Mauritius, an island nation located on the east of Madagascar off the southeast coast of Africa, gained independence on 12 March 1968. A democratic country, politically stable with free elections held every 5 years, the country has a diversified economic base and boasts one of Africa’s highest per capita income. Mauritius is divided into ten districts and three dependencies, and its capital is Port Louis. Its official language is English, and its currency is the Mauritian rupee (MUR).
Beneath the natural beauties of Mauritius’s landscape, lies another gem: Mauritian Cultures. A diverse range of different customs and traditions coexist in Mauritius, originating from the different cultures of people from Europe, India, China and Africa who, during the last 400 years, have settled on these shores.
In Mauritius, Churches can be found next to a Mosque, Indian temples next to Chinese pagodas. Various religious festivals are celebrated with much fervour and devotion all year round by different communities. Another manifestation of the rich diversity of Mauritian culture is its exotic cuisine, which is a fusion of European, Indian and Chinese flavours. Music is also a living tribute to the variety and depth of Mauritian culture, illustrated through beautiful sophisticated Indian music and dance, the Chinese spectacular lion dance and the rhythm of the Sega, the most traditional folkloric music of Mauritius.
Mauritius, an island covering 1,865 square kilometres is situated some 2,000 kilometres off the south east coast of Africa. More than 150 kilometres of white sandy beaches and transparent lagoons are protected from the open sea by the world’s third largest coral reef which almost surrounds the island. Being of volcanic origin, Mauritius has a central plateau which is about 400 metres above the sea level.
Mountains scattered throughout the island, fast flowing rivers, tropical forests and plants are other features that add to the natural beauty of the island. Mauritius enjoys a maritime sub-tropical climate. The summer season lasts from October to May with temperatures averaging 27°C, while in the winter months temperatures average 22°C. The topography of Mauritius makes the central plateau more humid and cooler that the other regions.
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