The heritage Regatta is a sports event that has been prepared and highly participated in by almost all Mauritians and tourists for many years. These are normally held every year for sailors who are just starting out so that they can meet the more experienced sailors, all in all it is a fun way to get to enjoy life at the sea with the locals. The venue for the regattas keep on changing but the most commonly use venue and it is also considered as the first place the heritage regattas were held is the former capital city of Mauritius Mahebourg.
The heritage Regatta is a must attend for all locals and fishermen within the country because it is one of the few ways that they are able to keep up with their traditions that have been carried out in the country for ages. It is one way for them to keep in touch with their ancestors and it is also a way of having fun as a country.
This is one of the many questions that are asked by all the tourists who want to go to the regattas and the answer is, yes it is safe. And yes there will be a few pick pockets and that is why it is advisable that you do not go with all your valuables but all in all, it is a safe event to attend as there will be law enforcers to ensure that everything goes on well.
The first regattas in Mauritius were held during the year 1874 when a group of sailors made yachts out of wood and decorated them with different bright colors. They became a popular trend after some time and transportation for the locals to go and attend the regattas was set up in form of trains and these would bring the locals to the location where the regatta competitions were taking place and then take them back.
After a series of years, the regattas were no longer attended like before and the activity dwindled but later on in the 1980’s after several attempts, the regatta competitions were revived and with a bang. The regattas now attract several sailors both within Mauritius and outside and all these compete for a special prize at the end of the day.
The boats that were used for regattas before were made out of a specific type of wood which has of recent become a little bit hard to get due to its near extinction and that is why most of the carpenters use fiber glass so that that the trees are preserved while other carpenters have resorted to importing the wood so that the making of the boats goes on smoothly.
There are sailors who normally organize the regattas and call upon the different sailors both those who have experience and those that are just starting out. Getting the reward is a little bit hectic since it is the organizers that have to collect funds on their own and that is why you will find that sometimes the prize is big whereas other times it is little but all in all, it is all about having fun and meeting with the experienced sailors and getting a taste of some of the best Mauritian dishes while enjoying the boat races.
Regattas are one of those activities or festivals in Mauritius that are widely participated in by all Mauritians and tourists. It is a chance for most of the local fishermen to show off their sailing skills with colorfully decorated boats and it is the traditional way of sailing for the Mauritius community. It is practically a competition between the local fishermen and the sailors each showing off their vast knowledge about the sea.
Regattas are either carried out in Mahebourg the former capital city of Mauritius and the Grand Gaube which is located in the northern part of the Island. The heritage regattas are carried out every year in the different months for as long as the weather is conducive for sailing. The regattas are organized according to categories and these normally match with the size of the canoes. Regatta canoes are not made of the same size and that is why when it comes to the competitions, they always do so in sizes that is small, medium and big regattas and there is always a large crowd at the shores with each person cheering on their teams. When the starting time is near, all the boats that are eligible in competing line up and start rowing immediately after the whistle blow. They ride past the routes that are marked before heading to the finish line and the different colors of the boats create a beautiful scenery that is worth watching both near and from a distance.
When it comes to the colors that are used to decorate the different regatta boats, the competitors have a story for each boat and the colors always showcase at the stories of the boats that are competing and if you are patient enough and lucky, you can also get a chance to know more about the stories of the said boats. The sail was originally made of cotton but at the moment, they are made of cloths that come in different bright colors. The regattas are prepared in a more enjoyable environment with lots of food and music from across the Island that is Indian dishes, Creole dishes, Chinese food, European dishes and many more other continental foods that will keep your taste buds on the peak all throughout your regatta experience.
After getting to know about the heritage regattas in Mauritius, all you need now is to prepare for the morning of the races that takes place at the sea. In order for you to get a good spot at the beach for watching the boats, it is better that you arrive early so that you avoid the jam that is always packed on the roads during this time. When you get there, make sure that you at least get to mix with the locals so that you get to know more about Mauritius as a country and a more clear explanation about the regattas.
So for all tourists that want to get to Mauritius just to get to enjoy some of the heritage regattas, make sure that you book in early so that you get some of the best accommodation services, get to keep all the memories from the regattas by getting there on time especially if it is your first time a you enjoy more of what the Island of Mauritius has to offer.