The full address of your Hotels or private Holidays Houses and
Bungalows before you arrive. Please note this carefully as you will
be required to write it on a card to be given to the Mauritian immigration
authorities in the airport on your arrival.
Flic-en-Flacq is about one hour
from the airport. Le Morne/Grand Baie [1.5 Hrs],
Belle Mare/Palmar [1.2 Hrs], Port-Louis [1 Hr], and Mahebourg
Transfer costs varies from 500 to 1200 rupees.
We recommend that you change some
money in the airport immediately on arrival.
(e.g. no banks in Grand Gaube area, which is on the North-West
On departure an airport tax of
500 rupees per person is payable. This can only be paid in rupees.
You need to re-confirm your return
ticket at least 72 hours before departure.
For Air Mauritius (230-208-7171), British Airways (202-8000),
Malaysia Airlines (208-4685), SAS (208-5538), and Singapore Airlines
Driving in Mauritius : Due to the
high import tax on new cars and spare parts, driving on Mauritius
can be expensive. Only super grade leaded petrol is available
on Mauritius and all cars use this. It costs slightly less than
in Europe. Mauritius uses the British driving system (driving
on the left).
Visas: Visas are not required
for people with EEC or American passports.
Vaccination: Mauritius is
fairly unique for a tropical country in that it is free of such
diseases as malaria, yellow fever and cholera. This is because
of the very effective efforts of the government to combat these
diseases. For most people therefore, vaccinations, etc. before
departure are not necessary. If in doubt please check with your
local Mauritian embassy before departure.
Health Care : The medical
standard on Mauritius is well advanced and the hospitals are free
of charge. This applies to visitors as well. There are now additionally
many private clinics in the island and they offer a more attractive
environment plus frequently some of the latest medical equipment
available. They are however not free and you would be well advised
to check that your health insurance is valid for Mauritius before
The local water is relatively clean
and the Mauritians drink it. You need therefore have no fear if
you use it for cleaning your teeth etc. However, it is better
you boil the water before drinking it or buy bottled water which
is freely available in the local shops.
Mosquitoes: As in all tropical
countries (even Europe in the summer) mosquitoes do exist. We
recommend using a mosquito repellant cream to keep them away.
Some holidays houses are equipped
with electrical mosquito repellers (vapes) which you can use at
night. Small impregnated tablets are inserted into the apparatus
which is then plugged into the electricity. The effect will last
for about 8 hours. You may leave 1 window open in the bedroom
but you should ensure that there is no strong wind as this blows
the vapor away. If you run out of tablets they can be purchased
locally for about 45 rupees.
Sun Cream: The sun is exceptionally
strong on Mauritius and many people are surprised (too late) by
its strength and have to suffer sunburn for several days. Even
on cloudy days, please make sure that you use a good sun cream.
Electricity: The power supply
is 240 volts and the power sockets use the british 3 pin standard.
If you bring electrical appliances with you then you will probably
need an adaptor.
Language: The official language
of Mauritius is English. A large number of people can therefore
understand and speak it. The main language of the island however
is Creole which is based on French. In addition the different
ethnic groups speak such languages as Chinese and Hindi.
Holiday Clothing: Men can
usually spend most of the time in short trousers unless you want
to enter a hotel for the evening, in this case long trousers are
required. Additionally the maid in the house washes and returns
clothes by the next day so that you do not need to take much with
you. Do not overload your suitcase with unnecessary clothes. Leave
some room for any shopping that you do on Mauritius.
Mauritius has a well advanced textile
industry so that instead of taking all your holiday clothes with
you might consider buying them locally on the local market. The
shops are full of ready to wear polo shirts, T-shirts, shorts,
shirts, trousers, pullovers, dresses and beachwear at low prices.
Disposable nappies for babies cost
about 3 times the price on Mauritius as they do in Europe. We
recommend either taking enough with you or taking nappies which
the maid can wash.
Currency: They use the Mauritian
rupee. Currency rate is EURO 1.00 = 29.00 rupees [Aug 02]. Mauritian
rupees do not circulate outside Mauritius so that you can only
change money on the island. DM/EURO/GBP or US$ travellers cheques
and cash can be changed in the banks. (Please NOTE that the exchange
rate for traveller's cheques is much better than for cash).
For more info on currency exchange
with the rates of your country,
please visit the Mauritius Commercial Bank.
There are 3 banks in the airport
just after the baggage hall and there are 3 banks in Grand Bay
and in other major towns on the island. Major credit cards such
as Visa and Mastercard are accepted in restaurants and hotels
and also in some shops and supermarkets. In addition you can use
credit cards to obtain cash in the banks or use them together
with the secret (PIN) number to get money from cash dispensers.
Depending on which country you
come from, you will normally find the prices in the shops to be
reasonable compared to what you pay at home. The food and drink
prices charged in the hotel bars and restaurants are normally
appreciably higher than this.
Tipping : If you stay in
private holidays houses or bungalows, the maid can cook for you.
We would recommend paying her MUR 125 rupees each time as this
is not covered in the house rent. If she washes your personal
clothes for you then the normal price would be about MUR 100 per
person and per week.
Climate : The hottest time
of the year on Mauritius is December / March when you can expect
temperatures of 30 degrees C (approx. 89 F) but with less humidity.
There is always a breeze from the ocean however so that most people
will find it pleasant. Cyclones (tropical storms) can also occurr
during this period.
For those people who do not enjoy
warm weather or want a more active holiday, we recommend going
in July/August when the temperature is 24-26 C. On the coast the
temperature can go down to 16-18 C during the night so that we
recommend taking a pullover.
As you can see the variation of
temperature on Mauritius is small such that enjoyable holidays
can be spent there at any time of the year. Although the weather
is normally sunny it does rain. The rain showers are normally
short and are a pleasant change from the sun.
Things to drink: As mentioned
above you should not drink the local water unless you boil it
first. Tea is grown on the island and is plentiful in the shops.
The local people rarely drink ground coffee although an excellent
version called coffee chamarel is grown on the island. They mostly
prefer instant coffee.
Locally bottled wine and imported
South African and French wines can be purchased from 45 - 200
Rupees per bottle. An excellent beer called phoenix is brewed
on the island and has proved to be very popular with our guests,
price is 25 rupees a bottle in local supermarket but triple in
private hotels and bars. Locally manufactured rums are also available
and cost very little.
1. If your house does not have a telephone then we recommend that
you purchase a Mauritius Telecom telephone card at a supermarket.
There are now many public telephones able to take these cards
all over the island. In an emergency you can also enter the hotels
and call from there.
2. Mauritius now has a mobile telephone
network which conforms to the international GSM standard. Roaming
contracts exist with the UK, France and Germany and Mauritius
Telecom is actively working to have contracts with the other countries.
If you own one of these telephones why not bring it with you ?
Pamplemousse Gardens: These gardens
are about 20 minutes from Grand Baie and are well worth visiting.
Official guides do now exist and take MUR 200 per person for a
tour. There are still however many people at the entrance who
would also like to act as your guide. If you decide to use one
of them be sure to discuss the price in advance as some of them
will try to charge you a high price afterwards.