Wednesday 1st May 2019
Day 6 Mauritius
Today we were up early to go to breakfast. We met our friends Patrick and Alison, who live in Mauritius. We walked out from the ship and they picked us up one block away from the port. We were very excited to see them and also going out for the day. The weather was fine and warm this morning. Today was a public holiday in Mauritius (Labour Day) and many people were in the streets for the Labour Day March. Firstly, we drove across the city to a very large statue and memorial to the Virgin Mary, set on a hill overlooking the city (of Port Louis). This is to be the site for a visit by the Pope in a few weeks. We accidentally walked along a storm water drain and had to climb out at the other end......we then visited a Hindu temple, very beautiful, after which we went to see the race track, where horse racing is held most Saturdays. We then drove up the hill to the Citadel of Fort Adelaide, which was very overgrown with grass and unkempt and complete with a couple of small stray cats. Back through the city streets and then we drove to the Botanical Garden. It was quite delightful there and included a very old typical sugar cane plantation house as well as plants that were very old with a highlight being a very large pond full of giant water lilies. Amazing! After strolling through the gardens, we visited the Catholic Church of St Francis of Assisi and a nearby old cemetery. By this time there had been a number of short showers. We then drove to the far north of the island where we stopped for a quick lunch. We went to the northern most Point on Mauritius with its beautiful white sand beaches just like the brochures and then travelled back to the ship arriving with about 15 minutes to spare. Had a cup of coffee and (4) cake in the buffet, then a bit of a rest before the show which was opera singers. We had a chat with some friends before dinner and went to bed around 11:30pm. It was a very enjoyable day with our friends today - we learnt many things about Mauritius.