Port Louis travel guide

Port Louis Tourism | Port Louis Guide

You're Going to Love Port Louis

Located in the west Indian Ocean, Port Louis is the capital and main port of the island of Mauritius. Against a mountainous backdrop, it blends modernity with tradition and is home to a mix of cultures, featuring many influences from India, Africa, Europe, China, and the Middle East. Whether you're in town for business or an extended stay, its fine selection of hotels will delight you, while its local sights and natural beauty will take your breath away.

Top 5 Reasons to Visit Port Louis

1. The Beach

In between Pointe aux Piments and Mont Choisy lies a public beach right beside one of the major hotels: the Trou-aux-Biches Village. This stunning stretch of blue water is bordered by white sands and filao trees, while the accommodation itself is truly a luxury experience.

2. Water Sports

Mauritius will make you fall in love with activities such as parasailing. Catch a bird's-eye view of the lagoons and lose yourself (figuratively speaking) atop the vast and magnificent turquoise waters.

3. Cocktails and Nightlife

A sophisticated bar and nightlife scene has been developing here in recent years. World-class microbreweries such as Lambic and Flying Dodo Brewing Company are fast garnering an international reputation, while hotspots such as Karma Lounge or Le Suffren Hotel & Marina are abuzz on the weekend. The city's iconic Le Caudan Waterfront also boasts numerous watering holes.

4. So Many Museums

From the acclaimed Natural History Museum & Mauritius Institute and the amassed treasure trove of old cameras and prints at the Mauritius Photography Museum to the Mauritius Postal Museum, which houses a mishmash of commemorative stamps and other postal paraphernalia from around the world, there is no shortage of fascinating historical perspectives to occupy history buffs in Port Louis.

5. Bask in the Tropical Climate

Port Louis enjoys some of the nicest weather in the world. Its tropical maritime climate ensures sunny weather across the year, with very minor temperature variations (the mercury usually sits between 65 and 80 degrees). A constant sea breeze blows across the island, experienced mainly along the eastern coast. This helps keep the climate refreshingly cool.

What to do in Port Louis

1. Visit a National Treasure at Blue Penny Museum

This beautiful building is home to the the former Mauritian Post Office's one-penny and two-pence stamps, which rank among the most valuable in the world. In fact, they're so valuable that a group of Mauritian companies forked out US $2.2 million in 1993 for the pair of unused one-penny and two-pence stamps that the museum now houses.

2. Take a Walk through History at Aapravasi Ghat

This building, formerly known as Coolie Ghat, was the landing point in the 19th century for the original forced laborers from India, before the abolition of slavery in 1834. The historic complex currently is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and consists of the partial remains of three stone buildings dating back to the 1860s.

3. Head to China Town

There is a constant bustle in this quarter, with the streets always full even after closing time and on weekends. The food is sensational - try local specialty bol renverse (literally, upside-down bowl), which is a stir fry of rice, chicken, and vegetables served with a fried egg.

4. Find Sanctuary at the Jummah Mosque

Combining Indian, Creole, and Islamic architecture, the mosque houses the remains of Jamal Shah in a marble tomb next to the mosque. Also on display is the distinct skill of Tamil craftsmen, who were responsible for building many of the country's temples and churches.

5. Enjoy the Breathtaking Views from Citadel Fort Adelaide

Built between 1834 and 1840 under the direction of William IV and named after Queen Adelaide, the fort stands at 240 feet above sea level. Today, it is one of very few garrisons left that does not stand in ruins, due to municipal efforts to preserve cultural heritage. Taking the journey up to Fort Adelaide guarantees breathtaking views of the port and the Moka mountain ranges.

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1. Visit a National Treasure at Blue Penny Museum

This beautiful building is home to the the former Mauritian Post Office's one-penny and two-pence stamps, which rank among the most valuable in the world. In fact, they're so valuable that a group of Mauritian companies forked out US $2.2 million in 1993 for the pair of unused one-penny and two-pence stamps that the museum now houses.

2. Take a Walk through History at Aapravasi Ghat

This building, formerly known as Coolie Ghat, was the landing point in the 19th century for the original forced laborers from India, before the abolition of slavery in 1834. The historic complex currently is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and consists of the partial remains of three stone buildings dating back to the 1860s.

3. Head to China Town

There is a constant bustle in this quarter, with the streets always full even after closing time and on weekends. The food is sensational - try local specialty bol renverse (literally, upside-down bowl), which is a stir fry of rice, chicken, and vegetables served with a fried egg.

4. Find Sanctuary at the Jummah Mosque

Combining Indian, Creole, and Islamic architecture, the mosque houses the remains of Jamal Shah in a marble tomb next to the mosque. Also on display is the distinct skill of Tamil craftsmen, who were responsible for building many of the country's temples and churches.

5. Enjoy the Breathtaking Views from Citadel Fort Adelaide

Built between 1834 and 1840 under the direction of William IV and named after Queen Adelaide, the fort stands at 240 feet above sea level. Today, it is one of very few garrisons left that does not stand in ruins, due to municipal efforts to preserve cultural heritage. Taking the journey up to Fort Adelaide guarantees breathtaking views of the port and the Moka mountain ranges.

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Where to Eat in Port Louis

Eating in Port Louis can be an amazing culinary experience. Head to Sailors for a taste of the region's traditional Cajun-Creole cuisine, the Courtyard in the city center for the best seafood in town, or splurge out at Brasserie Chic at Labourdonnais Waterfront Business Hotel. Expect to pay around MUR1,100 or less for an excellent meal.

When to visit Port Louis

Port Louis in August
Estimated hotel price
$312
1 night at 3-star hotel
Port Louis in August
Estimated hotel price
$312
1 night at 3-star hotel

Mauritius has only two seasons, winter and summer. It is warm and dry during winter (May to November) and hot, wet, and humid during summer (November to May). Temperatures don't vary that much between the two seasons of the year. Port Louis has a tropical climate, modified by trade winds from the southeast, with the central plateau being cooler than on the coast.

Data provided by weatherbase
Temperatures
Temperatures
Average
Celcius (°C)
Data provided by weatherbase

How to Get to Port Louis

Plane

The Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport is at Port de Plaisance and is the major gateway for travelers coming from abroad. Air Mauritius is the home carrier and operates a network of routes to the local islands, as do as Air Austral, Air Madagascar, and Air Seychelles. Buses will run you into town. The trip takes about 70 minutes and costs MUR30. If you wish to take a taxi, expect to pay around MUR1,300.

Boat

Cargo ships are the main vessels that arrive at the port. The Mauritius Pride and the Trochetia regularly sail to and from nearby islands such as Madagascar. Some cruise ship companies have started an Indian Ocean route recently, which include a stopover in Mauritius.

Airports near Port Louis

Airlines serving Port Louis

Lufthansa
Good (2,178 reviews)
KLM
Good (355 reviews)
Air France
Good (403 reviews)
Turkish Airlines
Good (1,337 reviews)
British Airways
Good (1,436 reviews)
SWISS
Good (458 reviews)
Emirates
Excellent (972 reviews)
Iberia
Good (924 reviews)
Austrian Airlines
Good (283 reviews)
Brussels Airlines
Good (102 reviews)
Egypt Air
Good (127 reviews)
Air India
Okay (1,086 reviews)
SAUDIA
Good (159 reviews)
Kenya Airways
Good (39 reviews)
Condor
Good (46 reviews)
South African
Excellent (2 reviews)
FlySafair
Excellent (36 reviews)
Air Mauritius
Excellent (7 reviews)
Corsair
Excellent (4 reviews)
Air Austral
Excellent (2 reviews)
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Where to stay in Port Louis

Le Suffren Hotel & Marina features a comfortable setting and is a free water-taxi ride away from Le Caudan Waterfront. If you're looking for 5-star luxury, you'll enjoy Le Labourdonnais Waterfront Business Hotel, with stunning views and a wellness center. If you're watching your budget, try the Cocotiers Seaside Boutik Hotel, a basic beach-side option with great food. Staying in the city center will mean easy access to sights and shopping. If you want breathtaking views with your morning coffee, head to the waterfront hotels along Pointe Aux Sables east of the city.

Where to stay in popular areas of Port Louis

How to Get Around Port Louis

Public Transportation

Bus services run from 5:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. and are an easy way to get around. Fares for a short ride cost around MUR15, and you can buy a ticket from the conductor when you board.

Taxis

Traffic can be congested during business hours. If you're staying in the center, you can easily reach most destinations on foot. In the evening, expect to pay between MUR100-150 for short trips.

Car

Driving can be a chaotic experience in Port Louis and traffic is common. Vehicles can be rented from companies such as ABC Car Rental and Endeavour Car Rental with prices starting at MUR1,500.

The Cost of Living in Port Louis

Shopping

The Caudan Waterfront provides a central shopping district with fashion, local crafts, and live entertainment. The marina is a must-visit shopping destination for locals and tourists alike, offering a wide variety of restaurants and cafes in addition to specialty shops selling unique local goods. As a tourist, be sure to take advantage of tax-free shopping.

Supermarkets and Food Stores

Supermarkets are pitched at locals and self-catering tourists, with most within walking distance of hotels. The Port Area has the most, including several branches of local chain Winner's Supermarket. The popular Port-Louis Market on Corderie Street offers lots of fresh produce, fruits, and other items. Expect to pay MUR45 for a gallon of milk and MUR700 for a good bottle of wine.