The white-sand islands of the Indian Ocean have long been synonymous with paradisiacal five-star luxury, but there’s also a more affordable side. Take Mauritius, which, while it remains popular with honeymooners and luxury-loving clients, also boasts a good selection of affordable resorts, and is better value compared with the Maldives or the Seychelles.
“Mauritius offers some top-of-the-range three and four-star properties for holidaymakers who are keen to visit the destination on a budget,” says Kevin Ramkaloan, director of the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority. “For the last two years now, MTPA has run its ‘Mauritius 365’ campaign from May to September. The initiative includes more than 100 deals on land-based, nautical and spa activities, with discounts ranging between 15% and 30%, details of which can be found at mauritius365.mu,” he adds.
Once in resort, opting for an all-inclusive stay helps keep costs within expectations, and there are excellent options appealing to families, couples and adventure seekers.
Some top tips from the industry experts
‘Go low’. If you travel to Mauritius in low season – between May and September – you will usually benefit from the most affordable prices. June is the most price-driven month, and though it’s technically cold season, daily temperatures average at a balmy 25 degrees. Booking far in advance will also ensure you bag the best deals.
All-inclusive packages to Mauritius can offer excellent value-for-money. Some of Mauritius’s top hotels are beginning to offer more and more in their inclusive offering, from dine-around options to excursions, ensuring that clients get plenty of bang for their buck.
Being savvy with the hotel offers can extend your stay at great value. Look for hotels that offer free nights, so when you are booking for 7 nights you are actually only paying for 5. Extending your trip to a longer stay can ensure even more better deals. Many hotels offer a second week at a reduced rate and the third week is sometimes free (on a room only basis)
Be beach savvy and don’t worry about not being located directly on a beach. Many of the islands best beaches are public and there will usually be a good beach a short walk or bike ride from the hotel.
A good alternative to an all-inclusive package is to book a villa with ‘home-to-home’ amenities such as a private pool, kitchenette and up to four bedrooms. Opt for a villa that’s close to shops, bars and restaurants so you can buy and cook their own food. There are some great locations on the estates in Grand Baie and you can eat cheaply nearby. You could also save money by hiring a car to explore the island rather than booking excursions. In Mauritius, they drive on the same side of the road as the UK and roads are easy to navigate.
Powder-soft beaches framed by volcanic mountains and top-notch hotels make Mauritius eternally popular with loved-up couples. We recommend that you plan trip outside of the school holidays to keep prices low and for greater hotel availability.
For those seeking a purse-friendly option, how about the 3.5-star adult-only Veranda Paul & Virginie hotel. The all-inclusive option is great value.
and guests can even request a picnic basket if you want to leave the resort and explore for the day. Couples staying in the Privilege rooms enjoy a full-day catamaran cruise including lunch and an open bar, as well as daily access to Saint Geran restaurant for a la carte dining at the end of the jetty.
Other recommendations for great value is Preskil Beach Resort, where the lagoon location gives it a romantic setting
or Jalsa Beach on the north of the island for couples seeking serious relaxation, with its views of the Indian Ocean and mountain scenery.
Many travellers nowadays don’t want to just lie around and relax so the five-star Heritage Awali is a great option for those who have trouble sitting still, offering windsurfing, yoga, mountain biking and sailing. The resort also has a European Tour-branded golf course to keep the golfers happy, with the all-inclusive package including a round of golf per day.
The 2,500-acre on-site nature reserve meanwhile acts as a real-life adventure playground, which can be explored by quad bike and 4x4, or as part of a guided tour. The resort also features a dine-around offering for clients keen to explore the island’s diverse cuisine.
Another great value, affordable option for adventure-seekers who enjoy water sports would be the Merville Beach hotel, which offer a range of complimentary water sports and activities for all resort residents. Clients can get out on the water with a range of activities, including windsurfing, kayaking, sailing and big game fishing, while novice divers can hone their skills thanks to the resort’s Padi-qualified diving monitors.