Holidays in Mauritius
- take a moment to learn of the
crucible of diverse cultures and religions which the immigrant
population brought from their ancestral soils, Hinduism, Christianity,
Islam, and Buddhism are the most practiced religions on Mauritius.
All year long their festivities are celebrated in
' Peace and Harmony'
Your holiday in Mauritius,
needs to be a relaxed affair, but there is so much to see and do and
time has to be spared, away from the comforts and
enjoyments of the many fine beach hotel resorts with all the many facilities
that they provide, to go out and learn more about this
Dream Island of Mauritius with its' friendly and proud people.
If this is your first visit
or holiday in Mauritius, here is a little calendar of 'special events'
- This religious festival is celebrated in honour of the
God Shiva, in February. After a fast, Hindu devotees, dressed in spotless
white, carry the 'kanwar' - made with bamboo richly decorated with paper
and flowers - in procession to Grand Bassin to bring back holy water.
The Ganga Talao pilgrimage reminds one of the sacred rites made on the
banks of the Ganges in India.
Divali - Mauritius Festival
of Lights is celebrated in a spirit of pure joy, in the month of October
or November. Before the festival, the house is cleaned with particular
care. New clothes are bought for the children. Sweets are made at home
or bought in shops and offered to friends and relatives. Small clay
lamps line the walls and balconies and the yard. At sunset they are
lit and everywhere shine the golden lights meant to guide the Goddess
of wealth and luck. Divali is in fact the victory of truth (light) over
ignorance (darkness). The Festival of Lights, Divali, is a celebration
of joy, happiness and for many Mauritians, a time for sharing.
Father Laval - On every
September 9th, Mauritians of all faiths walk or drive towards the tomb
of the Blessed Jacques Desire Laval, the 'Apostle of the Black People'
at Ste-Croix, Port-Louis. The belief in Pere Laval, to whom powers of
healing are attributed, reminds us of the Lourdes Pilgrimage of France.
Id-El-Fitr - The Id-El-Fitr
festival announces the end of the Ramadan - the fasting period of Muslim
people. Prayers are said in mosques all day long.
Holi - This Hindu festival
is as colourful as the many legends from which it originates. It is
above all a festival of joy during which men and women throw coloured
water and powder on each other and wish one another well.
Spring Festival - The
Chinese New Year is celebrated each year on a different date, owing
to the differences between the lunar and the solar calendar. Before
the festival, the house is cleared from top to bottom. On the very day
of the festival, no knife or scissors are used. Red symbol of happiness
is the main colour of the day. Food offerings are made to ensure that
the following year will be plentiful and traditional 'wax' cakes are
distributed to parents and friends. Firecrackers explode to drive away
Cavdi - This festival
is celebrated in January/February. Bodies pierced with needles, tongues
and cheeks with pins, devotees in a trance carry the 'Cavadi' on their
shoulders as a punishment. The 'Cavadi' is a wooden arch, covered with
flowers and with a pot of milk at each corner.
Ougadi - Ougadi is the
Telugu New Year and is usually celebrated in March.
Ganesh Chaturthi -
is celebrated on the 4th day of the lunar month of August/September
by Hindus in honour of the birth of Ganesha, God of wisdom.
The Sega, it's music and dance form, is typical to Mauritius. The Sega,
mainly based on African music originating from slavery, is today played
with modern instruments and contain contemporary musical influence.
The rubbing of feet, the swaying of the hips and Creole lyrics are part
and parcel of the music. It cannot be denied that slaves quickly began
dancing the Sega to forget their humiliating way way of living.
Naval Museum -Built
in 1771 this house now contains the marine past of Mauritius. Used as
an infirmary during the famous battle of Vieux Grand Port, the hose
was turned into a museum 1n 1950. Closed on Tuesdays and Public Holidays.
Blue Penny Museum -
Founded by the Mauritius Commercial Bank, the Blue Penny museum boasts
of objects of high national heritage value, particularly rare objects,
including the famous stamps of the Mauritius 'Post Office' series, being
the first to print in the world in 1847.
Hendrik Museum - Contains objects found during recent
excavation work and concentrates on the Dutch occupation period. It
is educational and brings to light the traces left by men who came to
this small island in the Indian Ocean in the 16th century. Closed Sunday
afternoons and public holidays.
Museum - The Floreal Knitwear Group, the most important
textile group in Mauritius is known worldwide. Floreal is well-known
for its high quality clothes range, namely its t-shirts, pullovers and
Bermuda shorts. The group has invested in a textile museum to present
a historical overview of the cloth art and industry in Mauritius.
For more information regarding the history of Mauritius
Simon (our contact Mauritian
Tourist Guide and Taxi Owner)
will take you for a half or full day excursion.
Please contact us if you need to talk to someone who has been ! - regarding
holiday in Mauritius, wedding, honeymoon,
or special occasion in Mauritius.
0113 2773 663
Speak To Someone Who's Been !
grateful thanks to the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority for copy)