Five exciting ways to experience Mauritius

Punita Malhotra


The pear-shaped island nation embedded in the turquoise waters of the Indian Ocean is a dreamy slice of heaven with powder-white sand beaches, rugged mountain peaks and thrilling water sports. These include a multitude of diving sites for top-notch snorkelling and scuba diving in the reef, and wreck dives off the crystal clear waters. In this article, we venture beyond the postcard-perfect image of Mauritius to discover the kaleidoscopic hues of this "Pearl of the Indian Ocean".

Dive into an underground paradise

Once you satiate yourself with the endless bounties of nature on the island, consider venturing underwater into an aquatic paradise. One of the top diving destinations in the world is blessed with crystal clear waters and diverse coral reefs with a variety of colourful marine life to impress even experienced divers. The island is hemmed in by coral from all sides, and there are several diving sites to choose from. Amateurs can head for the gentler North West coastline, while more experienced divers can seek thrills on the more dramatic East Coast. An array of fascinating creatures can be spotted, including barracuda, reef sharks, green turtles, moray eels, and clownfish. Adventure seekers can search out caves, canyons, and even shipwrecks. Visibility is highest between November and April when the waters are calm. Newbies can sign up for certified diving courses catering to all levels, from beginners to advanced.

Explore the tea route

Embark on a profoundly sensory experience in the heart of the tea plantations in the southern part of the island. Learn about the fascinating world of beverage production as you visit colonial-era plantation homes, charming tea factories, old sugar mills and cane fields. On the Tea Route, you can witness the entire tea-making process, from plucking leaves from the tea bushes to their transformation into aromatic, fine-quality teas. Indulge your senses with tea tasting to appreciate the skill and craftsmanship involved in creating a perfect cup of Mauritian tea. Participate in the traditional tea ceremonies surrounded by the sprawling plantations and understand the cultural significance of tea and how it is enjoyed as part of ceremonies and social gatherings. History nerds can also satisfy their curiosity by visiting some quaint tea museums.

Sway to the rhythm of Sega

The National Dance of Mauritius is deeply ingrained in the cultural fabric of the island and recognised as part of UNESCO's Intangible Cultural Heritage list. The vibrant costumes and infectious beats of the Sega folkloric dance have an ancient connection with history. Originally introduced to the land by African slaves, it has evolved gradually with a fascinating mix of Indian, European, and Creole influences. Instruments like the ravanne (a goatskin drum), maravanne (a metal shaker), and the triangle provide a lively background score. The dance is hypnotic, with performers swaying their hips, clapping their hands, and moving in sync with the music. Visitors are encouraged to join and shake a leg to the Creole lyrics, which narrate tales of love, joy, and everyday life. Dance enthusiasts can even participate in a Sega dance workshop to master the joyful moves. Sega is more than just a form of entertainment. It is a cultural expression reflecting the essence of Mauritius. Let the rhythm carry you away.

Raise a toast to the rum-making tradition

The tropical paradise of Mauritius is renowned for producing some of the finest rums in the world. Rum-making is deeply rooted in the island's rich history. Fertile sugarcane fields, the primary ingredient for rum production, cover vast stretches of land across the island. 

Reserve an afternoon to delve deeper into this fascinating tradition by visiting the island's distilleries to learn about the history and techniques and witness the art of rum-making first-hand. From small family-owned distilleries to commercial establishments, each distillery has its own distinct character. See the sugarcane being harvested and crushed to extract its sweet juice, then fermented and distilled to create the base for rum. From the choice of sugarcane varieties to the length of fermentation and the ageing process in oak barrels, every step is meticulously crafted to create a spirit that embodies the flavours and aromas unique to Mauritius. 

Indulge in tasting sessions to savour the distinct flavours of different rum varieties. Rum connoisseurs and fans of spirits will love the chance to have this enchanting experience showcasing the artistry and craftsmanship behind this spirit. Try unusual flavours like vanilla, coffee, tangerine, and coconut and return with a double-distilled 'Coeur de Chauffe' by Chameral or Pink Pigeon's spiced rum.

Choose a stunning hotel to enjoy your holiday from

Set the tone by booking a stay at One&Only Le Saint Géran, an exclusive resort situated on the beautiful Belle Mare coastline. The resort is surrounded by some of the best scenery on the island: the Indian Ocean, a tranquil lagoon and sugarcane-covered mountains. It’s the perfect tropical playground for romantics, families and adventurers alike.

When you need a total wind-down, treat yourself to a Mauritian-inspired treatment at One&Only Spa, unwind with a cool drink on the terrace at the Le Carré Lounge, or chill out in your room. Guest rooms and suites all feature outdoor space, and suites come with butler service.

The resort also has an excellent reputation for gourmet dining. Meat eaters can’t go wrong at Prime, while La Terrasse serves food fresh from the tandoor and pizza ovens. For local flavour, La Pointe offers seafood with authentic Mauritian flavours, but if Japanese is more to your taste, book into Tapasake.

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