Port Louis

Port Louis market

One of the major attractions of the capital is the market, established over 160 years ago. This has recently been moved indoors and is a must for any tourist. You can buy snacks as you go round such as faratas (thin pancakes with a layer of saucy sauce), badjahs (pieces of fried dough), and samosas. When it comes to buying goods at the stalls, negotiating over prices is very much expected, but not at the “fast food” carts.

The racecourse

Called the “Champ de Mars”, this is not only Port Louis’ racecourse, but is the island’s only racecourse. It is said to be the second oldest course in the world and dates back to 1812. Mauritius has very few racehorses and most of those that race are imported from South Africa. Of course the Chinese are keen gamblers and perhaps for good luck they have one of their three Port Louis temples here: it is called the Lam Soon Temple and incense can be smelt from some way off.

Postal Museum

Mauritius became the fifth country in the world to use postage stamps when they were introduced in 1854 and there is a very good exhibition at the museum in Port Louis. The stamps Red Penny and Blue Penny are very rare and consequently valuable.

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