Exploring the Cultural Delights of Mauritius

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The East African island of Mauritius is a melting pot of different cultures and customs that come together to create a truly unique way of life, which is best discovered up close. A more authentic and immersive island experience awaits you beyond the world-class beaches and luxury hotels; read on to discover how you can enjoy the cultural delights of Mauritius.

Gorgeous coastline in Mauritius
Gorgeous coastline in Mauritius

Savor the food

What better way to truly immerse yourself in a new culture than by testing out the local fare? Mauritian cuisine has been infused with so many different international flavors throughout history, with various dishes celebrating different aspects of the island’s heritage. You’ll notice particularly strong Asian and European influences, but the locals also like to champion native African flavors, too.

Mauritian food
Mauritian food

There are so many different ways to enjoy an authentic taste of Mauritian cuisine. If you’re out and about, keep an eye out for the street food vendors serving local dishes to go. These convenient spots will introduce you to the traditional flavors of the island, and are also an excellent option if you’re looking for cheap eats to fuel your adventures. Or, if you want to really live like a local, visit one of the markets and pick up some ingredients to recreate your own Mauritian dishes. However you choose to enjoy the wonderful food on offer, we’re sure you won’t be disappointed.

Uncover historic architecture

It’s not just the cuisine that’s drawn influences from the different countries to have settled on the island throughout history. Granted, Mauritius is probably best known for the natural elements that make up its alluring landscape, from the world-class beaches to the viridescent valleys. But the island’s architecture has an important story to tell, and if you want to know more about the culture and history here, exploring some of the historical hotspots is a great place to start.

Martello tower
Martello tower

From the British-built Martello Tower that was used in defense against French invasion to the museum at Beau Plan Sugar Mill, each spot uncovers a different aspect of the island’s fascinating past. If you can peel yourself off of your beach towel for an afternoon, the historic buildings across the island are well worth a visit.

Converse with the locals

Mauritian people have a reputation for being extremely friendly and welcoming to international visitors, and spending some time mixing with the locals is a great way to learn more about island life. The markets are a wonderful place to meet people and find out about the local culture through the medium of food and crafts. Or, consider signing up for a guided tour where you will not only get a local expert’s perspective on the sights, but it’s also an easy way to meet new people along the way.

A Mauritian local
A Mauritian local

As it is anywhere in the world, it will always be appreciated by the locals if you try to converse with them in the local language. There are a range of dialects spoken across the island including Mauritian Creole, French and English. Even keeping a few phrases handy can go a long way to helping you integrate into the local culture and interact with the people who live there.

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Michael Glass

Michael is the founder of Backpacker Travel. He also runs walking tours in San Francisco and is a freelance travel writer. Michael is extremely passionate about travel and loves to explore festivals around the world.

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