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Monument to Dutch Landing, Mauritius Overview

If you are in Grand Port, Mauritius and you come across a beautiful – well-architectured stone like structure, here's everything you need to know about it. If you didn't realise, the Dutch first colonised Mauritius in the year 1638. So, a monument in Grand Port, popularly known as Dutch First Landing, marks the site where the Dutch first set foot on the island.

To know what the structure is all about and what makes it significant, we need to talk about some history. It was 9th September 1598 when Vice-Admiral Wybrandt van Warwyck and Admiral Cornelius Van Neck commanded eight Dutch ships to a major seaport in Indonesia, called Bantam. It is said that the ship contained exotic trading products from Europe. But a sheer mishap leads the Dutch to Mauritius. Mauritius was never on their radar, but fate had a different story to tell.

Inscription on the Dutch First Landing Monument
Inscription on the Dutch first Landing Monument

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Significance of the Monument

What Exactly is the Dutch First Landing Monument?

A violent storm on August 28, 1598, made them disband their fleets and this is how they ended up at the shore of Mauritius. Five out of the eight ships – the Zeeland, the Geldria, the Vriesland, the Geldria, and the Amsterdam managed to reach the south-eastern shore of the country.

On board the Amsterdam ship was Vice-Admiral van Warwyck, who ordered two of his officers – Hendrick Dircsz Jolinck and Hans Hendricksz Bower, to look around the island for a proper shelter as they had decided to anchor their ships. It is interesting to know that the discovery lead to what is known as present-day Grand Port (earlier called Warwick Haven by the Dutch)

The landing of Jolinck, Bower and their crew members then marked the arrival of the first Dutch in Mauritian islands. More ships were moored in the bay on September 20, and most of their crew landed.

Dutch first landing monument in mauritius
Dutch First Landing Monument

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