Mauritius is a gorgeous destination for a beach holiday, constant sunshine and beautiful beaches are a natural draw for tourists. However venture deeper into the heart of the country and you'll find a lot more than just sandy beaches. The most unusual of all attractions is the 'seven-coloured earth'. This unique geological phenomenon also gives visitors the opportunity to see views of the falls within the Chamarel Park, which drops 100 meters. The capital city, Port Louis, offers a total change from the lush countryside of Chamarel Park. Constructed in 1735, this thriving town offers a beautiful waterfront, bazaars and three museums.
There are direct flights to Mauritius from London Heathrow and London Gatwick and indirect flights from most other major UK airports. The journey takes around 12 hours. Mauritius flights from the UK land at Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport, which is located in Plaine Magnien in the south-eastern part of the island. It is around 45 kilometres from the capital of Mauritius, Port Louis. Catching a bus or getting in a taxi are your best ways of reaching the city centre. The airport bus which runs from 6am to 6pm is the cheapest option, but can take a considerably long time to reach Port Louis. A taxi is the quickest option, taking around 45 minutes. Taxis are fitted with meters, but be aware that not all drivers will use them so it's best to agree a price before your journey begins.
Mauritius is not much bigger than the Isle of Wight so it is pretty easy to get around. Local buses are the cheapest option and will take you all over the island. They are pretty easy to use and reliable, but not always that quick!
Despite being a tropical paradise, you don't have to spend a fortune during your Mauritius holiday and can still pick up a cheap hotel in Mauritius. Just don't go expecting 5-star luxury with beachfront locations!
Good value, authentic Mauritian snacks can be picked up for next to nothing at one of the many street stalls located all over the island. Try the famous gateaux piments (chilli cakes) or vegetable samosas. It's easy to tell which street stall offers the tastiest and cheapest options - just look for the one with the longest queue! Alcoholic drinks can be expensive, but if you stick to the delicious locally made rum, it'll be much cheaper.
Mauritius doesn't really have high and low seasons, apart from Christmas and New Year. If you're going on holiday to Mauritius just be wary of school holiday periods, typically in August, as this can sometimes push prices up.
Updated 19th June 2013
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"Chances are, the thought of a luminously clear, turquoise ocean fringed by sugar-soft white sands sounds pretty good right now. Am I right? Central he..." 20 December 2012