Mauritius officially the Republic of Mauritius is an island nation in the Indian Ocean, off the southeast coast of the African continent. The country includes the islands of Mauritius, Rodrigues, east of the principal island, the islands of Agaléga and Saint Brandon. The islands of Mauritius, Rodrigues and the French department of Réunion form part of the Mascarene Islands.
The Capital and largest city of this country is Port Louis.
Christmas Celebrations in Mauritius :
Mauritians celebrate Christmas in a lively tropical summery atmosphere under an often scorching the sun. This does not prevent Santa Claus from popping in with loads of presents for young and old. At this time of the year, the awesome flame trees are in bloom with their bright red fiery flowers. Tropical fruits like mangoes of all sizes, colours, shapes and flavours, pineapples, letchis and watermelons abound. Shopping centres sparkle with Christmas decorations, animations and shows attracting crowds during the day and on late night shopping.
Streets are invaded by hawkers selling Christmas cards, toys, balloons, firecrackers, gifts, clothes and a wide assortment of household items. The noise, heat, crowded streets and traffic jam can be unbearable in towns. It is also the holiday season for schools and the most exciting time for kids and teens. On Christmas Eve, we set up and decorate our Christmas trees which vary from natural pine and spruce trees to artificial ones. The house, especially the living room is also decorated.
Many people would choose to enjoy the Christmas frenzy in the unusually crowded and highly animated night life in towns, Catholics would be attending the mass and other families would be having a normal evening with a typical Mauritian dinner with curry and rice. The western traditional dishes like the stuffed turkey or Christmas pudding are slowly entering the Mauritian culture. While huge turkeys are available in many super markets, Christmas puddings are rather rare but Christmas cakes like the Bûche de Noël is highly demanded and consumed just like wine, scotch whisky and rum. Nowadays, on Christmas Eve, many families like to have a Christmas feast/party/barbecue with relatives and friends at home or in a beach house. Many also blow fireworks at midnight.
Traditionally, Christmas gifts are given mainly to kids and young people but their gifts are not placed under the Christmas tree but rather on their beds or next to their pillows during the night. Gifts are opened in the morning on Christmas day and most kids believe in Father Christmas. Christmas day is a public holiday marked by family gatherings at home or at the beach. Dishes vary depending on religions, cultures and tastes and on this occasion remain mostly Mauritian.
Wishing all readers Merry Christmas 2019 & Happy New Year 2020 !!!