The vegetation of Mauritius is lush and green, with a great many filao and flame trees dotted around the island, the former particularly common along the island's beaches. These slender conifers with fine branches covered in needles are most commonly referred to by their Portuguese name, though the English often know the 'filao' tree as a 'casuarina'. No matter what you call them, you can't help but admire their silhouette swaying in the trade winds, offering a welcome spot of shade at picnic time or for a nap by the lagoon. The flame trees, meanwhile, are so-called because of the abundance of red flowers covering them in late November and early December. Originally from India, they belong to the banyan family and are planted all along the roadsides, forming tunnels with their branches meeting in the middle, so you're guaranteed to get some spectacular photographs! To make sure you catch a glimpse of them, take a drive around the little roads up in the north of the island, particularly around the Grand Baie area.
Along with the Bougainvillea, the Flamboyant is emblematic of Mauritius. With its vibrant red flowers in the summer months, the tree can measure up to 10 metres high.© iStockphoto.com / Mlenny
The flamboyants dress the diverse landscape, its colours hypnotising passer-by.© Oleg Znamenskiy / 123RF
Filao trees are one of the most common trees found on the coast. They usually grow in sand and shed their tiny cones throughout the year.© iStockphoto.com / Youssouf Cader
Mauritius has a variation of tropical vegetation making its landscapes unique.© Philippe Halle / 123RF
Mangrove still grows around the beaches of the island especially to the east and south.© Bamba Sourang / OT Ile Maurice