Réunion – overseas region of France, Réunion Island


Reunion has many resort hotels for mass holidays. Most are located on the coast with white or black, volcanic sand. Holidays on the island is not cheap, so local hotels are all appropriate level: the average room rates start from 100 U.S. dollars, but you can be calm about the quality of service and surroundings, it is on top.

Most hotels have their own area with swimming pools and a golf course or tennis court. Infrastructure in them is so well developed that such complexes, you can not go out, anyway the rest will be interesting and rich.

If you want to save money on lodging, you can stay in guesthouses, the choice on the island is also very large. The service is much more modest, guests usually have a room with a small kitchen, a balcony or terrace.

Climate Reunion:: No data.


Reunion is the most “French” overseas territory of France. If you step away from the local landscape, it seems as if you are somewhere in the Mediterranean. Even road signs and mailboxes are the same as on the mainland. It is also worth mentioning the amazing nature of the island: spectacular landscapes and numerous volcanoes have become a great “background” for many fantastic movies.

Réunion National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is a true paradise for ornithologists, because more than a thousand species of birds winter here. The active volcano Piton de la Fournes is the highest point of the island and the visiting card of the country. You can reach its summit on foot (with some fitness) or by helicopter.

Reunion area:: No data.


Saint-Gilles-Le-Bagne is the most popular beach area of the city. It is one of the few places with white sand (mostly black, volcanic). Along the resort lies an area of waterfalls and stunning rainforests. Cool Lake Bassin du Cormoran is a great alternative to the warm ocean and crowded beaches.

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The island’s calling card is the national holidays and festivals, which attract many visitors from other cities. Most memorable are the Hindu festivals of Malabar and Kawadi.

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And, of course, is the traditional beach holiday. A good location in the south-west of the Indian Ocean guarantees beautiful, sunny weather all year round. There is low humidity, so the heat is easily tolerated. Another unusual trend in Reunion is dental tourism. There are many good clinics, where you can improve your health at a reasonable price.

Active recreation is popular: diving, surfing, biking and swimming.


There are no direct flights to the island from Russia. There are possible to change flights in Paris or Dubai if you fly Air France.

Roads in Reunion are good, but often congested. A more modern overpass is currently under construction, which will make travel on the island faster. Buses and motorcycles are the main means of transportation for city dwellers. Tourists can take a cab or rent a car.

Standard of Living

Reunion is an overseas possession of France. Remarkably, until the XVI century, the island was uninhabited, visited only occasionally by Arab sailors. The first settlers here were Europeans, so the main population is French and Creoles.

It’s almost Europe. Even the local architecture is strongly reminiscent of it. The island sits on French subsidies, the locals work in services, agriculture and animal husbandry. The difference between the standard of living between the French population and members of national minorities is noticeable. The local government tries to make it the least noticeable.


The capital city is Saint-Denis with its attractive colonial center and high prices for everything. The capital is a solid place for walks, street cafes, and tiny stores with cute souvenirs. Also in the city has a botanical garden and numerous hotels with marvelous views of the coast. Here lives 100 thousand people, not counting the regular tourists.

Reunion Island

La Reunion coat of arms

Russian tourists are not very familiar with the island of Réunion (in French Réunion ) in the Indian Ocean. Located between Mauritius and Madagascar .

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Réunion is less famous than its neighbors, although its unearthly landscapes, impressive volcanoes, recreational opportunities and unforgettable diving are worthy of greater fame.

The island’s unusual name (Réunion in French means “reunion”, according to legend, dates back to the time of the French Revolution.) Earlier, the island was called Bourbon (Île Bourbon) in honor of the French royal dynasty of Bourbons. In 1792 in Paris, the Marseille revolutionaries, who united with the National Guard, arrested King Louis XVI (from the Bourbon family), and in honor of their unification (reunification) as if renamed the “royal” island.

Geographic position of Réunion

The island of Reunion is located in the Mascarene Islands in the Indian Ocean, about 200 km east of Madagascar.

Map of Reunion

It has a surface area of 2,512 km2 and a coastline of 207 km.


The island is of volcanic origin, rather “young” in geological terms, it is only 2 million years old. The landscape is mountainous. The highest point – Piton de Nege, 3069 m. In the south-east of the island is one of the most active volcanoes in the world, Piton de la Furnez with a height of 2631 m. The lava fields occupy about one-fifth of Réunion. The island’s rivers abound with waterfalls.


How to get to Réunion

Réunion’s main air gateway is Roland Garros Airport. Roland Garros Airport in Saint Denis (IATA code RUN ) is the main air gateway to La Réunion. It is home to the local airline Air Austral (IATA:UU, ICAO:REU). Saint-Denis is connected to Paris by its flights as well as those of French Air France or Corsair. Reunion also has flights to Madagascar, Mauritius, Seychelles and more remote airports.

Réunion’s second airport, Guyot, is located in the south of the island, does not have international airport status and cannot handle large aircrafts.

The island has several ports, but because of the long sea route tourists to Reunion rarely arrive by sea, mostly private yachts or huge cruise ships.

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Climate of Réunion

Reunion has a tropical maritime climate, quite hot, but noticeably cooler and drier than the neighboring islands.

Since Reunion lies south of the equator, its seasons are opposite to Europe. Summers, from November to April, are hot and humid: +30°C or more during the day and +25°C at night, with humidity up to 80%. Winter, from May to October is warm and drier: +23°C during the day and +17°C at night.

Humidity varies greatly depending on the direction and altitude. The eastern shore is much more humid than the dry west coast, and the wettest area is the mountain heights above the northeastern shore.

The best season to visit Reunion are considered the periods from September to November and April to June.

Features of Réunion

Officially Reunion is an Overseas region of France. It is governed by a prefect appointed by the president of France. Réunion, in turn, gives France 3 senators and 5 deputies of the National Assembly.

The national currency is the euro. Curiously, Réunion was in fact the first in the world to adopt the euro: because of an earlier time zone than European countries adopting the new currency on the same day, Réunion received a slight temporary advantage.

All major banks on the island – branches of the French, technical problems with the cashing or exchange of currencies usually does not arise.


The population of the island – more than 800 thousand people. The island’s majority are Creoles (of mixed European, Negro, and Malagasy descent. White French consider themselves about a quarter of the population, slightly less than Indians. There are also Chinese, Vietnamese, etc.

French is the official language and is taught in school, but there is wide-spread Reunion Creole (based on French) with two dialects: the urban dialect is closer to French, while the rural dialect has more African language elements.

The majority of the population (up to 90%) are Catholics, the remainder are rather mixed in religious terms: Protestants-Pentecostals, Hindus, Muslims, Buddhists, Rastafarians, etc.

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History of Réunion

For a very long time the island of Réunion was uninhabited, although familiar to Arab navigators since at least the 10th century. The first Europeans who landed on Réunion were the Portuguese in 1500.

We find it difficult to name another region of the Indian Ocean where the original permanent population was Europeans. Reunion is exactly that. Since 1642 it has been a French possession (ruled by the French East India Company). Since 1764 and rule of the island passed to the French crown.

The French organized on Réunion (then Bourbon) the cultivation of coffee, for which they brought slaves from Madagascar and Africa en masse. In 1848, slavery was abolished on the island, and Abolition Day (December 20) is a holiday in Réunion.

Reunion was twice under British rule: during the Napoleonic Wars from 1810 to 1815 (the British established sugar cane cultivation, an important crop to this day) and during World War II from 1942 to 1946.

After the war, the island, which was returned to France, officially became an overseas department (and later an administrative region) of France.

Recreation in Reunion

Beach vacations

On Reunion there are not so many beaches as, for example, in neighboring Mauritius. Nevertheless, the beaches of Reunion are world famous, but not the white ones (which are also here). Black sand of volcanic origin attracts many tourists.

Excursions, birdwatching, trekking

Réunion National Park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This is a true paradise for ornithologists and birdwatchers as over a thousand species of birds winter here. You can see up to 32 species of parrots alone here. This abundance of birds makes up for the paucity of terrestrial fauna of the island.

The active volcano Piton de la Furnez – a calling card of the country. You can reach its peak on foot (with some fitness) or by helicopter.


Reunion is a famous place for surfers. There are high waves along the coast, especially on the beach at the commune of l’Etan-Salais in the northwest of the island.

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Diving off the island of Réunion

Diving in Reunion is very diverse. Beginners and professionals, amateur macro divers and those who want to experience diving with dolphins, whales and whale sharks can find their dive sites here. There are a few racks here as well.

Diving with whales on Reunion

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To make reservation or to get more detailed information you can contact your consulting managers: tel: +7 495 740-29-89, e-mail: ac@actravel.ru

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“Tour Operator, RTO 001262 in the unified federal register of tour operators We work in tourism since 1996 Tel.: +7 495 740-29-89; +7 495 938-92-92; 8 495 938-94-56 Emergency telephone number for tourists who are abroad: +7 926 20-40-100 Address: Vernadsky avenue, 37 Bldg. 1B , Moscow , 119415 , Russia We work Mon-Fri: 10:00-19:00, Sat: 11:00-14:00 , weekend – Wed E-mail: ac@actravel.ru , Web site: actravel.ru

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