An exotic and explosive encounter
between Africa, India and the ocean
> 1½ months across Mauritius <
When not traveling overland, we’ve gotten used to spending time in airports; then why not also spend time gazing into flight departure screens to unravel where you could potentially go, and how different regions are connected by air transport? On our first trips to India there was one far-flung destination, which always seemed to be directly connected to the major Indian hubs, Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, and so on: the island of Mauritius. Remotely positioned off the Southern part of Africa, but more connected in many other aspects to the Indian “motherland”. In our early twenties we were lucky to feel the bite of the travel bug from India, and getting hooked we wanted to experience India’s alluring and many different cultures outside the subcontinent. There were indeed many cheap flights from India to Mauritius, but anyway we ended up coming to this paradisiacal island all the way from Europe.
Besides a multifaceted connection to India, Mauritian culture is actually defined as being Creole: A unique blend of African and Hindi culture along with the historical influence from merchants and sea traders since the island was a key stopover on the trade routes between Europe and the Orient. This maybe explains why the islanders are so welcoming and appear with open attitudes. Or maybe the friendliness that we felt was partly explained by our newborn babies that we took along our travels. By coincidence, we actually got each of our first-born child within a few weeks time, and by another coincidence both of us ended up spending our separate paternity leaves on Mauritius.
Mauritius is a beautiful island cast is vivid natural colors. Picture-perfect beaches and coral reefs virtually surround the small-sized island, and it has a varied interior topography made of small mountains spread in between the pastoral landscapes of crops and small villages. Our travels in Mauritius essentially covered the entire island, from the swanky South coast, over the diving and sailing mecca of the East, to the more rural and relaxed North. It was a real treat and overall a great stay for slow beach days, easy traveling, and many different water activities. We even did a hop to its much more isolated neighbor, the island of Rodrigues; this small isle will however, due to its uniqueness and overall different experience, be covered in a separate post (se elsewhere in our Island pages).