Situated in the Mascarene Islands in the Indian Ocean, Mauritius was uninhabited until 1598. Despite Arab and Portuguese seamen visiting the island, the first settlers – the Dutch only managed a real colony in 1638 before leaving in 1710. The French took formal possession in 1715 before giving in to British capture in 1810.
Mauritius was named after the Dutch Prince Moritz Van Nassau. Arab sailors used an earlier name of Dina Robin, and Portuguese explorers would name it Isla de Cirné. When the French East India Company claimed the island back in 1715, they renamed it Ile De France, and British gave it back the name of Mauritius in 1810. The country gained independence in 1968 and is a Republic since 1992.
Mauritius is known for its white sandy beaches and dense vegetation. With warm weather throughout the year, it is one of the best places for diving and outdoor sports as well as enjoy its gastronomy and its wide range of leisure.Key Facts:
Capital: Port Louis
Population: 1.3 million including Rodrigues Island and Agalega Island.
Languages: English, French, Mauritian Creolle.
Time zone: GMT +4
Currency: Mauritian Rupee (MUR)
Airport: Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam International Airport
Area: 1865 km2
Coastline: 330 km