Ah, Mauritius! The hidden gem of Africa that everyone falls in love with in seconds (I know I did). This tropical island is the perfect place to visit, with amazing natural sites, wildlife, crater lakes, beaches, colourful cities and delicious food. So, if you are planning a Mauritius trip, I couldn’t be more excited for you! There is so much to do and explore that it’s hard to choose. In this Mauritius guide I share with you 10 places to visit in Mauritius (to help you get an idea of what there is to do on the island), some thoughts on when to travel to Mauritius, and list some amazing tours in Mauritius too!
Before you go, I highly recommend booking a private airport transfer in advance, to avoid any hassle when you get to the airport. From the airport in Mauritius you may have a little drive ahead of you to get to your hotel (but no more than 1,5 hours approximately, as the island itself only spans around 2000 square meters).
To start with, let’s get one thing straight. Many of you might think of Mauritius as a honey-moon, bucket list destination that you can only visit once in a lifetime. You may assume that all there is to do on this beautiful island is to lie on a beach and do nothing. Well, to prove that you are wrong, here’s some light reading:
Your Mauritius trip is going to be absolutely amazing, I just know it (the island har so much to offer). And, if you start your planning with this list, you’ll be guaranteed a great time. There are so many amazing places to visit in Mauritius, so all you have to do is keep reading. Let’s start with an obvious one, shall we?
The 330 km long coastline of Mauritius island features pristine white sand beaches, azure blue sea and turquoise blue lagoons fringed by palm trees, limestone rocks and untouched natural beauty. Bring your bathers, a book, a sarong or a towel and get ready to relax!
Had enough of swimming, sunbathing and sipping coconut water? Go explore the rich and colourful underwater life with your snorkelling set or diving gear. The adventurous ones among us will thrill to try out the water sport activities at popular beaches like Grand Baie and Belle Mare. Indeed, the beaches of Mauritius have something for everyone!
Alternatively, you can head out to the popular Ile Aux Cerf, a private island just of the coast. We spent a few hours here, in addition to soaking up the sun and enjoying ourselves on a catamaran
The big market of Port Louis, the island’s capital, might be the place to try out the authentic Mauritian street food! You will be mesmerised by all the scents and colours and (of course) the rich taste of the food itself, ruled by local spices and herbs.
Fusing Indian, African, French, Creole and Chinese influences, Mauritian cuisines are a true explosion of flavours, making every food lover go wild! Make sure to try the most popular local snack ’Dholl Puris’; a pancake-style bread filled with delicious yellow curry, available at the corner of every street in Mauritius.
This beautiful sight of nature is found in the Savanne district of Mauritius. The Rochester Falls is like a perfect oasis to spend the day by the waterside, relaxing in the shade of tall towering trees, dipping into the refreshing water and cliff jumping from the rocks. Don’t forget to bring your swimsuit!
The island of Mauritius has lots to offer, and it can be difficult to figure out which part to explore. One activity I loved was jumping on an eBike and cycling around the South of the Island (see some fun clips in the video above (or just find it on Youtube). We spent some time exploring the area, looking over the beautiful cliffs on the south of the island, and enjoyed an amazing lunch at a local’s house too!
Our guide took us around the edge of the southern tip of Mauritius and allowed us to stop in some pretty picturesque places for photos (and just to take in the beauty of the ocean). We also cycled through the village of Souillac, where we eventually enjoyed our lunch.
The magical land of Chamarel, a true wonder of nature, is quite enchanting like a colourful lunar landscape! The 7 coloured earth of Chamarel features shades of red, brown, violet, blue, purple and yellow, and it evolved naturally through the conversion of basaltic lava to clay minerals.
On the way you can make a stop at the Chamarel waterfalls of which one is a 100 meters in height, making it one of the highest waterfalls in all of Africa. Kids will be happy to find a playground at the seven-coloured-earth where they can see giant turtles.
The crater lake of Ganga Talao, located 549 meters above sea level, is the most sacred and peaceful place in all of Mauritius. A Hindu priest once had a dream that the lake is part of the holy Ganges of India, and it became a pilgrimage site for Hindus living on the island since then. The lake is surrounded by majestic mountains and there are temples as well as a 33-meter high Shiva statue to be admired around the lake.
Ganga Talao is one of the places to see in Mauritius that is easiest covered by booking a car for the day or joining a tour. Scroll down for a selection of tours in Mauritius.
Side note: the temple entry is free of charge, but donations are welcome for the upkeep of it. Also, please don’t forget to remove your shoes before entering.
You know me. There is no better way for me to spend my time than on a boat (unless I can be in the ocean itself). So when we were told we’d be spending a day on a catamaran with Croisieres Australes, sailing to the beautiful island Ile Aux Cerfs, spending time snorkelling, drinking local rum and having a BBQ on board you can imagine my happiness level.
It was through the roof.
We had a great day, and I couldn’t recommend this enough for your Mauritius trip. Out of all the places to see in Mauritius, I think the Ile Aux Cerfs should be on your list.
Nature lovers will fall in love with the Black River National Park, also known as the Black River Gorge. Sitting on over 6500 hectares of tropical land, dense forests and rolling hills, this park has got great hiking trails through the beautiful nature of this park, passing magnificent panoramic viewpoints and wildlife. There are picnic areas around, so bring some snacks and drinks for the perfect day out!
You’ll find when planning your trip that there are plenty of tours in Mauritius to select from if you want to join a group in the National Park. Scroll down for a selection.
At Bois Cheri Tea Factory, the biggest tea farm of Mauritius, you will learn all about tea, tea and more tea. The walking tours through the tea plantations are breath-taking, the visits to the factory and the museum and interesting and of course, you get to sip your favourite cup of hot, flavourful goodness with a lovely tea tasting at the end of the tour.
One morning as me and Annika (from the Swedish blog Resfredag) were on our way to a resort for the day, our lovely driver asked us if we wanted to “stop at the viewpoint”. We didn’t quite know what to expect, so we said yes (of course) and grabbed our cameras. What met us was a tall rock formation on the side of the road, with narrow stone steps leading up to the top. There, a small platform (with railings, thankfully) had been built. The view of the southern coastline of Mauritius was absolutely stunning, and we were so happy our driver had asked us to stop! Definitely a must-see for your Mauritius trip.
Find it here (Google map coordinates).
Fun fact: There is a small monument entered into the rocks at the base of the stairs. This is a monument for Captain Matthew Flinders, who was a British cartographer in the late 1700s. He was captive on the island of Mauritius (then under French rule) for 6 years, during which he drew up (“circumnavigated”?) what we today call Australia (some say he also named it).
The local alcohol, Mauritian Rum, is claimed to be second best, after the world-famous Jamaican rum. Surely it is a must-try while on the island, mixing it in a tropical Pina Colada or a refreshing Mojito. There are several Rum factories on the island, where you can do a rum tasting, infused with vanilla or other local spices. Yum!
Rhumerie de Chamarel is one of the finest distilleries of Mauritius. The road to get there is lined by sugarcane plantations, the ingredient of which the ‘good’ rum is made of.
Now that you know where to go and what not to miss out on in Mauritius, venture out and do share your experiences! We love to hear all about it!
As you may know from my “is Mauritius for honeymoons only” post, I strongly believe that Mauritius is not a destination you should visit only to stay in your hotel the whole time. But that doesn’t mean you can’t find some incredible resorts to stay in during your Mauritius trip. Affordable luxuries are at your disposal here, such as stunning beach views, afternoon massages and top-of-the-notch food (and the freshest fruit), so why not take advantage of it?
Mauritius is not a large island. I think I have already mentioned (above) that the whole of the island is around 2000 square metres (2040, to be exact). This means that it’s easy to assume that getting around is super quick and easy (as the length of the island, according to Google Maps, is a 1,5-hour drive). This is not always true, as during rush hour the roads can get quite busy. So calculate for extra time when you are travelling.
If you are thinking about the best time to travel to Mauritius, I can share my experience of visiting Mauritius in November. This is the month building up to high season (as Mauritius is south of the equator, their summer months are November-February), so it gets quite busy on the island. This also means that most tours in Mauritius are running every day, so you should have no problem finding things to do and places to see on the island.
In conclusion, Mauritius is a beautiful place that I know you will enjoy visiting. There are so many incredible places to visit in Mauritius, and I have listed 12 of them (including some things to do) above. Whether you would rather relax on one of the beautiful beaches for your Mauritius trip, or go exploring the National Park and its wild nature, you’ll make this the trip of a lifetime!