The largest national park in the entirety of Mauritius, the dense highlands and thick forests of the Black River Gorges make up about 5% of the total landmass in the country – a staggering number once you pause to consider it. For wildlife enthusiasts and biology researchers alike, the rich diversity of endemic flora and fauna is what makes this national park one of the best in the world – with the added benefit of providing its visitors the opportunity for other activities as well.
Nestled in the highlands of South-western Mauritius, the cool temperatures of the Black River Gorges Park are noticeably lower than the rest of the country, perhaps owing to its lush vegetation. Home to both dry forest and humid forest, the diversity of species makes the park an important refuge for many different kinds of life, plant or otherwise, with some being rare and endangered. The park itself is named for the drastic curves borne of the series of mountain ranges that surround the area, the likes of which you wouldn’t see anywhere else in the world.
Getting to the park
There are four main entrances to the park – La Maine in Plaine Wilhems, Chamouny in the South, and the Black River/Case Noyale entrances to the West. Chances are that you’ll begin your visit to Mauritius on the coast, and for good reason, as there are many Blue Bay Mauritius hotels to take advantage of for tourists. If so, you’ll want to begin making your way inland to find any of these entrances.
Flora and Fauna
The park is home to much biodiversity. Hosting over 300 plant species, and several species of bird that can only be found in the Mauritian lands. Luckily, its status as a national park protects the local rainforest, and you’ll be able to see such beautiful creatures as the Mauritian flying fox, wild boar, and macaque monkey – along with the birds, such as the kestrel, parakeet, cuckoo-shrike and pink pigeon.
Tips for Walks and Hikes
There’s going to be a part of you that would want a hands-on walking tour of the park. To this end, there are many dedicated walking paths and hiking trails you can take advantage of. When you’re planning away in your little nest egg luxury resort, such as the one found at the Anantara Iko Mauritius Resort & Villas, consider a few places to research and decide upon – because there’s a good chance you won’t get to see them all. Consider such places as the Chamarel waterfall, Seven-Coloured Earth Curiosity, and the Grand Basin lake for some truly scenic views.