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Mauritius

Exotic and tropical splendour craft this culture-steeped island

Tropical Mauritius is famed for its postcard beaches. Sandy stretches such as Trou-aux-Biches are regularly voted amongst the most beautiful beaches in the world, and it’s easy to see why: they’re quiet, relatively undeveloped and you can wander for miles along the sand without a care in the world.

There’s more to Mauritius than its beach resorts, however. There’s a concentration of native rainforest in the Black River Gorges National Park and hiking along the park trails, you can hope to see curious creatures such as the Mauritius flying fox. Birders will be enthralled by the number of endemic species: whether or not you have a life list, the pink pigeon, Mauritius cuckoo-shrike, Mauritius bulbul and the gorgeous red-headed Mauritius fody are a delight to behold.
 
The island’s population is multi-ethnic and they practice a fascinating mix of Hindu, Christian, Islamic and Buddhist traditions. Festivals such as Thaipusam are loud and colourful affairs, so if your visit coincides with a religious celebration, you’re likely to get swept up in the action.
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Accommodation:
The Residence Mauritius
The Residence Mauritius is a jewel of a hotel, the nostalgic kind of place where you expect to lounge beside the pool and spot Humphrey Bogart or Audrey Hepburn. It’s a tropical paradise from a bygone era, an elegant and altogether civilised place to relax.
Accommodation:
Maradiva Villas
Maradiva Villas is a family-owned beachfront resort on the west coast of Mauritius which looks out over Le Morne Mountain as well as the Indian Ocean. Staying at the resort, you’ll enjoy luxury catamaran cruises, water sports, fitness facilities and a spa featuring Ayurvedic treatments.
Accommodation:
Heritage Awali
A beachfront resort in the heart of a nature reserve, Heritage Awali offers the best of both land and sea. It’s an action-packed destination, offering everything from yoga and golf to water sports and guided hikes in the hills.
Accommodation:
Four Seasons Mauritius at Anahita
The Four Seasons is set on sun kissed shores in Mauritius and offers luxury accommodation, crystal-blue lagoons and a view of the mountains. With something for everyone, you’ll enjoy indulgent spa treatments, golf and tennis facilities and a wide range of kids’ activities.