With so many options to choose from it can be overwhelming to make a decision about where to travel to. Don’t worry though, here we’ll have a look at two of the best options out there: Mauritius and Bali.
Mauritius is the most visited island in the Indian Ocean and Bali is the most popular destination in Indonesia. Which one should you go to? Let’s have a look at what these two have to offer.
Location and Accessibility
With 1.5 million tourists every year, Mauritius is the most popular island in the Indian Ocean. It’s famous for its diverse ethnicity, white sand beaches and turquoise waters.
Flights from the United States start at $1100 and take 24 hours, while from Europe there are direct flights for $750 that will get you to Mauritius in 12 hours.
Bali, also known as the Island of the Gods, is the most popular Indonesian island and receives 6.5 million visitors every year. It’s famous due to its unique culture, beautiful landscape and world-class surfing.
A ticket to Bali from the United States takes around 24 hours and starts at $650, while a flight from Europe costs $600 and takes roughly 18 hours.
When to go?
Mauritius has a mild tropical climate the year round with two main seasons. The summer runs from October to April, when the temperatures and humidity are at their highest, and the winter months go from May to November. There’s also a cyclone season that runs from January to March.
Considering that most tourists arrive between November and April escaping the cold winter, it’s advisable to visit Mauritius during April, May, October and the beginning of November.
Bali also enjoys warm temperatures the whole year round and has two main seasons: the wet season that runs from October to March, and the dry season that goes from April to September. The busiest months are July and August meaning flights and hotel rates are at their highest, making April, May, June, and September the best months to visit.
Mauritius vs Bali: Things To Do
Mauritius is home to some of the best beaches in the Indian Ocean such as Flic en Flac, Blue Bay, Ile aux Cerfs, Mont Choisy, and La Cuvette.
However, there’s so much more to this island than the beach. The Black River Gorges is a stunning national park with great hiking trails and stunning scenery, and its neighbor Valley of Colours has zip-lining and other adventure activities. A visit to the Ile Aux Aigrettes nature reserve is also a must if you like the outdoors. Mauritius is also home to a large coral reef making it a great place if you like diving and snorkeling.
Bali’s popularity is well earned. This small island provides activities for every type of traveler that will keep you busy for several days.
Even though there are some nice beaches -especially in the south- they don’t compare with the ones in Mauritius unless you’re into surfing. However, Bali has plenty to offer to make up for it.
For those who like the outdoors, a visit to the 5,000-ft Mount Batur volcano is a must. There are also stunning rice terraces such as Tegalalang or Jatiluwih, and more than 20,000 temples that you can explore. Uluwatu, Tanah Lot, Pura Ulun Danu Bratan and Taman Ayun are some of the most spectacular ones.
If you’re looking for something more relaxed, the numerous yoga and massage centers have got you covered.
Mauritius vs Bali: Accommodations
Tourism plays a big part in these islands economies so they’re well prepared for tourists in terms of accommodation.
Mauritius offers options for every budget: from local guest houses to apartments to exclusive hotel chains. A night in a room in a local inn starts at $20, an ocean view apartment costs between $80 and $120, while an exclusive spa resort will set you back a minimum of $300.
Regardless of the type of accommodation you want, Bali has got you covered with options for all types of traveler. You can get a bed in a hostel dorm for $5 in Kuta, a room in a 5-star hotel for $140 in Seminyak or a luxurious villa in Ubud for $900 per night.
Mauritius vs Bali: The Food
In both Mauritian and Balinese cuisine, the use of spices is widespread. However, they have their own unique flavors that reflect their heritage and culture.
Mauritius is known as a ‘melting pot of flavors’ because it has been influenced by Creole, Asian, Indian and European cultures. Its cuisine is a reflection of that diverse heritage.
Some of the most popular dishes you need to try are mine frite (fried noodles with fried onions and chilli), alouda (sweet milk beverage of different flavours), dholl puri (the national dish, consisting of fried wheat bread stuffed with peas) or millionaire’s salad (a salad with green leaves, raw palm tree heart and seafood). Apart from these typical dishes, there are numerous seafood and curry options. Additionally, rum is very popular and there are local distilleries.
Even though Indonesia is a Muslim country, Bali’s population is predominantly Hindu and its cuisine is a bit different from the rest of the country. In traditional Balinese food, you’ll find a broad mix of spices, vegetables, and meat or seafood.
Popular dishes that you need to try while in Bali include satay (marinated grilled meat with spicy sauce on a stick), betutu (chicken stuffed with spices and vegetables), nasi campur and nasi ayam (rice mixed with meat and vegetables), and babi guling (roast pig stuffed with spices and vegetables).
Mauritius vs Bali: The Cost
Bali and Mauritius offer accommodation and dining options for every budget. Mauritius tends to be more expensive but that doesn’t mean that you need to spend a fortune. The numerous local inns and restaurants are great value for money so you can spend no more than $120 per person per day if you don’t want great luxuries. If you prefer to enjoy more high-end hotels and restaurants, the costs can increase up to $180 per day.
With such a great variety of options in accommodation, dining and activities, it’s hard to beat Bali. This island offers fantastic value for money and you can have a blast without spending more than $60 per person per day (all expenses included). Those looking for more comfort can expect to spend around $100 per day.
Mauritius and Bali are two amazing islands so you can’t go wrong with either option. Mauritius has amazing beaches for those who want to relax as well as marvelous flora and fauna, zip-lining, and amazing marine life making it an excellent destination for those looking to relax on the beach and mix in some light activity and adventure.
If your budget is more limited but you still want to enjoy a holiday with plenty of activities, trekking, volcanos, temples and rice terraces, Bali is your choice.
He is an expert travel advisor and enthusiast. He has traveled extensively in the USA, Central American, South America and Europe. He has visited every Sandals Resort and is one of a select few Diamond Elite members of the Sandals Chairman’s Royal Club.
Dan graduated from Johnson & Wales University with an associate degree in Culinary Arts. Later he graduated from the University of Utah with a bachelor’s degree in International Studies with a focus on people and culture.