Lovers of Mauritian culture and heritage, we have prepared a selection of the essential museums to visit with family or friends… An excellent way to (re)experience the highlights of our history!
The Blue Penny Museum
Located in Port-Louis, the Blue Penny Museum was founded by the Mauritius Commercial Bank, Mauritius’ first bank. Since 2001, it has immersed its visitors in the heart of Mauritian history and culture through its various exhibition halls. The first two rooms will introduce you to the origins of Mauritius. You will discover the many maritime explorations that have taken place in the Indian Ocean as well as the key dates of the important milestones. You will be introduced to the three major colonial periods of Mauritius that have had a profound impact on its history and culture. The third room will allow you to travel in the country’s capital. You can appreciate it as it was in the 18th and 19th centuries through a series of images and old maps.
The Photography Museum
Created by Tristan Bréville in 1966, the photography museum offers us the opportunity to discover the camera in all its forms. There is also a large exhibition of the first photos of Mauritius taken with the oldest cameras. The Photography Museum thus offers an astonishing range of collections of old photographs, period photographic materials collected by enthusiastic amateurs and very beautiful postcards.
The Natural History Museum
Originally called the Desjardins Museum, the Natural History Museum is probably the oldest museum in the country and the oldest in southern Africa. Created in 1842 thanks to the collection of naturalist and zoologist Julien Desjardins, the Natural History Museum exhibits an anthology of endemic specimens that have disappeared from the fauna and flora native to the Mascarenes. The museum tour is like a trip to the heart of the legendary Mauritius, where you can discover the skeleton of the Rodrigues Solitaire, giant turtles and the dodo, among others. Declared a national museum in 2000, this museum is exceptional.
The Naval and Historical Museum of Mauritius
The naval museum is located in a former colonial residence in Mahébourg, in the south-east of the island. This residence, built in 1760, belonged to Jean Robillard. In 1810, it welcomed Admiral Victor Duperré, French commander, and Josiah Willoughby, English commander, both wounded after the great battle of Grand Port.
The museum houses many collectibles that trace Mauritius’ past. You will be able to discover maps drawn by navigators, the bones of missing animals, furniture, weapons, navigation equipment and objects of all kinds that would have belonged to the royal navy.