Sunday, November 19, 2017

View of Boston

I had few hours of time to spend in Boston before flying out. While I was browsing for the places to visit, Middlesex fells reserve drew my attention. It was a large natural park just before Boston with lot of hiking trails. Due to limited time I could not spend time on hiking. One of the highlight of the park is the Wright’s tower from where you could get a nice view of Boston city. 

I reached South Border road but found the parking lot full. There was only limited parking place which was occupied by early comers. I drove a bit further but could not find any parking place. I thought that it was not my day and decided to head to Boston downtown. While going back, I saw a Good Samaritan pulling his car out of parking lot. Immediately I rushed and occupied the slot!!

Trail to the tower
It was about 10 minutes of walk with a bit of climb to Wright’s tower. The view of the top were indeed great. The nature reserve with a busy I-93 and the city provide a panoramic view!!

Wright's tower

Saturday, November 11, 2017

Black gorges national park, Mauritius

When I looked into the map of Mauritius, a large “green” patch of area caught my attention. It was the “Black Gorges National Park”. In the quest for blue beaches, it is very easy to overlook some of the other aspects of Mauritius. It is also one of the few remaining rainforest in Mauritius. All these aspects made me to include this as part of my itinerary.

Black gorges national park

Plaine Champagne road
There are many entry points to the national park. One of them is Plaine Champagne road deviating from the route to Chamarel (seven colored earth). This route going from east to west cuts the national park. The lookout that provides the nice view of the forests is definitely worth the visit. 

A view of forests in Black gorges national park
Further on this road is the deviation to Alexandra waterfalls. While the place was serene and beautiful, the waterfalls itself was dry. Understandable considering we were in the summer season!! It would be a good place to visit during rainy season. But the area is peaceful and a good place for picnic.

Alexandra waterfalls
This route ends at Le Petrin that has an information center and also the starting point (or end point!!) for some treks. 

View of the ocean
Les Gorges road
This is the deviation from A3 that runs along the east coast. The road ends at the visitor center that has some nice information about the national park. We went to this place on the last day of our trip. This place is good to visit if you like to walk into the forests. There are many trails in this area. We walked along a trail that provided had some stream crossing. As went deeper, the place was very peaceful where we could hear the chirping of birds, feel the motion of the winds and water flowing in the stream. Amazing place.

A stream in black gorges national park

Last words

Black gorges national park is in the South western part of Mauritius. It is definitely a nice place to visit for anyone interested in forests and hiking. A nice break from the beaches!!

Flora of Black Gorges national park

Tuesday, November 07, 2017

Albion lighthouse, Mauritius

I have a fascination about lighthouses. Wherever I travel, I rarely miss opportunity to visit the lighthouse. The recent trip to Mauritius provided an opportunity to see a lighthouse. Though not a tourist spot, I added Albion lighthouse to the itinerary. Opened in 1910, it is interesting to note that the lighthouse is still operational!!

Albion lighthouse
We went there on one of the evenings. It was about 30 minutes drive from Flac En Flac on the west coast. Very few vehicles parked indicated lack of tourist attraction for this place. We went around the lighthouse and spent some time there. It was not allowed to climb up.

Albion lighthouse from the front
To get good shots of the lighthouse we walked in the grasslands. On one side, I met a group doing wedding photography. It seemed to be a big business these days. One can also get some good views of the coast from the lighthouse. Unlike many places in Mauritius, the coast here was lined with cliff with rough waters. But the place was completely peaceful with very few people.

Albion lighthouse from grasslands
Overall, it was a very nice place. The best time to visit the lighthouse is in the evening.

Ocean view from lighthouse

Saturday, November 04, 2017

Port Louis, Mauritius

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Port Louis, the capital city of Mauritius is more seen as a commercial center than a tourist place. It is a crowded city on week days and slow moving traffic is a common sight. Things change dramatically on Sunday where the city looks deserted. Through parking is generally free in Mauritius, Port Louis is an exception. But parking on weekend and Sundays are free!! These factors made me to plan a visit to the city on Sunday. But Chaya felt that I deliberately planned to foil her shopping plans!!

View of the street at Caudan waterfront

We visited Port Louis while coming back from North Mauritius beaches. Our main idea was to visit Caudan waterfront. Having parked our car in the parking area, we roamed around the area. The shopping complexes were empty but restaurants were open. We had some snacks at an Indian restaurant.

Caudan waterfront

For people interested in Hindi movies, this is a nice place as many Bollywood movies are shot in this area!! 

Posters of Bollywood personalities

There are few statues, namely the first prime minister Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam and few museums. The museums were closed on Sunday. A historical place that could be visited is Apravasi Ghat (Coolie ghat), which was the landing point for Indian laborers in 19th century. 

Empty street of Port Louis

An highlight of Coudan waterfront is umbrella street, where colorful umbrella’s were placed above the street. Chaya and Tanu were especially looking for this and were overjoyed!!

Umbrella street
We spent couple of hours in the area and it was indeed a peaceful and relaxing place. If you are looking for shopping, visit during weekend. While I promised that we will be coming again during weekday, we felt that there was no need to shop in Mauritius and dropped the idea!!

Wednesday, November 01, 2017

North Mauritius beaches

Mauritius is filled with great beaches and so it is difficult to pick a particular breach!! But when you look at the map of Mauritius and concentration of resorts in the country, the part of Mauritius north of Port Louis certainly pos up. Majority of the tourists flock to that area for the beautiful beaches. From our place of stay Flic En Flac, the North Mauritius was about an hour’s journey subject to traffic conditions at Port Louis. We visited these beaches on one of the days. Here is the list of few beaches.

Sunset in Mauritius

Trou Aux Biches
Little difficult to pronounce, it translates to a pond where deer used to drink water!! It is a Long Beach lined with resorts. Public can enter from both ends of the beach. One of the best beaches for playing in water and indulging in water sports activity. 

Trou Aux Biches

Mont Choisy
North of Trou Aux Biches, this was the beach we liked a lot. With the backdrop of casuarina trees, Mont Choisy beach looks lot scenic that other beaches. It gave an opportunity for my daughter to play “hide and seek” games!!

Mont Choisy beach

Grand Baie beach
Grand Baie is an area filled with resorts having their private beaches. The public beach is rather small but a good place if one likes to have street food!! Not a good place for swimming due to the presence of fishing boats. 

Grand Baie public beach

Pereybere beach
Further north of Grand Baie is Pereybere beach. It looked like it was more popular with locals. Lot of parking place and eateries. The water is deeper but not rough. A nice place to spend some time.

Pereybere beach

We went on for beach hopping but if one likes to stay in beach resorts, these beaches provide lot of options. But if you are looking for peaceful location, then South Mauritius beaches (yet to write about them) are better. If you are interested in submarine ride, then their office is between Trou Aux Biches and Mont Choisy beach.