Calm, protected waters and silky white sand are great for families and waterbabies of all ages.
The West coast of Mauritius is warmer in the winter months (May to August). And drier all year round. The west coast resort hotels are mainly clustered around the region’s best beach, Flic en Flac. This is just south of Port Louis with its colourful markets and frenetic haggling opportunities, if you enjoy a bit of retail therapy.
As well as enjoying the long stretches of reef-protected white sand, you can explore the wilder, southern part of the island. Key attractions are the volcanic lake at Grand Bassin. And the waterfalls and ravines of Black River Gorges National Park. The South-west around Le Morne offers dramatic scenery and the best location for kite-surfing and windsurfing on Mauritius.
The south-west coast is the most scenic part of Mauritius. It’s the least developed and perhaps the most interesting for those who prefer to balance beach life with other exploration. There are long stretches of lush indigenous vegetation in this area. Here you can walk or hike, perhaps to the little islet of Ile aux Aigrettes.
There are also fewer beaches in the south-west, so fewer visitors and fewer hotels. It's a great place to get a feel for real life on Mauritius. And the historic villages of Soulliac and Mahebourg are well worth a visit.
In the region of Bel Ombre there are shallow lagoons with crystal clear protected water, but elsewhere the open sea crashes against the cliffs. Swimming is hazardous due to the swell and strong currents.
The south coast faces the trade winds all year around. So this area comes into its own in the hot summer season. But it may be a little too breezy for a beach holiday in the winter months of May to August?
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