Content Produced in Partnership with Tourism Mauritius
Port Louis, the captivating capital city of Mauritius, is older than most cities in the world. Located on the northwest corner of the island and pulsing with activity and culture, the city captures the true essence of the island nation. Boasting stunning beaches, world-class museums and centuries of history, here's what you should do if you only have 48 hours to enjoy this hidden paradise.
8AM - COFFEE (OR TEA) TIME
16 WILLIAM SIR WILLIAM NEWTON STREET, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
Before you hit the streets to start exploring, wake up with a latte and some tasty pastries at Truth Coffee. With a quaint, pleasant interior, Truth is a favorite local hangout that's especially well known for its macarons. We recommend grabbing a few for the road to enjoy later.
9AM - GO GREEN
PAMPLEMOUSSES BOTANICAL GARDEN, SSR BOTANIC GARDEN, ROYAL ROAD, PAMPLEMOUSSES
Before you hit the beach, get acquainted with the natural beauty of Mauritius at the island's botanical garden. The oldest botanical garden in the Southern Hemisphere was designed by French botanist Pierre Poivre. Today, the Pamplemousses, or the SSR Botanical Garden, boasts more than 650 types of plants, giant tortoises and colossal water lilies, too.
NOON - PUT IN YOUR TWO CENTS
BLUE PENNY MUSEUM, CAUDAN WATERFRONT, BLOCK A, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
There isn’t a better and
faster way to get up-to-speed on the ins and outs of Mauritius' extensive history than visiting the Blue Penny Museum. This
museum is dedicated to the art and history of the city and features rare one- and two-penny stamps from the 19th
century. Ultimately, though, you will learn a lot about its colonial heritage and get a
greater understanding of what Port Louis was like hundreds of years ago.
1PM – LUNCH WITH A VIEW
TROU FANFARON HARBOUR, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
Located less than a 10-minute drive away from the Blue Penny Museum, The Deck is a classic seaside hangout offering seafood and other island delicacies. Slightly removed from the busy main streets of downtown, The Deck is a great spot to sit back, relax and enjoy a no-frills (but still spectacular) grilled fish meal.
3PM - MAGICAL SAND
SEVEN COLOURED EARTH OF CHAMAREL, CHAMAREL, MAURITIUS
Most islands brag about their white sand beaches, but Mauritius is a double threat with its multicolored sand dunes and incredible beaches to boot. Located just outside Chamarel about an hour south of Port Louis, The Seven Coloured Earths of Chamarel make for a great day trip outside of the city — and are a must-see for any visitor to the island. The sand can appear to change color in different lights, making it especially remarkable later in the day.
6PM - DINNER TIME, DUMPLING
THE FIRST RESTAURANT, ANGLE ROUTE ROYALE & RUE CORDERIE STREET, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
Mauritius is a cultural melting pot in the middle of the Indian Ocean, and dining out is a real treat. Rather than standard seafood restaurants, you can find a mix of Indian, Cantonese, French and African cuisines, too. The First Restaurant in Port Louis is a great example of that. Specializing in Cantonese cuisine, the restaurant plates up some of the best dumplings you'll find outside China.
8AM – WAKE UP WITH CAFE LUX*
CAFE LUX*, CAUDAN, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
The largest coffee chain on the island, you’ll love the coffee — and the atmosphere —here. Its newest location in Port Louis further elevates the brand's message that good coffee is a necessity — and one of life's greatest pleasures. Sit inside if the sun is baking outside, but there are tables available with great views of the water.
10AM - DIVE IN
TROU AUX BICHES BEACH
One of the biggest draws of visiting an island is the water sports, and that's certainly true for visitors to Port Louis. Known for its clear waters and shallow lagoon, Trou aux Biches Beach is one of the most popular beaches outside Port Louis that's perfect for stand-up paddle boarding, snorkeling or, of course, sunbathing.
2PM - LUNCH AT SOMAZA
22 BOURBON STREET, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
Dig into delicious and authentic Mauritian-Asian cuisine at Somaza Delights. Shawarma, curries, rice, briani — they’re all part of the fun here. Lunch times can get busy, so a late lunch after a a day on the beach should give you a good opportunity to dine in, but the food here is always worth the wait.
3PM - FIND YOUR TREASURE
9 CORDERIE STREET, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
It isn’t luxe and fancy – the Central Market is, quite literally, a market in the central part of Port Louis that showcases the beauty in the everyday. You will find local charm and will quickly become immersed in such an exciting marketplace. Buy some produce if you’re so inclined or scope out a few souvenirs. If you get overwhelmed, a nice walk by the water is just a few blocks away.
4PM - WALK BACK IN TIME
EX-DWC BUILDING, 1 QUAY STREET, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
From the Central Market, head over to Quay and Wharf Streets to tour not one but two cultural heritage museums. The Aapravasi Ghat honors the thousands of indentured servants who came to Mauritius from India. Meanwhile, the Beekrumsing Ramlallah Interpretation Center, or BRIC, is located on the site where these indentured servants took their first steps on the island of Mauritius. Featuring testimonials from those that were brought over and a replica ship, the BRIC and Aapravasi Ghat are two sites best explored in tandem one with another.
6:30PM - WATCH THE SUNSET
BAIN DES DAMES BEACH, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
You’d be remiss to have visited Mauritius without taking a dip in the Indian Ocean. At Bain Des Dames Beach, which has public access, you can meander away from the city proper and lay out and bask. This is a huge beach with lots of space to spread out, and you can watch as various ships and boats drift in and out of the Port Louis harbor. Sunset is right around 6pm in the fall – don’t miss it!
SEND OFF IN STYLE
LE COURTYARD RESTAURANT, RUE CHEVREAU, SAINT LOUIS STREET, PORT LOUIS, MAURITIUS
Featuring French dishes with a Mauritian twist, Le Courtyard Restaurant is an elegant, fine dining restaurant with open air seating so you can enjoy the early evening island breezes. This is one of those dining experiences where you'll want to enjoy more than just a main course — the appetizer and dessert menus are just as delicate and delicious.
WHERE TO STAY: LABOURDONNAIS WATERFRONT HOTEL
CAUDAN WATERFRONT, PORT LOUS PO BOX 91, MAURITIUS
Of all the luxury hotel properties in Port Louis, none are as close to the waterfront as the Labourdonnais Waterfront Hotel. Especially well known for its dining scene and its modern, chic guest rooms and private balconies looking directly out to the Indian Ocean, you'll find a palace all your own here.