Those of you who follow my blog will probably already know that I come from this beautifully verdant volcanic island in the heart of Indian Ocean. Mauritius. This small island – also known as the jewel of the Indian Ocean- with its semi-tropical climate, is embraced by white sandy beaches, diverse culture, and cuisine that speaks to the soul. It’s by no coincidence Mauritius, has become a popular destination for holidaymakers, water sports fanatics, and adventure seekers.
If this short introduction of Mauritius – coupled with this Lookbook I created during my last visit back home – has given you wanderlust, let me indulge you with insider tips on where to eat, drink and what else to do when you arrive there.
Where to Eat
If you are looking for a brash atmosphere and delicious fresh seafood, with emphasis on the local marine delicacy of Camarons (giant fresh water shrimps), then the Grill is the place to go. The Grill, as the name suggests, also serves juicy grilled meat and to quote their Facebook description, “burgers that are legendary”. A word to the wise, leave some room for their incredible homemade desserts. As an added bonus after your dinner, you can move right next door to the Banana Beach Club where you can enjoy live music from various local bands while you enjoy a drink or two at their lively bar.
Grand Baie, Riviere Du Rempart, Mauritius
Mystik Lifestyle Hotel
Located in the North of Mauritius, this new hotel’s restaurant and bar have become a favourite hang-out spot for many Mauritians. Enjoy the incredible view from the modern yet minimal Mystik restaurant setting, while discovering their fusion cuisine of local and international flavours.
Coastal Road, Mont Choisy, Mauritius
Chateau Labourdonnais |La Table du Château
Romantic dinner for two? Taste the wonderful authentic Mauritian culinary experience under the history and charm of Mauritian colonialism at the historical landmark of the Chateau Labourdonnais. La Table du Château is a great gourmet Mauritian experience altogether.
Domaine de Labourdonnais, Mapou, Mauritius
Flowers of Paradise
The restaurant is set on top of a teak wood deck 50 meters from the beach of Pereybere, at the North of the island. Here you can have this unique dining experience in a quiet and discreet atmosphere. The food at Flowers of Paradise, will trigger your culinary senses with its fusion cuisine that enhances all those rich flavours that define Mauritian cooking.
The restaurant used to be an old Creole dwelling which has been restored to house Visite Privée. The light fixtures, furniture, and hanging mirrors create the atmosphere of a small boudoir yet this small unpretentious restaurant has become popular for its deliciously bold pasta dishes.
La Plage by Evaco
La Plage is a hip beach club located on the beautiful beach of Trou-aux-Biches, in the North of Mauritius. Enjoy the lively beach club atmosphere while sipping on cocktails and eating beautifully prepared dishes. This place is your entire holiday condensed into one.
Coastal Road, Trou aux Biches, Mauritius
R Beach Club Mont Choisy
If you are heading out to Mont Choisy bay, then make sure you stop by The R Beach Club . This is a relaxed venue with a modern decor conceptualised to offer a warm atmosphere and authentic local cuisine. A must have are the fresh fish and seafood, as they usually recommend the plat du jour which is the catch of the day. I recommend you stay at the beach club till sunset as it is truly the most magical time of day, especially if you are enjoying their signature cocktails.
Mont Choisy, Mauritius
Where to Drink
Located in Grand Baie and in the Caudan Waterfront, the Sunset Cafe is a relaxed al fresco bar that offers you a panoramic view of the bay accompanied by lounge music. Perfect for a chilled start to your evening. They do throw parties with special DJ sets on certain days, so make sure you check their Facebook page for more information.
Sunset Boulevard, Grand Baie, Mauritius
Banana Beach Club
Also known as the Banana bar, is a legendary bar in Grand Baie. It is the best-known bar in Mauritius and the hang-out place on the island for Mauritians and tourists who want to listen to live music and chill out with their friends. Their cocktails are all made from fresh fruit, however, I highly recommend you try the mojito, it is by far the best on the island.
Grand Baie, Riviere Du Rempart, Mauritius
What To Do
Casela Nature & Leisure Park
This leisure and safari park is home to Java deer, wild boars, lions, giraffes, rhinoceros and many other African animals. The 4, 500-hectare reserve hosts two of the longest rivers on the island – Rivière du Rempart and Tamarin river and is a haven for many indigenous and exotic species. Casela offers a plethora of activities, therefore, make sure you go early as you’ll need a whole day to explore the park and allow time for activities such as:
- Big Cats Activities
- Big Cats Drive Thru
- Segway Safari Trip
- Safari Quad Biking
- Horse Safari
- Camel Riding Safari
- Interaction with Rhinos
- Mud Karting
- Canyoning Adventure & Zip Lining
Route Royal, Cascavelle, Mauritius
Hiking to the Tamarind Falls
Located in the South Western part of Mauritius, the magnetizing Tamarind Falls, also known as ‘Sept Cascades’ should be top of your must-see list. Contrary to what people think, Mauritius is not just about its resorts and beautiful beaches. The island offers exciting hiking trails through its enraptured dense vegetation ( its flora is composed of 700 species of indigenous plants) but this one is by far the most memorable of them all.
The hike to the Tamarind Falls is not as challenging as it sounds, it’s fairly easy and accessible and can be hiked by everyone, even for families.
More information here.
Ile aux Cerfs
Ile aux Cerfs is known as the Pearl of Mauritius, a true icon depicted on all tourist guides. This truly alluring island not only boasts fine white sandy beaches and incredibly crystal clear turquoise waters, it also hides many secluded smaller private coves where you can hide away from the hordes of tourists that visit the island each day. You won’t have to bring a packed lunch as ile aux cerfs has three restaurants that are open to the public. Additionally, if you are a keen golf player you can access the world class 18 golf course.
You can take memorable excursions on a Catamaran, around the mangroves or to the tiny but bejewelling islands of ile aux cerfs, ilot Gabriel or ile aux Benitiers where you can have a picnic on your own private beach.