Adventures on the Island paradise
Mauritius is a unique country in many ways. For one, it’s a small island off the continent; Africa. Dashingly popular for many things, it boasts of stunning beaches and sunsets, natural attractions, a wide range of wildlife and immensely diverse culture. An ethereal landscape.
As with all good things in life, there are more hidden subtleties. Experiences and perspectives various people might find subjective according to their own testimonies and witnessing. There are many things you begin to notice as you explore and delve more than just the surface, skin deep. Like tiny bits of a lost treasure.
Come along on a new series of events in beautiful Mauritius, that has played a defining point of many living here, particular young Africans.
Of Course, it’s blazing hot.
From November till April, Mauritius unleashes it’s unending ‘surges’ of sweltering heat. Considering the timeline, it might seem weird to be in summer when the rest of the world is in winter if you think about it.
Let’s dive into the scientific for a bit. The start of summer that late in the year is due to its location in the Southern Hemisphere. Geographically, the Southern Hemisphere experiences opposite seasons compared to the Northern Hemisphere. While countries in the Northern Hemisphere experience summer from June to August, those in the Southern Hemisphere, experience summer from November to February usually.
During these months, the temperature ranges from 27-29 degrees Celsius. Although, if you ask anyone who’s been here long enough, they’d tell you it feels miles hotter than recorded in the forecast. If tropical heat is what you’re into, the summer here is just right for you. If not too much. Sunbathing, fresh heat, tanning and everything you can possibly do in the sun is at your use and discretion in abundance. But if you’re like most of us, it could stand to get colder. Here’s an illustration. You take a bath after a long, tedious day at school/work. As little as five minutes after you leave the bathroom, you’re sweating almost as much water you used to bathe in the first place. And the frustrating thing is that it is persistently consistent. At every hour, for 24 hours, the suffering is unrelenting and merciless. Our advice, get a few key things.
- Sunscreen, so your skin doesn’t darken more than you want it to. (And yes, inquisitive mind, you need sunscreen whether you’re melanin or not). There’s a tendency to sweat it all out though, if you don’t let it settle into your skin.
- A portable hand fan. This is a guaranteed life saver. You might never know when the heat might get too unbearable. This would provide stable internal temperature at least.
- Come sunshine, come rainfall in Mauritius, always have your umbrella at hand.
Which brings us to the next point,
Of Course, the weather is bipolar.
The weather gods in Mauritius are not ones to be taken lightly. Yes, there is always a weather forecast to check and prepare. But really, who remembers to check?
There is fun and intrigue in unpredictability, but one finds that gets tiring quickly. The weather here switches up on you faster than a wild street dog. One moment, it’s raining, and before you realise it, it’s back to be sweltering hot. The changes are very apparent no matter the time. It could be cool and breezy early in the morning, then spontaneously in the afternoon, it’s raining cats and dogs. The spontaneity of it all makes for unforgettable events. One of these events is the recent raging of Cyclone Belal.
Cyclone: A large mass of air that rotates around a strong centre of low atmospheric pressure. These winds spiral inwardly to the centre, creating a region of high winds, heavy rain, and sometimes even thunderstorms. They can vary in size and structure.
Cycle Belal: The wind demon of destruction.
In recent times, Mauritius encountered a monolith of a catastrophic event. On the 15th of January 2023, the whole country bore witness to a spectacular display of pure chaos and monstrosity. Once again, Mother Nature showed who stands on top. The confusion began around noon when situations escalated. Lost cars, impassable roads, and property destruction. There’s really no limit to the events that takes place when a cyclone is active. Adhering to national warnings, lockdowns and protocols are best to preventing devastating harm.
Of Course, we can go to the out anytime we want.
Mauritius has a record for being the safest country in Africa, with a crime rate as low as 2.62 per 100,000 people in 2021. So, it’s rather common to go out and take in some sights without being overly cautious of attack. The best places to go to, as you might have guessed are beaches. The waters are a stunning hue of blue, leaning towards cyan, the sky during the day and at sunset are extremely mesmerizing. With gentle waves, and fresh breeze it is a delight to swim in. During the weekends especially, it is a bustling scene. Whether it’s a peaceful walk with loved ones, or nonstop partying, it’s refreshing not to be plagued by a constant fear of attack or harm. There’s room to experience what life has to offer more uninhibitedly. The convenience of safety is an underrated privilege.
Of Course, we wait hours for a bus.
Now, hours might be stretching it a bit, but it does take a while most times. For people used to the ease of transport in places like Lagos, for instance, the wait can take an immense toll on your patience. Through some research and a substantial amount of experience, we have found that these buses tend to be at the bus stops at these times: X’0 clock, X thirty and X forty-five. Still, it’s best not to leave anything to chance, especially when there’s an appointment or class to attend. Categorically, we can tell you that there’s no anger and frustration when you miss a bus so close to the nearest bus stop. We like to liken it to missing a number to winning the lottery. Although, if you have a car, or can afford paying overpriced taxi fares, this is hardly a bother to you.
Of Course, we have different foods to enjoy.
From a casual late-night burger at a bustling food truck, to the finest seafood dish at a restaurant, Mauritius is not short of a variety of meals to try out. It’s quite easy to find something to satisfy your adventurous taste buds, as long as you have substantial cash. It takes a quick “food near me” on google maps and a modest budget to start a diverse culinary exploration. But take this messenger’s bit of warning, preference is subjective, and as such each person’s epicurean experience. You might have more traditional preferences and that is completely fine.
Of Course, there’s disparity in culture.
Mauritius can be akin to a melting pot of sorts. This can be taken in the sense that it’s diverse with an interesting blend of cultures. Now, the real question is “Do these varying ingredients mix completely in this pot?” Not really. Naturally, it’s par for the course. As it happens in events all over the world, so does it here in Mauritius. It stems from a number of differences; traditions, norms, collective bias and inclinations, the likes. It might be daunting to navigate the tension and awkwardness of it all, but it gets better with time and newfound understanding and deliberation. The crucial point of the blend is to treat it with respect and consideration. Essentially, the art of human decency. This can not be overstated at all.
Mauritius, with its sublime landscapes and vibrant culture, shines as the cynosure of the Indian Ocean. It has a sense of peace and calm that is easily welcome by anyone curious enough to visit. There’s no surprise as to why it is such a desired tourist destination all over the world. Despite its stark existence, it is no different than any county on the globe, it is no stranger to unique nuances and fine points. Each person will have different perspectives and outlooks towards the culture, and as such is Relativistic.
How have you experienced Mauritius? Share your intriguing experiences in the comments below.
And as always,