Why kids will love Mauritius
A tropical island in the Indian Ocean may not immediately spring to mind as the perfect family holiday hotspot. But for a country often touted as a honeymoon destination and well known for its luxurious hotels, Mauritius has an extraordinary range of adventures and activities for children of all ages, not to mention some of the best resort-run kids’ clubs in the world.
If you’re looking for the ideal family holiday – but you’re not quite ready to give up your own dreams of sophistication, glamour and trips to the spa – Mauritius needs to be top of your list. Discover why kids will love Mauritius.
The best kids’ clubs
When it comes to kids’ clubs, many of the islands resorts have really pushed the boat out. Play at LUX* Belle Mare is the hot ticket for little ones aged 3-12, with a splash pool, big-screen films, culinary school and unique cake-decorating bar. For 12-17 year olds there’s Studio 17, complete with iMac stations, pool table and a hands-on DJ zone where budding musicians can learn how to spin the decks.
Up at Zilwa Attitude on the island’s northern tip, 3-12 year olds will love all the activities on offer at the Mini Club. Accompanied by Ayo the Dodo, the club’s pirate-themed mascot, excursions include a treasure hunt on Crusoe’s Island, along with glass bottom boat trips, swimming pool games and special theme days.
Beachcomber Hotels class any guest up to 17 years of age as a child and their rates are priced accordingly, offering great value for families. All Beachcomber resorts have Bob Marlin Mini Clubs housed in their own buildings within the hotel gardens, with a daily timetable of age-appropriate events and activities including bowling tournaments, mini-Olympics, face painting, pedal boats, bike rides and entertainment shows.
No matter how excellent your resort, remember there’s a whole world outside waiting to be explored – and for kids in particular this really is a chance to discover something never seen or experienced before.
Down in the south east, a trip to Ile aux Aigrettes will introduce them to the unusual wildlife of this offshore island sanctuary. Look closely and you might spot a rare pink pigeon or Mauritius kestrel, along with a group of Aldabran giant tortoises who roam free on the island after being released by the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation.
More adventurous kids have plenty of adrenalin-fuelled day trips to choose from including horse riding on the beach, zip-lining with Chazal Ecotourism or La Vallee da Couleurs, or unusual aquatic activities like sea-karting or underwater scooters.
The ease of discovering and exploring other cultures is one of the greatest advantages of a Mauritius family holiday. With its harmonious mix of Indian, Chinese, European and Creole heritage, the island offers ample opportunity for kids to discover how other people live.
A trip to the sugar museum accompanied by Raj the Martin and Florise the Mongoose helps children discover Mauritian history and the importance of the sugar industry in a fun and interactive way, while a visit to the market, a wander through Chinatown, or an early morning watching the fishermen unload their catch at Grande Gaube will open their eyes to other cultural groups and ways of life. This is also a great time to introduce kids to new and exciting foods and drink – like alouda, dhal puri or napolitains – and get their senses working overtime.