“The island’s raw beauty is breathtaking. But if you can look beyond it, a dynamic culture beckons.” – Eddy Patricelli, writer
Recover in Style
Emirates Airlines flies to Mauritius from New York City (JFK) via Dubai (DXB). Book a luxury Village Suite at the Shanti Maurice, nestled between sugar cane fields and white sand beaches along the island’s south coast. Once a wellness retreat, the Shanti Maurice now welcomes families, though the spa remains a central focus. Treatments like Intonga – using a wooden massage stick – quickly remedy the 25-plus-hour journey. So will your villa’s infinity pool, along with a Fish and Rhum Shack beach barbecue with sega dancers.
See the Sights
Start with a trip to nearby Le Morne Brabant, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, capped by a dramatic 1,800-foot-high basaltic rock. Watch kiteboarders from Le Morne‘s eastern shoreline, or join them with the help from Club Mistral‘s on-site instructors. Separately, spend a day at the Casela Nature Park where you’ll walk with (and pet) lions as they actively hunt deer. Use another day to sightsee Chamarel Falls, Seven Colored Earth, Black River Gorges and the Grand Bassin, where the island’s tallest Hindu statue towers over a holy lake. Also check out the Rhumerie de Chamarel for tasting and touring of the island’s most delicious rum.
Experience the Culture
Check into a stunning private villa at Maradiva, a luxury resort nestled alongside Flic en Flac, a quaint beach community with fun local nightlife. The main disco is Shouts, which booms on Fridays and Saturdays, and welcomes outsiders. Come Sunday, the island’s cross-cultural mix gathers for horse racing at the Champ de Mars Race Course in Port Louis. Locals also weekend at the Center de Flacq open-air market, where aromas, foods and languages blend in staggering fashions. The same holds on Ile aux Cerfs, a small island off the east coast. There, witness locals of all ethnicities embracing catamaran cruising, beach picnics and parasailing. Watch closely as tour operators attempt to fasten parasailing harnesses on woman in burkas.