The island of Mauritius is mostly known by visiting tourists for its natural features such as its beaches, its lagoon, its luxury hotels and its landscape, but it is also possible to better get acquainted with Mauritius by other means, like seeing how ingenious Mauritians are, and getting to know some local industries through factory tours. In this article we will present some Mauritian factories that are worth visiting while on holidays in Mauritius.
Phoenix Glass Gallery
The Phoenix Glass Gallery, also known as the Mauritius Glass Gallery is a glass recycling company that was set up by the island’s biggest drinks bottlers, Phoenix Camp Minerals and Mauritius Breweries Limited, in the city of Phoenix. They manufacture hand-blown glass products from recycled glass. They also have a small museum displaying hand casts from celebrities. At their foundry, visitors will be able to see the glassblowers at work. A variety of products are also on sale at the factory.
Château de Labourdonnais
In the village of Mapou, in the north of the island, you will find the Château de Labourdonnais. In this beautiful property, fruits are cultivated, transformed and packaged into tasty ice creams, sorbets, juices, jellies and jams and either sold locally or exported. All products are manufactured without artificial sweetening, colours or flavours. On the same property tourists will have the opportunity to visit the Rhumerie des Mascareignes and learn how traditional rum is made. Visitors will be able to sample them at the nearby factory shop. The Château itself, built 150 years ago, is also open to visitors.
The island of Mauritius is also known among a very specific set of amateurs for the quality of its ship models. One of the most reputable manufacturers of ship models is a little factory called Historic Marine located in Goodlands. They manufacture models of famous historical ships such as the HMS Bounty, the Nina, Pinta and Santa-Maria from Christopher Colombus’ fleet, the Saint Geran which was shipwrecked in Mauritius, as well as more modern ships and yachts. Its models are so good that several personalities, celebrities and even members of royalty have had ship models manufactured by Historic Marine. Factory tours can be arranged where visitors will see some ship models being made right before their eyes.
Located in Mahébourg, the Rault biscuit Factory manufactures cassava biscuits that have been loved by generations of Mauritians. It is one of the oldest companies of the island since the company was founded over 140 years ago. The recipe for the manufacturing of the biscuits has not changed much either and the biscuits are made using the same traditional methods that were developed over one and almost a half centuries ago.
Rhumerie de Chamarel
Located near the famous seven-coloured earths of Chamarel, the Rhumerie de Chamarel is another opportunity to learn everything about the manufacturing of rum in Mauritius. The company manufactures a variety of rums and beverages such as Rum V.O, Gold Rum, Double Distilled Rum, Premium White Rum, Vanilla Liqueur and Coffee Liqueur using local ingredients. Visitors will be able to purchase not only rum but also a variety of Mauritian handicraft products such as jewels and even an exclusive line of clothes called “Sugar Cane”.
The Bois-chéri Tea factory is the biggest tea manufacturer in the island of Mauritius. It is located in the centre of the island, near Grand-Bassin. Not only is it a working tea factory, but also a museum dedicated to the culture of tea in Mauritius. Once there, visitors will be able to find everything about tea production as well as the different types of machinery that were used in the past. There is also a restaurant on the property, where visitors will be able to enjoy meals flavoured with tea. The Bois-Chéri tea factory is the second stop on the Tea Road, a culinary and cultural touristic journey across the island.
The Saint-Aubin sugar estate is located near Souillac. It is the third stop on the Tea Road. There, you will be able to visit a beautiful colonial house built in 1819 from the wood of old ships. It was the house of the different managers of the nearby sugar factory. On the same property you will also find a restaurant, anthurium and vanilla greenhouses and a rum distillery where you will be able to learn everything about the manufacturing of rum.