Pont Naturel or Natural Bridge – whichever you may prefer to call it by – is precisely what the name suggests. It is a two-metre-long volcanic rock formation; although it may have the looks of a human-made bridge, it indeed is not. Formed entirely by natural processes, Pont Naturel is a part of the Gris-Gris cliffs and can be found towards the southeastern corner of Mauritius that consists of long rocky coastlines. It is a proof of how diverse Mauritius can be. The white sandy beaches aren't accustomed to all the shores of the island. You will not find any green forests or lovely tropical beaches in Pont Naturel, which is what comes to your mind when you think of Mauritius.
There are places where the sea is rougher than you can imagine and Pont Naturel is undoubtedly one of them. That being said, it does not make it any less breathtakingly beautiful like the picturesque beaches! The astounding cliffs, the gushing waves and the hauntingly peaceful silence – that is one tough combination to come across.
If you have a daring soul and want to feel the adrenaline rushing through your bloodstream, you can give it a shot at crossing this natural rock bridge. In the process, you will be able to see the strong waters crashing against the rocks right underneath the bridge; sometimes the waves pass over the bridge as well, and that is when you need to brace yourself.
The Picturesque Spot
Other than getting your heart rate pumped up, Pont Naturel also serves as a fabulous photography spot. The trick is to be patient, wait for the waves to come and time the picture-perfect moment. Another fascinating feature of this place is something you would have never experienced before. There are some little holes on the surface, through which the seawater flows and creates whistling noises. That is one reason why it is also known as the “Le Souffleur” translated to mean “a blower”.
Le Souffleur is a big mass of black lava rock that is joined to the sea via a neck emerging from the mainland. Due to the constant hitting of waves, the passageways have been forced vertically upwards over the years and have turned them into smooth cylinders because of the tremendous amount of wear and tear they undergo. When the strong waves roll in, the barrels are filled in an instant from underneath, and it roars up to a height through the natural chimneys. The receding water creates a state of vacuum bringing in the wind into the chimney’s aperture, resulting in a loud humming noise.
Apart from that, there is also a beautiful small island named Ilot Brocus that lies next to Pont Naturel. However, it is a private territory and can only be visited if you have an invitation.
A Perfect Weekend Getaway
If you are looking for a place to escape the heat, there is a beautiful wooded area nearby which serves the purpose. Pont Naturel is very popular, especially among locals and is a perfect location for a weekend picnic.
Nonetheless, although Pont Naturel is one of the finest on the island to witness some thrilling scenes, it can be fatal as well. One wrong step can result in a dangerous fall from the cliff and recovering from that is not something that can be predicted. So it is strongly advised to the visitors not to go very close to the edge. Even if you do, be extra careful with your safety. Good weather conditions and calmer waves are the ideal settings for crossing the bridge. Also, keep in mind that the water is not at all safe for diving or swimming.
So make sure, if you visit Mauritius, do not just spend your time on the quiet beaches. Try something unconventional and witness the “other” side of Mauritius by visiting Pont Naturel and seeing a natural spectacle!