Mauritius has a very rich blend of the various cultures and traditions of its multiracial population. The diverse religions and ethnicity imply that there are several festivals and holidays lined up all year round.
Culture and Holidays
Visitors can participate in the Muslim Id el-Fitr usually held to mark the end of the Ramadan season, the Hindu festivals of Diwali held in late October and November, and Maha Shivaratri in February and March. There is also the celebration of the Chinese Spring Festival.
Others include the All Saints’ Day in November, celebrations in honour of Père Laval sometime in September, and Catholic’s observance of Christmas season in December. Also to be relished is the Tamil celebration of Thaipoosam Cavadee held around January or February, which is typified by walking on fire.
The national holiday observed by the whole country is on February 1st, to mark the Abolition of Slavery Day. Labour Day is observed on May 1st, and on November 2nd is the Arrival of Indentured Labourers Day. Finally, there is the Republic Day celebrated on March 12.
Institutions Dedicated to Arts and Culture
Voluntary associations are responsible for the promotion of interests in sciences, arts and letters, and the island has, over time, produced quite a number of famous poets and amazing novel writers. One of the most acclaimed local writers is Dev Virahsawmy, a playwright and poet.
Virahsawmy gracefully writes in both English and French and is famous for incredible efforts in popularizing the Creole language. Other notable works by him include his translation of a good number of Shakespeare’s works.
Mauritius is famous for the popular folk dance, “sega,” a rhythmic dance that dates back to the 18th century. It was slaves that first performed this style of dance.
Other cultural interests include the UNESCO World Heritage site, Le Morne Cultural Landscape, located on the southwest peninsula of the island, and the Port Louis site called Aapravasi Ghat.