Classic Tour

Discover the endemic wildlife of Mauritius at Chamarel

Highlights:
• Guided tour on our 300 m raised walkway through an ancient ebony forest
• Raised walkway to the spectacular Sublime Point
• Flexibility with the option to hike or hop on an open-air safari jeep, if available
• Museum about the island’s natural history

 

If you have ever wondered where the Dodo lived or what Mauritius looked like before the arrival of humans, then visit Ebony Forest. Escape the beaches for a couple of hours and immerse yourself in the mountains and greenery of Chamarel, home to some of the most endangered species in the World.

 

Start or end your visit with a self-guided tour of our museum, Ebony Experience, written and illustrated by British palaeontologist and artist, and critically acclaimed co-author of Lost Land of the Dodo, Dr Julian Hume. If you are short of time, a must-see is the 6-8 minute film in English or French about the Island’s unique and fragile biodiversity, sponsored by the Mauritius Commercial Bank and produced by Mystic Mauritius. Leaving the museum, you will understand the importance of our conservation work.

 

To see the majestic black ebony trees, you can either walk (15-20 mins, 1.3 km) or take an open-air safari jeep (10 mins) from the Visitor Centre to the Flycatcher Forest. En route you will pass through our forest restoration sites, where we are continually weeding the non-native vegetation and planting native species so that Ebony Forest will be a refuge for the Island’s threatened biodiversity.

Classic Tour Raised Walkway - Ebony Forest - Mauritius

Explore one of the best-preserved ebony forests in Mauritius on our unique raised walkways with one of our experienced and passionate local guides. On this 30 minute guided tour, you will feel the density of ebony wood and understand why it is one of the most valuable woods in the world. See Fruit Bats hanging in the trees or eating fruits, endemic Phelsuma geckos sunbathing, pic pic birds hopping around the canopy looking for insects and one of the rarest trees in the world, the bois corail or Coral Tree, named for its magnificent coral-shaped flowers. Breathe in the sweet scents of the fresh and cool forest air and learn about why palms, once common in Mauritian forests, are now missing from most remnant native forests.

 

Next stop, Sublime Point. Either hop on a jeep or take the Ridgeline Trail. This gentle and tranquil trail through native forest offers breath-taking views of Le Morne, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, and the crystal clear waters surrounding the island of Ile aux Benitiers. Spot Mauritius Paradise Flycatchers as you pass through their territory and these inquisitive birds join you on your walk. If you only have time for one walk, we recommend the Ridgeline Trail. It is 1.1 km long and takes on average 30 minutes from the Flycatcher Forest to Sublime Point.

 

Sublime Point. As the name suggests, it is just sublime. One of the best views in Mauritius, if not THE BEST. Stunning views await you at Sublime Point of Le Morne, Ile aux Benitiers, Tourelle du Tamarin, Montagne du Rempart, Corps de Garde, Trois Mamelles, Le Pouce, Pieter Both, Piton Canot and the island’s highest peak, Piton de la Riviere Noire.

With a unique vantage point, watch the endemic Mauritian Fruit Bat flying below, White-tailed Tropic Birds delight you with their aerial acrobatics, Mascarene swiftlets, and Mauritius Kestrel. While you relax and enjoy the view, why not purchase some local snacks and drinks, such as gateaux piments, samosas, tamarind juice, lemon grass juice at our Sublime Snack.

 

For those adventurous and energetic enough, a hike up Piton Canot will reward you with a 360 degree panorama of the west and south-west coasts, village of Chamarel and Black River Gorges National Park. This 400 m trail has an ascent of 140 m to the summit at 542 m above sea level. We recommend the last departure time to walk up Piton Canot is at 4pm.

 

Choose to return to the Visitor Centre by hiking the 2.4 km (30 – 50 mins) or taking a safari jeep (15 mins). If you didn’t visit the museum on your way in, now is your chance. Feel free to also visit the Restaurant for a refreshing drink, coffee, salad or pizza cooked in our wood-fired oven using wood removed during weeding. Grab a souvenir in our Boutique. Your visit and purchases in our Shop, Sublime Snack and Restaurant contribute to helping save endangered species from extinction and offsetting carbon.

Overview

Highlights:
• Guided tour on our 300 m raised walkway through an ancient ebony forest
• Raised walkway to the spectacular Sublime Point
• Flexibility with the option to hike or hop on an open-air safari jeep, if available
• Museum about the island’s natural history

 

Includes:
• Access to self-guided hiking trails
• Film in English (6 mins) or French (8 mins) about the island’s wildlife
• Option to further contribute to saving endangered species and carbon offsetting

 

Suitable for:
all ages, families, groups and couples. As Ebony Forest is located on a mountain slope, access by push- or wheel-chair to the raised walkway and hiking trails is limited. The Shop, Restaurant, museum, ecology centre and toilets are accessible to wheel- and push- chair users. If you need assistance, please contact us for advice.

 

Group size:
no restrictions. If you are a large group, please contact us in advance. Resident group discounts are also available.

 

Difficulty level:
The Flycatcher raised walkway is more than 4m in height so if you suffer from vertigo, please inform our staff in advance. There are 113 steps up and 142 down on the walkway, but you will hardly notice these on your guided tour. The hikes are graded easy, based on international standards.

 

Duration:
1.5 – 4 hours, depending on if you hike or take our safari jeep. You can stay the whole day as there is plenty to see and do. We recommend you visit before 3pm to fully appreciate your visit as we close at 17:00 (1st April – 31st October) and 17:30 (1st November – 31st March). See safari jeeps regarding last time to visit.

 

Distance:
0.5 – 6 km, depending on if you hike or take our safari jeep. The 0.5 km refers to the distance along the Flycatcher Forest raised walkway and Sublime Point walkway.

 

Safari jeep:
we have two jeeps, each with a maximum capacity of 10 persons. A jeep departs the Visitor Centre every 30 mins on the 0:00 and 0:30, every 0:15 and 0:45 from the Flycatcher Forest and every 0:30 and 0:00 from Sublime Point. This enables you to hop on and off the jeeps should you wish to walk between the Visitor Centre – Flycatcher Forest – Sublime Point. The first jeep leaves the Visitor Centre at 9:30 and the last jeep that stops at both the Flycatcher Forest and Sublime Point leaves at 15:30 (1st April – 31st October) or 16:00 (1st November – 31st March). Thereafter, at 16:00 (1st April – 31st October) and 16:30 (1st November – 31st March), the jeeps depart directly for Sublime Point.

Flycatcher guided tour times:
the first tour starts at 9:45 and the last one at 15:45 (1st April – 31st October) and 16:15 (1st November – 31st March). Tours are 30 minutes and provided by an experienced local guide.

 

Booking:
not necessary. We request that large groups and persons with access difficulties contact us in advance.

 

What to bring:
we recommend trainers or hiking shoes for those wishing to hike. Otherwise flip flops will get you along our raised walkways. High heels should be avoided! Mosquito repellent is advised, and of course your camera.

 

Parking:
available. If you come by bicycle, let us know and we can find somewhere safe to store it

 

Food and drink:
picnics are not allowed as we wish to limit the amount of potential rubbish. We have a Restaurant at the Visitor Centre and a snack at Sublime Point. You can also buy ice cream and some snacks in our Shop. As part of our commitment to protecting the environment, we do not sell drinks in plastic bottles, but you can fill up your water bottle for free from our water fountain in our Shop.

 

Buying your ticket:
purchase your ticket either online to benefit from 10 % discount or when you visit.

 

Rates:
Our rates are the same whether you choose to hike or take the safari jeep. Profit generated from ecotourism activities are reinvested into the conservation of the flora and fauna, which has been on-going since 2006.

 
Adult
Child (5-12 years)

Non-resident

Rs 450

Rs 270

Resident

Rs 300

Rs 180

Resident group rate

Rs 270

Rs 150

Annual pass

Rs 975

Rs 500

Small acts

of Kindness can
go a long way

CONTACT EBONY FOREST TO FIND OUT HOW TO DONATE, AND MAKE A DIFFERENCE TO OUR MAURITIAN WILDLIFE…