Are you guilty of making your friends and family envious with your fabulous Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, and Snapchat posts of your incredible Mauritian vacation? We suspect that your answer was a solid “yes”. How can you make it up to them, you ask? By bringing back an authentic and thoughtful souvenir of Mauritius, of course. And while you’re at it, why not bring one back for yourself too?
Souvenir shopping while on vacation can be difficult. After all, with such a multitude of options, which are the best Mauritian souvenirs to bring back for your friends and family? How do you know which souvenirs are authentic, as opposed to being mass-produced in another country? To make your task easier, we’ve compiled a list of our favourite Mauritian souvenirs to help you out. Before you go all out on your souvenir shopping spree, remember to check out the customs restrictions that apply to your particular destinations.
With an abundance of delicious tropical fruits on the island, it’s no surprise that Mauritius has some amazing tropical jams that you can bring back. You’ll most likely get to taste a variety at breakfast during your stay, so you may already have your favourite, but we highly recommend the pineapple and guava jams that are a hit with the locals.
Mauritian Rum / Rhum
We’re big fans of Mauritian rums and rhums. If you’re not sure what the difference is, we will address it in a future blog post. But in the meantime, we highly recommend that you visit one of the many distilleries in Mauritius to find out and sample the different options available. Visiting a rhumerie also gives you the opportunity to sample the various rums, so you can pick the one(s) that you think you and your loved ones will like the best. Our favorite? We are all about the flavored rum, also known as rum arrangé.
Mauritian Sega CDs
It’s a fact that all Mauritians love séga music, and we are known to gently coax tourists into joining us while we enjoy some traditional dancing, be it at a spontaneous beach gathering or at a restaurant. Bring back that joie de vivre and those rhythmic beats with you by purchasing authentic Mauritian CDs. In doing so, you will also be supporting local Mauritian talent.
Mauritian Chili Paste – Piment Crasé
I call it the “Mauritian ketchup”. We put that stuff on everything, and I mean EVERYTHING! Served as an accompaniment to all meals, Mauritians have come up with many unique recipes that are sure to please lovers of all things hot and spicy.
Mauritian Spices or Spice Blends
Mauritian food is delicious, and you can continue to indulge in this fantastic fusion cuisine when you are back home too. Instead of purchasing individual spices from the markets, we recommend buying spice packs or blends from the supermarket. Made locally, they are available for a variety of dishes such as Kalia, Briyani, Salmi, etc.
These sweet treats are a Mauritian favourite. You can buy them from small patisseries all over the island and in supermarkets. They are essentially two shortbread cookies filled with jam sandwiched in between with a sweet glaze. If they don’t make it past the plane ride, we also have a recipe to wow your friends and family.
Bois Cheri Tea
Mauritians love tea, especially the Bois Cheri vanilla flavoured tea. We drink it in the morning with breakfast and enjoy it at regular intervals throughout the day. Tea makes for an excellent souvenir from Mauritius since even boxes of them are light to carry in a suitcase or carry-on.
Sarongs or “Pareo”
In Mauritius, we call sarongs pareos, and you can find them for sale everywhere: on the beaches, in markets, and supermarkets. They come in many different colours and patterns, many with Mauritius related prints such as the famous dodo or map of Mauritius. They are very inexpensive and can be used for any beach vacations that you have planned in the future.
Let your bookworm friends discover our island, its history, and daily life through Mauritian novels such as “Paul et Virginie” by French author Bernardin de Saint Pierre. For fans of photography, you’ll find a variety of coffee table books to bring back, and foodies will delight in the many Mauritian cookbooks filled with traditional Mauritian recipes.
If your friends love to bake, they will love a gift of the various kinds of specialty sugar available on the island. You can sample and buy them following your visit of the Sugar Museum, or you can purchase them from a local market or supermarket.
What is your favourite souvenir of Mauritius? Tell us by commenting below.