Tourists from around the world place Mauritius high on their bucket list for a tropical beach paradise escape, but did you know the island is also home to the stunning Black River Gorges National Park? Located in the southwestern part of the island, the park is recognized for its hilly terrain with dense forest, marshlands and a wealth of wildlife. So after lounging in the sun on the luxurious beaches of Mauritius, don’t feel like there’s nothing left to do but pack up and go home. Get your sturdy walking boots out and head over to Black River Gorges to see some of the wild side of the island. Here are the top reasons you should go.
You can see Mauritian flying foxes
Okay, so they’re not exactly foxes. These bats are known for their large size and have a wingspan of 80 cm. During the daytime, you can look up in trees to find these megabats dangling upside down from the branches having a “daycap.” But stick around at dusk if you want to watch them fly around and munch on fruit.
You can see incredible waterfalls
Looking for an idyllic spot to see waterfalls without being overrun with obnoxious tourists flashing their cameras? Then this park is the place to go. Various waterfalls of all sizes can be found throughout this park and nature lovers can literally walk across the top for a spectacular view.
It’s common to see low-lying rainbows
Whether it’s a full-circle rainbow or partial prism by the waterfall, tourists report seeing rainbows quite often in this park. Thanks to the hilly terrain, visitors can hike to the top of cliffs to look down at the rainbow. Yes, you heard us, look down.
There is a paved road for those who want the easy route
Some of us like to play it safe and not stray too far from the sidewalk. Lucky for us, Macchabee Trail is a 5.5 mile-long route through the wilderness and rivers. Locals love to come here to go for a run and get a dose of their nature fix.
It’s a haven for birdwatchers
Bring your binoculars with you, this is a paradise for birds (and birders). Expect to find colorful birds perching in trees and wistfully singing tunes. Types of birds you’ll find in the park are pink pigeons, parakeets, cuckoo shrike, Mauritius fody, kestrel and more.
There are herds of wild pigs rummaging through the forest
If you sense something isn’t kosher on your hike, it’s probably the nearby wild pigs you’ll find frolicking in the wilderness. Don’t worry, they won’t bother you if you leave them alone. And don’t forget to take photos so you can share your harrowing tale with your friends back at home about your encounter with the beast of the forest.
You can literally cross the river
Don’t take the bridge, instead hop on the large stones that make a perfect pathway across the river. This way, you can relive the old times of how the early people crossed rivers. Or, you can live in fantasy world and pretend you’re crossing the Bog of Stench.
You can get lost in a beautiful forest
Nature lovers are in awe of the odd-looking trees with tangled roots along with dozens of other types of flora found throughout the park. You’d be hard-pressed to find this many assortments of trees in one park on any other island.
Honestly, you need to see this view for yourself
Can you imagine a hike that ends with a victorious view like this? You’ll feel as if you’ve discovered a new world with no sign of anything touched by humans for miles. So do yourself a favor and book that trip right now, you’ll thank us later.
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