Experience an unusual Mauritius at this sustainable glamping stay

It’s quite unlike anything else in Mauritius, the antithesis of cookie-cutter resort. Words by Keith Bain.

Otentic was the island’s first ‘glamping’ experience, occupying a grass embankment alongside a river mouth on the quieter east coast. Founder Julien Gufflet opted for safari tents on raised wooden plinths, and was scrupulous about sustainability –everything from bathroom walls to beds was fashioned from recycled wood. Run like an upmarket backpackers – easygoing, convivial – it’s hard to imagine a more unfettered, authentic island experience.

Mauritius

There’s no phone or Wifi at this mountain experience – just you and the island. Photo supplied.

Taking the eco concept to the next level, Julien has opened Otentic’s lofty annex, on the foothill slopes of Bambous Mountain amid swathes of green. One typically doesn’t expect this kind of high-angle perspective in Mauritius, nor such innovative lodgings. Its ‘tents’ are canvas-and-wood chalets set beneath steeply pitched thatched roofs; the split-level design means bathrooms are below the breezy bedrooms, which open onto a terrace. Completely off-grid, with solar-heated water and just as much energy as the sun will provide, it’s the best chance you have for a full-on digital detox – there isn’t even phone signal.

Dreamy bedroom views and great facilities. Photo supplied.

To counteract the predicted idleness, a guide can lead you up nearby peaks to experience a raw, wild and wondrous side of the island you don’t often hear about. There are also twice-daily shuttles down to the riverside property, with a swimming pool, gorgeous little kitchen-café in a repurposed container, and kayaks and SUPs for exploring the river and drifting through the mangroves of the nearby island, Ile aux Cerfs, where there are gorgeous beaches.

Otentic Mountain View Mauritius

This unique place located in Bambous mountain side, in the still virgin valley of Bambous Virieux, is only 3kms from the sea. Photo supplied.

Best features: The views across the ocean from up high, and the food: Creole dishes prepared by local ladies using recipes handed down over generations.

Cost: From R1905 per tent/chalet (sleeps four) B&B a night (if you stay four or more nights).
Book: otentic.mu

Want to experience Mauritius like a local? Find more ways to experience this incredible Indian Ocean island in the April issue.

 

Find our affordable Mauritius adventure in the April 2018 issue of Getaway magazine.

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Our April issue features 7 of our favourite campsites in Kruger, a winding exploration of a rejuvenating Eden we like to call Knysna, an affordable cultural exploration of Mauritius and much more.