Mauritius has been honoured with the title of Indian Ocean’s Leading Adventure Tourism Destination among a number of top prizes at the World Travel Awards.
Here Breaking Travel News speaks to Arvind Bundhun, director of the Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority, to find out how it feels to have been recognised by voters from around the globe.
Breaking Travel News: Having claimed a top title at the World Travel Awards, how does it feel to have won?
Arvind Bundhun: It is a real honour for Mauritius to be recognised as the Indian Ocean’s Leading Adventure Tourism Destination.
We are very proud of the range of experiences we offer to international visitors, and we are delighted to see voters’ appreciation.
The adventure-seeking tourist finds an idyllic destination in Mauritius, able to enjoy something unforgettable each day no matter how long the visit.
This award is a reflection of the hard work, commitment and dedication of our tourism industry workers, from hoteliers to the villa rental operators, the beach traders, skippers, taxi drivers, restaurant owners and street food vendors over what has been a difficult year.
Everyone has worked tirelessly to ensure that Mauritius was ready to welcome guests once the time was right to open our borders, able to give guests the Mauritian paradise experience they know and love, and ensure they are Covid-19-safe and secure.
BTN: How will the trophy help you to promote Mauritius as we move into 2022?
AB: This award is timely as we have just entered our summer season, which is our tourism peak.
It helps shine the light some of the finest experiences Mauritius has to offer beyond our renowned beaches and lagoons.
It is a great asset to be recognised in this way and we expect that it will help push demand for travel to Mauritius up even further.
Demand has been increasing rapidly over the past weeks, as consumers in our key markets respond to changes in travel restrictions which make holidays more doable.
We have increased flight capacity for the national airline, Air Mauritius, from France, South Africa, Reunion and the UK over the coming months, and other airlines are doing the same.
BTN: What is it that caught the eye of voters; what do you think it is that separates Mauritius from its competitors in Africa and the Indian Ocean?
AB: Mauritius isn’t just a holiday island but a living, breathing, working island home to 1.3 million citizens and able to offer all kinds of experience, from the vibrant capital of Port Louis, to the national parks in the south, bustling markets, every type of cuisine from Mauritius’s diverse population, plus sites of historical and cultural significance and breath-taking views and activities for adrenaline-seekers.
BTN: Where does Mauritius stand with the reopening from the Covid-19 pandemic?
AB: Mauritius opened its borders to international tourists on October 1st, after a period of 18 months.
Vaccinated travellers are not subject to any quarantine requirements, providing testing obligations are fulfilled.
Mauritius has had one of the best Covid-19 responses in the world.
Our public health protocols are widely recognised as best-practice, and we have an extremely high vaccination rate - around 90 per cent of the adult population are fully vaccinated.
Tourists can feel absolutely safe and secure, able to enjoy the paradise holiday they truly deserve.
We took a more cautious approach to reopening than many countries, deciding to vaccinate first and then reopen.
This was a key part of our public health-first approach to managing the pandemic, but was also considered to be the best way to ensure long-term stable growth.
Tourism is 25 per cent of our GDP, which meant we had to get reopening right.
The impressive demand we’ve seen in recent weeks vindicates our approach.
Find out more about Mauritius Tourism Promotion Authority on the official website.