The island’s heart, central Mauritius has the coolest weather and more rainfall than anywhere else. It’s not top of the list for sun, sea and sand seekers, but some cultural highlights and impressive natural attractions make it worth exploring. The lure of shopping in the congested towns of the central plateau might inspire only a few people to leave their sunlounger, but nearby is the stunning Eureka mansion, a reminder of the island’s colonial past set against the pretty backdrop of the Moka Mountains. Outdoor activities range from the easy climb to the top of the distinctive mountain, Le Pouce, which affords some of the best views of the capital, to one of the island’s most beautiful hikes and canyoning opportunities at Tamarin Falls. To the southwest, the lush, green Black River Gorges is Mauritius’s only mainland National Park, sheltering all nine of the island’s rare and endangered endemic birds among ebony trees, waterfalls and mountains. Crisscrossed with walking trails, it gives a sense of what Mauritius’s landscapes would have looked like four hundred years ago. Nearby is the sacred crater lake of Grand Bassin, which according to legend was created from drops of the River Ganges.
Top image © dejjf82/Shutterstock