With its relatively remote location about 2,000km from the African coast and 900km from Madagascar, this 65 x 45km western Indian Ocean island has some 330km of coastline surrounded by coral reef formations protecting an impressive lagoon. The main attraction lies in its marine wildlife: warm temperatures varying from 21 deg Celcius (winter months) to 28 deg Celcius make for enjoyable snorkelling and scuba diving.
Scuba divers can appreciate some of the world’s finest coral reefs in about 200 dive sites where visibility is generally excellent. About 430+ marine species identified in the waters here include various large pelagic fish; marine turtles and many species of coral. The reefs teem with colourful fish, such as parrotfish, wrasses, groupers, sweetlips, angelfish, Moorish idols, clownfish and moray eels, among many others. Crayfish are often seen among colourful corals, sponges and sea anemones.
Given the sophisticated nature of Mauritius' tourism infrastructure, the island is a wonderful destination in which to discover scuba diving. Novices can enquire about the 'Discover Scuba Diving' sessions offered at various hotels and then take a PADI Open Water Diver course.
In terms of terrestrial wildlife, Mauritius is home to a selection of endemic birds, which include some of the world's rarest species which were saved from the brink of extinction by Durrell Wildlife Conservation Trust in collaboration with the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation. These include the Mauritius kestrel (national bird); the Pink pigeon (yes, it really is pink!); Echo parakeet and passerines such as Mauritius cuckoo-shrike, Mauritius fody and Mauritius olive white-eye. Most of these birds can be seen during guided forest walks in Black River Gorges National Park, or on excursions to the 26ha offshore islet Ile Aux Aigrettes. There is also a variety of endemic reptiles, most of which are geckoes and skinks. Some of these are unique to the closed nature reserve of Round Island, also home to the Round Island keel-scaled boa which has been a subject of intensive, successful conservation efforts. The only indigenous land mammal is the Mauritius fruit bat.
- Malagasy culture in vibrant Antananarivo
- Indri, Parson's chameleon and other rainforest denizens of Andasibe-Mantadia National Park
- Endangered endemic birds in Black River Gorges NP (Mauritius)
- Exploring colourful underwater life and enjoying rest & relaxation time in Mauritius
- Explore one of the world's great wildlife-viewing locations
- Chance to seek the Big 5 on safari
- Superb accommodation and hospitality
- Luxuriating in style at the beach in Mauritius
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