Mauritius Sport

Sport in Mauritius

Mauritius is one of the world’s ultimate island paradise destinations.

This beautiful island has spectacular volcanic formations, covered with tropical rainforests, and this picturesque landscape is framed by white sandy beaches of unfathomable beauty whose shores are caressed by the warm waters of the Indian Ocean.

Like many other paradise islands, Mauritius offers a range of top-class hotels set on gorgeous tropical beaches.

What some people may be surprised to learn is that it is also the perfect place to combine sport with tropical island luxury.

Golf

A fantastic 300-metre practice range is also provided with large putting greens and chipping and bunker facilities.

Tamarina greens are according to US specification: they are made of a special imported Ultradwarf Bermuda grass called “Champion” which is used successfully in similar climates in Texas.

Fairways and tees are Tif Green 328 Bermuda grass that is used on greens elsewhere in the world. Greens are irrigated with a state of the art “Rainbird” system backed up and supplied by a “Watertronics” pump system installed on the golf course. The landscaping grasses include Fataque, Citronella, Red Grass, Sikine, Vetiver and Lemon Grass.

Due to the climate and the nature of the terrain, golfers are encouraged to use golf carts throughout the course (golf carts are at an additional charge). Over 6km of concrete golf cart paths have been designed for the comfort of the golfer and a halfway snack House is found between the 9th and 10th holes for refreshments.

Our team welcomes you at the modern clubhouse with Pro Shop, bar and the restaurant Le Dix-Neuf and is at your service to cater for your needs.

Paradis Golf Club (Paradis Hotel & Golf Club)
Enjoy a game with scenic contrasts, moving from vistas of lush vegetation to magnificent ocean views at Paradis Golf Club. This superb 5,899-metre golf course lies between the magnificent Le Morne Mountain and one of the island’s most beautiful lagoons.

Whether your goal is to improve you swing, lower your handicap or win a championship, make sure you visit the Paradis Golf Academy.

Golf Pros are at hand and sophisticated computer software helps you to pinpoint your weaknesses and iron them out. Collective lessons are provided free of charge, twice a week and two full-time Pros are also available for private lessons.

Four Seasons Golf Club at Anahita / Anahita Golf Course
Designed by Ernie Els, Four Seasons Golf Club Mauritius at Anahita is a 7,580-yard, 18-hole, par-72 championship course with large fairways and five sets of tees. Six stunning oceanfront holes culminate in a final shot that is among the most spectacular in the world.

Built to USGA standards, it is the first of its kind in Mauritius. Carefully woven into the tropical sanctuary, the course is set against lush mountains and fringed by the vast crystal-clear lagoon.

The Golf Academy offers instruction and private lessons, and the Clubhouse is equipped to enhance any golfer’s game. The club also features a driving range, putting green and Pro Shop. Tee times are available from 7:00 am to 3:00 pm daily. One-hour golf clinics are offered daily on a complimentary basis to Resort guests.

Mauritius Gymkhana Golf

A little slice of paradise, located in the centre of the Island, the Mauritius Gymkhana Golf Club is said to be the oldest golf course in the southern hemisphere and apparently the fourth oldest in the world.

While it may not feature all the complexities of modern courses, it is perfectly maintained and offers a good mix of hazards with plenty of trees and large bunkers. This 18-hole course is a par 68 and is approximately 4870 metres long.

9-HOLE GOLF COURSES

One&Only Le Saint Géran (Le Saint Géran)
The lush Gary Player 9-hole, par-33 course, complete with its own clubhouse and One&Only Golf Academy, offers complimentary greens fees for guests.

Instruction for players of any level is available at the One&Only Golf Academy, from intensive training with video analysis, to fine-tuning game play on the practice range followed by 9 holes with the pro, to a fun day on the greens with the whole family.

Maritim
The Maritim hosts a 9-hole Par 29 golf course designed by the Australian Company, Graham Marsh Golf Design and Adam Mohun, Maritim Mauritius’ Golf Pro.

The Maritim Golf Course is rather a unique combination of 9-holes par 29. Each hole can be played from two different tees and a tremendous variety in length elevation and angle is achieved by this two-tee concept. There is also a driving range and putting green available for you to hone your skills when you are not on the fairways. The Golf Pro is available for individual lessons, beginners and advanced courses.

Shandrani Golf Course

Situated on a 50-hectare private peninsula on a site of unrivalled beauty and overlooking the Blue Bay lagoon, the Shandrani 9-hole Mashi course will undoubtedly provide stimulating moments to both golfers and non-golfers.

Do you want to improve your short game? If so, Shandrani 9-hole golf course is perfect for you. Golf at Shandrani is completely free (for Shandrani hotel guests) with complimentary collective lessons included.

Par 29, the course is a “Pitch and and Putt” course which runs alongside the lagoon. With the “tee-off” just 100 metres from the Reception and the beach, this course is both stimulating and fun.

Kitesurfing

Le Morne is best for kiters and windsurfers of intermediary to good levels as it is on the extreme side in terms of wind and especially sea (current) conditions. If you are unsure about your ability to safely enjoy this extraordinary spot, we suggest you consider one of the other 16 spots around Mauritius that also offer great Kitesurfing conditions.

The main regions in Mauritius for Kitesurfing are:

Cap Malheureux, Trou aux Biches, Belle Mare, Ile aux Cerfs, Pointe d’Esny, Flic en Flac, Poste Lafayette and Le Morne.  There are also various Kitesurf schools and shops all over Mauritius.

Scuba Diving

Cathedrale
(22 to 27 metres) An impressive underwater cave which starts as an underwater cliff just close to Flic en Flac and offers spectacular visual beauty due to the topography of the site. This dive takes place on the drop off, beginning at 18m at the top of a rock formation that drops steeply along two connecting cliffs to a depth of 27m. The bottom is sandy and barren but the walls of the chamber teem with an abundance of life.

Various creatures inhabit the cracks and crevices in the rock face. The dive follows a chute into a higher chamber with large quantities of crayfish and shrimps, and culminates in a huge cave which is open at the rear. A huge Giant moray lives at the back of one of the overhangs. Due to the filtering light entering through a crack in the ceiling, it feels like you are in a high-vaulted cathedral – hence the name. Generally the water in the cavern is calm although you may feel a sucking surge as you travel up the chute.

Two wrecks and cannon can be found in this area.

Kei Sei 113
(35 to 40 metres). This converted barge was sunk in 1988 to form an artificial reef. An Interesting dive and a large variety of marine life from red snappers and hawkfish to giant moray eels have made this their home.

Tug11 was sunk around 1981 to form another artificial reef. Again large shoal of fish can be seen around the wreck. Look out for lionfish, devil fire fish and stone fish.

The cannon can be seen on a shelf around 12 metres, this is rumoured to belong to the Banda, Admiral Pieter Both’s ship, which was wrecked during a violent storm in 1615 some distance from the current site. The actual wreck site is not suited for the beginner and intermediate divers.

Aquarium
(7 to 18 metres). This site has good visibility although mostly drift diving. A rocky reef area that harbours the likes of Angelfish, clown fish, and butterfly fish plus lots of wire coral. A fair number of stonefish may be encountered on the dive, as well as the black coral. This is where night dives are arranged for experienced divers.

Rempart Serpent
(25 metres). Close to Flic en Flac and also known as Shark place, this site resembles a large snake moving across the sand. It is home to an impressive range of tropical fish, however, it is the number and varieties of stonefish, scorpion fish, lionfish and moray eels that make it special. The inhabitants include Bearded and Weedy scorpion fish, Decoy scorpion fish, Humpbacked or Devil scorpion fish, Mauritius scorpion fish, Indian lionfish, Clearfin lionfish, Leaf fish, Indian waspish, Common stonefish, Ocellated dwarf lionfish, Yellow-mouth and Yellow-edged moray eels. The sharks sometimes spotted here are normally grey reef sharks although hammerheads occasionally visit the area.

Tamarin Bay
Famous for dolphins. In groups of four or five, the dolphins are more than happy to perform their ballet in the water, for their spectators enjoyment and delight. There are more dolphins in this area during autumn and winter – May to August.

L’Eveille
(27 to 30 metres). Descending over a wall, this site has two very distinguishing features: the first is the stepped terraces making up the reef and the second is a concentration of anemones and Mauritian anemone fish. Shoals of Lunar and Blue and gold fusiliers decorate the site.

EAST COAST
East
From Grand Gaube to Mahebourg in the south. This area is known for high winds and rough seas. Beware of tidal currents. Water temperatures vary from 18-26 degrees Celsius. The East coast is a bit wilder and rather less affected by mass tourism than certain other regions and it is famous for its beautiful beaches and magnificent lagoons. The coastline is scattered with many channels that allow easy access to the open sea. Dives are very often weather-dependent and during winter, high tides and strong winds in the region make diving in other areas of the island a better option. Of the four sites, one is particularly good; Dive into the current of the Belle Mare lagoon (12-30metres) and here one generally finds a variety of sharks, rays, barracuda, tuna fish and kingfish. Due to high winds and rough seas, organised dives are done in only 4 places along the East coast:

Lobster Canyon
(20 to 25 metres). Just beyond the reef is a gulley ending in a cave, with an abundance of lobster. Kingfish and white-tip reef sharks are seen in this location at times, as well as eagle-rays.

The Pass
(8 to 25 metres). Depth varies along the dive of 2km long. You can drift-dive through the pass in the barrier reef, admiring the psychedelic tapestries of coral and reef fishes. Starts at 7m and ends at 25m. Turtles frequent the area and sharks are seen as well.

La Passe De Bella Mare
This dive covers an area of 2 km long and 1.5 km wide. It is suggested to split this into 4 separate dives (shown below). Depth is between 20 metres and 33 metres and visibility is between 10 and 20 metres. This is a drift dive from the lagoon starting from 3 metres and going down to 17metres through a natural pass in the barrier reef. One of the finest dive sites on the east coast. Carried effortless through the pass by a strong current, divers can see eagle rays, magnificent giant kingfish(30-40kgs), shoals of horse eye king fish, pick handle barracuda, big Wahoo and a wide variety of reef shark including bull sharks throughout the dive.

Shark Point / Flats
(20 to 30 metres) As its name suggests, this site starts as a flat sand bottom bay surrounded by cliffs and coral outcrops. A multilevel dive, with a mild current and visibility of 25 to 30 metres. Divers can see various species of Sharks, specifically Bull sharks ranging from 2 to 3.5 metres long. Schools of Barracuda and Trevally as well as other pelagic fish and black-tip reef shark often pass through this site. Numerous varieties of soft corals, parrot fish and other reef fish can be seen along the cliff faces and coral outcrops.

Sea Fan Valley
(16 to 28 metres). A multilevel dive boasting various species of Giant Sea fans “Gorgonia” growing along the cliff face. These grow amongst the coral create a spectacular Scenery which hides numerous exotic fish and crustaceans. Schools of black chub, Blue striped snapper, King fish and many other fish and rays patrol the reef. Sometimes dolphin can be seen as well.

Castle
(10 to 18 metres). An interesting dive with good visibility from 20 to 30 metres. The depth on the bottom is 18 metres and goes up 10 metres on the top of the reef, with small sand bottomed gullies and channels weaving in and out of coral outcrops and overhangs creating a maze like atmosphere.

Divers can often see white tip reef sharks sleeping under low outcrops, Schools of black chub fish, Snake eels, Moray eels, Sting rays, crustaceans and a diversity of corals and other fish.

Aquarium has a large variety of fish species that frequent this area.

Again try out the other sites that include Le Touessrok Pass (22-26m), The Wall (23-25m) and Drift Dive (17-23m)

SOUTH COAST

Diving in this area is an exquisite experience. The marine landscape is absolutely breathtaking and each sweep of your flippers will propel you through an ever-changing landscape. Starting from Mahébourg up to Blue Bay, waves and currents have created caves, canyons, crevices and tunnels that make up very interesting diving sites. Diving in this region is heavily weather-dependent and due to high winds and rough seas, dives beyond the barrier reef are restricted. Visibility is often disturbed due to the presence of fine silt, which is continuously discharged by neighbouring rivers.

The most interesting diving sites are:

Roches Zozo:
(33 to 40 metres). An impressive underwater rock pinnacle

Blue Bay Marine Park
(7 to 10 metres). Good visibility with up to 50 metres at times. This is a protected marine park and small scale fishing is still done by locals around the fringes. However the designation has allowed this area to thrive with many varieties of corals, including huge Brain corals, Staghorn corals and Cabbage corals. There is also a wide range of fish species including Damselfish, Butterfly fish, Surgeonfish and juvenile Sailfin tangs. Large Trumpet fish are also found as well as tiny pipefish. This is a peaceful dive, more about relaxing rather than adventure.

Purple Cave
(18 to 20 metres)

Colorado
(33 to 40 metres) In these deep waters, you find the remains of Dalbair. The area has lots to offer, from a mini-grand canyon (hence the name), caves, large amphitheatre, arches and caverns. Also frequented by turtles, kingfish, and hammerhead and black-tip reef sharks.

Le Sirius Wreck
(18 to 25 metres). The remnants of the historical wreckage of the Sirius, which was sunk in 1810 during the naval battle of Grand Port between the British and French. The wreck lies in the Mahebourg Channel; visibility poses the biggest problem on this site, as the silt is easily disturbed by careless divers – but still a great dive

Pass St. Jacques
(15 to 25 metres). This is one site where you can enjoy a good drift dive in both good and bad conditions. Visibility is between 8 and 25 metres. Quite an exciting dive with its narrow pass and cliffs on either side. The dive starts inside the reef at 5m and ends at depth of around 24 metres. The cliff faces on either side are crowded with various species of tropical fish. Divers can expect to see anything from schools of barracuda, giant trevally, bull sharks, grey reef sharks, white tip reef sharks, sting ray, schools of eagle rays, giant lobster, giant moray eel and often Dolphin as well.

SOUTH WEST COAST

This area covers the stretch from north of Black River to south of the Le Morne peninsula. This underwater area is mainly sandy seabed with rocky outcrops and coral patches. Visibility can usually be expected in the range of 20 to 25 meters, reaching up to 40 metres at times. Water temperatures range from 20 to 30 degrees Celsius, depending on the time of year.

Needle hole
(12 to 16 metres). A very good spot for night diving. You can expect to find Sergeant-majors and Fusiliers in large schools in this area.

Anthony’s place
(14 to 16 metres). Conditions and visibility is good on most days. The area features a rock, with coral pinnacle that allows for some great under-water photography.

Cliff
(22 – 25 metres). A drop off site near the Paradis Hotel. The site has a few resident moray eels, groupers and wrasse. Conditions can be quite badly affected by strong tidal surges.

Casiers: (26 to 32 metres). A flat horseshoe-shaped reef, this is generally considered a deep dive, with depths of 26 to 32m easily reached. You could find yourself face to face with game fish, such as tuna, barracuda, surgeonfish, kingfish and Wahoo. Tidal influence is a little more pronounced and visibility can be adversely affected by suspensions in the water.

Japanese Garden
(14 – 28 metres) This site offers good visibility (20 to 30 metres) with very little currents. A dive that begins from a sandy bay at 17 metres and ends on the top of a coral outcrop at 12 metres with hardly any current at all. This site has been named “Japanese Garden” because it looks like a typically structured and tiered Japanese garden, with many types of coral, teeming with various tropical fish, Moray eels, Octopus, rays parrotfish, pipefish, ghost morays and sometimes shark as well. This site is well known for its Stone fish population.

Other Sports

Windsurfing
For the most part, windsurfing is possible almost all over Mauritius on account of the island’s large clear water lagoons. The only area where conditions are not favourable is the South and in some lagoons where it may be too shallow to windsurf during low tides.
Trade winds blow all year, but the ideal wind and climate conditions for windsurfing occur during the winter months from late May through to early December. Many believe that the Le Morne area in the south west of Mauritius offers the best location for windsurfing, as the wind blows side shore from the left, there are relatively constant wind speeds and the waves are ideal. However, others prefer the lovely Tamarin Bay area as waves are said to be of magazine quality.

Be warned that this sport should be practiced responsibly as Mother Nature can put the inexperienced surfer at risk.

Glass Bottom Boat
Enjoying a journey in a glass bottomed boat is a fantastic outing for the whole family. On offer at most of the Mauritian hotels and resorts, this sport or facility is a firm favourite and offers a superb view of the marine life and coastal reefs.

Trekking / Mountain Climbing
Trekking up Pieter Both, the second highest peak of Mauritius north, is no mean feat and should be left to those who enjoy a challenging climb. From the mountain’s peak there are panoramic 360 degree views that extend from the many northern islands, through to the west and east coasts as well as the mountains in the South.
Although reserved for proficient climbers – and of course thrill seekers – the Rempart Mountain is a height well worth reaching for those with a penchant for fresh air, where the altitude is approximately 777. For an equally exhilarating trekking experience, the 4500 ha Trois Mamelles hunting reserve, at the heart of the Yemen property is not to be missed. Adventure seekers get to see a variety of landscapes, making their way through a tunnel down into the mountain where they will see forests and multi-centenary trees, as well as the Rivière Papaye where they will cross a canyon and end up in a safari park.

For nature lovers seeking a less challenging climb, Mamzel Zabet in part of the hunting reserve of Yemen located in the West of Mauritius is a small mountain where trekkers will pass through endemic and indigenous forests, taking in the impressive fauna and flora that this part of the island has to offer.

Abseiling
Abseiling activities in Mauritius vary from fun locations like those in Les Cerfs Volants at St. Felix in the South, which consists largely of gliding along zip-lines, to more complicated activities where genuine mountain climbing is involved, also using zip-lines and abseiling equipment. Whichever option visitors go for, this can be a fun filled activity soaring down the many beautiful peaks of the island. Just make sure that you have a qualified guide to assist you the entire way through. A particularly popular destination for abseiling is the Black River Gorges, which consist of climbing all the way up to the Machabe Forest, walking down again partly on foot, and then abseiling the rest of the way down the waterfalls.

Quad Biking
This activity is definitely and adventure where gusts are able to experience more than “kick up some dust”, by zipping through lush vegetation at fast speeds. Quad biking is possible at Yemen Nature Park in the West, at the Domaine de L’Etoile in the South-East, as well as in the hilltop greenery of Valriche in the South West of the island. Quad biking activities are also offered at the Casela Nature and Leisure Park.

Archery
The traditional art of archery can be practiced at a number of hotels and resorts in Mauritius. However, to enjoy a truly unique experience of this sport, try Ciel et Nature’s L’etoile on the South Eastern are of Mauritius. Here there are 20 artificially realistic animal targets in 3D and the targets are scattered along a scenic circuit that covers some 10 hectares.

Mountain Biking
Several hotels and resorts offer Mountain bikes for rent, and these are generally for leisurely rides. To really experience the island’s interesting terrain opt for the guided trips. These are offered through various tour operators on the island, as well as at the Yemen Nature park in the West and L’Etoile in the East. Given the area’s scenery and animal sightings such as wild monkeys and bats, mountain biking is popular in La Nicoliere, which can be a country road access point to the Centre of Mauritius. Surrounded by hillsides where the vegetation is completely different to that of the nearby coast, La Nicoliere is ideal for a refreshing change of scenery. Riders can stop along the way at various viewpoints, to soak up the picturesque beauty. Another popular ride is the almost all down-hill journey from Plaine Champagne to Bel Ombre in the South, where riders navigate their way through lush vegetation.

Kayaking
Believed by many to be the only genuine way to leisurely explore Mauritius and its nooks and crannies, kayaking is a must-do water activity. The tropical conditions of the island, including sheltered bays, make paddling easy and a whole lot of fun. Equipment is available at most major hotels and resorts.

Undersea Walk

The exciting underwater walk draws tourists from all over the world. This unique water-based activity is great for almost everyone (over the age of 7 years) and you don’t even need to know how to swim!
Participants walk on the ocean floor in weighted boots and / or belt with a dive helmet firmly strapped on, connected to an above air supply. Head out to Grand Baie to partake in this unique and fun experience!

Submarine Safari

Enjoy a unique one hour adventure on board a submarine! Diving in a submarine as a tourist, offers a rare pleasure and at the moment, is unique to the Indian Ocean. Visit all sorts of interesting sights from a shipwreck to beautiful coral reefs. This experience is available to everyone irrespective of age.

Safari Sub-Scooter
Partake in this unique experience and pilot your own underwater sub-scooter. You can ride as a couple or on your own and enjoy the visual beauty the ocean has to offer. The ride is approximately 3 metres in depth and you breathe freely and naturally in a transparent glass dome. This adventure is not available for pregnant women, those suffering from cardio vascular problems, hearing or respiratory problems. It is also not available for those under 12 years old of age & passengers under 16 years of age are not allowed to pilot the scooter. For your safety, a guide diver will accompany you on the 30 minute jaunt.