Being a volcanic island, Mauritius is home to several caves that are both accessible and inaccessible. One such cave that's accessible is now a popular tourist attraction by the name Cavern Patate. The cave is located on the Rodrigues island, off the main coast of Mauritius. Rodrigues island is home to quite a few caves and caverns which were used in the ancient times by pirates to hoard their treasure. Although the treasure are no longer there, the caves are one of the most intriguing places you can think of exploring.
The Cave with an Intriguing Name
The most famous cave in Rodrigues is the Caverne Patate. Literally translating to 'Sweet Potato Cave (and no one can tell why this place got such a charming name), this cave system was discovered by farmers long back and is now famous as the longest limestone cave not just in Rodrigues, but in the entirety of Mauritius as well.
The cave had been in existence for a very long amount of time, but it was only mapped as recently as 1995, putting the total tally of the length of passages inside the cave to well over 1100 metres, with the depth of the save going as far as 20 metres in some places.
It was formed as a result of the standard tectonic movement and now stands as one of the most visited caves not just in Rodrigues, but across the entire country as well.
Inside the Cave
Mostly slippery and requiring some tricky manoeuvring in some places, the cave is incredibly fascinating, and the rows of stalactites and stalagmites inside the cave are a sight for sore eyes.
There is no artificial light inside the cave, so you will be given torches before entering the cave, and you will be accompanied by a guide for the entirety of your trip to the caves and back out.
Of course, tourists are allowed to go inside the cave on their own, without taking the help of a guide, but a guided tour is recommended if you're interested in knowing more about the cave and the various formations inside it (which apparently include a very curious formation that accurately resembles the shape of a dodo).
The Caverne Patate is directly connected to the ocean, so certain parts of the cave are inaccessible as they have water in them. Nevertheless, the parts that are accessible are awe-inspiring, and if you're interested in visiting places that are as old as time itself, a visit to the Caverne Patate is a must for you.
Photos of Caverne Patate
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Getting to the Caverne Palate, especially when travelling under the guidance of an expert is extremely easy. Said guide would lead you to the southern entrance of the cave where you will have to descend below the sea level via a stone staircase which was carved out of a natural cleft in the island many years ago.