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General Information

Mauritius is an insular country. It is located on a couple of islands on the Indian Ocean, in the Mascarene Archipelago. The biggest island of the Republic of Mauritius is Rodrigues and two smaller St. Brandon and Agaleja islands. The island called Mauritius is located 2,000 kilometers away from the shores of Africa and 850 km from Madagascar. It is a small island, only 65-kilometer long and 48-kilometer broad.

Mauritius was discovered by Portuguese people at the beginning of the 16th century and afterwards colonized by Dutchmen. Later the island was firstly under the French and then under the British rule. It regained its independence in the 60s of the 20th century. Nowadays, there is a stable democracy in the island with regularly held elections and with respect of human rights. Due to this fact, the country attracts not only lots of tourists but also foreign investors, which results for example in the highest personal income among all the African countries.

In the north of Mauritius, there are mainly broad, flat coastal plains, which turn into hilly center of the island and the chain of hills called Port Louis. In the middle part of the island, spreads the vast Central Plateau. It has many varied volcanic cones and three of them are more than 800 meters high. The plateau runs in the south-east direction, where the highest mountain range Rivičre Norie with the highest peak of the island: Piton de la Rivičre Noire (826 m above sea level) is located. As far as landscapes are concerned, it is the most diversified part of the island.

The main attraction for tourists in Mauritius, besides its wonderful lagoons and sunny beaches, is the ethnical and cultural diversity of its inhabitants. Every group coming to the island from Europe, Africa, Asia and Madagascar over the centuries, brought their customs, languages, religion, which are also cultivated up to now.

More than million inhabitants live in the island, among them are Hindu, Creole, Muslim, and Christian people. Official languages are mainly: English, French and also less popular languages such as : Creole, Hindi, Urdu and Hakka.

The biggest ethnical groups are Creole and Hindu people. Europeans and a small group of Chinese people also live here. As far as religion is concerned, more than half of the population is Hindus (52%). Catholics (26%) and Muslims(17%)constitute also a numerous group.

The country, besides its wonderful climate, warm sea, coral reefs, is also so interesting for tourists due to its exotic flora and fauna. It is a perfect place for holidays mainly for those who want to relax among the rich and beautiful nature, but less for those for whom the priority are historical monuments and sightseeing.