L’Aventure du Sucre is a converted sugarcane factory dedicated to retracing the development of the sugarcane and the sugar industry in Mauritius. The converted factory is that of Beau Plan Sugar Estate and two others, Constance & La Gaiete Sugar Estate and Deep River Beau Champ have joined forces in providing investment and equipment to complete l’Aventure du Sucre.
A sugar museum
A sugar museum was sorely lacking in Mauritius whose history was shaped for centuries by sugarcane cultivation and sugar production. This all changed on the 22nd of October 2002 when l’Aventure du Sucre, which means sugar adventure in English, was launched. Mauritians will retrace their history; children will follow an educational tour and tourists will learn more about the island than beaches and sand.
Choke-full with information, the tour starts by retracing the history of Mauritius from the Dutch to the British rule via the French occupation. Travel down from the history road to the technology stand explaining the industrial process of extracting sugar from the sugar cane; peek into the chemist’s lab and sit in the manager’s office; this reconverted factory has preserved some of its past structure and equipment and also thrown in some extras such as the children’s amphitheatre and a docked ship in water within the building itself.
If you want to read and absorb every single line of information, it could take you a full day to get out; fortunately, a summary of the important points are written on the walls and you can also watch a few short films. Children will also be captivated by the lesson by following two animal mascots throughout the tour. There is also a quiz where the train will whistle if you get the right answer.
Boutik shop and Fangourin restaurant
After having spent some time soaking in information, do a spot of shopping at the Boutik. The special sugars that you have read about on the tour can be sampled there and if you like what you taste, you can buy them as souvenir or gift packs. The rum is a by-product of the sugar industry and is also on sale in the shop. At the end of it all, unwind at the restaurant Le Fangourin which takes its name from a vertical mill to crush the cane. You will be seated under a veranda with a stunning view of the peaceful garden and the mountains of the central plateau in the background.
L’Aventure du Sucre is situated in the district of Pamplemousses in the north, a 20 minute drive from Port-Louis. Set amid the tranquil settings of vast sugarcane fields as befits a former sugar factory and in the shimmering heat of Pamplemousses, you can get there via the motorway either by taxi from the capital or in your own car. There is a car park on site. You can also extend your trip in the area with a visit to Pamplemousses Botanical Gardens found next door.
Opening hours are from 9 am to 5 pm Monday to Sunday.
L’Aventure du Sucre promises to retrace the development of sugarcane cultivation in Mauritius and does not fail to deliver on its promise.