Known to be a paradise Island to many tourists especially those going for their honeymoons, the Island of Mauritius always has something new to offer to tourists for each visit that you make but if this is your first time, then you will need to be equipped with basic knowledge about the country so that you do not look as green as someone who has not read anything about the island prior to their visit. There are many questions that are asked by first time travelers, information needed before traveling and we have tried to look at those that are important to the tourist.
Where is Mauritius located?
This is one of the questions that people especially when it is their first time to visit the country and it is also good to first know where your destination is so that you can start planning your journey with an idea of where you are going.
Mauritius is located in the India Ocean and an Island that needs to be visited by everyone. It was once a French colony and the British also once ruled the Island before they got their independence and even though they do not have an official language but French is the most spoken language on the Island. The currency that is used is known as the Mauritian rupee and it is the mostly used form of currency and one of the easiest ways for one to get to the Island is by flying into the country. The Mauritius Island has other several small Islands that are located within Mauritius that amount to 16 Islands and it is believed that they were all formed over a thousand years ago.
Is Mauritius safe for tourists?
Mauritius is a safe place for tourists to visit although this does not mean that many there will not be a few pick pockets and thieves in the streets and that is why it is advisable that you leave your valuable items in your rooms if you are planning on taking a walk around the island. Even with the security all over the country, you should be aware and do the following:
- Follow your tour guide, it does not matter whether you really trust your tour guide or not but while you are in the country, they are your only hope at getting through the country with ease especially when it comes to translation and bargaining with the shoppers.
- Be aware of the thieves at the airport that keep on trying to help you trying to help you with your luggage. If you do not have a tour guide to help you it is much better you carry your own luggage.
- Try as much as possible not to shop from the different factory shops and also be aware of the fake products that are sold in the markets and these are way too many and that is why you need a tour guide with you to help with the shopping and when bargaining, don’t do it a lot.
Documents needed to travel to Mauritius
Just like any other country, you will need proper documentation in order to be allowed to access Mauritius and there are majorly two things that are needed and these are the passport and the visa but there are also other things that you need to know before you land at any airport in Mauritius and these include:
- It is easier for the India internationals to get a visa upon arrival at the airport in Mauritius and all they need is a passport that has been valid for about six months. Other tourists can also get their visas but they need to first contact their embassies so that their Visas are prepared in time to avoid any delays at the airports.
- Some of the things that are allowed through customs include 200 cigarettes, 250g of tobacco, and 50 cigars but note that if the above products exceed the stated weight, then they are confiscated upon arrival.
- When you are issued a Mauritian tourist visa, it will only be valid for sixty days starting from the issuing date.
Transportation in Mauritius
There are several transport means that you can use to get into the country and all these depend on how big or how small your budget is. The island is well developed and can take on any mode of transport once you get to the country but before that the main two ways that you can get into Mauritius is by use of air or water transport.
- Water transport, due to its strategic location on the Indian Ocean Mauritius can be reached by ship and although it is a good way for one to travel while admiring the Ocean, getting to Mauritius using water transport is quite expensive and it takes a lot of time. Therefore for all those that are in a hurry, this is not the mode of transport that you should use to get to the majestic Island.
- Air transport, this is the easiest way of getting into the country and it is cheaper as compared to cruising along the sea. The Island has two major International airports and you can choose your flight to the country according to the destination that you want to go to on the island.
After flying into the country you will want to start your exploration either straight away or first rest and this is where the in-transportation needs to be talked about. You can sail to the different islands in Mauritius by boat, use a taxi or drive yourself around due to the good transportation system in Mauritius.
- A taxi, these are many and can be got at the Airport but beware of the fact that the taxi drivers sometimes increase transportation fee rates especially if they notice that it sis your first time in the country and that is why it is advisable to use a tour operator van in this case.
- Self-drive, you can also hire out a van and drive yourself around the Island but you will need a map so that you do not get lost while driving around.
- A boat, this is the easiest and best way to travel to the different parts of Mauritius that are Islands. You will however need to book in advance especially during the peak season.
Monetary matters on the Island
You cannot enjoy your trip around the Mauritius island unless if you have some money on you and this is why you should know the currency that is used in the country and how you an exchange it. The main currency used in Mauritius is the Mauritian rupee and although dollars can be used, it is much better if you exchange the money while at the airport but if you fail, there are different agents from where you can exchange your money from so as to have easy access to the different services.
What to pack when travelling to Mauritius
There are way too many things that are needed both essentials and leisure things before you travel to Mauritius but it is extremely hard for you to carry all of them and that is why we have narrowed down what is needed so that you get to enjoy your trip while in Mauritia. Most of the essentials that you will carry to the island entirely depend on the season that you find in the country and the activities that you will want to carry out.
- During the hot weather period, Carry insect repellents, light clothes, wide brimmed hats, sunglasses, sun block and any other essential thing that you can think of that will help you avoid a heat stroke while in Mauritius.
- When the rains set in, make sure that you carry some heavy and warm clothing that will keep you warm during these times, an umbrella or rain coat and many more others.
And since it is hard to predict the weather on the Island, it is better if you carry items that will help you in both situations that is when it is raining and when the heat from the sun is unbearable.
The people of Mauritius
The larger part of Mauritius is filled with Indians although there are other ethnic groups that can be found in the country. Most of the people that live on the Island came during the slave trade era and they have lived harmoniously together all this while. The women are meant to take care of the family and also some can be seen selling food staffs in the different markets.
While in Mauritius, make sure that you follow all the guidelines that are put in place by the local government and the police so that you do not end up on the wrong side of the law. The people of Mauritius are welcoming but you should not put their good nature into misuse because you might be arrested. When visiting the places of worship, make sure that you are fully clothed and cover up enough skin especially if you are a woman and follow all the guidelines and rules that are set up by the worship places. Go around the different restaurants that are located within the island and get a taste on the good food that is prepared by the locals.