in Mauritius and you’re within easy reach of a multitude of stunning beaches. Beaches in Mauritius are all about clean white sands, bright blue skies and swaying palm trees. One of the best beaches in all of Mauritius is the Trox aux Biches, which is great for both snorkelling and swimming. The water here is shallow, tranquil and clear, with sands that slowly descend into the sea.

There’s also a variety of snack stalls, restaurants and cafes that run along the coastal road. Belle Mara Plage is a great beach for a dip at any time of the day and is perfect for a quick swim before breakfast. Belle Mare Plage has strong breezes and water currents, ideal for water-sports including windsurfing and kitesurfing.

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Nightlife

Nightlife

Mauritius’ nightlife is similar to most of East Africa, with a moderately bustling nightlife scene to be enjoyed once the sun sets. Mauritius is ideal for holidaymakers who prefer not to be disturbed by loud music and drunken revellers at all hours, but still want the option of enjoying a number of bars, pool resorts and casinos in the local vicinity. Perhaps the most popular nightlife activity in Mauritius is gambling, with a selection of bustling small casinos available on the island. The most popular casinos include Trou Aux Biches and Caudan’s Casino. It’s worth bearing in mind that Mauritius casinos are based on a traditional card house rather than more modern casinos, so you will find a wide selection of card and table games but little to no slot machines.

Most of the Mauritian resorts have pool bars, while there are also a number of independent bars including Bananas, Zulu TamTam and Deck. There are no real nightclubs in Mauritius, but that’s not to say that you can’t have a good boogie at one of the numerous resort pool parties or beach parties hosted on the island. The C Beach Bar is the oldest beach bar on the island and hosts a brunch party on the first Sunday of each month, while Lambic has 30 different beers and a trendy location within a 19th century colonial house.

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Couples

Couples

If you’re planning a honeymoon and have plenty of sun, sea and sand in mind, Mauritius is right up your street. Mauritius is a very popular wedding and honeymoon destination, with first-rate beaches and stunning natural beauty providing the ideal backdrop to your romantic holiday. While you can feel caught up in the crowd in many other beach holiday destinations, Mauritius has a sense of unspoilt beauty that makes you feel as though you’re in a romantic dream.

If you’d prefer more culture and heritage on your vacation, head to Port Louis to visit the Place d’Armes, the historical centre. Here you can browse the Central Market for presents for your loved one, or you could take a trip to Le Morne peninsula to see the towering rock formation overlooking a picturesque three-mile beach. Mauritius has plenty of couple-friendly hotels to choose from, including beachfront spa hotels where you can enjoy relaxing massages and beauty treatments to keep you looking your best.

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Culture

Culture

Maurutius has a long, rich heritage and vibrant culture that will have you eager to explore the island’s art galleries and museums to learn more about the country’s past, present and future. The most famous artist of Mauritius is probably Xavier Le Judge and much of his work is exhibited in galleries around the island, including the Vaco Art Gallery at Grand Bay and the Gallerie Didus in Port Louis.

The Photography Museum has a selection of projectors and vintage cameras, as well as a variety of photography exhibits from bygone times. You’ll come face to face with the fascinating heritage of the Indian population of Mauritius at the India Immigration Museum at Moks, a worthwhile and illuminating experience. Mauritius is also famous for being the home of the most famous extinct creature, the legendary Dodo bird.

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