keskiviikko 7. toukokuuta 2014

Vanhat reissut - tekstit tuotu aikaisemmasta matkablogista... osa 3 MAURITIUS AND RODRIGUES 2010

KITESURF & DIVE TRIP TO MAURITIUS & RODRIGUES 21.6. - 5.7.2010
This was pure ex-tempore trip as we decided our destination just about week before departure. It was not easy to decide where to go as it was not easy to find a “perfect” place for this kind of holiday. To have good wind, beautiful beach, flat water (as we wanted to learn new tricks and jumps), good diving opportunities and also everything with reasonable price. But after spending hours and hours in the internet, the "final four" destinations were: Mauritius, Los Roques (Venezuela), Aruba and Mombasa (Kenya). After putting + and - things of each place, checking the prices, wind forecasts and contacting kitescenters in each destination, we finally decided to go to Mauritius. And actually it was our first option, when we started to think where to go this summer. It wasn't the perfect option either but as we got the flights with good price, we decided to go.
We book everything with the very last moment but no problem with anything as it's not the high season in Mauritius. Hotels for the first 4 nights we book through from www.hotels.com and decided to stay in the east coast, at the Palmeraie/Palmar beach. In the kitebeaches.com they say, that it's one of the best beaches with flat water so it was the main reason for deciding that place. Hotel for the first 4 nights was La Palmeraie and price of 100€ /room / night  with halfboard was quite good to be a **** hotel.  Nothing luxurius but good standard and the best thing was the location directly on the beach and even kitecenter located next to the hotel.
The prices of the flights we were comparing a lot, trying to find the most economical way to travel with a kitebag and without too many stops. We knew it's going to be a long trip, as we had to travel from Fuerteventura (Canary islands) to Mauritius, stopping in Madrid and also some other place in Europe as there are no direct flights from Spain to Mauritius. Basicly options were through London (British airways), Paris (Air France and  Air Mauritius ), Frankfurt (Condor) and Milan (Air mauritius and Meridiana). As it was little bit "stupid" to flight first to the north and then fly back to the south, we considered Milan as the best option and it's also very well connected with Madrid.
Air Mauritius had a good offer from Milan (direct flight), just 520 € / person but unfortunately we were too slow and the price was higher in the moment when we decided to book it. And also because of the waiting, we lost the flights to Rodrigues island where we wanted to go directly after arriving to Mauritius. But as there is mainly only one flight per day and with very small plane, this can happen... So, it was time for plan B which was instead of going directly to Rodrigues, we would stay some days in Mauritius. And so we managed to book the tickets to Rodrigues 26.6. after spending 4 nights in Mauritius. 
At the end, the cheapest option was to buy Easyjet tickets Madrid-Milan-Madrid, just 100 € / person and 25 € / way for the kitebag. (by the way, be careful.. booking the kitebag with Easyjet, you only buy one extra bag and 12 kg more. But at least we didn't had any problems and they didn't even checked the weight of the kitebag but can happen..) The flights from Milan to Mauritius we booked through Meridiana and was only 490 € / person. But for the kitebag we had to pay 100 € / way extra, but no problems at the check-in with the bags or kilos. The reason for the cheap price was probably the stop in Rome on a way to Mauritius, which we had to do. But at the end it was not bad, even we waited almost 2 hours in the plane. But the plane was not full so we got 4 seats for us and we managed to spend the overnight flight sleeping and relaxing. Flight back was directly to Milan.






day 1.  The trip starts: Mauritius - here we come!!!
After arriving to Mauritius airport, the representative of Alphacar was waiting for us, as agreed. We booked the cheapest car that we could find, Huyndai Atos for 4 days with 125 €. Very small but totally still totally enough to put all our things – 2 normal bags, 1 big kitebag and small handluggage
The tricky thing of the car rental is that driving is on the left side!! If you don't have experience for that, be ready to drive extra, extra carefully. As the traffic is quite disaster there, you need to watch out, not only the other cars but also the dogs and cows, people walking or bicycling in the middle of the street, motorbikes etc. But it's ok after you get used to it and it's also easy way to move around. And good way to see the normal life, as you are passing by all the small villages. You probably need to ask help from the locals few times on your way as the roads are not very well signed and there can be many signs in one crossroad to go to one direction – it's more or less good luck if you choose the correct one. But going without no hurries, it's not so bad..It took about 1.5 hrs to drive from the airport to  the Palmeraie/Palmar beach, even making few mistakes.. but was nice drive and part of the road was following just the east coast of the island.. 


Hotel  Le Palmeraie was very nice – small and quiet atmosphere and rooms nicely decorated and quite spacious. We got the room with the view to the parking place but it was ok as the plan was not the spend time in the hotel room. Most of the nights we had buffet dinner with different kind of themes like Mauritius buffet, indian buffet, mediterranean buffet, chinese buffett etc. But sometimes the dinner can be also menu, like we had the first  night. Food was delicious and portions big enough. Drinks we had to pay separately and bottle of water was 2€, glass of beer 3 € and glass of redwine 5 €. Also the lunch menu in the poolbar was very good, we had one of the best hamburgers of our life there.


Day 2 – wind or no wind?
After sleeping very well and getting energies from the good breakfast, it was time to go to check the situation. How is the beach, is there any wind etc. Unfortunately it was not windy enough and the forecast was not very good either, so it was time to make plan B. It was too late for diving already so the options were beach and snorkkeling or sightseeing. We decided to make most of the time and to go to see other beaches of the island and at the same time we could drive around the whole north-east coast of the island.
We started following the east coast to the north from the Palmeraie beach, first stop being just hundred meters north. Basicly Palmeraie and the next beach Palmar / Belle Mare is just one big lagoon and you can ride from the beach to another. Just be careful when changing the beach, as the are few rocks on the shore and appear especially on the low tide. And be also careful with the swimmers and boats, which are doing water skiing and other activities. Beach here is quite narrow and there are trees close, so be careful when launching and landing the kite. But anyway good place to do kite and not many people.  


Next was was Cocobeach, maybe 5 min driving to the north. It was not the easy to find, as there was no sign of the public beach on the road, just narrow alley going towards the beach. But the beach seemed to be quite nice, lagoon had a good size and reef protecting from the big waves. Seemed like very quiet place so could be good for kiting, even there was few boats in anchor. Beach was quite narrow but good enough for launching and landing. Following the coast about 10 min more, we arrived to Poste Lafayette, which was a big bay appr. 2.5 km wide. The entrance to the beach is from the north part of the bay. Here was actually some locals kiteing and seemed like a nice spot and beach is more wide here so launching and landing should be easy here. But wind was and normally is south-east, so totally onshore. Anyway, another good spot for kiting and just short distance from the hotel.
Poste Lafayette beach:

Next we tried to find access to Roches Noires but it was totally impossible to find a place to enter as the whole coast is full of private houses. It's a shame because lagoon in front is very wide so would be perfect for kiteing. There is also public beach but not suitable for kiteing.
After this we decided to head to the north, where is the biggest resort of the island, Grand Baie. During winter months the winds don't enter here so probably this is the reason why most of hotels are located here as most of the tourist don't go for a holiday following the winds... Place seemed to be quite nice though, more restaurants, some shops and big supermarket. There are also few kitespots around, for example Mont Choisy, about 10 min drive to the west from the center of Grand Baie. Now totally flat and no wind at all, but with northeast wind could be nice place to ride.
From the north it was time to head back to the hotel after late lunch as it gets dark very early at this time of the year (around 18 o'clock is totally dark already and there are no lights on the smaller roads). After seeing the whole east and north coast, it was interesting to drive back through the inland. Small villages, local life and a lot of sugarcane fields. 


Interesting day but also hard, as driving here takes a lot of energy. Roads are very narrow, traffic totally disaster, especially in the villages where people are walking, biking and driving without any rules. Cars are parked in the middle of the road, dogs running around and basically anything can happen so you need to be 100 % careful all the time. But renting a car is quite cheap here so it's a good option for those, who want to go around with own plans and timetable. It's also possible to rent a taxi for the whole day and it's not difficult to organize it and prices are quite ok. And definitely spending one day seeing all the nice kitebeaches, is good option for the days without wind.

Day 3 – finally wind and kiteing
Already early in the morning it was possible to hear the beautiful sound of wind that was knocking the windows. So, quick breakfast and to the beach!! The team of the Kitesurf Paradise -Center was already at the beach putting their gear ready so we joined the group. We got very good advices from Maude and Jerome, who are running the kiteschool here at the Palmeraie beach. As the lagoons can be tricky with corals, currents etc so it's good to get some tips from the locals about the place.
Palmeraie/Palmar beach is very good place for kiteing. Not only for experienced kiters but it's good for the beginners too as there is enough space to go downwind and walk up again so lot of space to practise and not many kiters in the water.  The lagoon here is not very wide but it's long and actually there is the whole area from the south of the Palmeraie until many km to the north, so you ride down and back up again. Reef is protecting from most of the waves, just some choppy inside of the lagoon. Going outside of the lagoon is really not a wise idea here..  
Palmeraie/Palmar beach, just in front of the Palmeraie hotel 


Launching and landind was ok, even there are some trees close to the water but still enough space to do it safely. We had very nice session of kiteing, good wind from the southeast,which is perfect cross-onshore here. Later in the afternoon it got cloudy and after 15 o'clock started to arrive very dark clouds so it was time to go out very quickly. As this time of the year clouds always mean rain, heavy rain. We tried to be very fast but unfortunately the storm came incredibly fast. But luckily we managed to get back to the beach before wind dropped totally. It was actually good lesson about the local weather - first you see some dark clouds in the horizon, then wind get stronger and when the first drops are falling, it's time to get out because rains stopps the wind totally. And this can happen very quickly. Normally the showers are quite short  but this seemed to be longer one so it was time to pack things and go back to the hotel. Luckily our hotel was just next to the spot so it was a pleasure to walk one minute and be in a hotelroom already. And like we were guessing, the storm was quite strong and lasted the whole evening and night.
day 4 – downwind excursion
Day started very well as it was quite windy, so we pack all the things and drived just 5 min south to the next village, Trou d'Eau Douche. From there departs many boats to the famous Ile des auxCerf -islands. It's actually like two islands, just small channel between them. But with the low tide it`s possible to walk from the island to the other. Unfortunately kiting is not possible there, as it's protected from the wind and it's also very exploited by tourists. But the lagoon behind the island is incredibly big, you can kite kilometers following the reef and the water is very flat. And there is nobody else! 

But to kite here, the only possibility is to make a kitetrip with a local kiteclub, like we did. First we got a nice drive through the islands and mangrove trees and after 20 min you will arrive to the small beach where it's possible to set up your equipment and launch. In here you need to have some skills because from the beach is necessary to ride little bit upwind. If you go down, you will end up next to mangrove forest and there are quite nasty fishes swimming around.. so, if you end up there, don't put your feet on the bottom!! And generally this is always a good advise here, as there can be corals on the bottom or rockfishes (which are very, very poisonous). So, what ever happens, don't put your feet on the bottom.
Unfortunately we were not very lucky with the wind as it dropped immediately when we arrived to the island. And we didn't take our biggest kite with us, as there was supposed to be very good wind. So, after fighting about 30 min we had to give up and the kitecenter boat came to pick us from the lagoon as it was impossible to ride back to the beach. This is the reason why it's necessary to go there with a rescue boat around. If the wind drops in the middle of the lagoon, it's a long way to swim back.. 
Luckily the owners of the kitecenter were kind and went to pick up our bigger 12m kite from the shore meanwhile we were having a picnic at the beach. With the 12m kite and 10 m kite we managed to finish our excursion and we did a downwind session from the ile des aux Cerf -islands back to the Trou d'Eau Douche. The boat of the kitecenter followed us the whole way but there was no need for the rescue this time, although the wind was not very good. It was nice excursion but would had been even nicer if the wind had been better but for that we cannot do anything. At least we managed to do something – better a bad day of kiteing and no kiteing at all :-)
               
It's really highly recommended to do at least one downwind session here on the east coast because it's very unique experience. Price for this trip was 50 € / person and included the picnic, we booked it through www. mauritius-kitesurf.com (kitesurf paradise center).
day 5 – Rodrigues calling...
After spending 4 nights and 3 full days in Mauritius, it was time to change the island. After reading many articles about the Rodrigues island, it was a definitely place that we had to see. In all the articles it's called like a paradise of kitesurfing, with a huge lagoon around the island and very good wind conditions. The map of the place were just too amazing to be true – we had to go and see it. 


We booked the flight in advance through internet as it's not very well connected place – basically just one or sometimes two flights / day from Mauritius and not even every day.. so, it's good to book the seats in advance. Price was 180 € / person. You cannot book sport equipment in advance and they don't even promise that will fit on the plane... So, be careful... For us they told first that our kitebag will be on standby, which means that they will take it if there is place but if not, will come with some other flight and maybe not even the same day. But after explaining who long trip we have done to come until Mauritius and this has been our dream etc. they promised that we can take it with us even the flight was fully booked. Charge for the extra kilos are 1 € / kg, so quite reasonable.
Hotel we booked through www.holidays-rodrigues.travel,  as they had the cheapest price for the Mourouk Ebony – hotel, 100 €/ night. As the island is still very original and not touristic at all, there are not many hotels available. Basically just one hotel in the south (Mourouk Ebony), one hotel in the east (Cotton bay) and few hotels in the north. The only good ones for kiteing are Mourouk and Cotton bay and both hotels has also kite centers.

View from the pool area of Mourouk Ebony- hotel:

We decided to be in the south, as the lagoon is the biggest there. And it's huge – from the beach you can kite kilometers in the blue flat water... Incredible place!! We were totally impressed when landing to the island, the lagoon around the island was maybe 2-3 bigger than the whole island. It took about 20-30 min to drive from the airport to the hotel and we booked the transfer already with the hotel reservation. The location of the hotel is the best – Osmosis Kitecenter at the beach and the big lagoon just in front of you. What else can you wish for? Ok, the wind... of course... But it was supposed to be the best time of the year and wind forecast very good so we were totally in love with the place after arriving. It was already late for kiteing but we had 4 days in the paradise in front of us!!
Osmosis kitecenter in the Mourouk Ebony -hotel 



day 6  – first day in Rodrigues
After a very good sleep (this is really a place to relax – no tv in the rooms, no bars around, no music or other noise, actually nothing at all around... just the sounds of the nature) we woke up with full of energy and our minds ready for the kiting. Seemed like windy day already in the morning so we had all the hope in the world that later will be more and we will have a perfect session in the kiteparadise. We pumped the kites, put everything ready and started to wait the wind to rise. And we waited. And we waited more.. What happened here, no wind at all??? Well, maybe will rise in the afternoon, with the high tide. So, lunch in the beach bar and more waiting... But no wind, not at all. So, at 16 o'clock we put the our gear in the storage and took the kayaks that hotel offered for free. At least to do something, so 45 min kayaking around the lagoon testings the currents and back to the room. Well, forecast for the next days is better so tomorrow there should be good wind.

Day 7 – day two in Rodrigues and still no wind
Unfortunately the morning didn't looked very good, no wind at all... And the locals said that will not be until the afternoon – so time to make plan B. We booked a dive with the Bouba -diving center, which was located in our hotel and departed for a dive at 11 o'clock. Very nice, at least we could do something this morning and not just wait at the beach. Even it's not the best time for diving, it was nice to go diving and we managed to see some corals and fishes during our 50 min dive outside of the reef. First plan was to dive inside, in the channel that is in the middle of the lagoon but the sea was very rough and visibility was not very good so we went outside of the reef, about 200 m out from the entrance of the lagoon. Kiting here is not a very good idea, even the waves looked very nice. But the current is very strong and takes you very easily outside and coming back inside of the reef is not so easy... So, seeing the reef by diving was better idea. Visibility was not very good here either and we didn't see anything special but anyway it was nice experience. Price was about 45 € / person, including the equipment. There are lot of place for diving around the island but the summer season is the best here as the sea is warmer and not so strong.


Diving places around Mourouk Ebony- hotel

Unfortunately the wind was not any better when we arrived back from the dive so we had to decide what to do. As the forecast was ok for the afternoon, we didn't want to miss the opportunity of kiting so instead of going for a excursion, we decided to wait in the hotel if the wind would rise. But at the end it wasn´t very good decision.. Wind didn't rise so we spent the whole afternoon waiting for nothing... But luckily the beach is nice so you can always relax doing anything special but anyway, it's a good idea to take some good books with you or laptop with films or something to do as there is no tv in the rooms, internet of the hotel is very, very slow and there are not many things to do here. 
Well, luckily the forecast promised very good wind for the  next days so hopefully two good days of kiting still in front. 
Day 8 – Finally kiting and what a day!!!
The forecast for the day was strong, 25-30 knots but at the end it was beautiful 20 knots the whole day. Some moments maybe even stronger but anyway from the morning until the evening gooood wind and during the day we had three nice sessions of kiteing. This is the reason to come here...

The lagoon in incredibly big and in the busiest moment there was 10 people in the water. So, you have all the space in the world to do kite, learn new tricks and jumps etc. The place is not maybe the best for learning as there are some boats near the shore but depending of the wind direction, can be good also. Now wind was cross-onshore and the current makes it little bit harder for the beginners to go upwind but otherwise it's very nice place to learn and specially improve your skills. The kite center also organize downwind sessions which can be useful if you are still learning. 
In the morning we had low tide but still there was enough water to kite without any problem. There are places with coral in the bottom of the sea, so as always in the lagoon be careful not to touch the bottom if you loose your board or your kite is going to the water.
The area in front of the hotel is very big and you can ride from the reef until the Hermitage-island without no problem. Further away there is a channel where the water goes out from the lagoon so the current there is taking you out – be careful, especially closer to the reef because the current can take you out very quickly and rescue is not always possible... Crossing the channel is possible but after that you are on your own risk as the kite centers rescue area covers only the area until the channel.

Price for the rescue/storage/help is 7 € per day or 21 € per week. There is storage room where you can leave your kites (not inflated) and other material during the night, there is also compression pump available to inflate the kites. Center is renting equipment just for the people who are attending a course so you should bring your own kites and boards with you.
For the kiting this place is a paradise – beach just in front of the hotel, nice beach bar offering  lunch or snack during the day, kite center located in the hotel to have lessons or to do excursions and, when there is wind, the wind is good. Normally at this time of the year wind comes in cycles, depending of the low and high pressures. When the wind starts, it can blow perfectly one week. But maybe later will be days without wind until the it starts again. But anyway, the wind % is quite high at this time of the year. And kiting here is so good that even with just this one day of kiting, it was definitely worth to come.
Day 9 – and the wind blows and blows even more..
Starting from the early morning it was clear  that will be another good day of kiting – wind was even stronger than yesterday. So, 7m and 10 m ready and kiting!!  In the morning sea was more flat as it was still low tide but during the day, it got more choppy as the high tide brought more water inside of the lagoon and wind was strong enough to create small waves. But was just nice – I managed to do my first jumps (small but a jump anyway) and Jesus was taking his first wave-excursion in the afternoon. There is a nice spot called "skatepark" at the north part of the lagoon where you can go riding and there are nice waves when the tide is good. Waves are clean and you can choose where you want to enter, so bigger for more experienced riders and smaller for the beginners. But it's good to go there with the center as there are some tricky places, currents and channels outside,  that you may not see, etc so it's good to know where you can go and what you can do. Beside the waves, there is totally flat water so perfect place for all kind of playing.

Another perfect day of kiting and after these 2 days, we were ready to stay here for longer time. But we had flight back to Mauritius booked already and we couldn't change it, so it was time to pack the things and change the destination again. Unfortunately we booked the tickets through agency, not directly from air Mauritius, so we should had called to the agency to change our flight and was too difficult and also calling very expensive. But if you book your ticket directly from Air Mauritius, it's not a problem to change your ticket – just have to pay small fee to do that.
And where to go now??  We didn't had any hotel booked in Mauritius so the evening we spent in the internet checking the options and trying to decide where to go. And it was not easy!!! It was very tempting idea to return back to  the Palmeraie/Palmar beach, where we stayed at the beginning, as the hotel was very nice with very good price and in front of the hotel was very nice spot for kiteing. But on the other way we were curious to see the Bluebay / Point d'esny area, which we saw from the airplane when departing to Rodrigues.

Bluebay is one of the biggest lagoons in Mauritius and looked like a paradise. But we couldn't find much information about the kiting there so it was little bit risky – maybe it's not very good for the kiting at the end.. So, instead of booking a hotel for the last 4 days, we just booked for one night. Then later we could book more nights, if the kiting is good there or if not, then we could change the place after one night. It was also good option because it's just few minutes from the airport.

It was little bit sad to leave Rodrigues as the kiting was so epic there but on the other way it was interesting to see other places also – to make this report more complete...
day 10 – back to Mauritius and checking the Bluebay-Point d'esny area
We had flight in the morning at 9.40 but as the airport is very small and not busy at all, we departed to the airport just 1h 15 min before departure. It takes about 30 min to drive from Mourouk to the airport and it was nice to see the local life in the villages that we were passing. Unfortunately we didn't had time to do any excursions around the island but now we have a reason to come back - still something to see..  At the airport we didn't had any problems with the boardbag as there was only 11 passengers in the plane :-)

Taxi from the airport to Blue lagoon hotel (only bigger hotel in the Bluebay-Point d'esny area) was about 20 euros. Inmeadiately after arriving we went to check the beach and wind, hoping to go kiting later in the afternoon.
Bluebay lagoon in front of the hotel:



In front of the hotel it was not possible to kite so we walked more north following the beach. There was few places where it would be possible to enter but with the high tide the beach is very narrow so you have to be careful when launching and landing the kite as most of the time wind is onshore here and there are trees are around. It's also quite long way from the hotel to walk with all the equipment but there are no other places to enter to the beach. So, you just have to walk by the beach about 5-15 minutes until you are on the good spot.

When we finally got everything kites ready, the wind was not strong enough anymore and at the end we couldn't enter. So, deflating the kites and again walking the 15 min back to the hotel. And time to make some decisions... As this was not the best place (too much walking, no other kiters around, onshore wind) we decided to find another place for the last 3 nights. And of course the direction was Le Morne, the famous kitespot of Mauritius. So, again to the internet – first to check the forecast and then to find a hotel. There are mainly just 4 or 5 star hotels in the peninsula of Le Morne so staying close to the kitebeach is not cheap. The cheapest option that we found, was 220 € / night in Indian Resort and spa- hotel, which is located in the best possible place: the spot just in front of the hotel. Expensive but location was the essential thing.. and it was also nice to spend the last 3 nights in a good hotel and even with the all inclusive (which we normally never use). The reservation we made directly from the hotel webpage. 
There are cheaper options to stay but more further away and you will need a car or taxi to go to the beach. If you want to stay directly next to the spot, Indian Resort -hotel is the place to be. 
Day 11 – Le Morne
We took a taxi to Le Morne, it cost 40€ and took about 1.5 hrs. Luckily the hotel wasn't full so we got the room inmeadiately even it was only 11 o'clock in the morning. Room was just in front of the beach and we could already see kites in the water. Our room was on the first floor but maybe downstairs would had been better – easier access with the equipment from the room to the beach and back. And almost all the kiters of the hotel seemed to stay in downstairs and keep their kites and equipment drying outside during the night.



There is a Mistral and Skydivers kitecenters in the hotel and we went there first to get some advices and to get more information about the spot, as we had heard many stories about the place and the dangerous currents of the lagoon. But after talking with many people, we got the idea that it wasn't too dangerous. Just need to be careful in some places.
Le Morne kitearea:

Le Morne- kitelagoon for beginners:

So, things ready and kiteing.. We started just in front of the hotel, where the lagoon is not very wide but anyway still big enough. This wasn´t the busiest day as there wasn´t too many people in the water but we heard that it can get sometimes very crowded and somebody had counted about 150 kiters and windsurfers being in the water at the same time on busy day.. But there is more space upwind from the center as there is a bigger area called kitelagoon. That they use for teaching and for beginners it offers a safer place to practise too. So, close to the beach it's really busy as there are many different schools teaching but when you head more upwind, you have the whole lagoon just for yourself and there is plenty of space to ride upwind and enjoy the long rides. It's more shallow than the area in front of the hotel but still enough water to kite even with the low tide.

The wind in the kitelagoon is normally onshore and in front of Mistral central cross-on, but can be also cross-of or offshore, depending of the wind direction.There is good warning system at the beach and also rescue is depending of the conditions. So, always good to check the tide, currents, wind etc. from the kitecenter before heading to the water first time.



We had very nice afternoon session in the water but there is no rescue available after 17pm so it was good time to go out of the water. Although many people stayed in water until the sunset, which actually comes very early, around 18 pm. After that it's nice to relax and enjoy the buffet dinner of the hotel...
day 11 – Le Morne, diving day...
There is also good diving school in the hotel and as there was no wind in the morning, we decided to see underwaterworld of Le Morne. Unfortunately we missed the first dive, as it was already at 8.30 so we needed to wait until the second, which departed 11.45. We were heading north through the lagoon and the diving place was called Cathedrale, just outside of the reef. Very nice and beautiful dive, max. 16 meters and good visibility. Much better experience than diving in Rodrigues, where the visibility was very bad and current strong. But here diving was a big pleasure, even we didn't see any big fishes. But the reef was nice, a lot of life to follow. And after the dive we managed to see even whale swimming quite close to our boat. Would had been really incredible experience to see that during the dive..



It was already 13.30 when we came back from diving so time to go for lunch and later the plan was to have a short session of kiteing in the afternoon. But at last we were too tired after all the travelling, kiteing and diving, so decided to have relaxing afternoon in the hotel area and to do some souvenir shopping as we didn't had time for that earlier. There was just few shops in the hotel but when arriving to Le Morne, we saw few kiteshops about 30 min walk from the hotel. We went to check those and managed to buy some nice t-shirts (good quality, 10 € each) for the friends and family. 
day 12 – last day of the trip, last day of kiteing in Mauritius
Forecast for the day was quite good but didn't look very good in the morning. But as it was the last day of our trip, we wanted to make most of the day. So, at 9am we were already sitting in a taxi to do some seightseeing. There is place called La Chamarel, about 30 min drive from Le Morne and is nice place to visit. There is one viewpoint on a way  where you can take nice photos of the lagoon and Le Morne and up on the mountain you can visit some waterfalls and famous “coloured earth” of Mauritus.


We paid 15 euros for the taxidriver and it was about 2 hrs trip altogether. We didn't want to spend more time  as we wanted to do also some kiteing. Unfortunately the wind was quite gusty, changing between 9knots and 19 knots, so it made the thing little bit tricky. First trying with 7m but not enough, then 10m but not good either.. So, back to the beach and waiting for the better moment. Unfortunately there was some very dark clouds coming from the south and looked like it was going to rain later so was not much hope of kiteing.. At the end wind was rising just before the rain and there was good 30 min of kiteing. But that was all for that day. 

Even we couldn´t do so much kiting in Le Morne, it was nice and we were happy that we went there – definitely a place to visit. Not maybe to stay 2 weeks just there but we were really happy for the trip that we had done. Seeing many places around Mauritius and also Rodrigues, it was a complete trip. Not maybe us much of kiteing as we wanted but 5 days of 12 was not bad either. And also two dives during the trip and some sightseeing. Definitely a trip worth to do and a place to come back. 

Maybe next time doing the things little bit differently. We learned many things during this trip and maybe next time we will head directly to Rodrigue after arriving to Mauritius and would stay there for more time. And then maybe another week in Mauritius, either on the northeast coast or Le Morne, depending of the other people travelling with us. If just couples, then the Palmar area is very nice as the hotel Palmeraie was very nice, boutique-style hotel and perfect for the couples but not so good for families. Also the beach of Palmar is very good if there are beginners in the group, as the beach is quite long and not crowded at all. But if there area children and non-kiters going with the group, maybe then the Le Morne is better option as there are more things to do for the children and non-kiters (playground and childrens club, activities, excursions).

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