Bliss in the Indian Ocean
Mauritius is an idyllic tropical island where couples can dip their toes gently into married life on the shores of the sparkling Indian Ocean
Couples seeking a picturesque palm-fringed setting for their barefoot beach wedding or romantic honeymoon paradise will fall head over heals in love with Mauritius, a stunning island in the southern Indian Ocean with lush tropical vegetation and long stretches of fine white sandy beach.
Mauritius is situated in the southern hemisphere, near the Tropic of Capricorn and has a central plateau fringed by striking jagged mountains – the remnants of extinct volcanic craters. The island is natural, spectacular and above all, relaxing, with unlimited year-round sunshine – hot but not too hot, with a refreshing ocean breeze to cool and refresh.
Nature lovers will adore Mauritius. It boasts a long coastline almost entirely surrounded by a coral reef, which has created a turquoise lagoon around the island, making it ideal for swimming, snorkelling and water sports. The reef is teeming with marine life and is a scuba divers dream, while on land there is an abundance of unusual and endemic species of animals, birds and plants. The Mauritian authorities are determined to keep their island unspoilt, so you won’t find high-rise hotels and apartment blocks here – just luxurious destination resorts, designed to blend into the unspoilt landscape and its towns and villages which are home to the friendly native Mauritians.
For honeymooners, Mauritius is the perfect place to relax and soothe the soul, or if you are looking for adventure and activities, there’s plenty to keep you occupied – from golf and excursions to the capital to all kinds of water sport. The beach is there, in stunning abundance – so use it! Sailing, windsurfing, scuba diving, water skiing, swimming with dolphins and, of course, saying “I do” or having a blessing below the shady palms with a truly romantic beach ceremony!
Sunsets in Mauritius are sensational, and as it dips below the Indian Ocean you can enjoy pre-dinner cocktails and romantic dining at its best with local and international cuisine including Creole, Indian, European and fresh seafood harvested from the sea earlier in the day. Then dance the night away to music from local bands – the sexy local dance is called Sega. Join in if you dare!
Getting married in Mauritius
Mauritius offers spectacular weddings and renewal of vows ceremonies in gorgeous settings – from a gazebo the beach to prettily decorated wedding pavilions overlooking the sea, you can even get hitched aboard a catamaran! A number of Mauritian resorts and tour operators offer all-inclusive wedding and honeymoon packages to suit all budgets. Weddings usually take place in the late afternoon as it is the cooler time of day and the light is better for photographs – and you can take advantage of those spectacular sunsets!
The day before your wedding in Mauritius the wedding team will arrange for you to be taken by car, with the originals of all required documentation, to the island’s capital, Port Louis, where you need to visit four different offices: Civil Status Main Office; Attorney at Law; Supreme High Court of Mauritius and Civil Status Sub Office – your taxi driver will take you to a sub office in the district closest to your hotel for the publication of the wedding and for the time of your wedding to be confirmed.
You will need the following documents: Copies of passports; Copies of birth certificates; Decree absolute (if divorced); Deed Poll (if name has changed); Copies of former marriage certificate if widowed and copies of former spouse’s death certificate; Copies of adoption papers if applicable; Non-English documentation must be translated into English and duly stamped. A little Mauritian red tape also states that if the bride-to-be has been divorced in the last 10 months, she will need a Mauritian Doctor’s certificate of non-pregnancy. There is a small charge for this certificate.
5 Top things to do
Go to the races
Rub shoulders with the socialites of Mauritius at the Champ de Mars racecourse in Port Louis – it’s the oldest racecourse in the southern hemisphere, so go and sip Champagne in the sunshine as you have a flutter on the horses.
Marvel at the waterfall
Climb the stairs to the viewing platform at the top of Chamarel, the highest waterfall in Mauritius at 100 metres. It’s well worth the effort to reach this natural beauty spot, which offers an awesome sight and is the perfect photo opportunity.
Browse the shops in Grand Baie
The cosmopolitan resort of Grand Baie is known for its great nightlife, shopping and restaurants. When you’ve finished shopping for souvenirs, head to the gorgeous beach for an afternoon of watersports.
Eat crocodile curry
We’re not kidding! The star of the show at La Vanille Crocodile Park is obviously the crocodile, and they actually serve crocodile curry in the restaurant! However, you can also see giant bats, giant turtles, monkeys and a huge insect collection and learn about the endangered species endemic to Mauritius.
Visit a botanical garden
See bats hanging from the branches of Fruit Bat Trees at Pamplemousses Botanical Garden – also known as Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolan Botanic Garden. It covers 60 acres of land and also features giant lily ponds with tadpoles and frogs plus trees planted by Nelson Mandela and Indira Ghandi.