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Mauritius is a country that was filled with a lot of vegetation and wild life that was endemic and the locals always kept nature alive but after the coming of the Dutch men, British and French, the animals were poached on while the trees were cut down and this led to the mass destruction of the forests that made up the larger part of the island. Mauritius before had a big forest cover which kept on being destroyed in order to pave way for the urbanization that is seen in the country at the moment.
The immigrants that also came into the country they introduced new tree species which led to the quick extinction of most of the endemic trees in the country. When the locals saw that there was a quick reduction in both endemic vegetation and animals on the Island, organizations came up and in order to save the wild life gazetted three national parks where the animals were taken and these at the moment are the only National Parks that are located on the Island. The National parks that were gazetted ever since have been acting as habitats to the different animals, bird and plants on the Islands ad this is where tourists can go and enjoy wild life viewing.
As earlier on noted, the Island of Mauritius was before filled with many forests that made up the National parks that were located within the country but after they were spoilt, the Island remained with only three National Parks that can be found in the country to date and these are located in the different parts of Mauritius and these include:
The d’Eau National park
The d’Eau National Park is located in the North eastern part of Mauritius and unlike the other two Parks that are visited by tourists, this one is rarely visited and this might be due to the fact that the largest part of the park is covered with the Mare Sarcelles water body. The National Park was established in the year 2011 and is filled with the untouched wilderness that all tourists should try to explore while in Mauritius. The National park is a paradise for birders and it is also a good place for trekkers due to the trek routes that are located within the National park.
The Park is filled with vegetation that is untouched and some of the trees and grass vegetation that is found in the Park include the Mangrove swamps, the ferns which are indigenous to the National Park, the orchids, ebony trees and these act as bird habitats for the different bird species that are located within the Park. Some of the bird species that habitate within the d’Eau National park include the Kestrels, the Mauritius grey Picpic, flycatchers, Chateau Vert and many more others pieces.
The d’Eau trek routes that are found within the d’Eau National park are clearly marked with arrows indicating where the routes that you are supposed to use although it is much better if you go trekking with a tour guide. There are different trails you can use and if you are not all that flexible it is advisable that you talk to your tour guide and you take the flat routes instead of the steep ones.
The National Park also has five ponds that are scattered all over the Park and these have different types of fish that you can see on while on a trip to the National Park. It is open all throughout the days of the week from 9:00am to 5:00p and you can visit it all throughout the year depending on the activities that you would like to carry out while there.
The Islets National Park
The Mauritius Island is filled with Islets that are located in the different parts of the country and these amount to about forty nine Islets and eight of these can be found in the Islets National Park and hence its name. It is located in the North Eastern part of the country and is considered a go to place for all tourists who want some quiet time away from the busy Centre of the Island. The National Park offers a variety of activities that you can carry out that is you can go fishing while in the Park, enjoy watching some of marine animal species, go for a trek around the National park, go for swimming in the lagoons and also do some birding in the different parts of the National park.
Within the Park itself you will find some historical sites that are now ruins and these can easily be seen while you take a trek through the Park. These will increase the fun while trekking especially when you pass the volcanic craters, the caves, the lagoons and other interesting animals. The trek route through the Park is about three miles long but the good thing about it is that even children can take on this route as it is flat and you practically get to see and explore the whole Island without getting too tired. And as you head down to the trek route, make sure that you carry lots of snacks, water and do not forget to carry a camera so that you stay with all these memories.
The Black Gorges National Park
Declared as a National park in the year 1994, the Black gorges National Park is located in the South Western Part of the Mauritius Island and one of the few National Parks that are found within the country. The Park is under the management of the national Parks and conservation service and covers over 67 square kilometers of land. It is a home to numerous bird species and the vegetation that is found in the Park is rare and some of them endemic to the Island. There are several activities that can be carried out in the National park and some of these include:
- Hiking, this is mostly done during the dry season in the different trek routes that are located within the Park. The trek routes here are more than 60 kilometers and therefore you should be extremely ready for the trek. While trekking, you will be rewarded with the sights of wild life, bird species, waterfalls, gorges and a view of some Mountains.
- Birding, just like all the National parks that are located within Mauritius, the Black Gorges National park is also a home to numerous bird species and these can be found in their natural habitats. Some of the bird species that can be found in the Park include the pink pigeon, the grey white eye, the Mauritius kestrel, the Mauritius Bulbul, the cuckoo shrike and many more other species.
The Mauritius Island also has several other nature reserves where the flora and fauna on the Island are conserved and these are found in the different parts of the country. These were set up by the government to breach the gap that had been caused when the forests were destroyed a few years back.
Exploring the National parks that are located within Mauritius should always be done with care and if you want to peacefully enjoy your safari to these parks, you will need to follow all the rules and regulations that are set and this is to help continue with the preservations that are set up in the country. In order to enjoy the best out of your trip to the different National parks in the country is to book with your tour guide earlier enough so that you can get the best services that are offered from transportation, accommodation facilities and many more other services.
When to visit the National parks in Mauritius
The best time to go exploring in the national parks in Mauritius is during springtime and this is because this is the time when most of the wild life in the country can easily be seen and this time normally falls in the month of October although you can also visit the country at any other time of the year if you are planning on carrying out any other activities besides trekking through the National parks. Although it will be better to inquire beforehand about the best time from the tour operator and get to know whether the parks are accessible during the time that you want to visit the Mauritia Island.