The Upcoming Indian Ocean Island Games in Mauritius
June 07 2019
June 07 2019
Mauritius is a fabulous holiday destination for every kind of traveller; whether you are a keen hiker, a parent looking for the ideal holiday away for your family or someone simply looking for a stunning place to relax and recharge, Mauritius is nothing short of awe-inspiring.
But beyond the surface-level beauty of this magnificent destination, it has a fascinating history, incredible culture and an amazing local people. The country’s fascinating and unique qualities are wonderfully represented in the diverse local dishes found throughout the destination, the cultural and religious annual festivals and unique Mauritian events - all of which are well worth experiencing to better understand the multi-faceted country.
One of the most exciting events to experience in this tropical paradise is the upcoming Indian Ocean Island Games, hosted this year by Mauritius.
Here’s what you need to know about this unmissable event:
The Indian Ocean Island Games run from the 19th to the 28th of July 2019
The thrilling Indian Ocean Island Games is a multi-sport event that takes place every four years for top athletes from seven Indian Ocean island nations - Mauritius, Seychelles, Comoros, Madagascar, Mayotte, the Maldives and Réunion. Seen as a “mini-Olympics”, this year will mark the 10th edition of the games which will kick off on the 19th of July and runs until the 28th of July with Mauritius proudly hosting the event, with a multi-sports complex built especially for the occasion in the centre of the country in the Cote d’Or region.
The opening and closing ceremonies, as well as all of the fabulous events in between, are sure to be extraordinary. One thing is for sure, this would be a great period to book your trip to Mauritius, and would allow you to make the most of the gorgeous tropical surrounds and the thrilling Indian Ocean Island Games at the same time.
These were formed in 1977
In 1974, the Regional Olympic Committee of Réunion started to arrange a multi-sport competitive event for Indian Ocean nations, an idea which was picked up later in 1976 by the International Olympic Committee and created with support from five countries namely Sri Lanka, Seychelles, Mauritius, Comoros and Reunion.
It was seen as an evolution from the Indian Ocean Games Trangulaire, which ran from 1947 to 1963 and which saw athletes from Madagascar, Mauritius and Réunion compete in an array of different sports. This new event was first named the Indian Ocean Games which later changed to the Indian Ocean Island Games as Sri Lanka dropped out of the programme before it even kicked off (they are currently trying to re-join the tournament).
The first official edition of the Indian Ocean Island Games was held in 1979 with Réunion as the host. The main participating countries take turns hosting the event, which passes between Réunion, Mauritius, Madagascar and Seychelles. This means each of these islands gets a chance to host every 16 years and we can’t wait for this year’s Mauritius edition!
The games were created to unite the Indian Ocean Island nations
The Indian Ocean Island Games was created for more than the healthy competition and to support the incredible athletes from the islands. One of the big driving forces behind the games was to build a bond and sense of solidarity amongst the participants and to strengthen friendships among the participating countries. It’s a wonderful way to foster regional cooperation through sport. The games also have the added benefit encouraging upgraded infrastructure in the host country every four years.
Sportsmen and women participate in a number of key events
Athletes from the different island nations participate in a number of competitive games which include athletics, badminton, boxing, cycling, handball, judo, karate, rugby, sailing, Pétanque, swimming, table tennis, tennis, Taekwondo, weightlifting, wrestling, football, volleyball, basketball, beach volleyball and rugby sevens.
Some of the most popular men’s events include basketball, beach volleyball (team and singles events), indoor volleyball, football and rugby sevens and the women’s events include basketball, beach volleyball (team and singles) indoor volleyball, among many others. The athlete numbers have increased since it’s inception, with some 1 500 participants in 2007, with 2 000 athletes expected to participate in this year’s edition.
If you would like to witness this sensational event, then we highly recommend booking your trip to Mauritius towards the end of July. Trust us, this is an event you don’t want to miss! Get in touch with us for more information.