Travel Thursdays: Mauritius – part 1: Where did I stay & how did I get there

by Karisa

Back in January of this year (yes yes, it’s taken me this bloody long to write about it), I did a sneaky little 7 night trip to Mauritius.  Why Mauritius?  Well I didn’t have a lot of days to play with, therefore didn’t want to spend too much time travelling.  I also really just wanted to zone out on a beautiful beach somewhere, sipping on cocktails and ice cold beers, completely forgetting about my world back at home.  With only a 4 hour flight time from JHB & beautiful beaches all round, Mauritius seemed like the obvious choice.

There were only 2 problems:

  1. My travel dates coincided with New Years and therefore finding accommodation was super challenging
  2. I was a solo traveller, something Mauritius has apparently never seen before

Usually I prefer to do my own bookings, but for reasons 1 & 2 above, I decided to get some help from the lovely team at Thompsons Holidays.  They found me a spot at Preskil Beach Resort which is a 4 star resort situated on a private Peninsula along the South East coast, near the village of Mahébourg, about 15 minutes from the airport.  Typically visitors flock to the north part of the island, but I must say being down south really wasn’t an issue for me.  The island being so small, it’s a relatively easy drive anywhere.  In fact, I rented a car one day and managed to drive around pretty much the entire island.

Some quick facts about Mauritius that you may find useful:

  • Mauritius is 2 hours ahead SA
  • R1 = 2.5 Mauritian Rupee
  • Food & drink prices at resorts (using mine as a reference of course):  Margherita pizza = 370 MR (R150), a main anything from R180 – R250, dessert about R100, a beer about R90 and a cocktail about R120.  So yeah, drinks are gonna hurt.  If you can get a full board deal and it’s not too much more, go for it…
  • Apparently the best time to visit is between May & December when the weather is cool, dry & sunny.  But even in Jan when I was there, it was really lovely.  We had one or two rainy spots, but nothing that lasted too long.  Then again I was there early Jan, their cyclone season usually kicks in between January & March, so I was probably just lucky (or got there early enough)

The total package cost of my trip was R34925.54 which included return flights from Johannesburg with Air Mauritius, return airport transfers, 7 nights at Preskil Beach Resort in a Lagoon Room (paying a single supplement) on a half board basis (so breakfast & dinner included, but no alcoholic drinks). But it also at least included a FREE afternoon Apero cruise with drinks & snacks which was very nice.

Preskil Beach Resort borders a lagoon which leads to the Marine Park of Blue Bay, so it really is very very pretty.  They have 200 rooms with either sea or garden views.  Each room is equipped with air conditioning, satellite TV, Wi-Fi (although I found it to be dodgy at best – much better reception in the common areas), minibar, safe, tea & coffee making facilities, a hair dryer and complimentary toiletries.

The resort also has a spa and a gym as well as 3 restaurants:  Spices, the main restaurant of the hotel which is open for buffet-style breakfasts and dinners every day (this is the restaurant that’s included in your package if you opt for half/full board).  Then there’s the Tapas Grill & Beach Bar which is an a la carte restaurant right on the beach and Charka Steak House & Bar which offers a menu consisting of a wide selection of meat imported from good ol’ SA.

Let me give you a quick tour of the resort… It really is quite striking:

See what I mean?  Just beautiful… even during the odd rainy moments:

My only minor complaint was my room. It wasn’t quite the 4 star sexiness I had in mind.  But I guess at the end of the day, as long as it’s clean & neat it’s not too big of a deal…

The bathroom did however look like it hadn’t seen an upgrade since the 70s:

Back when yellow tiles were a vibe hey… 😉

But at least my view wasn’t too shabby at all:

My days were pretty much spent doing this:

Yes! Exactly what I wanted…

And this:

Beer was my go-to drink, because well… the cocktails started getting a little too expensive…

Being a resort, they do arrange some social things.  On Wednesday evenings they do a sunset cocktail party where the cocktails are FREE!  A big yay to that…

I found the main restaurant, Spices, a bit depressing at times… So always tried to rather sit out by the pool…

The big families tend to sit inside… the honeymoon couples outside…

Ah yes, much better…

I did however decide to splurge a little one evening by doing dinner at the Tapas Grill & Beach Bar, which really was quite lovely:

Fresh breeze in your hair, sand between your toes… what more could you ask for…

Just look at those beasts!

Oh and that Apero sunset cruise?  Well that was just plain awesome…

Could get used to this life…

So yeah, overall a very nice resort.  You’ll definitely get some R&R and some really pretty shots for your Insta feed.

The only word of warning:  I wouldn’t say it’s solo travel friendly.  It’s definitely more for couples & families.  I was literally stared at like I had dropped out of a spaceship or something.  It was quite funny… well funny now, maybe not so funny at the time. 😉

But that aside, I had a really lovely time at Preskil.  Next week I’ll tell you all about the stuff I did & saw while in Mauritius.  So keep an eye out.


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