Make this the year that you discover Mauritius

Make this the year that you discover Mauritius

Photo by CC user Romeodesign on Flickr

Unless you live in southern Africa, you must be wondering to yourself: where the heck is Mauritius, and why should I care?

In recent years, the travel media has been beginning to leak this closely guarded secret to the world, so we feel it to be our duty to reinforce that this place needs to be discovered by travel connoisseurs such as yourself before they get ruined by the fanny pack brigade.

If you have started to wonder about these exotic islands of late, it’s time to get off the fence: make 2017 the year that you discover Mauritius.

An island of many cultures

For an island that has such a young history of habitation, it has a surprising level of multiculturalism that is normally associated with places that are much older.

After two failed attempts at establishing a colony by the Portuguese and the Dutch, the French finally managed to establish a foothold in the 18th century.

They brought African slaves with them to tend the fields of their sugar plantations, but soon, a successful invasion by the British in the 19th century changed who was in charge.

Later that century, slavery was abolished throughout the British Empire, leading to the immigration of Indian and Chinese agricultural laborers.

All these influences blended together over the centuries to form the modern day tapestry that currently exists in Mauritius today.

As a result, you can expect chow mein to be served alongside samosas and rougaille, and a vibrant mix of different cultures will ensure that your stay is an interesting one.

World-class beaches

One of the reasons that Mauritius is popular among tourists from South Africa and elsewhere is the fact that its beaches are regularly ranked among the top in the world.

Ile aux Cerfs is usually mentioned in conversation, as this idyllic isle off the east coast of Mauritius is bisected by a channel that visitors can float along without a care in the world, to say nothing of the blinding white sand along its shores.

On the main island, Belle Mare is your best bet if you are looking for a truly beautiful beach, although there are countless spots that you can claim as your own around this island nation.

There’s plenty to do in the interior as well

If you’re wondering if there’s more to do on Mauritius then lie on the beach you will be pleasantly surprised by what the interior has in store.

Le Morne Brabant is one of its signature mountains and it also has historical significance, as it was the place where escaped slaves hid from their masters during the bad old days of that practice.

Les 7 Cascades are a dramatic series of waterfalls that will provide an alternative to the beach as a way to cool off.

The Aapravasi Ghat harkens back to the days when Indians were flooding into the islands in search of a better life. As you will quickly see during your time in Mauritius, this island nation is a three-dimensional place.

Make 2017 the year you discover Mauritius

Are you hyped about this idyllic archipelago yet? If you are interested, but you aren’t quite sure whether you want to pull the trigger on a round trip airfare, check out more details about this place in this infographic

Best destinations to meet other single travelers

Vietnam is one of the best destinations to meet other single travelers

Photo by CC user MrTMan on Flickr

Want to go traveling, but can’t convince your friends to come with you? If you don’t feel comfortable exploring the world without the accompaniment of others, know that the inherent nature of travel means that you will bond easier with people by the virtue of being by yourself.

If you are down with this, but you still don’t feel like planning the logistics of a journey like the independently minded backpackers in your life, you can go on a singles holiday abroad instead.

This will put you together with like-minded people from around the world that also want the nuts and bolts of their travels plotted out by a facilitator. As a result, you will be free to spend your time mingling with your group, allowing you to make friends over dinner, activities and nights spent out at the bar.

Now that you know you can go traveling anytime you like and not have to worry about its hassles, we will now talk about a few countries that will help you get the most bang for your hard earned money.

1) Vietnam

It is very easy to meet other single travelers throughout Southeast Asia, but if you are looking to have a variety of amazing experiences and save money at the same time, make Vietnam your base in the region.

From the throbbing nightlife of Saigon and Nha Trang to the peaceful nature found in the Mekong Delta and the Central Highlands, there are plenty of opportunities to meet other single travelers that are also in the process of discovering themselves.

With tons of wonderful street food that costs less than five dollars for two people, getting dinner with someone that you met on the road is a very affordable thing to do as well.

2) Morocco

Located a short ferry ride away from Spain, visiting Morocco is a convenient way to see your first country in Africa if you are already traveling in southern Europe.

There are many intoxicating sights that will both amaze and shock you, which will inevitably lead to many interesting conversations that you will have with fellow single travelers back at your accommodation.

The beaches of Agadir will allow you plenty of space to socialize under the sun, while the unique architecture and culture of Fez will inspire those that seek to learn more about this intriguing culture in North Africa.

3) Croatia

If you are looking to make new travel friends while exploring Europe, make sure that you include Croatia in your itinerary.

The islands located off the coast of this country has developed a reputation for being a haven for partiers, making them the perfect place to meet new people in a festive atmosphere.

Hvar is the best known of the bunch, though Pag, Brac, and Rab also have a buzz about them. On the mainland, the cities of Dubrovnik and Split provides an epic backdrop to explore the history of Central Europe together with newly found travel mates.

Given that Dubrovnik formed the background for a number of episodes of the television series Game of Thrones, it will be a place that you will end up getting lost in for days or even weeks at a time.

The best places to visit on a budget

The world is filled with affordable destinations, which are not that hard to find. No matter the continent you want to visit, you will always find a cheap destination.

Here are the places that you should visit if you are on a budget:

Fiji

Many people think that you need to be rich to visit the Pacific Island. However, that is not the case, because Fiji is relatively cheap when compared to the neighboring destinations. Although there are 1000-dollars-a-night resorts, you can still enjoy excellent diving, tasty seafood, and pristine beaches without selling your kidney.

The emerging backpacker community in Fiji has made visiting Fiji easier because transportation, activities, and guesthouses are now cheaper. If you want to visit the Pacific Island, Fiji is the best destination for a low budget.

Central America

Do you want to trek through the jungle, visit the ancient ruins, and surf during your vacation? You should visit the smaller countries in South America, including Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Nicaragua. In these countries, you will find budget hotels for as little as 15 dollars a night.

The destinations are safe as long as you do not roam around bad neighborhoods during the night.

Cambodia

Although you can put all Southeast Asian countries on the list of places to visit on a budget, Cambodia is one of the most affordable places in the region. The country is beautiful, affordable, and has friendly locals. You can buy street food for $2 and get an air-conditioned room for $20. You will spend less than $50 dollars a day, which is a bargain.

China

The country of China has been fascinating tourists since Marco Polo crossed the Silk Road. Even if the days of China being a very cheap location are gone, it is still a budget destination. With hostels that cost less than 20 dollars a day, you can visit this country with a small budget.

Although the big and coastal cities of China are not cheap, the interior ones are a bargain.

Portugal

Not all Euro countries are made equal and Portugal is a bargain country in the region. The country is filled with stunning cliffs, beautiful beaches, jovial locals, historic cities, and delicious food. Moreover, the country seems to evade the press and crowds that other countries in Europe get.

Therefore, you can visit this destination if you are running away from the hectic environment of the city.

Thailand

You will find Thailand on every list of places to visit on a budget. With its lush jungles, amazing food, bargain prices, and famed beaches, it is easy to see why. It attracts tourists from all walks of life, and you can find very cheap guesthouses to stay in during your visit.

Traveling in Thailand is easy and it is a great country for backpacking. Overall, Thailand is well known for its jungles, beauty, food, and beaches.

Australia

Although Australia is an unlikely candidate, it is the ideal destination due to the many work exchange opportunities, cheap groceries, and a well-worn backpacker trail. Although the country has become a lot more expensive over the years, the drop in the Australian dollar has made the country more affordable than it has been in years.

Indonesia

Are you a coffee lover? You should consider visiting Indonesia for some of the best coffee you will ever taste in your life. It is made from kopi luwak coffee beans, which produce a rich-tasting and authentic beverage.

Indonesia has some of the most beautiful landscapes and the best aquatic life in the world. If you love snorkeling, it is the place to be.