Saturday, 25 September 2010


So we’ve been on the island for a month now. Much exploring has been done! I’m just going to tell you a little bit about all the places that Katie and I have visited!

Port Louis

Port Louis is the capital of Mauritius. It’s on the West coast of the Island. It’s a very diverse city. You have the traditional markets, stalls and Hawkers! But then along side it all are the high rise buildings, the harbour and English pubs…

The markets are amazing. You can buy literally anything! Unfortunately, there is no such thing as leisurely shopping. You can’t just stop and have a little look. There’s a stream of people who are constantly moving. You end up being the annoying tourist, having a ‘wee potter’ who won’t get out of the way. You have to be quite careful! A lot of people will put prices up because you’re the ‘rich’ foreigner. But, you just have to say “I’m a volunteer, I’m living and working in Mauritius and I HAVE NO MONEY!” Katie and I haven’t bought anything at the markets yet, mainly because we’re worried we’ll be ripped off. Most people speak French, so it can be a little difficult to negotiate.  But once our French has improved we'll definitely go to the markets more!

The food courts in Port Louis are really cool as well! There’s one which is right in the middle of the markets. You go in, and people just shout at you! And whistle! And click! They do anything to get your attention! Going in for the first was very intimidating! But once you know where you’re going and what you want you’re sorted! You can get roti’s in the food market which are an Indian style flat bread. (Mauritian’s like to eat them as far as I know!). They are rolled up with a mixture of curries and chilli inside them. They’re really nice + cheap! (Only 10 rupees each which is 20p!).

I’ve also explored the meat market with the other volunteers. It was horrible. Imagine walking through the worst slaughter house and x10. I only went into the Pig house (because after that I couldn’t take any more). There were the skinned heads of pigs hanging on hooks, guts lying everywhere and there were cockroaches all over the floor. It was so dirty and it stank! Basically… I won’t be buying any meat from there any time soon. Some other volunteers went into the Goat house but most came out gagging. (I’m glad I didn’t go in there).

The harbour is really different. It’s been well developed in the last few years. There’s a few hotels, pubs and restaurants and shopping centres. It’s much quieter than the markets but not as exciting I feel. It’s nice if you want to get away from the busyness and just chill! We went to an English pub the other afternoon. A home away from home... sort of!

The South of the Island

Last weekend, Katie and I spent with Bryonny and her family. Bryonny lives in Black River which is to the South coast of the island. We had a really nice weekend. She took us for a long scenic drive with her two kids Troy and Kira (I’ve going to upload some picture of them!). So, we headed towards Chamarel making stops on the way to take in some of the scenery. That day we saw a completely different Mauritius. Lots of green green green and green! It resembled jungle! And this is what all of Mauritius looked like at one point - until the land was felled for sugar cane and townships etc. I’ve got some amazing photos which I’m uploading! We also visited the ‘Seven Coloured Sands’ which is a ‘seven coloured sand geological site created by volcanic rock’. They had Giant Tortoises! And yes, they are MASSIVE! You were allowed to stroke them, they were so friendly! Apparently they are strong enough to walk (very slowly) with a person sitting on their back! You can do this at another park in Mauritius and get your photo taken. Katie and I will have to do that one day!
Anyway! It was a very good day! It was great to see a new part of the island!

The East Coast of the Island

Katie and I have briefly seen the East coast, but not enough for me to write a blog on! We spent last weekend at Heidi’s in-laws beach house on the East coast. It was beautiful!

Also something worth mentioning about...

The Weather

There are loads of mini climates. It tends to be much hotter and dry on the coast. The further inland you go the colder and wetter it is. But it’s far from a subtle difference. For instance, I was in Floreal this morning. It was freezing – probably as cold as Scotland! I slept cocooned in my duvet! Then we got the bus into Port Louis and it got very hot… very quickly. Port Louis is about a 20km from Floreal and there wasn’t a cloud in sight! I had a pair of jeans and my hoodie on! You end up being dressed completely wrong for the day!

The People

Mauritian’s are very very friendly. Katie and I have found ourselves getting French lessons while waiting for the bus, and through Heidi we’ve met many lovely people! They’re so kind. We spent last weekend with Bryonny, this weekend we are house sitting for one of Bryonny’s friends and in a couple of weeks we are spending the weekend at Jeanine’s.
Lots of Mauritians go to study in the UK so many know it quite well! Some even know where Aberdeen is! My taxi man lived in Aberdeen for 7 years! It’s such a small world!

1 comment:

  1. Think I'd turn vegetarian......
    Mrs W would be proud of your geographical comments here!
    But you must post a photo of a tortoise ride,