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A trip to the south-east: a day in Mahébourg

  • 04/27/22
  • Activities

This village in the south of Mauritius, close to the airport, boasts an authentic charm and a historical background dating back to the great colonial times. Very lively, open to the sea and focused on its history, Mahébourg offers many places of interest to discover in one day.

Traditional handicrafts: vacoa weaving at the Utilis workshop

You will come across them in any market or shop in Mauritius. The woven vacoa is one of the country’s handicraft specialities and is available in baskets, ornamental objects, gift sets, etc. The pandanus or vacoa is a tropical plant shaped like a sun umbrella, and its leaves are the raw material. The Utilis workshop brings together women artisans who work with the plant at each stage: planting, cutting, drying and weaving. In the workshop, one discovers the meticulous and patient work to make basketry objects, that will be authentic holiday souvenirs to bring back in your luggage.

The Museum of National History: The Navy comes to life!

This is a place that will delight children and fascinate adults with its wealth of historical objects. At the end of a long tree-lined driveway, a colonial mansion, a former family home, has been transformed into a museum. Its beautiful rooms contain magnificent collections of objects tracing the history of Mauritius from its discovery to the present day.

The museum displays several maps and drawings dating back to the Dutch colony of the island. A collection of furniture, paintings, coins and fine porcelain dating back to the Ming Dynasty is also on display. Among the most precious pieces is the bell of the Saint-Géran, the famous ship that sank according to the novel “Paul and Virginia”. There is also a display case showing the 1810 naval battle of Grand Port between the British and the French, Napoleon’s only maritime victory.

In the gardens, canons, sea anchors, a railway passenger carriage and a governor’s carriage, alas in poor condition. The museum is open to all and free of charge.

After this visit, walk through the streets of Mahebourg and stop at the waterfront to admire the view and find something to eat.

The cassava biscuit, proudly Mauritian!

For more than 140 years, the Rault family has been making delicious cassava-based biscuits, a unique product in the world that makes Mauritius proud. A visit to the biscuit factory is to immerse yourself in the traditional and timeless production of these products whose recipe has remained a secret. These manioc biscuits have a childhood memory for many Mauritians who grew up with them at tea time and they were particularly useful during cyclones when bread was lacking.

Here, everything is handmade and the visit of the workshop is completed with aromatic delights that can be discovered in the shop. The manioc biscuits are now available in several flavours (vanilla, coconut, cinnamon, aniseed …). The shop offers you the opportunity to purchase these little biscuits which will remind you of Mauritius upon the end of your holidays.

This day in Mahebourg will be a particularly enriching visit in terms of culture and heritage