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Updated by Joanna James on Aug 28, 2021
Headline for 9 Facts About Mauritius – Things you may not have known
Joanna James Joanna James
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9 Facts About Mauritius – Things you may not have known

Doing some research on Mauritius? Here are 10 facts about this country and tourist hotspot that's located in the Indian Ocean that you may not have already known.


The Land of the Forgotten Bird

Have you ever heard of the dodo? It's a species of an extinct bird. This large, flightless bird was endemic to Mauritius and was once very populous there, having had no natural predator as such; until of course, the humans came along and brought with them other animals to the islands as well. With the arrival of Dutch colonialists, the bird soon became extinct (within a matter of just around 60 years, in fact). The Dutch arrived towards the end of the 16th century and after the mid-to-late 17th century, the dodo was no more. Today, the dodo is given a place of importance as the national bird and even features in the country's Coat of Arms.


It's Not an Island

Mauritius is not an island, it is a series of islands of which there are many. There are many islands of Mauritius as well as other islands such as Rodrigues, the Agalega islands, and Cargados Carajos Shoals, which together, all make up the country of Mauritius.


There Are Several Religions Practised There

An African country though it may be, the majority of the people in Mauritius practise Hinduism. This is because in the past, once the slave trade was abolished, the British brought in a large number of indentured workers from India to work on the local plantations (this was during the time that India was still a colony of the British Empire). Other religions practised in the country include Roman Catholicism (which makes up around 26% of the population). There are also a significant number of Muslims in the country as well as people that practise other minority religions.


It's a Top Tourist Destination

Mauritius is one of the most famous tourist destinations in the world. Thanks to its large number of inviting beaches, it's known as a great beach destination and attracts travellers from across the globe. It's especially popular when it comes to the honeymoon and romantic travel tourism segment, often being called a leading spot for honeymoon vacations in the Indian Ocean. Several years ago, one of its beaches also won a title for being the world's best beach (World Travel Awards).


There are Many Luxury Resorts There

Since it's such a popular tourist destination, it must come as no surprise that you can find some of the world's best resorts in Mauritius.


There's a Strong Creole Culture

Many of the people here are descendants of both the French as well as Africans, Indians and other Asian ethnicities. As a result, there's quite a rich amalgamation of cultures and cuisines here. Mauritius' Creole cuisine, for example, is something quite unique for those that haven't sampled it before. If you're planning on visiting there, sign up for a local creole cooking class. Several resorts such as The Residence Mauritius, among others, offer such classes for their guests to enjoy during their stay.


There's a Lot of People There

It's Africa's most densely populated country!


It's a Botanist's Haven

There are over 700 species of native plants for budding botanists to study.


It also has much to offer History and Culture Buffs

Mauritius has not one, but two UNESCO World Heritage Sites to be explored.