Planning a holiday is not easy considering the many options that one has; right from adventure based holidays to religious circuits. Some people just love spending time on beaches, while others prefer lush green landscapes and bonding with nature. Apart from the different destinations, the availability of good staying facilities at those destinations, the local cuisine available and the overall budget for the trip are also major influencers in the decision on which is the best place for a holiday. A major question that people also have is whether to holiday within India or take time out and enjoy a holiday at an international destination. Two international destinations that immediately come to one’s mind while planning an international holiday is Mauritius and Maldives. When it comes to decide between Mauritius Vs Maldives, it’s a tough decision. Both of them are perfect picturesque, beautiful destinations that offer a wide variety of activities for tourists along with some amazing sightseeing spots.
While they both are almost identical, where they certainly differ is in their sightseeing attractions, culture, traditions and also cuisine. Both these beautiful islands are easily accessible and are also a very popular destination spot for many Indians. Due to this, it is not easy to decide which island is the best to visit on one’s holiday. To help you understand, here is a handy guide to explain Mauritius Vs Maldives. Alongside that there are the specialities of both these islands and what sets them apart, here are a few useful pointers, that could help you make a better informed choice, based on your particular preferences.
Best Time To Visit – Mauritius Vs Maldives
Mauritius enjoys a pleasant climate throughout the year, but the best months to visit this amazing island are from April to June and between September to December. Maldives enjoys an average temperature throughout the year. The ideal time to visit Maldives is from November to April, with the period between December and March being the peak season. It is advisable to not visit Maldives during the peak season, to avoid paying high rates for hotels and dining while holidaying there.
Places To Visit – Mauritius Vs Maldives
Here is a list of the best places to visit for a relaxing beach vacation. No matter if you’re going to visit Mauritius or Maldives, make sure to not miss out on these places.
Places To Visit In Mauritius
Being a naturally beautiful destination Mauritius offers some great sightseeing options. Some of the places that you should explore while on a holiday are,
- Port Louis: It is the capital city of Mauritius and home to many of its tourist destinations. While in Port Louis make sure you visit the La Place D’Armes, which is of the main squares of the city and connects the seafront to the Government House. While at the square, one can also see the Statue of Mahe de la Bourdonnais who is one of the founding fathers of Mauritius.
- Grand Bay: Located in the north, it is one of Mauritius’s premier tourist destinations. It is the place from which you can take shipping trips to explore the other islands and also take part in underwater activities. It also has two beaches, one of which is the “La Cuvette” where one can find rare small white seashells.
- Cap Malheureux: Located in the north of Mauritius, it is a beautiful fishing village, from where one can enjoy great views of the Northern Islands of Mauritius. A red roofed church is one of the major attractions in this village.
- Pointe Canon: Located to the south of Mauritius, this place offers great panoramic views of the Lion Mountain and the Grand Port mountain range, making it a must-visit place for budding photographers. It is also a popular concert venue and one can experience many music festivals here.
- Blue Bay Marine Park: It is a well maintained marine park that offers a beautiful view of many colourful fishes such as parrot fish, trumpet fish and even baby barracudas. One can also hire a glass bottom boat over here, to view the amazing corals, which are just a few metres from the shore.
Places To Visit In Maldives
Along with beaches and coconut groves, Maldives also has some interesting destinations that you can visit, while on a holiday there.
- Hukuru Miskiiy: A religious structure which was built in 1658, it is one of the oldest structures in Male and of religious importance even today. It has been declared a UNESCO World Heritage structure due to its architectural design.
- Banana Reef: One of the oldest reefs in Maldives, it has many beautiful caves and corals. Due to its calm currents it is a very with sea life enthusiasts, who often dive down to appreciate the underwater natural beauty.
- Addu Atoll: Offers adventure lovers, many great diving spots that have beautiful corals even today. One can also explore a British Naval vessel underwater, that was torpedoed by the Germans during World War II.
- Addu Nature Park: A great place to experience the many unique fauna and flora, as well as the wetlands of Maldives. Red Mangroves, baby stingrays and sharks are some of the things one can see in this amazing park.
- Utheemu Ganduvaru: To experience a part of Maldives history, make sure you visit this place which is the birthplace of Sultan Mohamed Thakurufaanu one of the most respected heroes in Maldivian history.
Accessibility & Transport – Mauritius Vs Maldives
While Maldives is located close to Sri Lanka and just around 1000 km from the Asian subcontinent, Mauritius is closer to the African continent and around 5000 km from India. If you compare that in flying times then the trip from Mumbai to Maldives would be around 3 hours, while the trip from Mumbai to Mauritius would be around 6 hours approx. So that makes these islands quite close by and within reach.
Both the islands have well-developed transport facilities that tourists can use to commute from one destination to another. Mauritius has a rail network that connects its major cities. One can also use the bus or hire a local cab while sightseeing in Mauritius. Maldives being a collection of islands and atolls, the ferry is a popular transport service used to access the different destinations. Local buses and cabs are also transport options that one can use in Maldives.
Visa Formalities – Mauritius Vs Maldives
Both Mauritius and Maldives offer a free visa on arrival facility for Indians. One just needs to have a confirmed return air ticket and enough funds for the duration of their stay. For convenience sake, this is calculated at approximately USD 100 to USD 150 per day. The visa on arrival facility is available at the international airports itself and one can get the same, on presenting your passport, a copy of your air tickets and proof of funds.
Natural Landscapes – Mauritius Vs Maldives
Maldives is made up of small islands called atolls. Atolls are circle-shaped coral rings that have a lagoon in the middle. The dominant features that you will notice in Maldives are lagoons and beautiful beaches that have rows of coconut and palm trees surrounding them. The Mauritius landscape, while similar to Maldives with white pristine beaches and clear blue waters also has a few mountains as a part of its dominant features. Since Mauritius has more land space as compared to Maldives, one can also experience more natural and manmade attractions in its cities. Mauritius and Maldives both are also very famous for having a wide collection of sea life and corals that tourists can explore while on their holiday.
Average Budget – Mauritius Vs Maldives
The biggest cost factor in your holiday to either of these destinations would be the airfares. Here Maldives has a very distinctive advantage since a return ticket to Maldives from Mumbai would cost you approx Rs. 18,000/- to Rs. 25,000/- per person. A return ticket to Mauritius is around Rs. 38,000/- to Rs. 45,000/-.The ticket prices are subject to peak season demand and how early you book them. You would also need to consider if there are any promotional offers while doing your booking.
Apart from the airfare, one needs to consider the staying and dining costs as a part of the overall budget. For both the islands a package tour option is considered ideal as it generally includes all cost and you would be sure of your entire budget beforehand. In case you are planning to explore these islands on your own, then Mauritius is a cheaper option since it caters to more tourists from around the world, making it a tourist friendly destination.
Both the islands are winners when it comes to offering a range of activities for tourists, along with clean beaches that have blue crystal clear waters. In terms of activities and sightseeing opportunities, Mauritius has the upper hand mainly due to its size and more land area. Maldives with its beautiful atolls is a better centre for scuba diving and other underwater activities, if one is looking for a place closer to home, then Maldives is a good alternative, not that Mauritius is very far off or in a remote location. Both the islands cater to a lot of Indian tourists so you can be sure of getting your Indian favourite dishes in the restaurant over there, while also getting a chance to explore some local delicacies. Whether it’s about visiting Mauritius or enjoying a holiday in Maldives, go for the one that best suits your budget and enjoy a relaxing holiday, that you will remember for years to come.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Mauritius And Maldives
A. While both Maldives and Mauritius are equally good to visit, both have their share of attractions and activity options. Mauritius being closer to Europe experiences more international tourists, due to which it has some very well developed tourist amenities. Maldives is a destination preferred by Asians and Indians as it is much closer to our peninsula. The choice for visiting either destination depends on what are the activities you are looking for and your overall budget.
A. Yes, Maldives is a safe destination for couples since it is a very tourist friendly place. There are many resorts and hotels in Maldives that one can stay in with complete safety and privacy.
A. The island of Mauritius is one of the most favourite romantic destinations for couples, especially for a honeymoon. This is due to the excellent tourism facilities it has and pleasant weather throughout the year.
A. Yes, Mauritius is a bigger country than the Maldives and even has more clear land area ie. not underwater as compared to Maldives.
A. Yes, one needs to have a passport to visit both these countries. Both the countries offer a free visa on arrival facility for Indians.
A. No, Indian currency is not accepted in these destinations. One would need to convert their Indian currency into the local currency of that country.
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