Mauritius positions itself as a green tourism destination and has committed to develop sustainable activities and leisure during the last years. Ecology has taken on an increasingly important place at all levels and, much more than its beaches, Mauritius offers a wide range of things to see and do inland during your stay. Its various landscapes, forests, parks and reserves, fauna and flora, make the richness of this island and are waiting to be discovered by green tourism enthusiasts. Hoteliers and other tourist operators are also actively involved in this sustainable approach, involving both employees and guests.
To reconnect with nature, there are a multitude of green zones in the island: its forests, parks and nature reserves, where you can discover the fauna and flora of Mauritius. The Black River Gorges National Park in the west coast, will offer a full immersion in nature. Several marked trails are available, some will take you to the centre of the island towards Macchabée and Pétrin; enjoy the many centenary trees and protected endemic birds that you will see there, and just appreciate the nature around. Bras d’Eau forest is another national park in the east. Like the one in Black River, it is part of a conservation program and is easily accessed from the main road. At La Vanille Reserve des Mascareignes park in Rivière des Anguilles, you will come across the Aldabra tortoises, introduced in Mauritius after the extinction of the endemic species of giant tortoises that lived here, and the impressive Mauritian bat, the only endemic mammal of the Mascarenes Islands. On the west coast, Casela Nature Parks will be the perfect place for a family outing. In addition to the walk in the park and other entertainment, you can enjoy activities in the wild such as ziplines and the Via Ferrata, or visit its endemic garden.
In Chamarel, the Ebony Forest is also to be seen, with its unique forest of endemic Ebony trees and preserved flora and fauna. You can opt for a guided hike to better understand the ecosystem; you will be stunned by the exceptional view of the western and southern part of the island from the top. End your tour with a visit at the museum on the history of ebony wood, before taking a break in the restaurant. On the south-east coast, Ile aux Aigrettes, a small island in the lagoon, is part of the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation’s (MWF) conservation program in collaboration with the government. The visit there is a must. Take the shuttle boat at Pointe Jérôme, and take a step back in time. A guide will be waiting for you on site and introduce you to the incredible wildlife there. You will learn about the remarkable conservation work done over the years, with the support of the Durell Wildlife Foundation Trust. Some species that live on Ile aux Aigrettes can only be found on this islet, such as the Telfair skink. Beautiful animal sculptures are also displayed around the island, and you’ll be surprised to see that of an owl… Yes, Mauritius was indeed home to endemic owls!
The management of terrestrial biodiversity and the Mauritius ecosystem is under the aegis of the National Parks and Conservation Service (NPCS).
There are also several other parks, estates and forests as well as hiking trails across the island, and for most of them, very easy to access: the Domaine de l'Etoile in the south-east where you can practice activities such as archery and quad biking, the Vallée de Ferney, for an immersion in an almost untouched forest, the Domaine de Bel Ombre in the south-west, where you will plunge into the lush vegetation and end with a picnic at the foot of a superb waterfall.
Eco-friendly activities are also available to discover the island and its population, such as Electric-Bike outings to explore authentic villages and landscapes, or visits of localities on foot, and go deep into authentic Mauritius.
To make sure that the green tourism approach is sustainable, hoteliers have also taken the plunge and implemented several actions such as the ban of single-use plastic products inside hotels, wastewater recycling, and even the decrease of buffets in favour of set menus to reduce food waste. Some have also implemented environmental projects such as the rehabilitation of mangroves, the protection of sea turtles, or the conservation of underwater areas near the resorts, and all this with the involvement of employees and guests. Several eco-friendly accommodations have also been built, such as eco-lodges for a lower carbon footprint of your stay in Mauritius
Mauritius Conscious is a sustainable travel & ecotourism guide that invites travellers to discover Mauritius' uniqueness in an authentic way. We support local initiatives and eco-conscious operators, making sure that your travel dollar contributes to sustain the community you are visiting.
Visit us at www.MauritiusConscious.com