Indian Ocean Islands

Mauritius
This Island paradise has white sandy beaches and clear warm waters ideal for  water sports (most of which are offered on a complimentary basis to resort guests). Here you can enjoy spectacular sun sets over the Indian Ocean before enjoying the many night life attractions like  trendy bars, restaurants and clubs. You can fill your days visiting stunning nature reserves, relaxing at the spa or lounging around on one of the Islands many spectacular beaches.

Must see Tourist Attractions in Mauritius:


Mauritius Botanical Gardens
- the Pamplemonsses Garden and SSR Botanical Garden is the oldest botanical garden in the Southern Hemisphere and one of the most popular tourist attractions in Mauritius. These gardens are located near Port Louis and are famous for its collection of 85 varieties of palms from Central America, Asia, Africa and the islands around the Indian Ocean as well as giant water lilies and spice garden.
 

Black River Gorges National Park - The park covers an area of 6,574 hectares in the hilly south-western part of Mauritius. Established to protect the natural vegetation of the island it is home to most of the island's remaining rainforest and too many species of wild animals and birds like the Mauritian flying fox, Mauritius kestrel, pink pigeon and many more.
Île aux Cerfs Island - Also known as Deer Island in English is situated near the east coast of Mauritius in the Flacq district. This island is famous for its sandy beaches, its beautiful lagoon and a big selection of activities and facilities.
Port Louis - Is the capital city and main port of Mauritius and was established in 1735 by the French governor, Mahe de Labourdonnais. Port Louis is the largest city in Mauritius and is surrounded by a mountain range, called the Port Louis Moka Range. The city is known for its many well preserved historic and colonial buildings.
 

Country Facts;


Mauritius
-Mauritius was named after the Dutch Prince Maurice Van Nassau.
Capital City - Port Louis
 

Located  - Latitude 20º south of the equator, Longitude 57.5º east.


Size - 2,040 square kilometres.


Population - 1.2 million, including Rodrigues and the outer islands

.
Time Zone - +4 hours Greenwich Mean Time; +3 hours mid-European time.
 

Geography – Mauritius is protected by a coral reef barrier that encircles almost the entire coastline, with the exception of the southern region. In the southern regions the coral reefs stop and you will find dramatic cliffs as well as deeper waters with bigger waves. From the northern plains onwards the land rises to a central plateau where you will encounter lakes and dormant volcanic craters.
 

Climate;
Summer is from November to April with an average temperature between 23ºc to 33ºc
Winter is from May to October with an average temperature between 17ºc to 23ºc
Cyclones (Occasional) & Months with most rainfall - December to March
Annual rainfall - 900 mm on the coast & 1500 mm on the central plateau

Ocean Temperature -  22ºc to 27ºc.


Languages -
English is the official language. French and Creole are commonly used. Hindi & Bhojpuri are also spoken. Many hotel employees are fluent in German, Italian and Spanish. The Mauritian literacy rate is close to 90%.
 

Government – Mauritius is a democratic state is based on the Westminster model.


Economy - The Mauritian Economy is mainly made up out of tourism, sugar, textiles and the services industry.
Telecommunication - International direct dialling facilities are available throughout the island.
International phone cards are available to buy at most shops, there are post offices in most towns and villages. Internet services are readily available at cybercafés and most hotels.
 

Currency -The Mauritian Rupee (MRU) but foreign currency notes, drafts and travellers’ cheques may be brought into Mauritius without any restrictions.
 

Money and Banking - Banks are open to coincide with the arrival and departure of international flights at the Sir Seewoosagur  Ramgoolam International Airport.

Banking Hours
• Monday to Thursday: 9.00am - 3.00pm
• Friday: 9.00am - 5.00pm
• Closed on Saturday, Sunday and public holidays
Credit Cards - Banks and most hotels, restaurants and tourist shops accept credit cards.
Medical Services - Free public medical facilities are widely available at hospitals and regional health centres. Private clinics provide payable medical services.

The Republic of Seychelles
The Seychelles has some of the most beautiful uncrowned beaches in the world; some consist out of age-old granite boulders and others out of powder-soft sands. The clear turquoise coloured waters are ideal for swimming, snorkelling and relaxation. There are 16 islands that currently offer accommodation that varies between 5-star resorts, rustic island lodges and beachside bungalows. Island-hopping between the Islands is a great option to experience the diversity this magical place has to offer. Other attractions are national monuments, beautiful Creole houses, artists' studios, nature reserves and marine parks. Activities like glass-bottom boating, water sports, Golf, horse-riding, guided nature tours and some of the most unique flora and fauna on earth will keep you busy. Seychelles nightlife includes casinos, some local bars and many fine restaurants offering Creole and international cuisine.

Country Facts:
The Seychelles comprises out of 115 islands covering an area of 455 km². The Seychelles is a Exclusive Economic Zone of 1.4 km² in the western Indian Ocean and consists out of an archipelago situated between 4 and 10 degrees south of the equator. These 115 islands lie between 480km and 1,600km from the east coast of Africa.  Mahé is home to the international airport and the capital city of Victoria as well as Praslin and La Digue. These Islands form the cultural and economic hub of the Seychelles and here you will find the majority of the tourism facilities as well as the most stunning beaches.
 

Weather:      
The climate in the Seychelles is always warm and without extremes, the temperature seldom drops below 24°C or exceeds 32°C. All of the islands except the more remote southern islands are comfortably outside the cyclone belt and this makes the Seychelles the ideal year round destination for beach lovers. October and March – The north-west trade winds are prevalent during the months between October and March. The weather is warm and humid, the sea is generally calm and the average wind speed is between  8-12 knots. January and February – Is the rainy season and the rainfall figures are the highest for these 2 months. May to September - Is known for drier, cooler weather, and livelier seas especially on south eastern coasts with wind speeds between 10 and 20 knots.

Best time to visit - The periods of calm between the trade wind produce fairly warm and wind-free conditions throughout April and also in October. Conditions for swimming, snorkelling and diving are best during April/May and October/November when the water temperature sometimes reaches 29ºC and visibility is often 30 metres plus.
Population - Consists out of 87,122 and is extremely multi-ethnic and consists out of the descendants of freed slaves, European settlers, traders of Arab and Persian origin as well as Chinese and Indians.

Language - There are three official languages in Seychelles, Creole, English and French. Many locals also speak fluent Italian or German.
 

Currency - On 1 November 2008, the Government of Seychelles removed foreign currency restrictions. Non-residents can now pay for goods and services in either Seychelles Rupees or hard currency (Sterling, US Dollars, Euros etc.).


 

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Genesis African Safaris
conrad@genesisafricansafaris.com
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