There are various motivations as to why we visit different destinations. For many travelers, authentic food and drinks top that list. Access to safe drinking water also goes hand in hand with food. If you have set your sights on Mauritius, the country boasts unique dishes worth sampling. Also, it has a reliable supply of water provided by the Mauritius Central Water Authority (CWA).
Is it safe to drink the water in Mauritius? The tap water in Mauritius is treated to make it safe for drinking, even for tourists. However, cyclones are common in Mauritius between January and March. They can contaminate water sources, making the water unsafe for drinking. During such times, it is advisable to drink boiled, filtered, or bottled water.
As a precaution, I carry a pocket-sized water filter whenever I venture outdoors. With it, I can always ensure that the water I drink is safe.
This article is a complete guide to food, water, and drinks in Mauritius. I have highlighted the foods you must try, where to buy them, and how to order. Further, I have shared information on food and water safety in Mauritius.
Do you know what else you can take to quench your thirst on the island?
Read on to find out.
The Best Foods to Try in Mauritius
Mauritian cuisine is a blend of African, Indian, Chinese, and European cultures. While it is safe to eat food in Mauritius, you might not have an opportunity to try all of them.
I have prepared a list of the best Mauritian foods to give you somewhere to start. Are you up for further reading? Find out everything you need to know about The Best Mauritian Cuisine.
Due to the strong Indian influence, curry is a significant food in Mauritius. However, it’s not the traditional Indian curry that you might have tasted. Mauritian curry has a flavor consisting of garlic, onion, turmeric, and curry leaves.
You will find different types of curries from tomato-based creole to octopus curry. You can have curries with rice or bread, lentils, and other accompaniments.
Want to check out other foods that start with C?
Being an island, it’s evident that Mauritius has plenty of seafood to share. Seafood forms a major part in cooking stews, curries, and other delicious dishes.
Some seafood dishes you’ll love are crab curry, chili fish, coriander, vindaye Poisson, fried squid, lobsters, and vindaye ourite. What’s more, you can order your seafood grilled, fried, baked, or salted.
This is another street dish you’ll find along Mauritian streets. It’s a noodle fried in soy sauce and topped with fried onions and chili. As such, if you are a fan of Chinese cuisine, then you’ll definitely love mine frites.
Without a doubt, Dholl puri tops the list of Mauritian street food. If they had a national dish, this would be it. It is a thin white bread stuffed in-ground peas and served alongside curries, chutney, and pickle.
Would you like to learn how to make your own Dholl puri? The video below will take you through a step-by-step Dholl puri recipe.
This dish resembles the Indian flatbread, better known as paratha. Tradition has it that immigrants from India did not have the right ingredients to make bread. So, they substituted it with Dholl puri.
Chutney is an Indian sauce, eaten together with Idlis in South India. When you order a chutney on this island, it’s usually complemented by a spicy curry.
Why is the Mauritian coconut chutney a people’s favorite? It’s zingy, fresh-tasting, and flavored with coconut. Coconut is a special ingredient on this island.
Are you a sweet-toothed tourist? You should try out Mithai when you visit Mauritius. This dish has its roots in India and is sweet and buttery.
I’d advise you to look for this dish at Bombay Sweets Mart in Port Louis. Here, an assistant lets you taste about 30 different types to help you decide the one you like best.
Are you a fan of vegetable salads? This dish is made up of vegetables. The main ingredients are cabbage, fried chilies, carrots, and French beans.
This is the Mauritian version of Indian paratha. It’s a delicious flatbread served with curry or chutney and has a little dough and butter. You’ll find it mostly in street stalls or alongside Indian restaurants.
Biryani is another Indian dish, almost identical to Hyderabadi Biryani. It is Basmati rice, a mix of spices and yogurt. Potatoes are also included at the bottom to prevent burning and keep rice from sticking to the cooking vessel.
Palm Heart Salad
Better known as “Millionaire’s salad,” this salad gets its main ingredient from palm trees (seven-year-old palm trees produce the best palm hearts). A palm heart is the inner growing bud of a palm tree. Mauritius being an island, these trees are widespread along with its coastal areas.
This salad is either cooked or eaten raw and seasoned with salt and pepper. The salad goes well with smoked marlin and other delicacies.
Is It Safe for Tourists to Eat the Food in Mauritius?
Mauritian food is safe for everyone to eat, including tourists. The Mauritian government has set measures to control the safety and hygiene of food. The measures regulate the handling, preparation, and storage of food. However, it would help if you practiced proper food safety and hand hygiene to avoid eating contaminated food. This is according to the International Association for Medical Assistance to Travellers (IAMAT).
Eating contaminated food can lead to a host of stomach problems and infections. I have put together and shared food safety precautions that have worked for me over the years.
With these, it should be safe for you to eat the food in Mauritius.
- Avoid undercooked foods.
- Always wash unpeeled fruits and vegetables.
- Do not consume unrefrigerated or uncovered food that has stayed for a long time.
- Steer clear of unpasteurized dairy products.
- Wash or sanitize your hands before handling food and after visiting the bathroom. I recommend always having a bottle of my favorite hand sanitizer. It dries fast and eliminates 99.9% germs and bacteria, which is necessary to bring along your travel to avoid food poisoning.
Where to Eat the Best Mauritian Food
Mauritius being an island, fish and seafood, is the centerpiece of Mauritian cuisine. White rice, on the other hand, is their main food, especially for lunch and dinner.
What makes Mauritian food so delicious? The addition of spices, tasty local greens, curries, and the island’s famous creole sauce. Also, almost every meal comes with chili.
Don’t you like hot food? Just say ‘pah fo’ which means ‘not hot’ in creole.
When you visit Mauritius, try to eat somewhere else than your resort. To get the authentic experience of Mauritian cuisine, get out, and explore the island. So, where will you have your fill of food on the island?
- The streets.
- The markets- good examples include Port Louis Central Market, Rose Hill Market, and Flacq Market.
- Restaurants and local eateries.
- Along beach roads and stalls located along the beach.
- China town- for Chinese-influence dishes.
Water in Mauritius
Water-borne illnesses can occur in any country you visit. Mauritius is no different. Taking precautions is the outright step to take when you visit Mauritius. Like I mentioned before, tap water in Mauritius is safe for drinking since it is treated (provided by the Mauritius Central Water Authority (CWA). And with a good quality water bottle, you can keep refilling your bottle at no extra cost.
Nevertheless, other factors can also lead to contamination of water in the country. Besides cyclones, worn-out pipes, floods, and unsafe water storage can pollute water.
If you are unsure of the water’s safety in your location, drink boiled, filtered, or treated water.
What Else to Drink in Mauritius?
Despite being safe to drink the water in Mauritius, you will need other things to drink. Mauritius Island is warm all year round, so you better have varieties of drinks to fight off the heat. Here is what you can drink besides water in Mauritius
Fresh Coconut Water
It’s a delicious coconut drink sold by vendors on the streets and along the beaches of Mauritius. According to Healthline, coconut water provides many health benefits.
Don’t leave out the creamy coconut; ask for a spoon and feast on it!
One great drink in Mauritius is rum. Rum is produced by three distillers across the island. The distillers are in St.Aubin, Château Labourdonnais, and Rhumerie de Chamarel.
They produce rum in flavors like Kumquat, citrus fruit, spices, vanilla, and coffee. You can also opt to have rum sweetened or sour.
Bois Cheri Tea
Call it Mauritian chai if you like. Bois Cheri is an estate that grows black tea in Mauritius. This tea is then mixed with Ceylon tea and vanilla flavor to produce a tasty black vanilla tea.
While taking a tea factory tour, the best place to find this tea is at Bois Cheri café. It is also popular on Air Mauritius.
A variant of Indian Falooda, Alouda, is a sweet milky beverage. It is either pink or green in color and is flavored with syrup. It’s made by dissolving agar with basic leaves and milk.
If you want a taste of it, you’ll find it best in the Port Louis Food Market.
If you fancy relaxing over a bottle of beer, Mauritius is home to locally crafted beers. Phoenix Beverages is the largest and most famous brewery on the island. It is behind several beer varieties.
Other local brews to try are beers by Oxenham Craft Brewery and Flying Dodo Brewing Company.
Mauritian Cuisine is a combination of rich exotic flavors from various cultures. This makes it one of the best destinations to head to for a culinary adventure. That’s not all, set aside enough time to visit this island paradise of Mauritius, and you will have more than a food adventure to remember for a long time.