1

Chinese Spring Festival (Chinese New Year) – (January – February)

Celebrate Chinese New Year with Mauritian Chinese. Listen to the shot of firecrackers in the air. Enjoy the auspicious red clothing and symbols. Jaunt to Port Louis in Chinatown to watch lion and dragon dances.

2

Cavadee Festival – (end of January – February)

Celebrate Cavadee with Mauritian Tamils. Symbolising the sacred mountains, it is an offering bowl made of wood, metal or plastic. Cavadees are covered in flowers and come with a pot of sacred milk. Be amazed at devotees piercing their cheeks, tongues and chests with needles. Watch as they walk to the temple carrying cavadees on their backs. Look at them lay their cavadees down at the feet of the divine statue. Feast your eyes at fire-walking and sword-climbing.

3

Maha Shivaratree – (February – March)

Celebrate Maha Shivatree with Mauritian Hindus. This three-day festival is held in Lord Shiva’s honour. Watch thousands of Mauritian Hindus sanctify themselves in the Grand Bassin. The lake is considered holy because it contains waters the Hindus believe are connected to India’s holy Ganges River. White-garbed devotees carry bamboo devices in sacrifices and fetch holy lake water from the lake.

4

Holi Festival – (March)

Celebrate Holi with Mauritian Hindus. Laugh as you get splashed with colourful water and powder. Sing and dance along with the Hindus.

5

Ganesh Chaturthi – (August – September)

Celebrate Ganesh Chaturti Festival with Mauritian Hindus. Observe the replicas of the elephant god as the Hindus bring them to the riverbanks or beaches. It is believed the Ganesh replicas must be placed in water before sunset.

6

Father Laval Day (Jaques Désirée Laval) – (9th of September)

Celebrate Father Laval Day with Mauritius. Join Mauritians of all ethnicities visit Father Laval’s tomb on September 9, the birthday of Blessed Father Jacques Désiré Laval. His tomb is in Sainte Croix, Port Louis. Father Laval was born in 1803 left France for Mauritius in 1841. He was believed to have miraculous healing powers as a French missionary and doctor. Pope John Paul II’s first beatification as pope was Father Laval. Father Laval protected the island slave community while he lived. He is honoured as the island symbol of compassion and love.

7

Eid-Ul-Fitr (Id-El-Fitr) Festival – (October-November)

Celebrate Eid-Ul-Fitr Festival with Mauritian Muslims. This celebration comes after the holy fasting month Ramadan ends. Muslims pray at the mosques and share food and cakes. They exchange gifts with family and make charity donations.