Mahebourg holidays are more varied than a lucky dip, with everything from heavy-hitting history to banging beaches in the tank.

Continental calling cards

Mahebourg calls the south-east corner of Mauritius home, but it's got far-flung links to thank for its present-day look. A French governor, British traders and Dutch colonists all left their stamp on the architecture, and the old town still has hallmarks of times gone by. Elsewhere, Mauritian cuisine makes the most noise on the foodie scene, and a clutch of classic tropical beaches lure in the sun-seeking clientele.

Nailed-on nature

As well as a pair of pristine waterfronts on the south side of town, Mahebourg has something in reserve for exploring sorts. There's an island that whisks you back to a time before tourism, floating just off the shoreline and easily reachable by boat. Ile aux Aigrettes, to give it its full name, was earmarked as a protected area half a century ago. Thick portions of forest, which once cloaked the outskirts of Mahebourg, are still going strong, and there's sanctuary-like space for local critters and birds.

Shopping spectrum

Because Mahebourg is just 10 minutes' trundle from the airport, it's made the necessary adjustments to tick a few more contemporary boxes. A pair of modern malls cover your standard shopping needs, and there's a casino in the centre of town. Tradition is still a stalwart elsewhere, and you'll find local textiles, scrummy food stalls and souvenir sellers in the main marketplace.

At a Glance

  • Sift through souvenirs at the traditional marketplace
  • Make tracks for the country's National History Museum
  • Stroll along the palm-lined seaside promenade at sunset