Waterfalls in Mauritius
07th May 2019
The first thing that probably comes to mind when you think about Mauritius is the dazzling turquoise lagoons that gently lap the coconut palm or casuarina tree-lined powder-white beaches. And while these are certainly some of the destination’s most gorgeous features, beyond the dreamlike golden sands and sublime five-star hotels lies a tropical wonderland unlike any other. Oscillating volcanic landscapes are dotted with vibrant green patches of sugarcane fields in between lush stretches of jungle, and seemingly endless gorges and dramatic cliffs, much of which is home to an array of indigenous flora and fauna which can’t be found anywhere else on earth.
Hidden amongst the fertile lush terrains are breathtaking sights, many of which are only known to those that truly enjoy travelling off the beaten path and seeking out the lesser known gems of a destination. Some of these hidden wonders include places from which to enjoy unbelievable panoramic views, secret spots that allow you a chance to try glimpse some of the rare birds or plant life and paths that lead to some truly awe-inspiring waterfalls.
There are a number of beautiful waterfalls in Mauritius, situated amongst magical tropical vegetation, each of which is well seeking out. Often found in serene, isolated parts of the island, trekking to see the waterfalls awards those do so with tranquil and idyllic oases, the perfect places to reconnect with nature, breath the fresh air and surrender to a sense of calm and inner peace.
Here are some of the most amazing waterfalls in Mauritius:
The Chamarel Waterfall
Visiting the Chamarel area is a must for adventurous travellers in Mauritius. This incredible part of the island is filled with novel experiences and mesmerising natural wonders. Fabled for its geographical phenomenon, the Seven Coloured Earths, and the sublime Black River Gorges National Park, waterfall chasers can also embrace the 100m high Chamarel Waterfall during their visit to the area. Boasting the same height (more or less) as the Statue of Liberty, the Chamarel Waterfall in Mauritius is known as the highest on the island and is encompassed by dense island vegetation; it’s truly a sight to behold.
Because of the area’s special geological makeup, you can find some of the island’s oldest lava rocks here, some of which date back as far as 10 million years. This specific waterfall is actually formed by three different streams of water which run from the River Saint-Denis, a river that flows passed fields and gorges as it makes its journey towards the sea. Within the Chamarel Seven Coloured Earth reserve, you can find excellent platforms that allow for prime photo opportunities of this famous waterfall in Mauritius.
While the waterfall at Chamarel is the highest of the waterfalls in Mauritius, the Rochester Falls are deemed the widest. The incredible waterfalls are found in the Savanne District of Mauritius, in the south of the island. Nestled amongst luxuriant vegetation, the waterfalls are fairly isolated and makes for an excellent place to stop for a picnic or a quick dip in the refreshing waters. The powerful stream of water plunges from a height of ten metres and flows between the rocky shoreline of the Savanne River. As a note, jumping from the surrounding cliffs into the pool - an activity often enjoyed by the locals - is extremely dangerous and definitely not recommended.
Grand River South East
Amongst the most popular waterfalls in Mauritius, Grand River South East, unsurprisingly situated along the southeastern coast of Mauritius, is another extraordinary sight. Despite its close proximity to the sea, the area around the waterfall is vivid and lush and boasts an array of huge basalt rocks. Monkeys frequent the area, which adds an extra exciting element to the experience. Given its location, many travellers combine a trip to Grand River South East with a trip to the iconic Ile aux Cerfs - another must-experience highlight when in Mauritius.
Situated on the outskirts of the extraordinary Combo forest, on the most southern tip of the island, travellers will find a veritable Garden of Eden - a tranquil oasis, characterised by vivid green colours and thick, wild vegetation. Home to an array of indigenous flora and fauna, it’s a nature lover’s paradise. There are technically two waterfalls in this canyon, Leon Waterfall which has a 20 m drop into a 25 m wide pool, and Cascade Cecile, which boasts an impressive 45 m drop, with ample rock pools in between. The cascading waters here have the power to heal weary minds and the area makes for a fantastic place to relax. Those who prefer to remain active have the option of swimming or jumping across the rock pools or even trying their hand at abseiling.
As the name implies, the Eureka Falls are situated close to the famous colonial mansion, Eureka Mansion, which can be found in Moka. A tour of the mansion itself is bound to be a memorable experience, with antique colonial treasures found throughout the gorgeous building which is enhanced by a sensational and exotic garden. The Eureka Waterfalls are a short distance from the mansion itself, and a trip down to them, although a slightly challenging path, is well worth the effort for those who are able. At the end of the path, you will actually find four waterfalls, set amongst mango trees and palms and an array of other sublime tropical flora, and in the water itself, you might be able to spot eels, carp or even ‘scampi, Madame Céré'.
Located amongst the staggeringly beautiful Black River Gorges National Park, some 700m above sea level, is the iconic Alexandra Falls. The ultimate retreat for nature enthusiasts, this area is home to a diverse array of plant and animal life but also boats magnificent and dramatic scenery which offers sensational views from certain points.
The waterfall is accessible by going to Plaine Champagne and heading in the direction of Grand Bassin. Along the way, you should see a sign saying Alexandra Falls Viewpoint. Head in the direction of the sign and you will find ample parking and refreshments on sale. The unbelievable tranquillity of the viewpoint is something that everyone needs to experience for themselves and once they do, they are sure to never forget it.
The Tamarind Falls, also known as the ‘Sept Cascades’, are very deserving of their place on the list of must-see waterfalls in Mauritius. Situated in the Black River District, the falls allow travellers a moment of unparalleled serenity and makes for an excellent place to try and spot one of the rare Mauritian birds or discover some exotic indigenous plant. The waterfalls come from the Tamarin River which branches out in multiple streams of incredible waterfalls at one time. A great spot for adventurers, the canyon here is perfect for hiking and canyoning and the pool of the waterfalls is ideal for a swim, with unbelievable scenery as your constant companion. Guided tours are recommended for the more challenging routes.
The fabled underwater waterfall
Only visible from above, the mysterious “underwater waterfall” off the coast of Le Morne (in the island’s southwest), is actually not a waterfall at all, but a fantastic optical illusion. While it undoubtedly resembles a cascading body of water, it’s an illusion created by sand and silt moved around by underwater currents which make it look as if the water is pouring down into the depths of the ocean. The best way to see this “waterfall” is via a helicopter tour.