Africa’s east coast is blessed with a plethora of stunning islands, each one washed by the warm waters of the azure Indian Ocean. Think lush tropical vegetation, dazzling beaches, guaranteed sunshine, crystal clear water and you’ve got yourself the setting for a dream holiday.

And yet, don’t imagine for a second that all the islands are the same, as each destination will surprise you with its own charm. Some islands are geared toward those looking for an intimate escape at a carefree paradise with hammocks and coconuts to sip on. Others revel in the beauty of nature with their lush tropical vegetation and birdsong that surround you, and exploring the island gives you a deep sense of serenity and connection to the earth. Others are steeped in culture and history and exploring the local cuisine makes for a wonderful discovery to entice the senses. While others reveal an explosion of multi-coloured life underwater.

Mauritius draws visitors in who are looking for a luxury beach break, only to discover so much more than just its beautiful beaches and crystal-clear turquoise waters. It’s a wonderful destination for superb hiking, excellent mountain-climbing and world-class diving. The vegetation is lush with jungle-clad mountains, glistening blue lagoons, impressive rivers and waterfalls, extinct volcanic craters, charming little ramshackle villages and wonderfully friendly locals.

This unremittingly beautiful country is located off the eastern coast of Africa in the Indian Ocean and is a great destination for those seeking romance, beautiful natural settings or just time with the family. Let our experienced team at Ikewana help design your perfect Mauritian holiday, with activities like swimming with dolphins, trekking to waterfalls or immersing yourself in the local culture with its hypnotic blend of Indian, African and European influences.

Mauritius's Climate

Mauritius has a tropical maritime climate, with relatively little seasonal variation in temperatures. It has two seasons: Summer from November to April, and winter from May to October. It has a micro climate, meaning that it can be raining in one part with dark grey skies, while the other part enjoys clear sunny skies. Even if it is raining in the morning, the weather can change quite quickly and the sky will clear in no time. Throughout the year, there is not much difference between the weather conditions; there are minor changes in temperature between the seasons. There are also no well-defined rainy/wet and dry seasons. The humidity is quite high during summer time mainly on the coastal part of the island.

The hottest months of the year are December, January and February (cyclones can also occur). Sea breezes blow all year, especially on the east coast, and the inland central plateau around Curepipe is cooler and rainy year round. The temperature on the coastal areas varies between 22°C in winter and 34°C in summer. The sea temperature varies between 22°C and 27°C. In the central part of the island, the maximum daytime temperature varies from about 19°C in August to about 26°C in February. The western and northern regions are warmer and relatively drier than the East and the South.

  • Ocean paradise A massive coral reef surrounds almost the entire island and thanks to its bountiful marine life, warm waters and good underwater visibility, it is a great attraction for snorkellers. The underwater topography is sublime and a dramatic ocean drop-off means scuba diving is very popular. Above the surface, visitors can enjoy kitesurfing, boat excursions, paddling and fishing.
  • Flying foxes Mauritius is the only place on earth where you will see this curious looking bat called a flying fox due to its fox-like face. They are on the vulnerable species list and are a critical part of the country’s ecosystem as they pollinate flowers and disperse the seeds of many plants.
  • Famous for its beaches In the north, from Trou aux Biches to Pereybere Beach, enjoy year-long sweeping stretches of beautiful powder-white sands and constantly good weather. In the east, in the Belle Mare area, there are more great beaches with palms, white sands and absolutely calm water due to the reefs blocking the waves. But when the season changes to winter and the winds are about, the east is the place to be for windsurfing and kitesurfing. In the south-west around Le Morne, there are amazing beaches too at the bottom of an old volcano and reef. In the south at Gris-Gris it may not be ideal for swimming, with big waves and strong ocean currents, however the scenery is astounding.
  • Swim with Dolphins Enjoy a magical experience of a lifetime swimming with dolphins off the coast of Mauritius. Two kinds can be observed, i.e. the playful Spinner and the gentle and intelligent Bottlenose dolphin with their willingness to approach humans.

    Plenty to do From excellent golf courses, a myriad of water sports, mountain trekking, bird watching, great food, an exciting nightlife, sightseeing and beautiful beach bars, you’ll not be bored.
  • Capital: Port Louis
  • Currency: The monetary unit is the Mauritian Rupee (MUR or Rs.) which is divided into 100 cents (cs).
  • Language: French Creole is the most popular language of Mauritius while both French and English are used for official purposes. Several oriental languages are also spoken, including Bhojpuri, Hindi, Tamil, Marathi and Hakka.
  • Electricity: The current is 220 / 240 volts at 50 c.p.s. Travellers are advised that a three-point round-pin adapter plug should be brought for your electrical appliances, and these can be purchased at major airports.
  • What to wear: We recommend lightweight clothing, with warmer wear for evenings and winter months. Rainwear is advisable all year round. In the summer months, you should wear sun-care products, as well as a hat and sunglasses. Long sleeves and trousers are good to deter insects from biting. Men can usually spend most of the time in shorts, and for the evening at hotels, long trousers are required. Don’t over pack, as you can buy holiday clothes when you get there.
  • Getting around: If you’re driving on the mainland, there is one major highway which runs north to south, as well as a good network of paved, if sometimes narrow, roads which cover the rest of the island. Driving is on the left-hand side of the road. Taxis are regulated and metered and linked to provinces or hotels, printed on a yellow panel on the drivers' door. Bus and taxi services are best used in urban areas. Bicycles and motorbikes are also available for hire.
  • When to go: The best time of year depends on your holiday preferences and knowing that the warmest weather occurs during the month of February while the coolest temperatures tend to hit during July. In general, the western and northern regions are warmer and drier than those in the east and south. For beach holidays, we recommend going from October to April, when the days are long, hot and humid and swimming is refreshing and the breeze welcome. It’s also a good time for water sports. Remember that towards the end of December through till March, Mauritius has its cyclone season. Diving enthusiasts will have the clearest waters between December and March, whereas anglers will be delighted at the opportunities available for big game fishing through the months of October until April. During the winter months, July to September, the temperature is much cooler and on most days, you would rarely have the need for air conditioning. It rains less in winter and when it does, it's mainly in the evening or just a passing shower during the day. The cooler weather during this period with less humidity makes this the time to engage in many of the inland activities offered on the island such as hiking and quad biking. Winter is also the time to visit should you be interested in any water sport that requires wind, such as kitesurfing. Despite it being winter, a tan can still be achieved, as the sun shines throughout the day, especially during midday, when the sun is particularly strong. Surfers are advised to visit the beaches of Mauritius between June and August as during this period, you are sure to have amazing waves along the west coast of Mauritius, especially in Tamarin and Le Morne.
  • Airports All airlines flying into Mauritius fly to Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport (MRU) in the island's southeast. Air Mauritius operates daily flights from Mauritius to Rodrigues, a small island to the east of the mainland.

    Area: Mauritius is an island of volcanic origin with most of its craters covered with a rich and lush fauna and flora. The total land area is 2 030 Km2 (784 sq. miles) and it lies 2 000km (1 240 miles) off the south-eastern coast of Africa, due east of Madagascar. From the coast, the land rises to form a broad fertile plain on which sugar cane flourishes and beyond, crater edges form a mountainous backbone. The mountainous interior encompasses Black River Gorges National Park, with rainforests, waterfalls, hiking trails and native fauna. Mauritius includes the islands of Mauritius and Rodrigues, 560 kilometres (350 mi) east of Mauritius, and the outer islands (Agaléga, St. Brandon also known as Cargados Carajos Shoals, and two disputed territories).

    A good portion of the island is surrounded by an outer reef, which creates calm and piercingly-blue lagoons for swimming and water sports, as well as a safety net for water sports enthusiasts who have a fear of sharks. The only break in the otherwise perfect barrier reefs circling Mauritius occurs in the south, which results in angry waves crashing on the cliffs.
  • Le Morne Peninsula In the south of Mauritius is the beautiful Le Morne Peninsula with stunning land and seascapes featuring coastline, an emerald lagoon and lush green mountains. Le Morne Brabant is a distinct feature with its summit of 556 metres (1 824 ft) above sea level. It is to this area that slaves escaped back in the 19th century during the colonial era. It is said they gave up their lives since they preferred death over slavery. It is classified as a UNESCO World Heritage Site and synonymous with the struggle for freedom.

    Pamplemousses Botanical Garden Pamplemousses Botanical Garden or Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Gardens is a popular tourist attraction and the third oldest botanical garden in the world. Palms of all varieties are the most important part of the horticultural display including the stubby bottle palms, the tall royal palms and the talipot palms – which flower once after about 40 years and then die. At the centrepiece of the park is a pond filled with the amazing giant Victoria Amazonica water lilies, with floating leaves up to 2 – 3 metres in diameter, and strongly fragrant flowers that are white the first night that they open, become pink the second night and purple subsequently.
  • Chamarel Chamarel is a wonderful mountain hamlet worth visiting for a variety of reasons. There are its ‘Les Terres aux 7 Couleurs’, an extraordinary natural phenomenon consisting of an undulating landscape of different and contrasting shades of colours (brown, red, violet, purple, blue, green and yellow). These are believed to have been formed by various rock strata cooling at different speeds following volcanic activity here millions of years ago. There is the picture-perfect waterfall nearby, an excellent eating scene and world-class rum.

    Ile Aux Cerfs Ile Aux Cerfs is considered the most beautiful beach in Mauritius as it has spectacular white sand, palm trees and water of all shades of blue. It is also a paradise for water sports and the adventure types can go parasailing to enjoy a majestic aerial view of the pristine isle. For the kids there’s an adventure park and for adults an 18-hole golf course and beach restaurants.

Destinations in Mauritius