Why Are There So Many Hindu Temples In Mauritius?
This blog consists of all you need to know about Mauritius Tour Packages and the cultural and religious practices in Mauritius. Also know about the best temples of Mauritius which you must visit.
Hinduism in Mauritius began when Indian laborers were brought as indentured labor to colonial French. These immigrants then settled in Mauritius who practiced Hinduism as their religion. As a result, more than 50% of population in Mauritius is Hindus which ultimately makes it necessary to have Hindu temples to worship and perform rituals.
One of the biggest festivals on the island is Maha Shivaratri, or the ‘Great Night of Siva’. During this annual Hindu celebration, which takes place in the months of February and March which is a four to nine days of ceremony and fasting lead up to an all-night vigil of Shiva worship and Ganesha worship. There is also a significant migrant population of Bhumihars in Mauritius who have made a mark for themselves in different fields; they are still in touch with their family members in India and there are instances of marital relations between them to keep their cultural identity intact.
Apart from enjoying the golden sunsets at the beautiful beaches, one thing you can do on Mauritius Tour Package during your free time is explore the temples and get to know the culture and history of Mauritius up close. Some of the temples that you must visit are:
1. Maheshwarnath, Shiv temple.
The locals know this temple as “Grand Shivala Triolet” which is one of the most famous temples in Mauritius. It has become one of the most important ceremonial centers since 1898. This temple is decorated and rituals are conducted during the time of Mahashivaratri, The hindu devotees, from all the nearby villages around the island- walk to the Holy Lake to sanctify their deities. The presiding deity of the temple is lord Shiva, who is represented by a lingam in the main temple. The architecture reflects Bengal influence through its four pillars built on a platform. The buildings are the work of Tamil artisans, composed by colorful deities and flowers designs over a white background.
2. Sagar shiv mandir.
A young temple built in 2007, this temple’s presiding deity is Lord Shiva. It boasts a bronze colored statue which is 30m in length, which guards the temple resembling the statue of the Ganga Talao. This colorful temple was built by a Hindu family. They established it in a small islet off the coast of Poste de Flacq which is united to land by a thin land- bridge. What makes this temple unique is the water surroundings which give the temple a serene atmosphere which is definitely worth experiencing during sunrise.
3. The Ganga Talao.
When indentured Indian immigrants were brought to the “paradise island of Merich” their strong faith looked for a place to settle, where they could venerate their deities in the proper fashion and space as they did back home; thus, the Grand Bassin became the most important Hindu ceremonial center, following the folkloric belief that the Ganga Talao and the Ganges River share their sacred water. The lake receives an important pilgrimage every year in the honor of Lord Shiva, a festivity known as Maha Shivaratri, where believers from all around the island walk long distances to bring their offerings to the sacred lake and temple.