Towns and Villages
Grand Baie is the main village in the north of Mauritius. It has two beaches, restaurants, bars, clubs, billiard halls, and good shopping centres. If you are looking for great nightlife, this is the place to come.
A little north of Grand Baie you will find Pereybere, which is a small resort with one of the best bathing areas on the island.
Further north is Cap Malheureux which was where the English landed in their bid to conquer the island in 1810. Here you’ll have excellent views of the northern islands and will find a thriving fishing community as well as a red roofed church, a favourite instagramable spot.
A further six kilometres east takes you to Grand Gaube, a tiny fishing village with a good beach.
If you want to know more about the history of the island head inland to Pamplemousses. Here you can visit the old cemetery, the 18th century church of Francis of Assisi, and L’Aventure du Sucre which is a museum which tells you all about the history of the sugar industry on the island.
Triolet is the longest village on the island and a Hindu temple here is worth visiting, namely The Maheswarnath Mandir, one of the biggest and oldest of its kind on the island. The temple is well known for its participation in the first pilgrimage to Ganga Talao, the sacred lake found in the center of Mauritius.
The north boasts many beautiful beaches. The most popular is Trou aux Biches which is shaded by casuarina trees. Along most of the beach you will find the Trou aux Biches Hotel, which has both a golf course and a casino.
Mont Choisy beach is a little further north of Trou aux Biches. At more than three kilometres long, it is one of the longest beaches in Mauritius. It is the perfect place to go snorkelling. Water sports activities are also proposed on this beach.
Pereybere beach is east of Grand Baie and is one of the liveliest beaches on the island, with shops, bars, and kebab and pineapple stands close by. It is a favourite place with the locals.
If you are looking for a quiet beach, head to La Cuvette in Grand Baie. It is just 80 metres wide and is set away from the maddening crowd.
What to Do
If you have had enough of soaking in the sun, there are plenty of other things to do in the north of Mauritius. If you love nature, don’t miss out on the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Garden in Pamplemousses. You will find amazing plants here including the giant Victoria Amazonica water lillies. You may be very lucky to see the talipot or coryphe parasol in bloom. It flowers only once in fifty to seventy years and then dies.
Don’t miss going to Goodlands, a huge village of 14,000 people. It is famous for its markets. On Tuesdays and Fridays they sell fabrics and fashion items, while on Wednesdays and Saturdays fruit and vegetable markets are held.
If you love chocolate, visit the Van Ann Chocolate Manufacturers near Calebasses. It was founded in 1992 by Belgian Ann Van Den Bergh and is famous for its pralines. Take a tour around to see how the chocolates are made and buy your favourites.
If you love sea life, head over to the Mauritian Aquarium at Pointe aux Biches. There you will find a collection of 200 Mauritian fish species, invertebrates, corals, and sponges. There are even sharks here and a pool where children can swim with harmless fish.
Another interesting place to visit is Chateau Labourdonnais in Mapou. It was built in 1859 and it takes you on a journey back to what colonial life was like. The chateau is set in an old sugar plantation and it has been restored to its’ former glory. There is a wonderful orchard here with mango trees, spices, and exotic fruit. The chateau produces fruit jellies and jams, and ice cream and sorbets, all of which you can taste. There is a restaurant which serves local cuisine.
Close to this plantation you will find the Rhumerie des Mascareignes distillery where you can find out about the manufacture of agricultural rum and even take a sip yourself.
If you are interested in sea activities, there are plenty to be found on the north coast. Grand Baie is a great place to start. Yachts, catamarans, and speedboats can be hired from here to visit the northern islands. Gunner’s Coin is good for snorkelling, while Flat Island and Gabriel Island are great for swimming and picnics.
If you want to kite surf head to Cap Malheureux and Anse la Raie. Diving is also very popular in the north and both experienced divers and beginners are catered for. One great place to dive is Whale Rock where you might come face to face with a hammerhead shark!
As it can be seen, the north of Mauritius is an exciting place to visit. There is so much to do here whatever your preferences are. You can sunbathe on glorious beaches, take part in sea activities, sightsee, or enjoy the busy nightlife.