Pamplemousses Gardens, or the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam Botanical Gardens, is one of the best-maintained botanical gardens in the world. It lies 7 miles from Port Louis, and dates back to 1775. The original garden was a vegetable patch built around a French mansion called Mon Plaisir. Later, the botanist Poivre developed this garden by planting indigenous as well as foreign plant species. The Pamplemousses, spread over an area of 60 hectares, is famous for its water lilies, though the medicinal plants, palms, bougainvillea and hibiscus beds are also major attractions. You can also see the remains of a beautiful iron railing that was once the pride of the garden and won a prize in 1862.
Visit the many fishponds, the lily ponds and lose yourself in the charms of the beautiful garden. The Victoria lilies have red petals, and open with the rising sun and close with sunset. These are probably the biggest horticultural attractions of the Pamplemousses. The lush tropical gardens have fragrant fruit and aromatic spice trees. The fruit orchards are crowded with trees laden with fruits ripening in the warm tropical sun of Mauritius. The trees include gymnosperms like palms and angiosperms or hardwoods like ebony, mahogany, as well as the parasite plants like latania and pandanus.
A visit to the Pamplemousses is a must for any budding botanist or nature lover. Though the number of visitors to this Botanical garden is large, you will never feel that because of the large area the Pamplemousses covers. It is one of Mauritius' most visited places, and a major stopover on a tourist's itinerary.