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MAURITIUS EXPLORE
» 01 Apr 2010
A GRAND TIME ON GRAND BAIE

Grand Baie, or Grand Bay as it is sometimes referred to, is one of the best places on the island of Mauritius to soak up a lot of sun and enjoy a lot of fun. If you are looking for crystal-clear waters of deep glistening emerald green, a variety of exciting water sports, and pristine, white sand beaches, then Grand Baie is the perfect location for an enjoyable day or an entire vacation next to this calm bay.

It is amazing to realise when viewing this popular tourist destination today that De Bogt Zonder Eyndt, as Grand Bay was once called, used to be a sleepy little fishing village. It was originally established by Dutch explorers in the 17th century. Today it gleams like a  jewel along the protected northern coast of Mauritius, welcoming tourists and locals alike with its numerous entertainment options.

That northern coastal region, a flat expanse with sheltered lagoons, brings more temperate weather to Grand Baie than other areas on the island. During the winter months it is less affected by the sometimes fierce ocean winds. June to September are the coolest months but even so, a sweatshirt or light jacket is usually sufficient.

The summer is typically hot and humid – the best time to spend daylight hours playing in the gentle surf. Although the land is flat with nothing to interrupt the view of the vast ocean waters, by no means is the landscape around Grand Baie boring. White surf crashes up against the coral reefs which ring lagoons incredibly clear, with water that ranges from emerald green to deep blue.

What to Do on Grand Baie Grand Baie is a great destination for families or romantic couples, offering a wide variety of accommodations from luxury resorts to simple bungalows and guesthouse rooms. There are numerous activities going on every day and night sure to please any member of your travelling party. When you want to venture beyond Grand Baie, public transportation to other destinations
on the island is easily engaged.

During the day, many beach-bound visitors opt to soak up some of the warm sun and the soothing sound of the waves hit the breakers in the bay. Set out a lounge chair, sip a drink, and enjoy delving into the pages of a good book for the ultimate in relaxation. For respite from the crowd on Grand Baie beach, consider taking a short trek to the beach at Pereybere for a quieter atmosphere. For those who prefer a bit more action, Grand Baie is the gateway to a number of water sports and activities.

Swimming is almost carefree in the waters of the bay and a great way to keep the kids busy. Older kids and adults can enjoy hours of water skiing, sailing, or windsurfing. For a more intense experience, consider contracting one of the enterprising captains on the beach for a guided tour of the islands north of Mauritius, a helicopter tour, or a deep-sea fishing excursion. When you are ready to take a break from beach adventure, the numerous shops and boutiques located in the village of Grand Baie beckon with a variety of high-quality goods to bring home from your grand holiday. Interspersed among them are some of the more traditional fisherman’s haunts.

 

And, a stroll through the Sir Seewosagar Ramgoolam Botanical Gardens is a fantastic way to admire the colorful blooms and unique flora endemic to Mauritius.A drive following the inlets and outlets along the northern coast provides another view of the area.

Several fishing villages, still quaint and untouched by the tourism making Grand Baie such a lively destination, make for picturesque scenery with a backdrop of sparkling blue ocean. After the sun sets in a spectacular display of colors reflected in the clear ocean waters, it’s time for eating and drinking in Grand Bay style. Dine on fine local cuisine at Happy Rajah, Le Capitaine, Don Camillo or Cocoloko – but be sure to get there prior to 10 p.m. when most of the eateries close for the night.

Afterwards, do some club hopping by visiting Zanzibar, NGyone, Les Enfants Terrible or Godfather. The action gets started around midnight and goes into the wee hours of the morning. If clubbing is not your style, you might even consider chartering an overnight trip on a catamaran. There is a reason that Grand Baie is such a popular destination for tourists. With its lovely beaches, large number of activities, great shopping, and lively nightlife, everyone can find something here sure to make for a memorable holiday.

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