Mauritius as an island is really gorgeous! Surrounded by the sea, it has also other islands and islets nearby, which deserve to be visited. In this post, you will learn about the top islands and islets in Mauritius further below!
The Top Islands & Islets In Mauritius
Imagine taking a break outside the mainland on a sandy beach. You are enjoying a cocktail and some barbecues with your friends or relatives. Or, you are hiking among the tall trees in peace and tranquility. You hear the birds singing, welcoming you. There are few islands and islets in Mauritius where these can be achieved.
Flat Island or commonly known as Île Plate, is located around 11km away from the northern coasts of Mauritius. Popular for its white sandy beaches, everyday, both tourists and the locals spend nice times there. In addition, the island has a lighthouse on the top of the hill, including an old cemetery nearby. Decades ago, Flat Island had a dangerous reputation, because many fishermen’ boats have been sunk there. It is also famous for divers to observe sharks. In fact, there is an area called “The Shark Pit” where professional divers can observe sharks. The island is not famous only for swimming but also hiking. A walking trail around 2km exists to lead you to the top of the island.
Île Aux Cerfs
Île aux Cerfs is the best for aquatic activities. Snorkeling, swimming, water skiing, kite surfing, the list goes on. It is normally a private island, which is situated in the East of Mauritius. Moreover, the island has a golf club, few restaurants and entertainments. Île aux Cerfs is definitely a must to visit to spend a wonderful time!
Île Aux Benitiers
A remarkably beautiful island! Île Aux Benitiers is located in the South-West of Mauritius, precisely near Le Morne and La Gaullette village. It is popular for its hiking trail and also a site to relax. Most people who visit the island do it from Tamarin to observe the dolphins and also to visit the gorgeous Crystal Rock. Crystal Rock is around 500m from Île Aux Benitiers. It is a rocky formation, but unfortunately, it is being degraded with climate change. Furthermore, on Île Aux Benitiers you can have a tasty barbecue or buy some artisanal stuff from the local sellers.
Isla de Ambre or Amber Island is basically the third national park in Mauritius. It is best for hiking as this large island is under in charge of the government. It has known a severe pollution problem since years. Garbage from the mainland is being carried away by the sea to the island. More than that, there is a lack of bins for the public to throw their stuff while visiting. Île D’Ambre is surrounded by other small islets such as Île Maunick, Matapan Island, Îlot Bernache and others. The island has endemic plants and also a volcanic crater. Lastly, it has been reported that the last sighting of the Dodo was from there in the 1660s.
Ilot Fourneau is a privately owned island located in the lagoon of Le Morne. The island is quite small with a hill, surrounded by a low-depth water. In case of low tides, you can walk to the island easily, but of course, make sure you know how to swim. Moreover, on the island you can enjoy few aquatic activities such as kayaking, a short hike to the top and others. Ilot Fourneau is recommended to camp and to relax. However, the island’s beaches are not appropriate to swim.
Île Aux Fouquets
Classified as National Heritage, Île Aux Fouquets or Île Au Phare has a strong history behind! The island witnessed the Battle of Grand-Port, where many ships participated in a great war between the French and the British. Additionally, the island has an old ruined lighthouse, surrounded by the agitated waves. It is prohibited to swim there. Nevertheless, at the entrance of the island, the sea is calm and you can have a short swim in the crystal clear water. If you are a lover of history or old building, this island is a must to visit.
A small islet next to Flat Island where you can swim, have a picnic day, etc. Ilot Gabriel is covered at some places but almost dry in summer season. It is popular for its white sandy beaches.
Île Aux Aigrettes
A natural reserve, occupied by the Mauritian Wildlife Foundation, an amazing island to add in your list of activities. It is situated in the South-East, around 800m from the mainland. What is fascinating, Île Aux Aigrettes is made up of coral-line limestone. It inhabits several endemic plants and species. A visit to the island can take up to 90 minutes.
Île De La Passe
Île de la Passe is next to Île aux Fouquets, which also was served in the Battle of Grand-Port. Some of the ruins still exist. Most skippers pass by the island but do not land because of the agitated waves. If you are lucky enough, maybe you can land on the island to have a walk. You will surely feel a nostalgia there and vision how the ships were bombing each other in the Battle of Grand-Port.
A small islet, around 3m away from the coast where it is easily accessible by foot. Ilot Sancho has a legendary facet too. According to some legends, it was believed some treasures were buried there. Obviously, until today, they have not been found. Ilot Sancho is indeed a place to relax and to seek inspiration.
Other Islands & Islets To Visit:
- Gunner’s Quoin (Commonly known as Coin de Mire, this nature reserve island is situated in the North, where you can snorkel and swim).
- Ilot Marginie (It is situated next to Île Aux Cerfs and is widely visited for lunch breaks).
- Ilot Bernache (A small islet located close to Île D’Ambre, nice for picnic and camping).
- Île Des Deux Cocos (A privately owned island, currently has a hotel on it but has a small space for the general public to visit).
To conclude, the above list states the famous islands and islets to visit in Mauritius. Nevertheless, there are other islands where the public is prohibited to access. For example, Round Island, Serpent Island, etc, are nature reserves and are protected by the authority.