Along the spice route
Mauritius is a genuine melting pot of European, African and Asian cultural and culinary influences. During your stay, you will experience a unique journey full of fresh savours. The spices spread their fragrant secrets amidst this combination of colour and senses. Let’s set off on a tour to discover how volatile but distinctive spices can be found in Mauritian cuisine. From the corner shop to Port-Louis market, a tasty tour Spices are so much a part of local food habits that they can be found everywhere: small village shops, supermarkets, bazaars, souvenir and local craft shops, delicatessens… Available in small bags, in bulk or in various assorted packages, you will be spoilt for choice when it comes to bringing them home for your personal use or as gifts. However, for a full immersion in scents and colours, the Port Louis market is the place to be. Here, spices are sold by weight. In multicoloured heaps or in large gonis (jute bags), spend some time at the many stalls and smell these plant treasures. The vendors will be more than happy to explain the name, origin and use of their spices. Spices on your plate Although spices can be found in almost all the Mauritian dishes, it is certainly the Indian cuisine that makes the utmost use of them and the most exotic. For an authentic epicurean journey, head to the best Indian restaurants with our five suggestions: – If you’re staying at Marguery Villas, check out Happy Rajah, opposite our resort, which offers delicate and veggie-friendly cuisine, – If you’re staying at Mythic Suites & Villas, two must-visit and memorable addresses within a 15m drive, Chef Ramesh’s famous Saffron in Trou d’Eau Douce and Amari by Vineet, in Belle-Mare, for a celebration of spices in magnificent settings, – On a journey around the island? Go to Indra, at Domaine les Pailles at the entrance to Port-Louis for its beautiful Indian décor, or Namasté on the harbour at Caudan. Which spices to bring back and for what use? Among the spices to bring back in your luggage, discover: – Star Anis is very fragrant and is used grated in sauces or macerations. It also adds flavour to desserts, – Pink pepper (a variety of slightly sweet pepper) adds a strong flavour to dishes, a subtle blend of pepper, aniseed and sweet flavours, – Cardamom, which comes from India, has a strong floral and lemony flavour and is suitable for rice-based dishes and desserts, – Turmeric, called cumin in Mauritius, is used to season poultry, lamb, fish, vegetables and rice, – Curry leaves, called caripoule, are found in mixtures such as massala and curry. – Saffron, the ‘red gold’ and most expensive spice in the world, is a key ingredient in many meat, fish, vegetable and dessert dishes. Make the most of your stay to delight your senses and stimulate your taste buds to the subtlety and richness of the best spices you can find and bring back from Mauritius. Ask our concierges for our best addresses.
The Junior Suite turns into a Grand Luxury Suite!
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More space and increased freedom for all, greater happiness for everyone: Mythic Suites & Villas has enhanced its Suites offer by proposing the Grand Luxury Suite, a top-of-the-range flat particularly suited to families or friends staying in Mauritius. A suite of great taste and elegance for you The new Grand Luxury Suite is designed as a living area, where luxury, natural light and space reign. Particularly suited to stays with family or friends with its 202m2, the Suite can accommodate up to 6 travellers in complete privacy. Comfortable and restful, the three bedrooms are in the image of the Suite, spacious and each with its own shower room. The Master Suite has a king size bed and the other two rooms have twin beds. With its elegant, stylish decor, you feel immediately at home. A place for everyone to live Fully equipped, the Grand Luxury Suite features a fully independent living area with a laundry room and kitchen that opens onto a large lounge. A dining room and a comfortable living room lead to a 37m2 terrace or balcony with deckchairs and a table for outdoor meals. In your private garden or on your terrace, enjoy spending time by the shared swimming pool just a few steps from your flat. In-suite hotel services The Grand Luxury Suite offers excellent hotel services, including daily housekeeping, linen, pool and beach towels, and unlimited high-speed WIFI. Our private concierge is available every day from 8am to 11pm to assist with the organisation and ensure the success of your stay at Mythic Villas & Suites. In addition to room service, enjoy the in-suite catering offered by our restaurant and bar L’Atelier which serves a wide range of local and international dishes every day. The Grand Luxury, a flexible suite You wish to have one or two rooms among the three? The Grand Luxury Suite is adaptable to your needs: book a single room for 149m², two rooms for 171m², or three rooms for 202m². Regardless of the number of travellers, you always benefit from great quality accommodation. With the Grand Luxury Suite, your stay at Mythic Suites & Villas is sure to be magical and happy. To discover this haven of peace and happiness and make a reservation !
Historical trail: the Apraavasi Ghat
One of the most moving examples of Mauritius’ fascinating history is the Museum dedicated to the many immigrants who spent their first days here after their arrival or on their way to other horizons. Take a walk along the traces left by these men and women from far away. The colonial background For a better understanding and appreciation of the incredible ethnic mix in Mauritius, the best thing to do is visit this beautiful site of stonework located in the harbour of Port Louis. In 1834, under British rule, Mauritius was to be used as a full-scale test for the introduction of free labourers rather than slaves. This was referred to as the “great experiment”. It was an exceptional wave of migration that involved nearly half a million indentured labourers, either in Mauritius in the sugar plantations or on their way to Reunion, Australia or southern Africa. This cultural and historical dimension has led to the Apraavasi Ghat being listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site since 2006. Built in 1849, this former depot (whose name is the Hindi translation of “immigration depot”) and transit site welcomed the indentured labourers – women, men and children – who had left their native land to work elsewhere in search of a better future: immigrants from Madagascar, East Africa, the Comoros and South-East Asia, who made up the diverse strata of the Mauritian population. A place full of history as well as stories Some vestiges of the original building have survived, a few rooms, the hospital, but above all, the moving 16-step staircase which many Mauritians’ ancestors climbed. Each of the immigrants who arrived on this site brought with them their history, their secret dreams and their hopes, and the walk through these shady places is filled with both charm and emotion. The museum of the Apraavasi Ghat offers an interactive and fascinating insight into the way of life of these immigrants and the way the immigration centre operated. Visitors can discover a number of daily objects: the ros kari, the basalt rock on which spices are crushed, the gonis (or jute bags in which sugar was stored), the katoras (or tin bowls) … There are also re-enactments of the living quarters, where conditions were more than precarious and which testify to the harshness of the life of these recruits. The moving portrait wall Each newcomer was photographed on arrival, and the photo was kept with his or her name, registration number and date of entry into the country. These thousands of black and white portraits and the beautiful cursive handwriting so typical of this century are certainly the highlight of this visit to the Apraavasi Ghat. Fierce or proud but always imbued with an indescribable beauty, these faces peer into the visitor’s soul and bear the painful nostalgia of an abandoned homeland. Knowing that the majority of Mauritians are the descendants of these men and women offers a different view of the extraordinary local mix of cultures. A beautiful and emotional immersion, a journey to the origins of a large part of the Mauritian population: the Apraavasi Ghat will appeal to all history enthusiasts, but also to children and adults thanks to its authentic historical reconstitutions.
Sports enthusiasts? How to spend your holidays in Mauritius in April?
April, with its milder temperatures, is an ideal period for outdoor activities on the island. An overview of our four suggestions for a successful sports holiday. A trekking experienceDo you love hiking and nature? If so, trekking is the right activity to try. It is an intense hike that takes you to parts of the island that are not reachable by other means. For a safe walk, we recommend being assisted by experienced guides. Our concierges will be happy to recommend reliable and well-known service providers. On the menu: the 7 waterfalls spot, the river trek at the Rivière des Galets, the Morne mountain climb (Yanature LINK) or the Lion Mountain. Introduction to canyoningExplore the mountains and waterfalls of Mauritius and get a shot of adrenaline, hence the attractive Water-Earth-Air programme. Supervised by professionals, this outdoor activity is to descend torrents, streams, rivers, gorges with or without water and with waterfalls, pools and vertical parts. Canyoning combines hiking, swimming and abseiling, and is only for those in good physical condition. Strong emotions and intense memories guaranteed! An excursion to the Heritage Nature ReserveIn the south of the island, this magnificent 1300-hectare reserve offers many green activities. The programme includes excursions on eco quad, eco buggy, 4×4 or on foot (hiking and trekking) which combine learning and entertainment around the flora, fauna and history, in the company of trained guides. Discover preserved ecosystems and varied landscapes (forests, rivers, waterfalls), as well as animals (deer, wild boars, birds, etc.) Play Indiana Jones on the third longest zip line in the worldIn the Vallée des Couleurs nature park in the south of Mauritius, the 1.5 km zip line is for those who do not fear strong sensations and who are not afraid of heights. Over trees and waterfalls, fly over the site and discover the beauty of the nature reserve. Shorter zip lines are available for the less adventurous. April is an ideal month to try out or discover nature sports in Mauritius. Our concierges are at your disposal to organise the most unforgettable sports related holiday for you.
Top 4 good reasons for a trip to Mauritius in July and August
Dreaming of a sporty, vitamin-packed holiday in Mauritius during the summer months? Beautiful sunny days, far from the southern heat, refreshing trade winds and fewer travellers in July: Winter in Mauritius has some nice surprises in store for its visitors. Discover our TOP 4 good reasons to pack your bags ! For a warm winter experience under the tropics July and August are the austral winter season in the southern hemisphere. The mild and temperate climate of Mauritius means that holidays can be enjoyed without any particular clothing constraints, with temperatures varying between 15° at night on the plateaus and 25° during the day on the coasts. Just pack a small sweater for evening outings. The water temperature is cooler, which makes swimming invigorating. This period is also marked by trade winds blowing from the east and south-east, much to the delight of kiters and other windsurfers, and offering enjoyable catamaran and sailboat outings. For kitesurfing enthusiasts July and August in Mauritius are ideal months for windy sports that ensure great adrenaline rushes. It is the best season to indulge your passion for kitesurfing. The colourful sails fill the familiar spots (the Morne in the south, the Preneuse in the west) and the show of acrobatic figures is well worth the wait. An opportunity to learn if you are a beginner or to improve your techniques if you are experienced. Windsurfing and paragliding enthusiasts are also in for a treat. For surfing at its best Surfers eagerly look forward to it: the southern winter is the time of great swells and breakers that delight surf enthusiasts. If you live at Marguery Villas, it’s at Tamarin Bay, more precisely on the mythical spot of Dale. Beginners get to practice in the bay’s surf rolls with Cyril, while many others have fun on a morey. Have you come without? No problem, the two supermarkets and surfwear shops in Black River sell them: Make the most of it and offer your morey to a village child or drop it off at the Charity Shop before departing. For the off season, a cost saving opportunity Far from the busy tourist season of the end of the year, travelling in Mauritius in the July period means lower rates and prices. Many shops and restaurants offer cheaper prices. How about bringing back some 100% Mauritian souvenirs? Travelling to Mauritius in July and August means discovering the island differently and enjoying a holiday that’ s special. It is about enjoying a pleasant climate, perfect conditions for water sports while benefiting from lower prices.
Mauritian celebrations: early year events
Mauritius is slowly winding down at the beginning of January, with businesses closed and Mauritians on holiday. After the traditional New Year’s greetings, our multicultural and diverse population honours a number of national holidays, which are worth discovering and sharing with the Mauritians. Greetings, a tradition that is giving way to digital technology On January 1st, Mauritians used to visit their closest family and friends to exchange wishes of happiness and health. This tradition is still relevant today within close family but the pleasure of reuniting with family members is now increasingly replaced by digital messages. However, many people still honour the traditional lunch on 1 January, when several generations gather around a good meal. Thaipoosam Cavadee: piety and devotion This festival of Tamil origin marks the end of ten days of fasting. On this occasion, the participants, whose bodies and tongues are pierced with needles, go on a pilgrimage to the temple for offerings and purification. Dedicated to Murugan, this celebration is quite impressive for children but exciting for all those who want to discover thousand-year-old traditions. Chinese New Year Kung shee fat choy! Don’t be surprised if you are greeted like this on 1 February, Chinese New Year. In Mauritius, celebrations are national and exclusive cultural appropriation does not exist. At dawn, the spinners (huge strings of firecrackers) drag the late risers out of bed. The houses and businesses of our Sino Mauritian compatriots are strewn with bits of blood-red firecrackers. After prayers to the ancestors at the pagoda, families gather to offer fung pow to the younger ones, red envelopes containing money. This is followed by a huge lunch and vibrant games of mah jong. It is not uncommon to come across a celestial dragon and a belligerent lion in the shopping centres. A must-try is the “gato lasir”, a round cake made with honey. Maha Shivratri The long night of Shiva is certainly one of the most beautiful pilgrimages to attend during your stay in Mauritius if you are there at the end of February. From all over the island, on the days preceding the festival (1st March), pilgrims converge on Ganga Talao, the sacred Mauritian lake located on the central plateau. Pulling splendid glittering chariots decorated with the face of Shiva or carrying more modest bows on their shoulders, tens of thousands of men, women and children dressed in white walk along the roads. They are going to do their offerings and prayers on the banks of this magnificent lake. A multitude of gods from the Hindu pantheon, an atmosphere smoked with incense, vibrating with prayers and bells, a crowd full of fervour and the unforgettable spectacle of hundreds of earthen lamps illuminating the sacred waters: Maha Shivratri is an exceptional immersion in the Mauritian culture. Mauritians are always happy to welcome you on their national holidays. They will proudly explain the traditions inherent in the ceremonies and will let you taste the culinary specialities. Ask our concierges for information on the places and times of the festivities closest to your hotel residence so that you can fully experience each of these celebrations.
5 keys to remember
- Feel at Home