Tuesday, 27 March 2012

Mauritius Tourism | Mauritius Map

Mauritius Tourism | Mauritius Map

About Mauritius:

Mauritius is an island nation off the southeast coast of the African continent in the southwest Indian Ocean, about 870 kilometres (540 mi) east of Madagascar.In addition to the island of Mauritius, the Republic includes the islands of Cargados Carajos, Rodrigues and the Agalega Islands. Mauritius Island is part of the Mascarene Islands, with the French island of Réunion 170 km (110 mi) to the southwest and the island of Rodrigues 570 km (350 mi) to the east. The area of Mauritius is 2040 km2; its capital city is Port Louis.

The United Kingdom took control of the islands in 1810, from France during the Napoleonic Wars, and Mauritius became independent from the UK in 1968. It is a parliamentary republic and is a member of the Southern African Development Community, the Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa, the African Union, La Francophonie and the Commonwealth of Nations. Mauritius has an upper middle income economy.

The main languages spoken in Mauritius are Mauritian Creole, French and English.English is the only official language but the lingua franca is Mauritian Creole and the newspapers and television programmes are usually in French. Asian languages also form part of the linguistic mosaic. The country's populace is composed of several ethnicities, including Indian, African, Chinese and French. The first European explorers found no indigenous people living on the island.

The island of Mauritius was the only home of the dodo (Raphus cucullatus). This bird was easy prey to settlers because of its weight and inability to fly, and became extinct fewer than eighty years after the initial European colonization.

Geography of Mauritius:

Mauritius is relatively young geologically, having been created by volcanic activity some 8 million years ago. Together with Réunion and Rodrigues, Mauritius is part of the Mascarene Islands. These islands have emerged from the abysses as a result of gigantic underwater volcanic eruptions that happened thousands of kilometres to the east of the continental block made up by Africa and Madagascar. They are no longer volcanically active, and the hotspot now rests under Réunion. There has been no active volcano on the island for more than 100,000 years. Mauritius is encircled by a broken ring of mountain ranges, varying in height from 300 meters to 800 meters above sea level. The land rises from coastal plains to a central plateau where it reaches a height of 670 meters, the highest peak is in the southwest, Piton de la Petite Rivière Noire at 828 metres (2,717 ft). Streams and rivers speckle the island; a lot of them are formed in the cracks created by lava flows.

The country is situated some 2,000 kilometres (1242 miles) off the south East coast of Africa, between Latitudes 19°58.8' and 20°31.7' South and Longitudes  57°18.0' and 57°46.5' East. The island of Mauritius is 65 km long and 45 km wide and has a total land area of some 1,864.8 km2, it is surrounded by more than 150 kilometres (93 miles) of white sandy beaches and the lagoons are protected from the open sea by the world’s third largest coral reef, which surrounds the island. Just off the Mauritian coast lie some 49 uninhabited islands and islets (see Islets of Mauritius), some of them are used as natural reserves for the protection of endangered species.

Mauritius Weather:

Mauritius Tourist Attractions:

Grand Baie:

Grand Baie, (or Grand Bay) is a seaside village and large tourist beach in the district of Rivière du Rempart on the island of Mauritius. The village is on the western side of the northernmost point of Mauritius and was the site of the British Invasion of Île de France in November 1810.

Grand Baie may well be the most renowned village in Mauritius. It owes its popularity to the enchanting quality of its emerald waters and to its liveliness by day or by night. It offers facilities for safe swimming, sailing, windsurfing, and water skiing, and is also the departure point for helicopter excursions, deep sea fishing and for boat excursions to the islands to the north of Mauritius: Gunners' Quoin, Flat Island, Round Island, and Serpent Island. Grand Baie and its surroundings also offer a large choice of fashion and craft shops, hotels and restaurants. Grand Baie is also known for its night-life as it hosts most of the island best bars and night-clubs, including Banana Café, Zanzibar or Les Enfants Terribles.

Flic en Flac:

Flic en Flac has become the second tourist area of Mauritius after Grand Baie. From a small fishing village, over the past 200 years, it has rapidly developed into an important tourist area.

Flic en Flac derived its name from an Old Dutch phrase "Fried Landt Flaak" that literally means "Free and Flat Land."

During the 1960s the village was known only for its cemetery where people from nearby villages came to bury their dead relatives. There was also some artisanal hunting of wild ducks and birds in the marches of the region.

Le Morne Brabant:

Le Morne Brabant is a peninsula at the extreme south-western tip of Mauritius and the most windward side of the island. It is highlighted by an eponymous single standing basaltic rock with a summit of 556 metres (1821 ft.) above sea level, the most imposing sight on Mauritius. The summit covers an area of more than 12 hectares. There are many overhanging caves on the steep slopes. It is surrounded by a lagoon and is a famous tourist attraction. It is also one of the last three refuges of one of the rarest plants in the world, the Mandrinette. Another rare plant which grows only on the sides of the mountain is Trochetia boutoniana.

This hill became well-known in the 19th century when runaway slaves used Le Morne Brabant as a hideaway. After the abolishment of slavery on Mauritius, a police expedition traveled to the rock on 1 February 1835 to tell the slaves that they are free people. However, the slaves misunderstood the expedition and jumped to death. Since then, this day is celebrated by Mauritian creoles as Annual Commemoration of the Abolition of Slavery.


Souillac is a village close to the southernmost point of the main island of Mauritius. It is the capital of Savanne district. It was named after the Vicomte de Souillac, the island's governor from 1779-1787.

Mauritius Botanical Garden:

The Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Garden is a popular tourist attraction near Port Louis, Mauritius, and the oldest botanical garden in the Southern Hemisphere. The garden was first constructed by Pierre Poivre (1719 – 1786) in 1770, and covers an area of around 37 hectares.

These gardens, for a long time ‘ranked third among all the gardens that could be admired over the surface of the globe’, have been known successively as ‘Jardin de Mon Plaisir’, ‘Jardin des Plantes’, ‘Le Jardin National de l’Ile de France’, ‘Jardin Royal’, ‘Jardin Botanique des Pamplemousses’, ‘The Royal Botanical Gardens of Pamplemousses’, ‘The Royal Botanic Gardens, Pamplemousses’. On 17th September 1988 the garden was formally named “Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanic Garden”.

Black River Gorges National Park:

Black River Gorges National Park is a national park in the hilly south-western part of Mauritius. It was proclaimed on June 15, 1994 and is managed by the National Parks and Conservation Service. It covers an area of 67.54 km² including humid upland forest, drier lowland forest and marshy heathland. Facilities for visitors include two information centres, picnic areas and 60 kilometres of trails. There are four field stations in the park which are used for research.

The park protects most of the island's remaining rainforest although much of this has been degraded by introduced plants such as Chinese guava and privet and animals such as rusa deer and wild pigs. Several areas have been fenced off and invasive species have been eradicated from them to preserve native wildlife. Many endemic plants and animals still occur in the park including the Mauritian flying fox and all of the island's endemic birds: Mauritius kestrel, pink pigeon, Mauritius parakeet, Mauritius cuckoo-shrike, Mauritius bulbul, Mauritius olive white-eye, Mauritius grey white-eye and Mauritius fody.

Île aux Cerfs Island:

Île aux Cerfs (English for deer island) is an Island near the east coast of the island of Mauritius in the Flacq District.

The island consist of a five star hotel (The Touessrok Hotel) with a golf course and has beautiful beaches. Every day Mauritians and tourists visit the island, they depart in boats from the village of Trou d'Eau Douce and spend the wholeday on the island. Several water sports activities are also available on the island.

Port Louis:

Port Louis is the capital of Mauritius. It is the largest city of the country and main port, which borders the Indian Ocean. It is located in the Port Louis District. The population of the administrative district was estimated at 128,483, and the urban area at 148,416 in December 2010.

Port Louis is the busiest city in Mauritius. It faces heavy traffic congestion as there is only one motorway which leads in and out of the city. The busiest hours are 8am and 5pm, which roughly correspond to the working hours for the majority of enterprises. Parking is another big problem the city faces. The financial centre is also located there, with the Bank of Mauritius, the Mauritius Commercial Bank Ltd and the State Bank of Mauritius, all having their headquarters there. The busiest street is Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Street, formerly known as Rue Desforges. It leads directly to the Municipality of Port Louis, the Jummah Mosque, and Kadafi Square, which is a hot place for local food. Ornately and colourfully decorated Tamil temples such as the Kaliammen Kovil and the Tamil temple of Saint-Croix overlook the port. There is a Chinese burial ground where elaborate memorials have been erected. The city morgue at the Kit Lock is located in the centre of the city.

Seven Coloured Earths:

The Seven Coloured Earths are a geological formation and prominent tourist attraction found in the Chamarel plain, in the Black River District of south-western Mauritius. It is a relatively small area of sand dunes comprising sand of seven distinct colours (approximately red, brown, violet, green, blue,purple and yellow). The main feature of the place is that since these differently coloured sands spontaneously settle in different layers, dunes acquire a surrealistic, striped colouring. This phenomenon can also be observed, on a smaller scale, if one takes a handful of sands of different colours and mixes them together, as they'll eventually separate into a layered spectrum. Another interesting feature of Chamarel's Coloured Earths is that the dunes seemingly never erode, in spite of Mauritius' torrential, tropical rains.

The sands have formed from the decomposition of volcanic rock (basalt) gullies into clay, further transformed into ferralitic soil by total hydrolysis; the two main elements of the resulting soil, iron and aluminium, are responsible for red/anthracite and blue/purplish colours respectively. The different shades of colour are believed to be a consequence of the molten volcanic rock cooling down at different external temperatures (hence rates), but the causes of their consistent spontaneous separation are yet to be fully clarified.

The place has become one of Mauritius' main tourist attractions since the 1960s. Nowadays, the dunes are protected by a wooden fence and visitors are not allowed to climb on them, although they can look at the scenery from observation outposts placed along the fence. Curio shops in the area sell small test-tubes filled up with the coloured earths.

Trou aux Cerfs:

Trou aux Cerfs is a dormant volcano with a well-defined cone and crater. It is 605 m (1,985 ft) high and located in Curepipe, Mauritius. The crater has been alternately described as 300 and 350 meters in diameter, and is 80 meters deep. It is also known as Murr's Volcano. According to experts, the volcano is lying dormant but could become active at any time within the next thousand years. The crater is only accessible down a steep embankment which is considered dangerous. Water and silt have clogged the crater, making it even less accessible.

Ile aux Aigrettes:

Ile aux Aigrettes is a tiny coral island (25 hectares) just off the coast of the town of Mahebourg. MauritiusThe island has been declared a nature conservation site and today is being preserved by the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation. Owing to the remarkable work accomplished by the Mauritius Wildlife Fund, the island has become an international standard for the protection of natural resources and endangered species. A few of the world’s rarest birds, including the kestrel, can be seen there. You can also discover the extremely rare Pink Pigeon, the Green Gecko Phelsuma and the Aldabra giant tortoise. Some of the plants found in Ile aux Aigrettes grow nowhere else in the world and they form the last remnant of a coastal forest that once surrounded much of Mauritius. Eighteen Mauritian plant species which grow on the island are classified as endangered or very rare.

Gabriel Island:

known also as Îlot Gabriel, is located near the Round IslandMauritius and the Flat island, at the extreme north of Mauritius, about 10 kilometers north of Cap Malheureux. The distance between Gabriel Island and Flat Island is only 750 meters. The size of the island is 42 hectares and the highest point is of 28 meters. Gabriel Island is a protected natural reserve and is most famous for if its beautiful unspoiled beaches, with crystal clear water surrounding the entire island. It is a very popular site for snorkeling, it offers great dive sites, and is the ideal destination for a day of relaxation on the beach.

Air Mauritius:

Air Mauritius Limited, doing business as Air Mauritius, is the flag carrier of Mauritius. The airline is headquartered at the Air Mauritius Centre in Port Louis, Mauritius. Its main base is Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport.

The carrier is 51% owned by Air Mauritius Holdings Ltd., which is in turn owned in its majority by the Mauritian Government.Air Mauritius' wholly owned ubsidiaries are Airmate Ltd., Air Mauritius Holidays (Pty) Ltd. Australia, Air Mauritius SA (Proprietary) Ltd., Mauritian Holidays Ltd. (UK) and Mauritius Helicopters Ltd.; partly owned subsidiaries are Mauritius Estate Development Corporation Ltd. (93.7%), Pointe Coton Resort Hotel Company Ltd. (54.2%), and Mauritius Shopping Paradise Company Ltd. (41.7%).

The company is the fourth largest carrier in Sub-Saharan Africa, and has an important standing in the European, African, and Indian Ocean region markets; the airline won the “2011 Indian Ocean Leading Airline Prize”, making it the seventh year in a row for it to win the award. It also performs a range of services in Mauritius for international airlines. Out of a five-star ranking, the carrier's inflight service is awarded 3 stars by Skytrax.

Mauritius Hotels:

5 Star Hotels In Mauritius:

The Oberoi Mauritius
The Sands Resort
LUX Belle Mare
One&Only Le Saint Geran
Angsana Balaclava
LUX Le Morne
Constance Le Prince Maurice
Shanti Maurice A Nira Resort
Le Touessrok
Dinarobin Hotel Golf & Spa
LUX Grand Gaube
Royal Palm Hotel
Shandrani Hotel
Maradiva Villas Resort and Spa
Sofitel So Mauritius Bel Ombre
Heritage Awali Golf & Spa Resort
Belle Mare Plage
The Residence

Budget Hotels In Mauritius:

Le Grand Bleu Hotel
Hotel Les Cocotiers
Klondike Hotel
Mourouk Ebony Hotel
Manisa Hotel
Les Lataniers Studios
Island Sports Club Hotel
Hotel Les Orchidees
Colonial Coconut
Villas Pointe aux Roches
Lakaz Chamarel
Silver Beach Hotel
Merville Beach Hotel
Recif Attitude
Emeraude Beach Attitude
Casuarina Hotel
Aanari Hotel & Spa
Hotel Tamarin

Mauritius Map:

Mauritius Pictures:

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