MAuritius Area guide
Escape to the real Mauritius! Tamarin was originally a small fishing village on the western coast of Mauritius. It remains predominantly a residential district with relatively low impact tourism scattered around the bay and surrounding hills. It’s mix of local life and tourism provides the perfect destination to get a feel for genuine Mauritian life. You’ll find locals congregating on the beach on the weekend, it’s got a vibrant yet chilled out vibe.
Tamarin bay for those in the know, is regarded as one of the iconic yet off the radar surf spots in the world. The 70’s surf film ‘Forgotten Island of Santosha’ really raised the profile of the area as a location for surfing and it became a popular surf destination for those looking for the perfect point break wave away from the hoards.
There have been altercations between visiting surfers and local surfers over the years, so we suggest being mindful of risks and respectful on the water. If you’re planning on surfing, I would suggest using the local surf school found outside the Tamarin hotel adjacent to the beach they are linked to the hotel, so expect a tourist-friendly service.
Thankfully, rowdy local surfers are few and far between, and Tamarin bay is also a great destination for spotting much more majestic animals out on the water. Bottlenose and spinner dolphins can often be seen in the bay in the early mornings.
The whole Tamarin area has a very relaxed local vibe and this extends into the Tamarin Hotel run by Veranda Resorts across the road from the beach. The hotel was recently renovated when Veranda Resorts took over the location and now offers excellent accommodation, a choice of restaurants and bars and many leisure activities. It’s got an inviting atmosphere, with a bohemian surf chic feel to the decor.
The staff are all very keen to please and despite a few glitches to be expected of a new resort, the hotel runs very smoothly. The food and drink is offering is excellent with three main eateries on site. Tribu is the place to go for polished local cuisine, with the main restaurant Ye! Man offering buffet-style breakfast and main meal service.
The crazy fish bar is at the front of the hotel and offers decent bar food and drinks. It’s also open to locals and actively promotes local participation with music and activities throughout the week. This ethos of integration is strong across the hotel and there is a feeling of unity and collaboration with the locals rather than the segregation which can be found in other resorts on the island. There’s a fabulous roof top bar with a small plunge pool, which is the perfect place to watch the sun go down with a few local rums or the very drinkable local beer Phoenix.
There are a few different room options with very respectable rates as low as £70 per night for a double room. Due to the recent refurbishment, all rooms are at a high standard, with varying views and facilities dependant on price. You can’t really go too wrong with any of the configurations, although the access to the rooftop bar is limited to those in privilege graded rooms.
Tamarin is a great base for exploring the Black River region, seven coloured earth and the famous Chamarel Waterfall is also only 30 minutes away by car. UNESCO site Le Morne is also worth a visit, with its rich history and epic views. Flic en Flac beach is highly recommended as one of the top beaches on the island (if not the world) and is just around the coast from Tamarin bay.
If you want to get a proper feel for Mauritius and explore laidback local life then Tamarin is a fabulous destination.
Tamarin is approx 40 minutes drive from the airport. There are also bus services which take 1h40.
The main hotel is the Veranda Tamarin Hotel, which is an ideal base to explore the area.
Rooms are very reasonably priced at around £70 per room.
The key destinations in the area are Flic en Flac Beach, Black River gorges and Chamarel.