Standing at around 400 metres above sea level, the Central Plateau is what can be labelled as the 'Highlands' of Mauritius. It has perpetual rains and foggy weather throughout the year. With pristine waterfalls and crystal clear lakes- the Central Plateau is not exactly a tourist spot but it certainly has a few hidden gems.
The central plateau used to be a deserted place till the beginning of the 19th century, after which people slowly started migrating to higher ground to steer clear of natural disasters like cyclones and floods, which were kind of standard in the lowlands and the coastal areas. Gradually, tiny settlements began to grow into villages, which then shaped themselves into the commercialised towns that you will get to see if you visit the place today.
Colonial Architecture in Central Plateau
Eureka House - Moka
One of the most-visited places in the Central Plateau is Moka, a town located directly behind the mountain range separating the highlands from Port Louis and the rest of the island.
Moka was once home to French Nobel Prize Winner author Jean-Marie Gustave Le Clézio and his family, and their beautiful Creole mansion was auctioned off after their deaths. Today, the estate is known as Eureka House and is an impressive testament to ancient colonial architecture.
Places of Interest
Trou Aux Cerfs in Curepipe One of the most populated cities in Mauritius, Curepipe is a bustling commercial centre. During the colonial rule, the British built a large number of picturesque churches in and around the place, and the best way to explore them all is by taking a walk through the town. The most famous attraction of Curepipe is the Trou Aux Cerfs, which lets you look down into the crater of a now-dormant volcano.
Shopping at Quatre Bornes Also known as La Ville des Fleurs, Quatre Bornes translates to 'city of flowers'. The city is one of Mauritius' best shopping hubs, with its central marketplace being a bustling hotspot of crowded shops, hordes of people, and a riot of colours. The food market in the town is also exceptionally well-known for its high-quality production of fresh fruits and vegetables, including home-grown specialities as well.
Other tourist destinations in the Central Plateau that you can give a try include Pailles, which boasts of being home to the most extensive exhibition and concert hall in Mauritius; Beau Bassin-Rose Hill, another of Mauritius' big cities with historical attractions such as the Rose-Hill Municipal Museum and the Plaza; Phoenix, a city in the highlands famous for its beer; and Eau Bleue, where you can go on a boat ride along the gentle aquamarine waters of the Rivière Eau Bleue.