This small but densely populated island country consists of a series of volcanic hills rising to a height of about 600-800 m/2,000-2,600 ft with a fringing coastal plain.
It is situated in latitude 20°S in the Indian Ocean about 800 km/500 mi east of Madagascar.
Mauritius has a tropical oceanic climate with moderately high temperatures and humidity throughout the year. Temperatures never rise to such high levels as to be really uncomfortable or dangerous, although on occasions the nights may be rather sticky and oppressive.
Rain occurs in all months but the wettest period is from December to April. During these months tropical cyclones occasionally strike the island or pass near enough to give very heavy rainfall and violent damaging winds.
The table for Port Louis illustrates conditions at lower levels on the island. The south and southeast coasts, being exposed to the dominant southeast trade winds, receive almost twice as much rain as Port Louis and rainfall is also heavier on the higher ground inland. Outside the main rainy season the weather is generally sunny and pleasant, with slightly lower temperatures and a strong sea breeze.
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