The beauty of Mauritius is no secret. In Mark Twain's book 'Following the Equator', he wrote: You gather the idea that Mauritius was made first and then heaven, and that heaven was copied for Mauritius. And it's hard to say anything more complimentary than that. It's also a philosophy (in terms of creating a heaven for their guests) that most of the best places to stay in Mauritius attempt to adhere to.
In addition to the soft, pale, sandy, palm fringed beaches of your best tropical island fantasy, Mauritius also offers a spectacular diversity of plant and animal life, draped gracefully around an extinct volcanic plateau. Some of Mauritius has been built up, and provides cosmopolitan entertainments, while some areas remain virgin.
Mauritius might not seem like an obvious family holiday destination, but it's certainly one your kids will remember! Best known as a winter sun destination, this is really an all-year-round spot. The island has microclimates, so if it's raining where you are it's quite possible it's sunny a five minute drive away.
This level of loveliness sounds expensive, but Mauritian luxury and many of the best places to stay in Mauritius can actually be quite affordable.
This is an island for exploring as well as flopping on. As well as the incredible biodiversity, there are wonderful old colonial buildings - dating from both the French and British periods, ancient Indian temples, colourful markets and animal parks which make it easy to meet the locals. Exploring can be done on foot, horseback, quad-bike, or by boat.
The cultural fusion from the mix of Indian, Creole, Chinese, French and British heritage of the residents, means the cuisine is unique. Between the markets and restaurants there is plenty in Mauritius to please foodies.
Grand Baie, on the northern side of the island, is where you'll find the majority of hotels, and the most visitors. But there are also plenty of beautiful beaches to go around. This is also where you can find some of the best deals.
The east coast has beaches considered a smidgen more perfect than the others, and this is where you'll find the high end resorts. The family resorts are on the island's west where the seas are calm, and the south is where vegetation is densest and the coastline is most dramatic.
Diving round Mauritius is excellent and varied. As well as volcanic caves and coral reefs, there are also a few wrecks and plenty of marine life to meet, including dolphins. If you fancy an underwater experience but you're not an experienced diver you can do the 'Solar Sea Walk', which involves you suiting up into one of those old diving suits and walking along the bottom of the ocean. Or you could try the Blue Safari Submarine, which means you'll see some of the treasures of the reef without getting wet.
For an island so small, Mauritius has a large number of reserves, and there are numerous opportunities for walkers of all abilities and fitness, from strollers to mountain hikers. There are also horse riding, zip lining and quad biking opportunities. The best places to stay in Mauritius will be able to arrange any of these activities for you.
Still not sure which to book? Browse through our list of all the best places to stay in Mauritius, or call, or email, one of our gurus for advice. Alternatively why not check out our list of recommendations in the Maldives?
A charming and tranquil ecolodge hidden away in Mauritius’ tropical south-west corner. A truly relaxing experience awaits with wellness options including massage, reflexology and yoga. Great walking too in the Black River Gorges National Park. A wonderful off the beaten track destination.
Grande Baie, Mauritius
Blissful low-key luxury with a trio of restaurants and a glorious waterside setting. Four poster beds with billowing canopies and suites with either private hot tubs or private pools. Superb location on the North Coast a paradise for sailors, divers and those who simply want to chill out.