A sleepy little town on the east coast of gorgeous Mauritius, Trou d’Eau Douce is a delightful and authentic fishing village. You can watch the fishermen lay out their nets on the beach, or take one of the boat excursions to Île aux Cerfs, a stunning island famed for its spectacular beaches and wealth of water sports. Stretching north of Trou d’Eau Douce are some of the most beautiful and unspoilt beaches on the island, centred around Quatre Cocos. Beach-trekkers will be in heaven, as you can walk for miles along some of the most paradisiacal strands imaginable. And you can make day trips to charming colonial towns and elegant plantation houses.
Trou d’Eau Douce is a fantastic base on the beautiful east coast of Mauritius. A quiet and laid-back fishing village, you’ll see fishing boats pulled up onto the beach, with fishermen spreading out their nets on the sand. There’s a handful of restaurants and bars, and a welcoming, island vibe. It’s one of the main departure points for the Île aux Cerfs, one of the most popular excursions on Mauritius. Boats depart regularly for this magnificent island, which boasts a huge range of water sports, stunning beaches, and even an 18-hole golf course. You could also explore the magnificent, empty beaches of Quatre Cocos, just north of Trou d’Eau Douce.
There is a smattering of restaurants and cafés in Trou d’Eau Douce, which range from relaxed beachfront grills to extremely fancy eateries in the town’s smartest hotels. And, of course, the island offers some outstandingly good street food – everything from fresh pineapple or coconut, sold on the beach, to aubergine fritters and the ubiquitous dholl puris (flatbread filled with curry or other savoury fillings). The cuisine on Mauritius is incredibly varied, and reflects the influence of three continents: Asia, Africa and Europe. The seafood, unsurprisingly, is superb, but you’ll also find wonderful curries and rougaille (a Creole stew with tomatoes and meat or seafood). Chilli is served with everything, including fruit, so fans of spicy food will be in heaven!
Families in search of a relaxing holiday will have a fantastic time in Trou d’Eau Douce. The sleepy town has its own beach, which boasts calm, turquoise waters, where the kids will enjoy paddling or snorkelling. The best beaches stretch for several miles north of town around Quatre Cocos: blissfully wild and unspoilt, they have few facilities so remember to bring a parasol, food and drink. You will definitely want to make a boat excursion to Île aux Cerfs: there is a choice of boats, including glass-bottomed boats, catamarans and even a pirate ship! Île aux Cerfs is a breathtakingly beautiful island in a lagoon which is home to some of the world’s best beaches, and offers fantastic opportunities for snorkelling and diving around the coral reefs.
Action & Adventure
The island of Île aux Cerfs, which sits in a spectacular lagoon just off Trou d’Eau Douce, is a major centre for water sports. Snorkelling and diving are the two main activities, thanks to the stunning coral reefs which support a wealthy of colourful marine life. There are several local suppliers offering excursions to the island, and most also feature a stop at the Grand River South East to see the waterfalls, plus a visit to some of the snorkelling spots which are inaccessible except by boat. You can take part in dozens of other water sports on Île aux Cerfs, including paddle boarding, wind-surfing and parasailing.
The beach in Trou d’Eau Douce is a lovely stretch of golden sand, dotted with fishermen’s boats. The calm and shallow water is an intense blue. It’s the main departure point for boat excursions to the Île aux Cerfs (‘Deer Island’). The Île aux Cerfs sits in the largest lagoon in Mauritius and is famed for its stunning beaches, which boast dazzling white sands, azure waters, and luxuriant vegetation. Unsurprisingly, they are regularly voted among the finest in the world. A whole host of water sports is available on the Île aux Cerfs, but it is particularly well known for snorkelling and diving. The beautiful coral reef supports a colourful profusion of aquatic life. The magnificent Quatre Cocos beaches stretch north of Trou d’Eau Douce, and are some of the most spectacular and unspoilt to be found on Mauritius.
There is little in the way of nightlife in Trou d’Eau Douce, which exudes a laid-back island charm. You can enjoy drinks at the town’s inviting and atmospheric restaurants, many of which enjoy fabulous sea views, but you won’t find big bars or clubs. There are a couple of elegant resort hotels, where you can dress up and enjoy cocktails in glamorous surroundings: occasionally, they host special events, such as live gigs or DJ sessions. But in general, the thing to do in Trou d’Eau Douce is simply kick back, and enjoy the balmy evenings with a glass of the local rum or beer in hand.
Trou d’Eau Douce is an appealing and authentic fishing village, ideal for a relaxing and romantic holiday. It has its own charming beach, with fishing boats pulled up onto the strands, but walk north to find the best and most secluded beaches near Quatre Cocos. These have few facilities, but you could pack a picnic to enjoy an intimate and romantic lunch in your own little patch of paradise. You could take a boat tour to the spectacular island of Île aux Cerfs, where the white-sand beaches backed by luxuriant vegetation are regularly voted the world’s most beautiful – the setting simply couldn’t be more romantic! In the evenings, you can linger over a candlelit dinner at a beachfront restaurant.
There are several fine cultural sights that can be visited in an enjoyable day trip from Trou d’Eau Douce. Vieux Grand Port and Mahébourg, two of the most historic towns on the island, are about a 45-minute drive away, and are full of interesting colonial architecture. Vieux Grand Port is where Dutch sailors landed in 1598, becoming the first human inhabitants of Mauritius. They built a fort in what is now the town of Vieux Grand Port, which became the headquarters of the Dutch East India Company until the early 18th century, when the Dutch left the island and the French took over. Mahébourg, now a bustling port, is one of the oldest settlements on the island, and is full of elegant colonial architecture. Eureka, one of the finest plantation houses on Mauritius is also about 45 minutes away, and is now a fascinating museum set in gorgeous gardens.