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Written by Keshav on April 19, 2020 Share on

Maldives vs Mauritius: Which is the better tropical island getaway?

Maldives and Mauritius, two destinations that seem to be quite similar when you first hear about them. Yes, they do have a lot of similarities like the brilliant white sandy beaches, amazing turquoise waters & overall awesome tropical island getaways. So what differentiates the two and which is the better pick for a vacation? Are they different enough and warrant visits to both of them? Well, I’m quite familiar with these destinations and break them down for you.

The Geography:

To begin with, Maldives and Mauritius have quite varied geographies. Maldives is an archipelago, meaning its made up of a chain of small islands and coral reefs and it lies southwest of Sri Lanka. Mauritius, on the other hand, is actually towards the east of Madagascar and Africa and as far as tourism is concerned, Mauritius is one big island compared to Maldives. This is a very key difference between the two destinations, most Maldives islands average at about 100 acres or 0.4 square kilometers while the main island of Mauritius is 1,864 square kilometers. Now the Maldives archipelago is a much bigger area overall but what it boils down to is, Maldives has a lot of smaller islands spread over a large area while Mauritius for all intents and purposes is one big island.

Activities and sightseeing:

Now when it comes to activities both the destinations offer similar ones. You have a plethora of water sports like scuba diving, snorkeling, skydiving, mini-submarine rides and almost every other water sport in between. Where it falls flat for Maldives, in particular, is that you have to travel between a lot of islands at times to experience some of these activities and speed boat transfers can turn out to be very expensive very fast. The transfers average at about 150USD per person which can stack up quite quickly.

Also Read: Places to Visit in Maldives | Things to do in Maldives

Mauritius, on the other hand, being one island, makes it easier to move between places. The scattered nature of Maldives doesn’t help with sightseeing as well. For one, there are a lot of sightseeing places in Maldives and the ones that are worth visiting or spending time on might be just plain hard to get. Mauritius has a lot of great sightseeing options like the seven-colored earth, Ship model factories, Black River Gorges National Park and so on.

The Experience:

Now after what we discussed, you might be thinking that Maldives is quite the letdown. Well here is where Maldives kinda redeems itself. If you want one of the best possible laid back vacations and just log off from the world. Then, Maldives is perfect for you. Since it’s made up of small islands, you find that most resorts are on individual islands. One resort on one island, it’s like your own slice of paradise, a lot of the resorts here are just outright dreamy. The resorts are also extremely focused on providing some of the most luxurious experiences for their guests. It’s not odd to find 5 or more restaurants in a resort and one other major pull here is that. These are all private islands and in most cases are not open to the general public. These are individual island resorts that only paying guests can access. The rooms as well are much more luxurious and spacious. Amazing beachside villas and bungalows are the most common forms of accommodation here and you also get to experience some of the best overwater villas in the world here and even though Mauritius does have a few. The cost of water bungalows in Mauritius is quite a bit more expensive, in Maldives you have a wide range of water villas in Maldives that you can pick from different price points. Similarly, the advantage of having more scattered geography with less concentrated landmass is that the waters around Maldives are also that much more exquisite. The further you travel from the capital, the better reefs and dive spots you find. It’s a divers dream come true and the water sports experiences you have here are to die for.

Mauritius does hit back with some positives of its own though. If you are looking for some engaging nightlife, Mauritius offers that in spades compared to Maldives where the nightlife is just okay. There are not many pubs or bars in most of the commonly inhabited islands of Maldives, primarily because it’s a Muslim country. Alcohol is usually served only at resorts that operate under special licenses to serve liquor. You can’t carry any liquor into the country as well, it’s illegal. That and the scattered islands don’t exactly enable people to gather in places and party hard does it? Mauritius, on the other hand, doesn’t have these restrictions. A lot of great pubs and late-night hangouts especially near Grand Baie. Rum is also produced locally and these days you have some late-night eateries popping up as well. Also, as we discussed earlier, Mauritius has sightseeing options that are actually accessible by road. So if you are someone that isn’t too much into water sports and like exploring more, Mauritius might be a better pick.

Also Read: Islands in Mauritius

The Budget:

Both Maldives and Mauritius are known to be quite exotic and expensive, how different are they in terms of budget though? Well, the answer isn’t simple. It falls down to a number of factors. Chief of them is the duration of the vacation. To simplify things Mauritius has cheaper accommodations and expensive flights. Maldives has cheaper flights and some incredibly expensive accommodations. If you are taking a longer trip, say 6 nights or more, then Mauritius will end up being less expensive. In Maldives though, most good resorts charge around INR 30,000 for a night. A far cry from the INR 10,000-15,000 a night rate that you find in Mauritius. Flights for Mauritius though might cost around 40-50k per person round trip and Maldives will cost you around INR 15000-25000 per person round trip. One other important factor that has to be taken into account is food. You see in Maldives, most travelers book a resort and stay there for an ‘x’ number of nights and they are reliant on the resort for their food, drinks or any other services. So, it’s very important to make sure that you book a Maldives package with a meal plan that works best for you. I would suggest taking an all-inclusive package as it covers all three meals and unlimited beverages and alcohol. If you don’t pick the right meal plan, you might find yourself spending a lot more on Al la carte meals and drinks. To give some context, a plate of samosas might cost you upwards of 15 USD (around INR 1000) This isn’t the case with Mauritius, you can dine outside of the resorts or choose to take a bundle deal with them, it’s entirely up to you. So if you wanna save some cash on food and drinks, Mauritius makes a better case.

Also Read: Things to do in Mauritius

Plan a vacation today!

Now it’s very hard to put a clear winner here and that’s because there isn’t one. Maldives will give you the best possible experience when it comes to resorts and feels of being in a tropical paradise in the middle of nowhere. The reefs, the beaches and the luxury here are just on another level compared to Mauritius. The nature of the destination also makes it great for a short vacation of 3-5 Nights. Where Mauritius makes the most sense is if you are planning a vacation for 6 Nights or more. You have sightseeing options you can take up, you have some great nightlife and overall it’s better suited to be explored. It mixes laid backness and exploration quite well. At the end like most things in life, the decision here falls on these factors and above all, it falls down to what you want to do on your vacation. I hope this was helpful for you guys and this helps you decide where you want to travel to. If you need more help deciding or you are looking for some amazing deals for your next vacation to Maldives or Holiday in Mauritius. Reach out to the great people over at Pickyourtrail. Their destination experts will be able to help you plan and customize your vacation to your liking and also get you some of the best deals along the way. So, what are you waiting for, go check them out?

Also Read: Places to Visit in Mauritius

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