The weather is beautiful but very cloudy this Sunday morning; the sun is shining behind the cloud; the sky is blue and grey, and the lagoon is calm. It’s a dream day to go for a boat ride in the region of Black-River, and do water sports. The South West coast of Mauritius having a huge lagoon, is suitable for calm boat trips, and for water sports initiation.
Laurent puts our little boat in the water of the Black River jetty on the west coast of Mauritius. Here we go with the children and one of their friends for a beautiful sunny day on the Mauritian lagoon. He has everything planned, wakeboard and kneeboard for the pleasure of the little ones.
We also prepared a picnic for lunch so we could spend more time on the boat and fill hungry bellies after sport!
After half an hour at sea, a big black cloud from Chamarel is heading towards us. The weather is changing so fast in Mauritius, so you have to enjoy it while the sun is out!
Water sports with the children in the Black-River lagoon
Mauritius is the ideal place for nautical activities, its turquoise and calm water surface is an ideal playground for sportsmen. The new fashion; a buoy towed by a boat to amuse the young and the old. It is necessary to know well the lagoon and the tides.
Juliette, a friend of Raphael, jumps into the sea. The temperature of the sea is not so hot. It is the month of September in Mauritius and the Mauritian winter is still there. The lagoon must be about 22/23°C.
But Juliette is not cold, and she wants to try the kneeboard at all costs, regardless of the water temperature. What an adventurer! As its name suggests, the kneeboard is a board towed by a motorboat on which one must kneel and play in the wake of the waves. The most important thing is not to fall and to balance. The ideal is to learn with an instructor.
“I worked in a water sports centre for a few years, Laurent explains to the children, and I taught thousands of people how to practice water sports. You always have to look at me and respond to my signs.“
You have to swim a little to start. After several tests and a few falls, she manages to hold on for a long time and synchronize the movement of the water and the balance! Bravo Juliette! Everyone applauds her. She is proud of her performance from the top of her 9 years!
Now it’s Raphael’s turn to knee board. Since he’s been doing it for years, he’s very comfortable. He plays with the wake wave. Plus, he’s having fun getting out and getting in the wake.
Raphael is encouraged by her dad to test the wake-board for the first time. Like Juliette, a few laborious attempts are necessary before standing on the board. But the smile settles as soon as the success is there! Youpi! It will take practice to perfect.
What do you prefer monoski towed, bodyboard or water skiing?
Picnic in Coteau Raffin
After amateur water sports, the rain comes. The wind and the rain refreshed us; we are cold but fortunately, the boat approaches the coast of Mauritius close to Coteau Raffin. Laurent docks at this place so we can take shelter under a tree. The boat arrived ashore; we can finally get down on this black rock beach. Here no white and fine sand. We run under a tree to shelter ourselves.
After a few minutes, there is a little lull. This break has given us an appetite. We sit on the rocks for a picnic.
The children are delighted and explore this still unknown place in search of shells and small fish.
Opposite, the beach of Benitiers Island emptied of its tourists with the rain. The mountain of Morne Brabant all near to our left seems almost erased with the curtain of rain! The lagoon and its seabed have lost its beautiful colors.
Cleaning up Nature
We are impressed to see that there are four wooden bins around us, 50 meters apart. Unfortunately, despite this, waste litters the ground, some from the sea and others from human origin. This pollution is distressing!
We pick them up; we find cans, cigarette butts, and plastic waste… but unfortunately, we don’t have gloves and just two garbage bags!
Kids love these cleaning operations. You really feel you’re making yourself useful.
More and more Mauritians are sensitive to the environment and are doing wildlife collection sessions. Nature is so beautiful here. This detritus degrades and leaves invisible plastic particles polluting water, nature, animals, and man. We feel responsible and enjoy keeping our island clean.
Children are aware of this and are the first to respect their environment. We are proud as parents to have instilled in them ecological awareness. We collected two filled plastic bags that we will throw to the ground once arrived. Our day has at least benefited to the well-being of the planet!
Back to Home in Black-River
We take advantage of a gentle moment to sail aboard our boat. We’re not warm and we’re putting on a lifejacket and we’re huddling in our bath towels. The crossing to Black River is not long, about 15 minutes. We have time to see the coastline. The village of la Gaulette, the Morne Brabant mountain that moves away, the Piton de la Petite Rivière Noire (the highest peak in Mauritius) which stands proudly.
. It’s so different to see the land from the sea. We pass the Benitiers island and the famous crystal rock, a big volcanic rock that comes out of the water, then we arrive at the level of the pilot saltpans and finally at Black River in the pouring rain…
We approach and have only one idea in mind, drinking a hot tea or a hot chocolate to warm us up! The children want to try the wakeboard experience again as soon as possible; they loved the sliding sensations that it provides!
We’ll do it again, I promise, but when the lagoon gets a little warmer!!!
Green actions in Mauritius
Last year 500,000 tonnes of waste were generated in Mauritius. Fortunately, ecological awareness is affecting Mauritians and actions are being taken to reduce the emission of waste and no longer throw garbage in nature.
The ban on plastic bags was the government’s first major initiative in 2017 to reduce their impact on our island, particularly on the beach.
For the day of the big cleanup, many volunteers mobilized to collect the waste in nature. This waste collection helps to reduce pollution of the ocean and the seabed; “Let do it Mauritius” enables volunteers to gather around the island each year. Schools invite their students to clean up the beaches at least once a year. This civic gesture allows children to realize the importance of preserving their environment.
The “Mission Verte” association has made containers available on supermarket parking lots for selective sorting: paper, cardboard, plastic, cans.