Mauritius, a jewel in the Indian Ocean
Blessed with beautiful beaches, blue waters and lush scenery it's not surprising Mauritius is a top holiday destination. There is a wide choice of places to visit on the island, including a China town, tea plantations, rum distilleries, old forts and grand old mansions which give a glimpse of Mauritius's colonial past.
Mauritius has a tropical climate and the holiday peak seasons are: September - November, March - May. January/February is hot and humid, with the likelihood of tropical cyclones remaining high until March. The wWest coast is hot, whereas the east coast is windier and cooler. Perhaps visit in Jan/Feb and see 'Cavadee', a Tamil Festival in honour of the god 'Muruga' which has a procession with trances and fire walking. The lively Chinese New Year is also at this time. The 'Holi Festival' of colours is in September as is the pilgrimage to Père Laval shrine in Port Louis. The Muslim festival of 'Eid' is in August(dates vary), and October/November hosts "Diwali", the Hindu festival of lights.
Mauritius entry requirements
No visas are needed by UK natives, but passports have to be valid for your visit and travellers need proof of either onward or return travel documents.
Recommended vaccines are: Hepatitis A, Typhus, Diphtheria, Tetanus.
Safety: Watch out for strong undercurrents when in the sea. Use mosquito repellent and wear long clothing to avoid bites (Dengue and Chikungunya fever) and avoid drinking tap water.
Costs: a cheap meal is 500 MUR. Try 'Rougaille', a lovely rich tomato based sauce used for meat and fish. Prices will often be lower outside hotels and are often stated in Euros.
Travelling around Mauritius
Book taxis and agree fares in advance. it's around 35 EUR to Grand Baie or Flic en Flac. Airport Taxis are around 2050 MUR. Buses are not recommended with heavy luggage, as it involves changing in Port Louis, but buses are cheap: 30 MUR appx. and the last bus leaves early evening. Bus number 9 serves the airport to Curepipe, and bus 10 goes to Rivière des Gallets or Mahébourg. Accommodation: Guesthouse are about 800 MUR pp/night, 3*hotels about 3.600 MUR pp/night, and holiday rentals are about 1.200 MUR per night. Local buses are cheap, short distance is about 15 MUR, longer journeys about 30 MUR. Negotiate all taxi journeys beforehand, and taxi day tours are about 2000-2600 MUR. TIP: Tipping's not common.