Tourists have been warned to be vigilant when travelling to Mauritius after a spate of burglaries at villas on the island nation.
The UK Foreign Office is urging holidaymakers to take care when locking their rooms, avoid withdrawing large sums of cash and not to do deals with beach vendors.
Most of the incidents have been non-violent but the Foreign Office also warns of recent reports or armed robberies and sexual assaults.
The country welcomes around 100,000 British tourists a year, and is currently in its cyclone season, which typically lasts from November to May.
Advice on the government website was updated on Wednesday, January 11, to say: “Petty crime is common. Take care of bags and valuables in popular tourist areas including Port Louis, Grand Baie and Flic en Flac.
“Use a hotel safe, where practical. Keep copies of important documents, including passports, separately.
“There have been recent reports of burglaries at villas where tourists have been staying. Make sure accommodation and hotel rooms are secure. Avoid renting accommodation that isn’t registered with the Mauritius Tourism Authority.
“Most crime is non-violent, but weapons have been used in some burglaries. Although uncommon, there have been some instances of sexual assault on tourists. Avoid walking alone at night on beaches or in poorly lit areas especially in the back streets of the business district of Port Louis.
“There have been reports of street robberies near or at ATMs. Take extra care when withdrawing cash.”
“In 2011, an Irish tourist was murdered in her hotel room at a resort in the north of the Island. The crime remains unsolved. Incidents like this are very rare, but you should remain vigilant.
“Avoid doing business with street or beach vendors.”