“Climb to the highest point in Mauritius for 360 views, then check out the Black River Gorge Overlook.”
— Karl W
Views · Waterfall
Hike to the highest peak in Mauritius from a high starting point along a muddy trail. Very limited views until the summit which offers 360 views of the whole island. Before departing check out the overlook for great views of the gorge and waterfall.
Need to Know
Can be exceptionally muddy. Bring some money for the souvenir shops.
There is room for two small cars to park at the main trailhead, but it's likely to be full. A ton of parking is available a quarter mile east. The parking area is for for the overlook and gets much more traffic than the summit trail.
Hike along the road to the trailhead, being mindful of cars because there is no shoulder. The trail is clearly marked with a painted rock. There is only one way to go along the trail so start hiking northwest. The trail will descend a bit and - likely - start getting muddy, possibly very muddy. The mud can make the hike quite a bit more difficult than it should be. For the most part the trail passes through a thick tunnel of trees that block almost all views. The first view you'll get is at Piton Saint Denis, limited to the southwest. It's an excellent view of Le Morne Brabant, an UNESCO world heritage site.
Continue along the trail, descending a bit into mud before ascending the final stretch. The last part of the trail is very steep and consists of exposed dirt that can be quite slick. Ropes have been strung along the edge of the trail to help you ascend. The top is unfortunately somewhat small, so if there are multiple people out it can feel a bit crowded. However, there are awesome views in every direction. Someone has brought a bench up there to either rest on, or use for better views. You'll be able to see the ocean to the west and the south, Le Pouce and Pieter. Both in the northern distance, Le Morne Brabant, the Black River Gorge, and Gran Basin in the far east distance on a clear day.
Return the way you came. Before departing though, take the Gorges Viewpoint Trail a short distance north from the parking area. The view point offers excellent views of the Gorge and the tall waterfall just to the east. There will be some vendors selling souvenirs and trinkets along the way. You can probably also buy snacks here. There are restrooms, but they're not very nice.
History & Background
Piton de la Petite Riviere Noire is the tallest point in Mauritius at 828 meters above sea level.