The first thing that the tourist should know about driving in Mauritius is that it is done on the left-hand side of the road. The drivers give way to the right and the rules on driving are heavily influenced by Europeans, particularly the British.
The second aspect to decide on is the car with tourists having two options. The first, and cheapest, is to know someone local who has his or her own car. However, the tourists must be certain that the car is in good condition because car parts on the island are expensive due to the government’s high import tax. It is also important to remember that the only fuel is the super-grade leaded petrol. The second option is to rent a car. Car rental companies have offices at the airport and these are easy to locate. The rates vary between 200 and 600 dollars to hire a car on the island.
And the third aspect of logistics is the island’s weather. Mauritius has a tropical climate and light rains are expected all throughout the year. Daytime temperatures reach the coldest in August, at an average of about 19 degrees Celsius or 66 degrees Fahrenheit. Highest temperatures are in February at an average of about 26 degrees Celsius or 79 degrees Fahrenheit. Tourists who plan to drive in Mauritius usually dress casual with a light jacket for cooler evenings.
When driving in Mauritius, there are five general directions to take, to the north, to the east, to the southeast, to the west, and inland.
To the NORTH, the destinations to go to are the Triolet Shivala, the Labourdonnais Orchards, the Grand Bay, and the Balaclava Ruins. The Triolet is the longest village where tourists can find the Maheswarnath, the biggest temple dedicated to Hinduism gods Shiva, Krishna, Vishnu, Muruga, Brahma,and Ganesha. The Labourdonnais offers mountain biking and hiking opportunities among fruit trees and sweet-smelling flowers. The Grand Bay, with its restaurants and bars, is the favorite area for shopping and having fun. And the Balaclava is where tourists can behold the sea walls.
Driving in Mauritius to the EAST will lead tourists to the Flacq Market, the Water Park Leisure Village, and the Ile aux Cerfs. The Flacq Market is the largest open market in the country, with its wide variety of produce, trinkets, and other goods. The Leisure Village is great for families with smaller children because of amenities such as giant chutes. And the Ile aux Cerfs is for adults who love water sports.
Driving in Mauritius to the SOUTH EAST will lead tourists to several interesting destinations. There is the 900-hectare Domaine du Chasseur, which is home to indigenous wildlife, including the kestrel, an endangered bird species. There is the Souillac with its garden that overlooks the Indian Ocean. And there is the Vieux Grand Port where the old ruins of the Dutch fortifications are located.
Driving in Mauritius to WEST leads to Casela a bird park that protects over 140 species of birds. There are also fishponds and areas for monkeys, tigers, deer, and tortoises. The western part of the island also has the Yemen reserve for deer and other Mauritian animals. It has strategically located pastoral kiosks that provide encompassing views of the ocean. The western region also has the symbolic Martello Towers and the colorful Chamarel.
And finally, driving Inland Mauritius will lead tourists to the history of the island’s sugar industry. The L’Adventure du Sucre is an exhibit that includes an ancient sugar mill. The tourist might also be interested in exploring the black river gorges and the Grand Bassin.
The black river gorges are nestled and protected by native forests and home to endemic Mauritian flora and fauna. The Grand Bassin is where tourists can find a lake on the crater of an extinct volcano.