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Transport in Mauritius
Mauritius has undergone rapid development these past 20 years which is greatly reflected in the state of the transport system. Metamorphosing from oxen pulled carts along dirty ragged paths, Mauritius now has a network of roads of about 2000 km long extending around the whole island. Though small in size, Mauritius has a large population and it also faces the problem of traffic especially during the peak hours (8am to 10am, 3pm to 5pm), noise and air pollution as in other developed countries. Modes of transport in Mauritius are via the roads, the airport and the harbour. Most of the roads on the island are in generally good conditions with few exceptions in the lesser used areas (unpaved and ragged roads). There is only one airport on the island, the Sir Seewoosagur Ramgoolam airport located in the South East at Plaisance; the airport has undergone major development over the past years to cater for the tourist industry. The harbour is located in the North West in Port Louis where all shipping processes take place as well as cruises to other countries. The best way to travel on the island when you are on holiday is by private car. Most hotels can arrange for car hire from existing private agencies at relatively good prices or you can just walk up to some car hiring agency and book for a car at a lower price; these agencies are located all over the island and can be easily accessed. Other means include scooters which are rented at cheap prices in hotels or in travel agencies and which allow the visitor to travel at his/her ease over the island and which may help to bypass traffic in certain areas. One of the cheapest ways to visit the island is by far the buses. Numerous bus stops are found along major streets as are found bus stations in most cities. The person has to pay the fare while on the bus itself which is less than £1 per couple; the fare is generally cheaper for children and those with student Ids. The bus network spreads across the whole island which means that one can go from the North to the South by bus itself though the journeys can be quite long and tiring. Another easy way to travel in all comfort is the taxi. Though taxis in Mauritius have taxi meters, they are not used but rather the prices to travel from place to place are established by specific laws based on the distance. Taxis are readily available from hotels, major shopping malls as well as on many roadsides in most towns. There is no rail transport in Mauritius but all in all travelling over the island is quite easy.