The Ultimate Mauritius South Island Tour Itinerary
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The South Coast of Mauritius is a tropical paradise sprawled with lush greenery and exotic beaches, it’s no wonder so many people flock here each year.
There are so many incredible places to visit and a lot are doable in a day, however, if you want to take your time and spend more time at each destination I’d recommend 2 or 3 days.
I don’t know why but I didn’t expect Mauritius to be so hilly if that’s even a word! As we drove from the North to the south I was so impressed with the mountainous scenery we passed!
I’ve put together a perfect 3-day itinerary for seeing the very best the South of Mauritius has to offer. You’ll get to see all the best places and some hidden gems too!
Let’s get started…
We wanted to visit Mauritius the first 2 weeks of June which is actually winter and temperatures start dropping.
We did our research and found that the north was considerably warmer in June but we really wanted to see Le Morne so decided to compromise and do half up north and half down south.
Which is highly recommended as Mauritius is one stunning island and the north is quite different from the south see my post here. We stayed at the stunning St Regis on me Morne beach.
It was one of the hotels I had on my bucket list! I just had to stay there and it didn’t disappoint, read my review here.
How to see the South of the Island
With having two young children with us we wanted some days by the pool and beach than other days out exploring so for us the best option to see as much of the south as possible was by hiring a driver.
It wasn’t much more money (£100 full-day tour) then hiring a car with sat nav and child car seats and the driver would know the roads and how to get everywhere quickly. Definitely the best option for us. If you’re feeling a little more adventurous then I’d say get a car and go explore at a more relaxed pace.
We always use google maps to plot out our itinerary so we can see how far everything is from each other and how long we want to stay at each place them present it to our driver for his opinion and to see if he can add anything to it along the way.
Sometimes they might know some hidden gems or those Instagrammable places you see all the time!
If you’re looking for some non-touristy things to do in Mauritius, you can read all about those hidden gems!
Where did we visit & how much?
We did day 2 days, but I have put together a 3 day itinerary as there’s so much to see!
Here is our itinerary for 3 day in the south of Mauritius: –
- Le Morne Hike
- Le Morne Beach and Kayak
- Underwater waterfall
- Maconde Point
- Gris Gris Beach
- Le Domaine de Saint Aubin
- La Vanille Nature Park
- Bois Ceri
- Grand Bassin
- Alexandra Falls Viewpoint
- Seven Coloured Earth
- Swimming with dolphins
- Crystal Rock
- Île aux Benitiers – Picnic on the beach
Here are our recommendations in more detail of what you should see when you visit the South of Mauritius:
Day 1 Mauritius Tour Itinerary
So, for day 1 you could do the Le Morne hike via a guided tour, which will take you into the afternoon. Then once you’ve finished why not cool off at Le Morne beach with a spot of kayaking, snorkeling and sunbathing.
If you wanted to you could hire a boat out and visit the underwater waterfall, you’ll need a good drone like the DJI Phantom 4(View on Amazon). to get the aerial view though.
Le Morne Hike
Le Morne mountain is an iconic landmark of Mauritius and we certainly wanted to see it when we visited, however, we enjoyed the view from the foot of the mountain. If we didn’t have our baby with us we most definitely would have hiked Le Morne Brabant.
The mountain has 360 views of the forests, mountains, beaches and not to forget Mauritius underwater waterfall! Yes, you read that right!
The hike will take around 4 hours and is a moderate hike, starting off easy with well-marked paths but gradually getting more difficult near the top. The best time to start the hike is early morning before it gets too hot.
The hike itself is completely free but a tour guide might be a good idea if you’re not an experienced hiker. The cost of a tour guide will be around £35.
Le Morne Beach & Kayak
What can I say, Le Morne beach is absolutely breathtaking! The white sandy beach stretches on for miles, with soft turquoise waters and palm trees lining the beach, it’s the most perfect place to spend the day!
We stayed at the St Regis Le Morne which is located right on Le Morne beach. I’d highly recommend this hotel, the location is out of this world and service impeccable. Read my review here.
There are a lot of water sports going on at this beach but the most popular one by far was windsurfing due to the good wind conditions. We saw so many people doing this and it looks like so much fun!!
The underwater waterfall is a spectacular optical illusion that is best seen from a height, either a drone via a boat tour or a helicopter is recommended.
It looks as though water is cascading over the edge into the depths of the ocean, when in fact it’s actually the ocean’s currents pulling the sand from the shore over the shelf’s edge.
Whilst most waters around Manutius reach a maximum depth of 150m the edge at the waterfall falls to depths of thousands of meters to the bottom of the ocean.
A helicopter rider seaplane over is a fantastic way to see the underwater falls in all its glory! A drone is another way to see this natural phenomenon.
Day 2 Mauritius Tour Itinerary
This is an itinerary of what we actually did in a day with our kids. We had a wonderful day and highly recommend everywhere on this list. It looks like a lot of places however a few are just viewpoint stop-offs, so you won’t actually be there long at all!
If you’re looking for a great viewpoint in Mauritius this one will impress you. Maconde viewpoint looks out to the crashing waves of the south’s picturesque coastline.
This area is well known for its rugged coastline and natural beauty making the viewpoint very popular with tourists so I’d recommend coming early or during the week.
The viewpoint can be reached by climbing a set of narrow stairs, when we went it was extremely windy and we were told this is very common so be prepared to be blown away (quite literally) by the stunning views at the top!
Gris Gris Beach
This beach is simply stunning, with jagged cliffs falling onto the beach it’s a stark contrast to the picturesque white sandy beaches you picture when you think of Mauritius.
There are no coral reefs on this part of the island which means the waves crash right into the cliffs creating the most beautiful beach.
The day we saw this beach it was so windy we didn’t get the boys out and my husband jumped out to take some pictures. I’d love to go back on a calmer day to really explore this beach.
There is a small garden area with benches where you can sit and take in all the natural beauty.
Le Domaine de Saint Aubin
This amazing place is overlooked by a 19th-century colonial mansion and is not to be missed, I was fascinated by how beautiful the colonial mansions were in Mauritius. We visited quite a few.
Located just outside Souillac the home was built in 1819 from wood from demolished ships, something that is apparent when you walk around.
The mansion is now a restaurant and they also make rum within the grounds as well as a candy factory and greenhouse full of vanilla pods.
Only recently a children’s playground and farm were added to this wonderful place. Such a great place to stop for a bite to eat.
La Vanille Nature Park
We had the best time here and the boys loved feeding the Aldabra tortoises. 3.5 hectares of lush tropical vegetation surround them and it’s a wonderful experience feeding them.
There are 1000 tortoises here and I think we fed them all!! There are lots of other animals here too, including monkeys, bats, and geckos.
Wait until you see how big the crocodiles are! I was shocked and fascinated at the same time. If you’re interested in insects they have an insectarium with over 23,000 species. It costs around $30 dollars per adult to get in. Completely worth it!
This is the oldest tea plantation on the island boasting over 250 hectares and they open their doors for visitors to see how the place works. You get to see the tea plants, visit the museum as well as a tea tasting session in the restaurant which has panoramic views of the tea fields. It costs around $10 to get in.
They actually have a bubble lodge on site where you can stay, check them out, they look amazing!
Grand Bassin and Mangal Mahadev
Sat over 550 meters above sea levers this crater lake attracts tourists year upon year. Located in the southwest of the island in Savanne there sits a temple and some other small shrines dedicated to Lord Shiva.
People Love to come here to pray, meditate or simply take in the beautiful scenery on a walk.
In 2007 a huge statue of the Hindu god Shiva was unveiled and is now the tallest standing statue in Mauritius at 33 meters high. It’s really quite impressive and worth a visit. It’s free to enter but donations can be given.
Alexandra Falls Viewpoint
The next stop on this route is Alexander Falls viewpoint. Here you’ll park up on the road or car park, then cross the road and head towards the viewpoint.
As you take the paved path towards the viewpoint there are lots of stalls selling a wide range of local goods and crafts.
Once you reach the viewpoint you’ll be greeted with endless views of Black River Gorges National Park a beautiful waterfall streaming from the mountains to your right.
Next, you’ll arrive right at Chamarel Waterfall, which is probably one of the most visited and Instagrammable attractions in Mauritius, and with good reason!
Surrounded by tropical rainforests, this incredible waterfall has two viewing decks where you can get some amazing pictures.
It does get very busy though with people wanting that perfect picture, however, once you’re at the front you’ll have a clear view of the falls
Seven Colored Earth
Finally, you’ll arrive at one of Mauritius’ great natural phenomenons know as Seven colored earth. Upon arriving here you’ll think you’ve arrived on Mars.
These dunes are made up of several different colors, and they light up at sunrise making from an incredible spectacle.
You can walk around this GeoPark and there are lots of viewing platforms, you’ll get some amazing pictures here as the dunes are unobstructed.
There are toilets and restaurants here too, which is a nice break, after all that driving.
Day 3 Mauritius Tour Itinerary
So, on day 3 you could hire a private boat tour which includes swimming with dolphins, a trip to Crystal Rock then finishes by going for a picnic on the beautiful island of Île aux Benitiers.
I would recommend to try and do a full day on this tour to fully take in the sights, as you’ll be up at the crack of dawn for the dolphins. After this just kick back and relax on the island of Île aux Benitiers.
Swim With Dolphins
This is something we really wanted to do whilst in Mauritius and our hotel offered the excursion however with the boys being young we decided against doing it as the water would be cold and we would have had to get up at the crack of dawn.
Yes, it does cost a lot ($250) to hire a private boat to take you out but it is a once in a lifetime experience and what better place to see them.
The bottlenose and spinner dolphins usually swim in groups of around 20 so it’s a wonderful sight to see. You can get cheaper excursions to see the dolphins from around $45 pp
If you fancy seeing Crystal Rock It would be a good idea to combine the speed boat with a visit here. There are many tour operators that do this.
Crystal Rock is a natural rock formation that sits 200 meters away from the shore in the south of Mauritius. It attracts visitors due to its unusual appearance. With Le Morne as a backdrop, this makes for the perfect picture opportunity
Île aux Benitiers – Picnic on the beach
After an early morning and day swimming in the lagoon you, you’ll most likely want to relax for a bit and Lle aux Benitiers beach is the perfect place to relax and have a picnic. There’s even a small coconut farm and colony of migratory birds.
The island is open to the public however it is just the beaches and you can’t go wandering off into the island.
Our top tips for your trip
Here are my top tips getting the most out of your day trips around the South of Mauritius. In no particular order…
With our suggested 3-day tour itinerary, you will comfortably be able to see the best points of interest in the South of Mauritius.
Day 3 looks like there’s too much, however, we did this in less than a full day. A lot of the places are viewpoints and quick stop-offs.
When planning your itinerary, try not to squash too much in and end up rushing around. Use Google Maps to your advantage and plot your route and timings carefully.
If you’re thinking about hiking then you’ll need plenty of water supplies. Also, it’s worth bringing a few bottles on your taxi tour just in case. Luckily our driver kept up hydrated throughout. There’s plenty of little stalls and shops along the way, so don’t worry if you forget.
Pack the essentials
Again, make sure you bring all your essential gear, from a quality backpack, hiking shoes to your camera. If you’re planning on seeing the underwater waterfall make sure you bring a good camera or drone.
Take enough sun cream
It may be windy in the south but you will still get burnt, even though you might not feel it. If you have kids make sure they wear a secure hat, one that won’t blow off.
Get a tour guide
Renting a car can give you your own freedom to see and stop where you want. However, we decided we wanted to get a driver for the day, yes it’s more expensive but you can relax. Not only that, but your driver will also know some hidden gems along the way that you won’t have heard of.
Essential travel gear
See the underwater waterfall of Mauritius in style with this amazing drone. The DJI Phantom (View on Amazon) is the best drone on the market and you’ll be able to capture the highest quality picture and images with this bit of kit!
A Good Camera
With any vacation you want to capture the memories in high-quality, therefore I’d always recommend a great camera such as the Canon EOS 4000D (View on Amazon). Mauritius is a beautiful island with so many amazing things to see, so don’t miss out and make sure you get the perfect picture every time!
Traveling around all day can be tough work and you’ll need to take onboard lots of water. Rather than carry lots of heavy bottls which are hard to get to. Why not consider getting a hydration backpack like the CamelBak M.U.L.E (View on Amazon).
Quality Walking Shoes
There are some amazing hiking trails in Mauritius, but you’ll find it hard to beat the Le Morne Trail. You should always get a good quality pair of hiking shoes such as the Salomon X-Ultra 3 (View on Amazon).
This will ensure your feet are kept firmly on the ground, as some of the trails are pretty tough.
If you’re thinking of doing the Le Morne hike on your day trips then you’re going to need a hiking backpack, and they don’t come much better than the Osprey Stratos 24 (View on Amazon). Yes, you can probably get a cheaper one, however they don’t last and a poorly made.
If you’d like to know which are the best backpacks for hiking in Hawaii then this guide is for you!
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