Travelling with children in Mauritius presents no particular problems. To put their holiday in context, there's a wonderful series of English-language cartoon books by Henry Koombes (published locally by Editions Vizavi Ltd), including In Dodoland, SOS Shark and Meli-Melo in the Molasses.

For more information, see Lonely Planet's Travel with Children.

Practicalities

Most of the high-end hotels have dedicated facilities (like 'kids clubs') for children, and those that don't sometimes have a small playground. Most top-end hotels also include babysitting services. The proliferation of villa leases has made it easy to bring the entire family on vacation, while many hotels and even some chambres d'hôtes offer family rooms. Most hotels have cots, although usually only a limited number, so always request one when making your reservation and send a reminder some weeks in advance of your arrival.

Remember that some top-end resorts market themselves as 'adults only'. This is less an indication of risque behaviour than an attempt by hotels and resorts to appeal to the honeymoon or romantic-getaway market. In other words, kids are not welcome. If you're making a reservation online and there's no option of adding kids to your booking, chances are that's why.

Disposable nappies are widely available in supermarkets, and most car-hire companies have a limited number and range of child safety seats available (the smaller the company, the fewer options you’ll have). Baby-changing facilities in restaurants and other public areas are almost nonexistent. Breastfeeding in public is not really the done thing (although it’s usually fine within hotel or resort grounds), but you’re unlikely to feel uncomfortable as long as you're discreet.

Children's Attractions

Besides the seaside, Mauritius has numerous attractions that make for excellent day excursions for families. Remember, however, that some activities may be subject to minimum-age requirements – phone ahead or check the relevant website before getting the kids all excited. Our favourite attractions for children: