Casela Nature Reserve, AFRICA

I grew up looking at Lion King and watching amazing jaw-dropping documentaries on National Geographic. I always fancied seeing the wildlife in Continental Africa. When I visited Mauritius, little did I know that I would be getting a small trailer of what the real wildlife in the African plain would look like! By far Mauritius is one of my favorite countries so far, I absolutely loved the country for its nature, exhubarent wildlife, the vast sugarcane farms, endless expanse of landscape, seamless merging of the dense forests with the Ocean at horizon & the union of the sky with the Ocean at the far distance.

Now I had a wonderful opportunity to appreciate this country even more when I visited Casela. Its a nature park reserve and its gorgeous. The buildings within the park are built with Volcanic Rocks – they look absolutely stunning. The lush green vegetation inside hardly lets the relentless sunlight to seep through, the birds happy in the ponds, and the animals in perfect harmony and they all seem to be at peace.

I loved the landscapes at the Casela Nature Reserve. We tool the safari and we were taken into the wild! I absolutely loved the idea of keeping the humans in a cage and letting the animals free, for we were infact visitors to their homeland ūüôā

We offered bread to the Ostrichs and several Zebras came by to enquire as to who the new set of visitors were. The children and grown ups were thrilled alike when an ostrich made a surprise apprearence at the window and snatched the bread off a persons hand.

The lions are in a seperate enclosure and you can walk with the African Lions but at your own risk.

Apart from the fact that there are animals there, its a beautiful park with an endless expanse of lush green lawns, as the terrain is elevated the ocean breeze that blows is calm, cool and refreshing.

I absolutely loved my visit to the Casela – if you are in Mauritius you should definitely visit this place & I am pretty sure you will love it too!

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M2 Lifeline of MRU

The national motorway of MRU is one of the most famous stretch for its endless drives, pristine quality  & for connecting the south west РMahebourg to Grand Baie, all the way up in the North of the country. It is a lifeline for commuters, people rushing to the airport and tourists savouring the visual delights Mauritus has to offer along the Motorway.

  Clear blue skies, perfect backdrop for the floating clouds. Taken on M2

I loved what the tourism department has done all along Mauritius, they have given it some serious thought and it’s one of the best marketing strategies I’ve seen. Subtle but effective. Huge bigger than life billboards talk about the African Fauna, and the connectivity this island country has with the rest of the world. I really appreciated the fact that they displayed an innocent looking sign that says – Connecting Africa to the rest of the world, this would never go unnoticed because the pictures grab¬†the attention of any onlooker.

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You could zoom at 110km/hr speed, and this is the legal speed limit ūüôā It was my first experience to drive on roads as lovely as these. The view is great too. The skies are a deep blue, the contrast is sharp, and the foliage an exuberant green. All in all this is a view that you will notice while at this island country.

I love the way the roads are maintained, and the stringent road rules is definitely a necessity. The motorways look like they were inaugurated the day before, pristine black with prominent road dividers, you could be driving on your own just after setting foot here for the very first time.

Government of Mauritius really knows how to treat its citizens and pamper its guests ūüėČ Was a pleasure driving on your roads MRU!!!!

Twilight Rendezvous

I am a big fan of fresh air at a serene location. In the middle of the Indian Ocean, thousands of kilometers off the coast of Continental Africa are few islands sprinkled like pebbles in the ocean. The Mascarene Islands are a delight to any nature lover. And if anyone has not appreciated the beauty of nature up until now, then seeing these immaculate islands –  will definitely be an eye opener.

Few weeks before i set off to these islands, I was slightly apprehensive about the fitness routine I was following at the Gym. I read few blogs on the internet and one of the best suggestions was to go running. Excersice after a few months becomes integrated into your lifestyle, it becomes a default part of your regime & feels natural. Sometimes few people feel good only after a workout ūüôā

When i read this blog about inculcating running when on vacation it sounded like fun! When you have running shoes – you can run in any vacation spot you are at. You dont need a gym per say – but just a road or field where you could have your daily dose of cardio.

Good for me that i read this – for I saw quite a few historical locations around the place during my morning run! I went to a beautiful river, a nice sugarcane field, a lovely mountain – it was bliss. 

  

 When I was at Vacoas – I was told about this beautiful park named ‘Parcours de Sante Fin’ – I went to see it without any preconceived idea whatsoever, as to how it might look – but when i saw it I was speechless – The lawn was perfectly manicured. The railings a beautiful form of art, and i met very warm people who greeted me with the sweetest sounding Bonjour ūüôā

  

 I put on my Asics Running shoes – every single morning and did at least 3x400mts run, crunches and lunges. I savored the sweet pain post my workout & looked fitter as the days went by. I am glad i read that blog about not missing cardio while on vacation and my romance with Dawn at Vacoas is definitely an event to remember.

Looks like I am waiting to go on another vacation to get some cardio ūüėČ

Le Morne 

One of the most fabulous aeriel views while approaching the enchanting island of Mauritus, is the sight of Le Morne. As soon as I heard the announcement, that we approaching the coast of the African continent I ran to find a seat by the window and a very kind Blue eyed Mauritian let me sit by the window to savour the first glimpse of this continent. 

I saw a vast expanse of the Blue ocean below, the color was a deep rich blue. At the horizon I could see the color fade a little to turquoise and that’s when I saw this gigantic rock jutting out of the ocean. Beyond this rock I saw the island country of Mauritus. 

Le Morne is a Basaltic monolith rising to a whooping 1824 mts above sea level. The summit covers an area of about 30 acres. This is a Basaltic rock formed by the rapid cooling of Molten Lava. 

Volcanic islands are a treat to the eyes, you can see various formations across the island country of Mauritius. Beautiful Monlith such as Le Morne, can only stretch your imagination as to how it ended up being the way it is right now. 

The view of Le Morne at the extreme South Western tip of Mauritius is a natural wonder, has a historical significance, treat to a geologist, mountain of fantasy to a botanist as two rare plants are found on Le Morne, and enjoys the grandeur of being listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. 

Due to the coral reef and the lagoon surrounding Le Morne, the terrain looks like the perfect illusion of a under-water waterfall…..! This is just a optical illusion ūüôā The various shades of blue and the reef make it look this way. 

 

The view of Le Morne, from Sugar Beach.  

There are a bunch of privately held luxury villas on Le Morne overlooking the bay! What a delight it must be to be living there! While swimming at the Sugar beach – the view of Le Morne is fantastic. You could take a canoe and wade around Le Morne. A visit to Mauritius, a dream destination where the swimming or canoeing around Le Morne is definitely the icing on the cake. 

Good Samaritan – Be one!

Raise you vibrations to attract the good, and only the best will be filtered your way.

When travelling, one has to be vigilant at all times. You got to keep your bags in check, your documents and the currency you are carrying. Not to forget, the constant improvisation on the ever effervescent contingency plan.

Before I set off for my first Solo Trip, I was a nervous wreck,¬†I was freaking out. For the first time in my life I experienced ‘Cold Feet’. I now understand what the Brides, Grooms, Parents-to-be or anyone else¬†feel when they have a panic attack. I couldn’t relax, I couldn’t talk, I couldn’t eat, I had constant headaches days before my travel.

That’s when my friend KK came to my rescue, he said “Nam, don’t worry! You will be fine, you have traveled before and its gonna be a walk in the park for you. Just relax, breathe and GO!” Honestly I dint believe a word of what he said, for I was thinking of almost cancelling my ticket! Yes! I panicked probably because I¬†was travelling to a non-English speaking country for the first time ever. KK said “Just be positive, and only the good ones will come your way. Be good and you will attract only good people. But stay vigilant and be street smart”.

I finally relaxed and took it one step at a time, I remembered to count my blessings and keep looking for the good. And many Good Samaritans came my way! From my first pit stop at a transit in KL, I had encounters with amazing good hearts. Yes good people have good souls, you can sense it, it feels good – very good to be around them. I met a person from Switzerland who was in KL to see the Petronas – we soon became friends as she was also a solo traveler, we shopped and had lunch together. We had a fantastic time.

When I reached my destination I had several encounters with Good Samaritans. This travel taught me many things, one of them was that there are angels all around. Look for good and you will find it. Help comes in various unexpected ways.

One morning after breakfast i saw that a couple left the restaurant but they dropped their Subway card on their way out. I knew this was a lifeline, I handed it to them and they were grateful for the gesture and asked me what my plans were for the day and instantly tore off a bunch of sheets from their immaculately filed travel file and gave it to me. To this day I don’t know how I would have managed that day ‘without’ that info. It was so detailed and it was ‘absolutely necessary’ and the universe just filled the jigsaw puzzle for me. I was overwhelmed.

Help comes in various forms, every single day we need to remind ourselves that,¬†‘The Best is YET to come’.

Golden Mantra: Do unto others what you would have them do unto you!

7 Colored Earth @Chamarel

The earth is seven colored at Chamarel, a total mystery with centuries of secrets. I was flabbergasted when I saw it for real. This is a unique, one of a kind geological formation found at Chamarel – south-west of Mauritius. It is a major tourist destination, attracting almost everyone who sets foot on this mysterious, magical, surrealistic island.

You might wonder if this is a paining, a hoax, and believe me when you take a handful of this earth you can’t really tell if you are dreaming or if it is for real. Because the earth has grains of sand colored¬†red, brown, violet, green, blue, purple and yellow! They are formed over centuries from the decomposition of volcanic rock & the various degrees of colors are due to the molten volcanic sediments cooling at varying external temperatures.

The different colored grains spontaneously settle in different layers! When the dunes are formed it acquires an artistic, striped coloring in a layered spectrum. Yet another surprising aspect of Chamarel, these mysterious dunes never erode despite the torrential tropical rains.

The route to Chamarel is beautiful with waterfalls and lush green forests. There is a view of the famous Black River Gorges National park too and you can see the mountains in layers up until the horizon.

IMG_8858A picturesque waterfall on your way to Chamarel.

Small curio shops in the area sell souvenirs of this 7 colored earth. The place is serene and makes one wonder how it really was when the volcano first erupted at that place, and to be witnessing this beautiful phenomenon after centuries only makes one love nature more and more.

Heavenly Abode – Mauritius

‚ÄúMauritius was made first, and then heaven. Heaven was copied after Mauritius‚ÄĚ – Mark Twain¬†

I honestly thought this was a wee bit exaggerated, until I saw Mauritius for real. I realised what Mark Twain wrote was really a very subtle attempt to explain what the grandeur of this immaculate country is all about. The whole place is picturesque. The pristine waters have a different tinge of indigo mixed with blue that looks metallic when the waters shimmer in the endless landscape of Africa. 

MahebergThe View from the Boulevard at Mahebourg – South-East of Mauritius.

Located in the middle of the Indian Ocean, thousands of kilometers off the coast of the continental Africa this heavenly abode boasts of possessing some of the worlds best visual treats. The air is crisp, skies ink blue, and the lush canopy a deep shade of green. The roads are jet black and the motorways meet the horizon, as far as the eye can see. 

One can’t help but notice the untouched beauty of nature. It’s the energy in Mauritius that makes it such an exotic destination. People across the world secretly hope to reach Mauritius to see for themselves what the media coverage and the hype is all about.

Well, MRU has a lot more to offer than just the scenery. The beaches are pristine with silver sands that feels very soft under your bare feet, the waters are different shades of turquoise and various degrees of blue. Visibility at snorkeling areas in Blue Bay is several meters in-depth with a beautiful shade of light blue that doesn’t just feel beautiful but also soothes the soul. Immediately after being immersed in these beautiful water bodies one can’t help but thank the universe for making it possible to arrive at this destination. I believe the ones who reach Mauritius truly feel blessed to have witnessed something this close to perfection.¬†

Often I get bombarded with the eminent question – Nam what’s so special about Mauritius….isn’t it just like Maldives? Why this destination…? Well, for starters I’d always say – No two places feel the same, they look-alike but not the same. The place, the energy, the aura, everything feels different and these places have their own secret stories to share.

While in Mauritius, it is really hard to give your camera shutter some rest. You will have an incredible undying urge to click as many pictures as possible because you would want to relish the memories for the days to come. 

What’s so special about this country that grows loads of sugarcane? The view of the fields is magnificent, luscious green canopy covered mountains jutting out of the crystal blue ocean is a sight so splendid that it really did take my breath away! The landscapes look fresh and all over the boulevards are inscriptions of history and very significant events that took place in the country’s rich and entertaining history.

Mauritius is a volcanic island with varying temperatures, at the coast it’s pretty hot and humid but as you scale up ¬†the terrain just a few miles from the coast the temperature drops drastically. My favorite was Vacoas – beautiful residential villas embalmed in a blanket of moisture laden air and the climate in this region is very pleasant – around 20 degrees.¬†

The view at Casela¬†Nature Reserve is breathtaking – you can see the lush green mountains followed by the motorway and then the ocean, you can’t really tell when the Ocean meets the sky! It’s a beautiful unison, a melodious harmony – a visual treat.¬†

I would urge everyone to make an attempt to visit this place, it’s exhilarating & rejuvenating at the same time. How about this – save up some dough for treating yourself. Because this gift you give yourself will last a lifetime.¬†

Mauritius is truly worthy of all the praise and the reputation it enjoys.