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The underwater world of Mauritius is so teeming with life and colour that it looks like a subterranean Mardi Gras. The extravagant fish, striking corals and enticing canyons are some of the world’s very best. The water is clear and the range of life so diverse and abundant that it can easily be considered a natural wonder.
The good news is that this underwater wonderland is not only available to divers. Mauritius has some of the world’s most advanced technology, which allows everyone to enjoy a first-hand experience of the ocean. The options are excellent – there are family-friendly activities such as the glass bottom boat trip and the underwater submarine, and for the more adventurous there is an underwater walk as well as something that is enticingly called the underwater scooter. For the non-swimmers and non-divers out there, these are the fantastic options.
Mauritius has a beautiful blue lagoon that extends about one kilometre seaward from the reef crest. The turquoise lagoon offers excellent swimming and snorkelling as the vibrant life is truly exceptional. The glass bottom boat explores the lagoon, which has an average depth of 5.5 meters. The clear water offers great visibility and a wonderful opportunity to see the reef, fish and the 50 different species of corals in the lagoon.
Image credit: Shankar S.
This is perfect for the non-swimmers out there who would like to explore the reefs. Guests are taken to a platform slightly out to sea above a pristine coral area. Old-school headpieces are attached to the heads of guests, which ensure a constant supply of oxygen. Professional divers then accompany guests to the sea floor via a ladder. For novices, this may seem challenging but once they discover the spectacular neon-coloured fish and incredible corals below all apprehension quickly disappears. The unfamiliar feeling of floating in this spectacular world is one of the unique attractions in Mauritius.
This Hollywood-like machine is technically called a sub-scooter and is a “motorized scuba bike, which resembles a cross between a scooter and a midget submarine”. Another way to think of it is as an underwater jet ski. Crazy, I know. Each person gets their own scooter to ride and puts their head and shoulders within a clear dome. The air supply is constantly replenished from a scuba tank connected to the scooter allowing riders to breathe normally. The rider’s body is immersed in the water, but their head remains dry inside the dome, allowing you to breathe easily, remain dry and able to see everything clearly. Riders pilot the machine themselves and can dive to a depth of 10 metres.
Image credit: Bruno de Giusti
Underwater walks and scooters are cute but plunging down 35 metres in a real submarine is a whole new story. The popular submarine trip visits a shipwreck, explores the coral reefs and enables close encounters with a wide range of fish species. The adventure stirs up whimsical comparisons to National Geographic explorers and the comparison seems genuine when you descend into the ocean from the platform into the deep sea. The pilots are informative and, with each passenger given their own viewing platform, the exotic underwater world provides a spectacular show.
For information on how to make a trip to this underwater Promised Land, contact us now.
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Matt discovered a passion for writing in the six years he spent travelling abroad. He worked for a turtle sanctuary in Nicaragua, in an ice cream factory in Norway and on a camel safari in India. He was a door-to-door lightbulb-exchanger in Australia, a pub crawl guide in Amsterdam and a journalist in Colombia. Now, he writes and travels with us.
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