As we arrived at our third and final destination on the east coast of Mauritius, we knew it was going to be a little different from our first two experiences.
Otentic is the definition of paradise, but not in the usual sense. The basic accommodation adds a touch of luxury with outdoor showers, homemade bath oils and luxurious crisp white bedding. Yet there is something that remains incredibly rustic about the place.
We spent the first two nights at the river site, where our eco tent, perching on wooden stilts and sheltered by luscious green palms, was a stones throw from the Grand Riviere Sud Est.
Smooth local coffees, followed by kayaking and paddle boarding was a revitalising way to start the day.
The order of the day turned from kayak to speed boat as we took the the 30 minute journey to île aux cerfs, the picture postcard public beach. The small island is peppered by palm trees, white sands and glistening aqua waters.
After late mornings spent on the island we’d sail back to camp for a delicious Mauritian lunch. The cooks at Otentic whip up a local Mauritian feast daily. Vegetable curries, dhal, sautéed aubergine, squid, all accompanied by an assortment of chutneys and salad.
Afternoons at the camp offered a slower, more relaxed pace. Following kayak paddles to the local waterfall, we nestled into bean bags in a tree house overlooking the river for a memorable sunset.
Evenings were spent in the communal area, drinking red wine and enjoying the dim light of the candles. The laid back lifestyle at Otentic was something we effortlessly adapted to.
After two days and nights at the river site, it was time to head into the mountains, to expereice Otentic’s sister camp, Otentic Mountain.
The newer of the two camps sits 30 minutes in land (by jeep) on a slow, rocky road way up in the mountains. No electricity, wifi or phone signal meant we were really going to switch off here.
Jaws dropped (as well as our bags) when we discovered the view from our bedroom.
A quick dip in the natural outdoor pool and we were quickly becoming accustomed to life in the mountain tops. The natural pool is just that, a small waterfall running into a mini lagoon (no chlorine or tiles in sight).
Post dip we got ready and headed with the group to the top of the mountain for sunset. Drinks and snacks were enjoyed amongst good company as we watched the beautiful day fade from hazy dusk to shimmering moonlight.
This positioning of our tent was carefully considered as the uninterrupted stunning panoramic views of the mountains and coast line were all we could see for miles.
The modest layout inside consisted of a double bed protected by a mosquito net surrounded by tea lights in little glass lamps. Morning came and we woke for sunrise. Dragging our duvets out onto our terrace we were joined by Bamboo, the local rescue dog as we watched the morning light flood over the site.
Our experience at Otentic was magical. We love camping so this was top on our list when planning a trip to Mauritius late last year. I am so glad we got to experience both sites as they are both so different. My only wish is that we could have stayed a little longer in the mountain site. Never underestimate the luxury of being able to fully switch off and enjoy, uninterrupted, the world’s natural beauty.
Watch the Vlog of our stay at Otentic here.