Banana: In Mauritius

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“Beaches, filao trees, lagoon, the latest spas, luxury hotels, award-winning chefs… Difficult not to see that Mauritius has developed itself a top of the range image as a tropical paradise, which, you have to admit, could be enough to frighten off three “Bananeros” after a 36-hour crossing, and still completely enchanted by the Rodrigues pace of life. Imagine the captain, stretched out on a sunlounger, wiggling his toes, sipping on a cocktail under a parasol? The first thing we noted on arrival was that Port-Louis reminded us, in miniature, of Cape Bay: a waterfront which goes from the bay right up to the mountains with the big commercial docks to port. Then the response to the eternal question, “which hotel are you staying at?” demonstrating that the Mauritians are very welcoming. All the formalities and everything else are made easy on this attractive island which is free from tourist traps. Boaters will be no doubt be interested to know that we were able to haul out very easily at the Taylor Smith boatyard, under the watchful eye of Bertrand Hardy who runs Yacht Management. I know they’ll also be aware of the work involved in repairing a mainsail. Just to complete the story, we had to wait for a public holiday so that the marina parking lot was empty enough for us to unfold the sail. We were lucky to have the pirogue Hokule’a as next door neighbors. Hokule’a is a famous Hawaiian double canoe, uniquely equipped with traditional instruments (and clothing as well!). It’s a replica of those used in times past by Polynesian mariners. Setting out in 2013, her voyage will have covered 47,000 nautical miles and 85 stopover ports in 26 countries by 2017, whilst campaigning for sustainable management of our planet.”
Robert-Louis and Sophie on board Banana

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