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La Vanille Nature Park
The park is full of palm trees and giant bamboo creating a lush green environment for the thousands of Nile crocodiles raised in the park. The giant tortoises 'Aldabra' live in semi-liberty, one of them is Domino who is over 100 years old and weigh 275 kgs.
La Vanille Nature Park is the largest tortoise park of 'Aldabra' and 'Radiata' living in captivity in the world. Animal Species living in the park which you will be able to encounter during your visit are: Tortoises, Iguanas, Nile crocodiles, Goats, Mauritian Bats, Sheep, Lemur Catta, Peacocks, Geese, Caimans, and Alligators.
Additional Experiences in the Reserve
Aldabra giant tortoise feeding. You may meet and feed the tortoises everyday at 11.00am and 1.00pm.
Crocodile feeding show. This is a spectacular and unmissable show exclusive to La Vanille Nature park! It takes place everyday at 11.30am.
Take a picture with a baby crocodile. You can get up close and snap a memory to last a lifetime with one of the baby crocodile.
Meet Octar. Who is Octar? It is an Iguana which comes to see the guests everyday at 10.30am and 2.30pm.
Pony rides. The little ones may enjoy a pony ride either in the interactive farm or into the whole reserve itself accompanied by team members of the park.
What is the Interactive Farm?
It is a new area which has been created in 2015, principally for children to have a dedicated recreational space where they may get in contact with different animal species under the guidance of the reserve's staff. The Pony Club is situated there.
It also houses a playground for children.
Other attractions in the park
La Vanille Nature Park homes one of the largest collections of insects, where you will discover the fascinating world of butterflies and other insects. Mr. Jacques Siedlecki a passionate of nature and insects took 30 years of patience to complete these collections with more than 26 000 species and about 30 000 specimens from 5 continents.
The Aquarium offers you to discover certain species of waterfowl. You will also be able to admire the iguanas basking in the sun on the banks of the river. Enjoy the view of the turtles and crocodiles swimming together.
La Vanille Nature Park also houses a Fossil Museum. This exhibition called '100 Million Years Under the Sea' is an exhibition of international standard. It is a collection that Mr. Owen Griffiths, director of the park, has collected over many years. It holds hundreds of fossils from Madagascar. Ammonites are the well-known and most popular fossils.
In addition, the museum includes a section showing modern history of marine mammals of Mauritius. This exhibition is the work of Dr. Julian Hume recognized worldwide as the Natural History artist and paleontologist (he worked in collaboration with several museums worldwide, including the Smithsonian in New York, the Bishop Museum in Hawaii and the British Museum). The exhibition outlines a range of whale skeletons as well as seals, dugongs and carvings on whale teeth ...
There is an old train on display at La Vanille. This train is a Ruston & Hornsby diesel engine, and was probably one of the last locomotives in use on the island. It was withdrawn from service from the Savannah Sugar Estate in 1981, the year the last sugar line on Mauritius closed. It was left in the fields at La Barrack, Savannah, until 1986 when it was brought to La Vanille.
There are 3 conservation areas which exist for endangered species: protecting their habitat, captive breeding for later reintroduction into the wild and farming. La Vanille is involved in all three of these conservation areas.
There are captive breeding programmes in place at La Vanille for a number of threatened species.
Ebony Forest Chamarel
Ebony Forest is located near the village of Chamarel. Sadly, less than 2% of the endemic forests remain in Mauritius. This conservation project aims to fully restore 50 hectares of forest to protect the flora and endangered fauna of Mauritius, educate the public about the importance of biodiversity conservation, and develop ecotourism to support future activities. Over 110,000 indigenous trees have been currently planted and 10 hectares of forest have been restored. The forest is an important refuge for the Paradise flycatcher and three endemic species of geckos.
Further to this there has been the establishment of the François Leguat Giant Tortoise and Cave Reserve in Rodrigues.
La Vanille is also involved in other conservation projects in Madagascar.
Opening Hours - Everyday from 8.30am to 5.00pm
There is a restaurant in the park, The Hungry Crocodile (open from 11.00am - last order at 4.00-pm) (View more details here https://www.myguidemauritius.com/restaurants/hungry-crocodile) and a snack (at the park entrance)
Shop, Crocod'Île where you may have exclusive products.
A booking service to celebrate birthdays at La Vanille Nature Park