The small island nation of Mauritius sits in the Indian Ocean, east of Madagascar and close to it’s island neighbor La Reunion. The warm climate, beautiful nature and of course gorgeous beaches and turquoise blue ocean make it a truly paradise-like destination.
Here is your ultimative guide to Mauritius
Best things to do in Mauritius
Enjoy the ocean and beaches
Mauritius has a closed reef on its entire coast, which forms almost a ring around the whole island, forming many lagoons, especially on the west coast.
That’s why on many beaches you have very shallow water and the exceptionally turquoise colors of the ocean.
Hike in the beautiful nature
Mauritius green and hilly inland holds some truly amazing hiking possibilities! You can choose between great panoramic views of the whole island, swimming under waterfalls or challenging climbing.
It’s also very likely that you’ll see wild animals like fruit bads, wild pigs, monkeys and dolphins on your tours!
Visit Black River Gorges National Park
The national park is located in the southern part of the island of Mauritius. It’s a beautiful forest full of waterfalls, viewpoints and great hiking trails.
You can easily drive with your car into the park. Highlights besides the hiking trails are two stunning viewpoints: Alexandra Falls and Gorges Viewpoint.
There is also the tallest waterfall in Mauritius Cascade 500 Pieds. Take a short hike to the top and enjoy incredible views.
Another stunning sight in the National Park is the Grand Bassin Temple. There, you also can’t miss the two monumental Hindu statues, which are 33 meters high.
Drive further east and you’ll reach Bois Cheri, where you can visit a traditional tea factory.
Also famous and close to the National Park is the village Chamarel and the Seven Colored Earths. It’s a geological formation of sand dunes that look beautiful due to their different shades.
Take a little Road Trip in the south
The southern coast of Mauritius is more wild because there is no protection from the reef. But this part of the island is also exceptionally beautiful.
Just drive the road from Gris Gris Beach to Le Morne and enjoy nice viewpoints and beaches.
Gris Gris Beach is well-known for being one of the more wild beaches where the waves come crashing in more strongly than anywhere else on the island.
A truly beautiful spot that still seems a bit less visited are the Rochester Falls in Surinam. Follow the path to Rochester Falls parking, otherwise you’ll land on a very bumpy field road. The falls are a playground for the locals and feel very serene at the same time.
From here, drive west and stop at one of the beautiful and more calmer beaches. St. Felix beach is very nice, for example.
Bel Ombre is also a very lovely village with a beautiful beach.
Also don’t miss the famous Maconde viewpoint. You can stop on the side of the road and climb up the few stairs for great views of the ocean and the coast. It’s especially nice in the evening sunlight. Also, have a close eye on the ocean.. you might spot some sea-life.
Eventually you reach Le Morne Brabant, famous for its beach and mountain that you can also hike.
Visit Ile aux Cerfs
Ile aux Cerfs is a small island on the east side of Mauritius island. A lot of guided day tours bring tourist here for some hours of swimming and relaxing. So, as the island is very small, it can feel a bit touristy. Nevertheless, the island is a very beautiful little place with many beaches. You can take a walk along the water and just stop at a corner you like. There are many tiny covers under the trees in the shade where you can rest without too many people in sight.
There are also going small ferries there, so if you don’t come with a guided tour, you have the advantage to stay much longer in the afternoon. Once the day tourists are gone, you basically have the island to yourself.
Most boats go the Ile aux Cerfs from Trou d’Eau Douce, which is a small fishing village and worth a little visit.
You can book a tour a local tour operator, for example LMC Tours in Flic en Flac.
Visit Île aux Bénitiers
The small island is located on the south-western coast of Mauritius, close to Le Morne. It’s part of many day tours and thus you won’t have it to yourself. However, the water here is so clear and shines in all shades of turquoise, it’s very beautiful.
Many tours offer a boat trip including spotting dolphins near the coast, snorkeling and then spending a few hours on the island to have lunch and relax.
Also famous is the Crystal Rock, a rock in the shallow water that is home to many different sorts of colorful fish. You’ll go there with a boat from Île aux Bénitiers.
Visit a local market
Each week, there are big markets in most bigger towns, where you can buy fresh fruits, vegetables, fish and meat, but also clothes and souvenirs.
The biggest market is in the capital Port Louis and Mahebourg but there is also a nice market in Quatre Bornes and in Flacq.
Where to eat and drink in Mauritius
The food in Mauritius is a very unique mix of Indian, Asian and Western cuisine.
What is always great is to try the different food trucks you find everywhere. Wether you just want some fresh fruit, a chicken sandwich or a noodle dish, you’ll get everything there.
Make sure to get some local small bananas, mangos or coconut – they are delicious!
If you’re really craving pizza, you can go to La Cosa Nostra in Tamarin. But Mauritius might not be the best place for pizza.
What is great in Mauritius is that you get the most delicious French pastries, especially at La Kaz à Pain. There is a big outlet in Tamarin and a smaller shop in Flic en Flac. Go early, otherwise the pains au chocolat and baguettes will be sold out.
For a bit of nightlife go to the beach bar of Veranda Hotel or Big Willy’s in Tamarin. You can eat and drink here, watch sports and dance.
You also find a very good restaurant away from the coast in an old sugar factory in Pamplemousses. At Le Fangourin you sit in a beautiful garden. It’s part of the sugar museum L’Aventure du Sucre.
Where to eat in Flic en Flac
There are a lot of restaurant options in Flic en Flac, basically all on the main Coastal Road.
Go to Zub Express for very good Indian halal food. They have a nice terrace and delicious curries and rice dishes.
Ah Youn is a cheap restaurant with a lot of typical Asian dishes.
You get a little bit more classic restaurant feeling at Rib & Reef. They cook very good and also have delicious dessert.
Directly at the beach you find different food trucks with local food.
You get the best samosas in town at Krish Delights. They are also very cheap.
Where to drink in Flic en Flac
Also on the Coastal Road you’ll find some nice bars where you often have live music at the weekends, too. There is Shotz, Twin’s Garden II and Kenzi Bar a bit more hidden in town.
How many days should you stay in Mauritius
Two weeks are a good time to see most of the beautiful places the island has to offer but to also have some time to relax and lay on the beach. But you could easily stay three weeks to see the whole island in a slow pace.
Where to stay in Mauritius
Mauritius is famous for its many resorts and beach hotels, especially in the north of the island. But it’s also nice to stay in an apartment or holiday house. Flic en Flac is a great little town that holds something for everyone. In general, the west coast is a good area to stay because you can reach many great sights from here.
How to get around in Mauritius
The island of Mauritius is not extremely big – it’s around 65 kilometers long. But getting from one point to the other can take a while. The roads are mostly in good condition but there is a lot of traffic, speed limits and roads lead through busy towns. There are many public bus lines which are also super cheap, but they are very slow and seem to stop everywhere.
So, renting a car gives you the best possibility to explore the island. There are the usual big car rentals but also a lot of small shops. In Flic en Flac you can rent a car from LMC Tours or Sub Express, for example.
Another way to get to places you want to see is renting a driver for a day or book a day tour. In Flic en Flac you find many tour operators who offer both options for reasonable prices.
Where to shop in Mauritius
If you’re staying in a self-catering apartment or house, you’ll find many options to shop for groceries either in the local stores and shacks or in big supermarkets.
There is a Jumbo in Flic en Flac and a big Super U just outside Tamarin.
When it comes to souvenirs, the markets are a good place to find nice things.