Most of my Mauritian readers will already know most of these facts about their home country but I thought it would be interesting to do a slightly different one to those you will find on pretty much every tourist/country information website about Mauritius. So here goes!

Small dot in the Indian Ocean

  • Mark Twain wrote "Heaven was copied after Mauritius"
  • Mauritius is a very small country. The main island of Mauritius (Mauritius is actually made up of many small islands) is only 28 miles wide and 40 miles long which is about the same size as Luxembourg or twice the size of Hong Kong. Not very big at all.
  • The national flag is made up of 4 colours also known as the 'four bands' It consists of red, blue, yellow and green representing:
    • Red - the bloodshed at the time of slavery and colonisation, or self-determination and independence.
    • Blue - the Indian Ocean surrounding the island
    • Yellow - The new light of independence shining, golden sunshine, or the bright future.
    • Green - the lush vegetation on the island.
The national flag
  • Port Louis is the capital of Mauritius and home to about 40% of the population.
  • There is no standing army, instead there is 'duty personnel' that serve and protect Mauritius.
  • The Mauritius motto is "The Star and the Key of the Indian Ocean" but the unofficial motto is "One Country, One Nation, One Destiny"
  • Mauritius's national flower is the Trochetia Boutoniana which blooms around June to October. The only place where the flower naturally blooms is on Le Morne Brabant mountain.
Also known as Boucle D'oreille - Nectar smells like vanilla
  • Mauritius isn't just about the white sandy beaches but there are some amazing countrysides home to rare birds and animals.
Overlooking Black River Gorges

Black River Gorges

Pretty much straightforward info so far but here comes the more trivial and fun facts of Mauritius that you will not find on typical information sites about Mauritius.

  • There is no concept of area codes (I think they have started to introduce postcodes but things still get delivered without).
  • The country code is 230 + a seven digit phone number. Yes! only 7 digits including all land lines and mobiles on the island!
  • Mauritius imports most of its food so supermarket food shopping is very expensive (unless you go to local fruit/veg markets etc where it is cheap) 
  • No train/tram system on the island but back in the days there actual was!! (the railway closed in the mid 20th century)
The old railway map

Old Locomotive
  • Baby/Children car seats are not a legal requirement. I have seen kids as young as 5-6 riding on motorbikes with adults, children on the back of pickup trucks with no harness. It's utterly shocking!
  • Any post/parcel that has a value of Rs2000 (approx £40) or more needs to be checked by customs so you either need to arrange to have it delivered to your local post office (after they've checked the contents) or you need to go to the main parcel office in PL for examining and collection. None of them get delivered to you at home. Same goes with any food goods so it's a pain when you get deliveries!!
  • There are many fast food chains in Mauritius now but at one point KFC was the only fast food Mauritians knew. Now there are 21 KFC restaurants in Mauritius but I believe the very first one opened in Curepipe in 1983.
The 1st KFC outlet in Mauritius

And last but not least... 

In a new global happiness report released in Mar 2016, Mauritians are one of the happiest nations in the world.

Anyone else have some interesting facts and info about Mauritius?


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