Yes, we do have an aquarium on the island and no, it is not the best thing we have in Mauritius. I don’t really like making a ‘negative’ review, but on the other hand it is really not that exciting. We met up with some friends from school last week end. I have been there once before when kiddos 1 was maybe 2 years old – and all I can say is that, nothing has changed since.
It is located on the North West coast, in Pointe aux Piments, a small coastal town between Port Louis and Grand Baie. Entrance fee at the moment is Rs200/adult and Rs100/child.
They have a few walk through areas, with small aquariums displaying fish found around Mauritius. One large Aquarium and then a place where they keep a couple of turtles and eels. And that’s it – they used to have sharks as well, but apparently they are renovating that area at the moment – and the fee has therefor been reduced by Rs100. We were there at 11am and they feed the fish and turtles at that time. A guide talks a bit about the fishes in the aquarium: apparently divers working for the aquarium have caught all the fish that you will see.
The biggest hit was of course the turtles, yes they are very cute and well the eels – there is a common Moray and a Spotted Moray – they are also cool.
They have a small snack that sells Ice creams and decent coffee (that’s always a good point!!) as well as a playground where the kids played for some time – we had a couple of balls in the cars and they used some energy there.
But for the kids the highlight of our trip was this…
The children had an awesome time on the rocks, checking out the rock pools and all the small animals inside. The views here are stunning and the kiddos really enjoyed themselves.
So to visit or not?!
Well, it is the place that could propose so much more than what it does – we were talking about it with my friends – even if they cannot have bigger aquariums or more space they could/should have a more educational role to explain the importance of the eco-systems, the coral reefs to the Mauritian kids (and others of course!) – there is enough of information on the importance of nature in Mauritius – and this place would be perfect for it! My friend – who is Mauritian – actually thought about doing some volunteering work there, I think it’s a great idea and would happily join.
If you have small children – 6yrs and under – it is ok-ish. The kids can have a look at what there is and if you come at 11am you’d be there when they do the feeds. Just don’t expect too much, grab a cup of coffee and enjoy the sun while the kids play. Yes, I agree Rs200 is a bit much for what there is to see, but at least you’d be supporting the local community.