Although English is the official language and is widely spoken and understood in everyday life however, French and Creole are mostly used. Several oriental languages are also spoken.
April - October = GMT 4 (Winter)
October - March = GMT 5 (Summer)
The currency of Mauritius is the Mauritian rupee (Rs) which is made up of 100 cents. There are banks in most main towns, and main hotels will exchange traveller's cheques for cash. Credit cards such as Visa, Mastercard, American Express and Diners are all widely accepted.
The average exchange rates are as follows:
R1 = Rs4
$1 = Rs30 = Rs30
£1 = Rs47
Official Banking Hours
Monday-Thursday: 09:15 - 15:15, Friday: 09:15 - 15:30, Saturday: 09:15 - 11:15 (some banks only). Banks are also open to coincide with the arrival and departure of international flights at the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Airport.
Shopping areas in the main towns range from 09:00 - 19:30 (Monday - Saturday).
Some shops are open till noon on Sundays and public holidays. Please note that no shops are open on Thursday afternoons in: Rose-Hill, Quatre-Bornes and Curepipe.
Geographical Location / Location
Mauritius is a mountainous and volcanic island in the Indian Ocean. It lies east of Madagascar and 2000km off the south eastern coast of Africa. The island is 45km in width and 65km in length.
Visa & Health Requirements
Initial entry is granted from 2 weeks to 1 month upon arrival. A visitor must be in possession of a valid passport as well as a return or onward ticket. The visa can be extended upon request at the Passport and Immigration Office in Port Louis.
Credit cards are normally accepted by banks and most hotels, restaurants and tourist shops. It is recommended to have cash when going to markets and areas outside of the tourist hubs.
Culture / Religion
Mauritius is a blend of cultures and religions consisting of Hindus, Creole, Chinese, Muslims and Europeans.
People in Mauritius drive on the left side of the road and give way to the right. Visitors with a driving licence issued by a competent authority in their respective countries are allowed to drive during their stay in Mauritius.
Nudism and topless sunbathing are frowned upon on the public beaches. No hotels permit nude sunbathing on beaches. Topless sunbathing is tolerated by some.
There are 15 public holidays every year. Seven of them are fixed and the rest are religious festivals whose dates change from year to year.
Tipping is common but not compulsory and is left to the discretion of the guest.
Police: 999 / 112
Police: 208 0034 (Line Barracks, the main police station in Port Louis)
SAMU (Ambulance): 114
The International Dialling Code for Mauritius is +230.