I visited Mauritius for my honeymoon in March 2018. It is a beautiful country with rivers, the sea, mountains and volcanoes. Yes, all the geology I wanted packed in a little island. The locals are friendly and most speak English so Sacheta and I did not experience any translation challenges. The weather was warm and it did rain unexpectedly which called for fast reflexes because I was wearing the vOICe. My vision 800 glasses proved to be quite rugged and the splashes they got did not damage them. In terms of accessibility, there isn’t any. People will help but there is no accessible infrastructure. If you are blind, then keep a sighted companion handy or go with a specialized travel provider. Moreover, the group tours are inaccessible. In many cases, you are shown pictures especially if you go to a winery. I was fortunate to have a mechanism where I could experience shapes at a distance namely the vOICe else I would have been left out of many of the attractions of the tours. In addition, if you take a group tour, you need a way to experience the scenery as you are driven in a buss. Sacheta described everything but audio description has its limitations. For example, how do the double walled tanks look? How are the pipes laid out? Moreover, some of those group tours move fast therefore you do not have the time to get a full audio description. I was doing my best to follow the guide as she explained things to the rest of the group. All Sacheta had to do was to point me in the right direction and I was fully included in the tour, no accessibility infrastructure required. The other thing about Mauritius is that it is a honeymoon destination which means that everyone else is also honeymooning. You can get lost in the crowd and get your privacy since the locals are friendly but not intrusive. The highways are clean and the drivers know how to avoid traffic jams.
A crater lake situated in South Mauritius. Plenty of fresh air and the water is clean. There is also a popular Hindu temple with friendly priests.
The valley of 23 colors also known as Vallée des Couleurs
The 23 colors refers to the color of the soil in the valley. The geology and wind have created unique conditions for the formation of mineral deposits in the soil. I tried iMusic and the musical scale mode of the vOICe. I did not count 23 colors but could tell the shades of colors though I cannot name them. There are a number of waterfalls. None of them are high. Getting to them is a bit of a hike but is well worth it.
This is where you go if you want a break from nature. Most of the government offices and shopping malls are here.
The Tea house museum
The place for you if you love tea. There is a demonstration factory where the staff shows you how tea is made. The staff is knowledgeable and be prepaired for facts and figures before that perfect cup of tea.
The valley of the 7 colored earths
Once again, we have soils with minerals but with 7 colors this time.
A great place for having fun with animals. There are several activities such as feeding the giraffes and walking with lions. The park is meant mostly for kids but if you are blind, there is a lot of tactile experience here. However, you should have sighted assistance with you because you need to walk through the jungle to go between activities. There is no accessibility here and the busses are old and creaky.
There are too many people who made this trip the smashing success it was.
The incomparable Sacheta Lal
for the trip, sound advice and seamless experience.
Planet Abled for accessibility advice
The staff at the hotel Le Meridien in particular Sam and Shazia for exceptional service and a superb accessibility workaround for hotel key cards.
The staff of Solis the local support partner, in particular drivers Viki and Edlib (I hope I am spelling your name correctly).
The members of our tour group in particular Jatin, Harish, Rushil for being who you are and for navigation assistance.