Mauritius – much more than a honeymooner’s paradise

The utterance of the word ‘Mauritius’ is often followed by visions of turquoise waters and powdery beaches. While Mauritius is perfect for a luxury holiday or honeymoon, it offers so much more to visitors. It’s colourful culture and friendly inhabitants ensure a memorable holiday. Here are some of my favourite things about the island:

Sugarcane fields

Endless fields of sugarcane seem to define the landscape of Mauritius.

Sugarcane fields

Sugarcane has a long history in Mauritius. It was introduced to the country by Dutch colonizers in the sixteenth century, popularised by the French in the eighteenth century, and developed  by the British as the primary crop in Mauritius during the nineteenth century. As a result, the Mauritian economy is still heavily dependent on sugarcane.

Getting lost in the narrow alleys of a sugarcane field should definitely be on your agenda while visiting Mauritius. It is easy to spend hours observing the hypnotic swaying of sugarcane plants. I suggest visiting a sugar museum such as L’Aventure du Sucre. Don’t leave the island without sampling the variety of sugars of offer and relishing a glass of fresh sugarcane juice

Temples

There is no shortage of colourful temples in Mauritius. A large percentage of Mauritians are Hindu, so there are dozens of Hindu temples scattered all over the island. I love the intricately carved South Indian temples on the island.

Temples

The most famous temple complex is the legendary Grand Bassin. A collection of temples built around a crater lake, it is one of the most sacred sites for Hindus around the world. Pilgrims, devotees, and tourists swarm the complex on a daily basis.

Festivals

Mauritius is a rich melting-pot of cultures. Due to this, a number of Hindu, Christian, and Buddhist festivals are celebrated almost every month. A number of Hindu Festivals such as Holi (the festival of colours), Diwali (the festival of lights), and Maha Shivratri (the festival of Lord Shiva) are celebrated alongside the Chinese New Year, Christmas, and Easter. Try to partake in colourful festival celebrations when you visit Mauritius.

Festivals

It provides the perfect opportunity to acquaint oneself with Mauritian traditions and befriend locals.

Street food

Mauritian street food is a unique amalgamation of African, Creole, Chinese, and Indian flavours. This results in a scrumptious, albeit spicy, cuisine.

Street food

Make sure you try the famous sea-food curries at one of the many beach shacks in Mauritius. The flavourful curries still smell of the sea. They are accompanied by fragrant rice and pimento, a hot paste made of green chillies (try it at your own risk!).

The countryside

While the beaches of Mauritius are absolutely gorgeous, its little-known countryside steals the spotlight. Vast expanses of Southern Mauritius boast of rolling hills, cascading waterfalls, and stunning panoramas.

Countryside

There you have it. A holiday to Mauritius is so much more than a luxury getaway. It is an experience, an exotic holiday that is tough to forget.

Paul Shipway is Business Development Director at Simply Luxury Holidays.

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