Cultural Orientation Week

The Introduction Week is designed especially for you to get a deeper understanding of the culture and customs of Mauritius, find out the do's and don'ts during your stay, whilst visiting some of the islands most stunning attractions. Head on an exotic adventure, while learning more about the local lifestyle, getting familiarised with your surroundings and feeling comfortable in Mauritius before your project starts.

Le Morne city photos – https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/0B3GwVMf8ZDx3OVd2QmxRdTBLV00

accom photos – https://drive.google.com/drive/u/0/folders/0B3GwVMf8ZDx3dHJkQ0pWU3o3UjA

Program Description

Before your volunteer project starts, why not spend a week exploring this stunning island and becoming familiarised with the local culture! IVI’s cultural orientation week will teach you everything you need to know about the do’s and don’ts, safety advice and explaining the transport system. We also get the chance to travel around this beautiful county and visit some of the highlights.

During the week you can make new friends, learn more about the country with local language and cooking classes, as well as visit the most popular spots on the island. Le Morne also represents one of the most significant global commemorations to the memory of the slave trade, making it a UNESCO World Heritage Site. There are several monuments to see here.

You will also go hiking on the Le Morne trail, which has spectacular views from the top. We travel to Chamarel, where you will visit the mysterious seven coloured earth, mesmerising sand dunes made up from colours of brown, purples and reds. We also drive through the stunning Black River Gorge National Park, spotting wildlife, native plants and waterfalls along the way. During your 5 days of activities, you’ll be introduced the local culture and surroundings, and be able to meet and interact with your fellow volunteers.

Program Duration & Availability

Min duration (weeks):1

Max duration (weeks):1

Aims & Objectives

To help you develop an awareness and deeper understanding of the local Mauritian culture, by taking part in activities with the locals and exploring the surrounding areas of natural beauty.

Schedule

Monday

We start the week with a welcome meeting, introducing you to the house Rules, do’s and don’ts within the cultural norms, including an informative lesson on the history and culture of the island. After lunch, you will have time to relax on the beautiful Le Morne Public Beach, which has crystal clear, blue waters.

Tuesday

After breakfast, we take a local bus to explore the town of Quatre-Bornes, commonly known as La Ville des Fleurs (The City of Flowers). Take some time in the shopping centre, restaurants, supermarket, banks, money exchange, as well as the many textiles and accessory shops. After lunch in Quatre-Bornes, we travel by bus to Port Louis, the capital city of Mauritius and known for its French colonial architecture and the 19th-century Champ de Mars horse-racing track. We spend time exploring this busy city.

Wednesday

After a delicious breakfast, we will be hiking the Le Morne Trail. 60% of this trail is fairly easy, with the other 40% more challenging. The views from the top will be 100% worth it! The hike takes around 3 hours. The rest of the day is spent relaxing at Tamarin beach. Go for a wander over the soft white sand, or swim in the turquoise waters of the ocean.

Thursday

After Breakfast, leave for Chamarel- home to the Chamarel Waterfall, the seven coloured earth and the most incredible views over the Indian ocean. The waterfalls are stunning, and you can even swim at the bottom- once you hike down! The Seven Coloured Earth are sand dunes that have formed a strange pattern in in the colours of the rainbow. This is a truly unique sight worth seeing. Later on, we drive through the lush jungle of the Black River Gorge National Park and through to Ganga Talao.

Friday

Have fun enjoying a traditional Mauritian Cooking lesson, before spending the afternoon at the tropical beach town of Flic-en-Flac, Here you can see the old Dutch influenced areas and take part in some amazing water sports, or simply relax at one of the longest sandy beaches in Mauritius.

Starting Dates

During 2019

Jan 7th Feb 4th Mar 4th Apr 1st May 6th Jun 3rd Jul 1st
Aug 5th Sep 2nd Oct 7th Nov 4th Dec 2nd    

During 2020

This program starts every week.

Volunteer Criteria & Requirements

Standard Requirements

Minimum age:-

Maximum age:-

Minimum English level: Basic

CRB required: On Signup

Passport copy required: On Signup

Resume copy required: No

Required qualification: None

Additional Requirements

For volunteers below 18, parental consent is required and for volunteers above 65, medical clearance is required.

Additional Equipment

No specific equipment necessary.

Location

The location is absolutely stunning. Le Morne sits alongside a beautiful stretch of coastline, on the Southwest side of Mauritius, only a two hour drive from the International Airport.

Think turquoise clear waters, bright white sand, towering palm trees and a huge forested mountain as the backdrop. Not only are there paradise beaches but lush jungles, forest trails and hikes leading to up to some unbelievable panoramic views.

Le Morne characterises some of the most important commemorations to the memory of the slave resistance. It was named as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, with numerous monuments in respect of the memory of past slaves.

Accommodation & Food

About the Accommodation

You will stay at our volunteer house, which is located in the Le Morne area, but can vary depending on the project. We ask that you are environmentally responsible and use all resources with restraint, particularly water, paper and electricity. You will be expected to clean up after yourself, and to play your role in keeping the accommodation neat and tidy. There are refrigerators at the accommodation for volunteer’s convenience. Bathrooms have hot water facilities and all rooms are cooled with wall fans.

Available Room Types

Standard Room
All meals included Yes *
Free beverages Yes **
Persons per room 4-6
Wifi in public areas No
Laundry facilities No
Safety box No
Lockable rooms Yes
Hot shower Yes
Private bathroom No
Bed linen Yes
Towels No
Air conditioning No
Fan Yes
Mosquito protection No

* 3 meals on weekdays, 2 on weekends
** Drinking water, coffee and tea

Food Arrangements

Breakfast is western style, with lunch and dinner usually being a mix of western and typical Creole style cuisine (seafood, corns, beans, rice, potatoes, stews and vegetables).

Facilities

ATMs, supermarkets, and medical facilities are available within a 5km reach of the accommodation.

Mandatory Orientation Day

On your first Monday, you will join our orientation day, to get familiarised with the local surroundings and culture. Your project will continue as usual from Tuesday and throughout the week.

Schedule

  • Welcome meeting, introduction to Mauritius and the various projects, general house rules, code of conduct and checking documents, etc.
  • Lesson on Mauritian History and Culture
  • Lunch
  • Visit to the stunning Le Morne Beach

Activities & Events

No scheduled activities outside the program.

Sights & Surroundings

Hike the Le Morne Brabant Trail

The Le Morne Brabant is a UNESCO World Heritage site, that is situated just metres from the clear turquoise waters of the beach. This mountain by the beach has a fairly challenging trail, due to the second part being very steep. It will take you around 3-4 hours to climb, giving you stunning views out over the blue waters and tropical beach.

Chamarel Seven Coloured Earth

A popular and unique attraction in Mauritius, this well photographed spot is made up from colourful sand dunes, which have formed interesting shapes across the landscape. Colours of reds, browns and purples stand out again the green rainforest, sitting along side it. You can take some really unique photos here.

Chamarel Waterfalls

Make a day of it at the Geo Park – not only is this where the colourful sand dunes are, as mentioned above, but you can also spot the tallest waterfall in Mauritius. Surrounded by lush green jungle, the Chamarel waterfalls create a dramatic break in the beautiful forested landscape. You can also take a 3 hour trek down to the bottom of the falls, and swim in the pool below.

Black River George National Park

The Black River Gorges National Park is a green mountainous region, situated in the South of Mauritius and has some beautiful drives and treks through the dense forests. Over 6576 hectares, this gorgeous region has 9 incredible bird species and over 150 plant species. There are many walks and treks for a variety of fitness levels, where you can spot wildlife and natural waterfalls along the way.

Visit the Botanical Gardens

Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Garden and the National Botanical Garden are wonderful places to visit if you love walking around in nature. The national garden is home to over 650 plant species, while the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam was created in 1770, making it the oldest in the Southern Hemisphere!

Tamarind Falls

Another beautiful waterfall, located in the Tamarind Falls reserve, a stunning area of mountain, waterfalls and views out over to the West coast. You can take an adventurous hike to the Tamarind Waterfalls and take a swim once at the bottom.

 

There are many other activities to get up to in Mauritius from snorkelling, diving, nature parks, water sports, surfing, fishing, museums, markets and sightseeing in the towns. A perfect location for beach lovers and adventure enthusiasts alike!

Transportation

From this volunteer location we do not provide free transport to other areas.

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