If somebody is going to tell you he/she stayed in Mauritius Grand Baie (or Grand Bay) he/she will probably mention two key qualities of this small town. The beautiful colours of the emerald water and the unique liveliness, both by day and by night.
Why spending your time in Grand Baie? Because you love that bit of privacy offered at the many resorts however you also enjoy your evening walk for a few late drinks and maybe a night out dancing where you will not meet only the resort guests but also some locals. In fact on Friday and Saturday night in Mauritius, Grand Baie is the place to be.
You will find some shopping in Grand Baie and indeed one of the biggest supermarkets of the island. Go there to buy your tea and sugar at a fraction of the price you see in some tourist shops around.
The Cuvette Public Beach is just lovely, especially at sunset time
If you are after some adrenaline then skydiving may be the option for you. SkyDive Mauritius is one of the operator around.
If you are after fishing, Grand Baie provides facilities for deep sea angling, we are talking about big fish here LOL. Sportfisher is a local operator
If sailing is your thing then this is a great leaving port for Gunners’ Quoin, Flat Island, Round Island, and Serpent Island.
If you are just bored rent a car or a scooter and drive along the north coast, from Grand Baie to Grand Gaube, so many nice beaches, coves and interesting local restaurants (basically a table and few chairs) to have your meal for $5, including drinks. Not too bad 😀
Pereybere is the next area in the east of Grand Baie. You will find some awesome beaches, although access may be challenging due to the resorts occupying most of the coast here.
There is always this question mark in any island or dream land you visit. When is too much? I am referring here to the resorts occupation of the beach, which is somehow public land, but really you can’t access it. There are few places in Mauritius where you can feel that the limit has been exceeded and that is a pity. In saying that, the resort constructions are based on the tourist demand and obviously there is a fair bit here.
Probably laws should be introduced to build and clearly mark ways to the public beach
If you travel instead to the west, you will end up in Trou aux Biches where you can find more public land available and most definitely an easy access to the beach. Moreover you will find some of the best food cabanne (beach shacks) making some of the most beautiful and tasty local food.
Have a walk or drive to the bottom end of Trou aux Biches. You will have a wide choice here. The fish at the Cabane du pecheur is just amazing, in both quality and price. Opposite there is a Roti Cabanne and on the side a fish and meat noodle cabanne. More than enough to satisfy every taste
One thing you can easily find in Mauritius is an organised resort. At first I was looking into it as an option and I found that Hotels Combined offered the best packages. In saying that, at the end I decided to go for 2 bed and breakfast because they both gave me more freedom with my timing and my photography. I did not really want to be stressed when out on a sunset (usually at the same time of dinner).
I decided to spend the first week on the south-west coast. From there I could see the southern part of the island, the Black River Gorges National Park, Grand Bassin and the capital of Mauritius, Port Louis.
After some investigation I decided to book Marlin Creek in Riviere Noire. Cristophe and Ingrid, the owners, were just two stars on earth. Super friendly and always providing advices on things to do and discover. It is in the middle of the Riviere Noir village where I could find few restaurants for the night. Freshly cooked breakfast was waiting in the morning, which was a great plus 😀
The room I had was spacious and really well cleaned. Difficult to find anything that did not work. Great experience
I booked at the Bleu De Toi Boutique Guest House in Pereybere. It was a real heaven. I stayed in the Hope room, in front of the garden and the swimming pool (I love my early morning swim) and it was just awesome. Great big breakfast too, anything you want just ask. I really liked the décor all around the guest house, I felt like in the perfect creole place. It’s not really located in the centre of Pereybere. You need a 10 minutes walk for either the public beach or the restaurants which was not a big deal to me anyway.
I personally suggest to book the accommodation in Mauritius in advance. Too hard to get around and on-line you get the best deals
Please note that I do not have any affiliations with both guest house owners, I just had a great stay