One of the most famous churches in Mauritius is Cap Malheureux Church. It’s official name is the Notre Dame Auxiliatrice Chapel, but it’s known by tourists as the ‘Red Roof Church’. The Church is arguably the most photogenic spot on the Island of Mauritius due to the way that the bright red roof of this Catholic Chapel contrasts with the turquoise waters and deep blue sky that surrounds.
Visiting the Cap Malheureux Church
The Cap Malheureux Church is very easy to get to from Port Louis, Grand Baie or Anse-La-Rai as the buses follow the coastal road. Just jump on the 95 from Anse-La-Raie and it’s just 10 minutes down the road. From Grand Baie you can jump on the 82 or 95 heading East around the coastal road and it takes around 20-30 minutes, depending on traffic and your driver. Remember that in Mauritius, the buses come when they come – they don’t have a timetable, but we were never waiting more than around 10-15 minutes.
If you prefer to take a taxi, you shouldn’t be paying more than around 500 Rupees to the Chapel from Grand Baie. Make sure that you bargain hard as Mauritian taxi driver do rip off tourists.
The Red Roof Church is well worth a visit even if it’s just for the views or snorkelling near the bay. It’s a very popular photo destination for honeymooners.
Cap Malheureux Church History
The Notre Dame Auxiliatrice Chapel was built in 1938. The Church also marks spot of history – this most northerly point of the island is where the British colonisers first landed before laying claim to the island in 1810.
Above: Photo by my lovely Hubby Simon Green!
Inside the Cap Malheureux Church
It is free to enter the Cap Malheureux Church and you can go in provided that there is not a service (unless you are attending one). Remember to dress appropriately (no swimwear and covered shoulders and knees) and observe silence inside the chapel (Read about how to visit Churches with respect).
Cap Malheureux Church Wedding
The first time that I visited the Cap Malheureux Church, the car park was packed with decorated cars and a wedding was going on inside. We could hear the ceremony being conducted from the outside and the guests were impeccably dressed.
Cap Malheureux Bay
The Bay is a beautiful photo spot and a nice place for a picnic (take your litter with you and dispose of it ethically, of course). Snorkling is popular in this area of Mauritius, but don’t get ripped off by the snorkelling and taxi touts who will approach you in the bay!
You might also like to read about Diwali in Mauritius.