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  • Saint-Denis
  • Hellbourg
  • Plaine des Cafres
  • Sud Sauvage
  • Cilaos
  • Saint Gilles les Bains

La Réunion is actually a beautiful and very compact collection of awe-inspiring sites with a little of everything Mother Nature as to offer: jungle, 3 large circusses, lagoons, an active volcano, fairy-tale like waterfalls, cozy mountain villages and a large number of amazing viewpoints.

This selfdrive is ideal for those who love maximum flexibility. You can choose from 10 accommodations and can compose your own day-to-day itinerary. A week during which you travel the circuses, the volcanoes, the beaches of this island to fully enjoy the immaculate nature of La Réunion.

Individual

Day 1 - Saint-Denis - Hellbourg (60km – 1h30)

Arrival at Saint-Denis airport, welcome and pick-up of the rental car. For those who feel like it, the city tour comes absolutely recommended: strolling through St Denis is like reliving the past. This tropical city is still steeped in colonial influences and accents. From the '' Rue de Paris '' and its beautiful Creole houses with iron-wrought balconies and porches decorated with white lambskins you reach le Grand Marché which easily withstands all comparison with an exotic souk: souvenirs, embroidered table cloths, wooden games ... You get the picture. And as you soar to your end point, the Barachois coastal road, it is nice to stop at the "Vanilleraie" in Ste Suzanne (not included) where the Bourbon vanilla is still grown in a traditional way and at the largest Tamil temple on the island, the Kolosse temple in St-André. Next, Nature comes knocking at your door near the cirque Salazie. This is the most accessible, the largest and greenest part of the island; a constantly 'watered' agricultural area where sugar cane, banana, bamboo, vegetables ... flourish. The climb to Salazie takes you along a scenic path along the rivière du Mât and smuggles you into a gigantic garden of greenery and waterfalls including 'The Bridal Veil'.

Standard Hotel:  Alamanda
Category:

Day 2 - Hellbourg - Plaine des Cafres (70km - 2h)

After breakfast, you explore the village center of Hellbourg, a true open-air museum of Creole architecture laced with colourful alleyways. A visit to the authentic Folio House (not included) catapults you back in time to the glory and splendour of the Governors. There is ample time for you to discover some of the hidden gems at your own pace. Early in the afternoon you head towards the east coast where you'll find lots of brilliant spots: the Cascades des Bassin la Mer & La paix, the Bassin Boeuf, etc. ... Then the winding Routes des Plains in-between exuberant tropical plants awaits. An altogether totally different setting.

Standard Hotel:  Alamanda
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Day 3 - Plaine des Cafres - Sud Sauvage (105km - 3h30)

En-route to Piton de la Fournaise, one of the most active volcanoes in the world, you may want to stop at Nez de Boeuf, the Commerson crater, at the Plaine des Sables and Pas de Bellecombe. Here you can choose: you either go to the Formica Leo crater or head to the top of the Piton de La Fournaise (5 hrs h / t, Medium + level). After this amazing outing you turn back to the Route des Plaines and drive to the Wild South. Who is brave enough to cross the classified suspension bridge near Sainte Rose? A historical mo (nu) ment. In '' Grand Brûlé '' you can witness how successive lava flows added about 30 hectares to the island. Like to nose around in the Jardin des Parfums et des Epices, perfume and spice garden? This natural paradise in the middle of the forest of Mare Longue, on a 800 year old outflow of lava, is accessible free of charge. Plan a stop at Saint Philippe - Cap Méchant with unforgettable views of the ocean and coast. Nowhere do the black basalt rocks strike a more sharp contrast against the intense blue of the sea.

Standard Hotel:  Le Vieux Cep
Category:

Day 4 - Sud Sauvage - Cilaos (97km - 3h30)

Early in the morning you leave for the village Entre Deux, 400 m above sea level, known for its traditional houses and colourful gardens. Perfectly balanced between tradition and modernity, Entre-deux managed to preserve its authenticity and craftsmanship. But today is the spectacular Cirque de Cilaos claims its spot in the limelight: imagine a narrow mountain road with 400 curves! Slowly the gorge of the St Etienne river opens and the breathtaking mountain landscape emerges. Countless stops along the way show you all four corners of this natural masterpiece: Peter Both, the Tunnel Geule Rouge, Palmiste Rouge, etc. The rest of the day is dedicated to the visit of the mountain town of Cilaos, the local embroidery school and La Roche Merveilleuse, a viewpoint with wow content of 11 out of 10.

Standard Hotel:  Le Vieux Cep
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Day 5 - Cilaos

After breakfast you follow the panoramic route to Îlet de Bras Sec, one of the most isolated villages in the circus, surrounded by vineyards and lentils. Make sure you taste the specialties of the region during your lunch: the lentils and the delicious Cilaos wine. You return to Cilaos centre and head towards the edge of the "mare à Jonk" in order to relax and to count some sun rays in front of the Piton des Neiges OR for a day with athletic allures (optional and at surcharge): guided trekking, canyoning, mountain biking, acro-branching etc.

Standard Hotel:  Le Puit des Français
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Day 6 - Cilaos - Saint Gilles les Bains (80km - 2h)

Enjoy a hearty breakfast in this wonderful setting and boost your energy? There are worse things you could think of doing at the start of your day, right? On your way to the west coast you stop at the Étang salé to discover its blowhole and the black-golden sand beach. Feel free to explore the picturesque fishing village of St-Leu and its lagoon, the Stella Matutina Museum (a former sugar cane factory), Kelonia (a turtle farm) and the stunning botanical garden of Mascareignes. Saint Gilles les Bains is your final destination.

Standard Hotel:  L'Ecrin
Category:

Day 7 - Saint Gilles les Bains (70km - 2h30)

Rise early. Today you head to the heart of La Réunion, St Gilles Les Hauts, located in-between sugar cane fields, tamarind trees etc. You climb to the top of the +2000 m high Piton Maido peak of Mafate, the most isolated island circus, accessible only on foot or by helicopter. In La Petite France, famous for its geranium nurseries, you visit a place where essential oils are still distilled artisanally. Also the Musée de Villèle from 1974, located in a large colonial mansion, is worthy of your attention. The central theme is the story of the Debassyn family that marked La Reunion during the 18th and 19th centuries. After lunch you drive towards Saint Paul, the cradle of the island and the former capital of Réunion. Especially the beautiful market by the sea (on Fridays and Saturday mornings), but also the covered market, the coastal promenade, the cave of the first French to set foot on the island and the maritime cemetery are perfect spots to round off this exuberant day in a serene way.

Standard Hotel:  Le Relais des Cimes
Category:

Day 8 - Saint Gilles les Bains - airport (50km - 1h)

Enjoy the last few glances over the lagoon before you drive towards the airport and drop of your rental car.

Helicopter Flight 2 Circusses

 25 min.

What better way to admire the scenic beauty of the isle of La Reunion than by helicopter? Get an eagle's eye view of the Mafate and Salazie circuses as well as the Trou de Fer waterfall before returning via the lagoons on the west coast.

Child fare (age -12: €170)

 Individual

Helicopter Flight Cilaos Circus

 15 min.

Aboard the helicopter, you have exceptional 180 ° views of the unusual landscapes of Cilaos Circus.

 Individual

Helicopter Flight 2 Circusses

 25 min.

Seeing the beautiful volcano of the Fournaise from the air is an absolute must-do! You also fly over the Plaine des Sables and the Rivière des Remparts. Classify this experience amongst the 'truly unforgettable' ones. Cross our hearts!!!

Child fare (age -12)  €160

 Individual

Hotels & Meals

Typical terminology:

  • pain bouchon: stuffed bun
  • rhum arrangé: rum, fruit and spices
  • carri: a stew of beef or chicken
  • rougail saucisse: a chutney that perfectly matches sausage
  • civet zourite: squid dish with wine and onion
  • produits péï: local products

Typical expressions:

  • Ladilafé: gossip
  • Craz un séga ': taking a step into the world and dancing
  • Les Zreilles: reference to the French. They always put their hands to the ears while listening to the nice, local language.

Travel Documents

Travel documents:

  • Travelers with Belgian nationality * (including babies and children) can enter the country on the basis of their valid Belgian ID card. You DO NOT need a visa.
  • Travelers of non-Belgian nationality and / or with a foreign passport should contact their respective embassy (s) or consulate (ates) to obtain up-to-date information about the required travel documents. They are requested to report this spontaneously to the Connections travel consultant (s).

Insurances

Have a safe and carefree trip: travel fully insured with our Protections travel insurance! Our Protections insurance policies offer various formulas in order to offer you the widest possible cover (with even a fly-on-time, natural catastrophes and epidemics) for both single journeys or for the entire year.  We guarantee you the best protection at the best price. 

Tailored travel

Have a safe and carefree trip: travel fully insured with our Protections travel insurance! Our Protections insurance policies offer various formulas in order to offer you the widest possible cover (with even a fly-on-time, natural catastrophes and epidemics) for both single journeys or for the entire year.  We guarantee you the best protection at the best price. 

Health

No mandatory vaccinations. To verify the latest updates on health requirements, please surf to www.itg.be

Time Zones

+ 3h (Winter), + 2h (Summer).

Currency

Currency

Euro

Prices

Pricing in Africa is low

Climate

Réunion is especially attractive for tourists thanks to its tropical climate. The summer in Réunion runs from December to March. This is opposite to our seasons as La Réunion is located in the southern hemisphere. The summer months are much wetter than the winter months. Along the coast there is about 150 to 250 mm of rain per month during the winter months while along the Piton de la Fournaise volcano in the south-east of the island rainfall and mist are common even daily features. It is said the area has 2 to 3 times as much rain in one month as Belgium in a whole year. Actually this region ranges among the wettest areas in the world.

The temperatures on Réunion along the coast during daytime fluctuate from 15°C in winter to 31°C during the summer months. Inland the temperature drops readily 10 to 15 degrees on the highest peaks. Those who want to discover nature here must therefore bring warm and waterproof clothing, as temperatures regularly drop 12 to 15 degrees between sea level and 3000m altitude year-round.

Gemiddelde temperaturen (in °C):

Destination J F M A M J J A S O N D
La Réunion 27 28 28 28 28 27 26 26 27 27 27 27

 

What's included?

  • Welcome at the airport
  • Rental car (8x24h, Type A, type 2-door Twingo)
  • 7 nights accommodation with breakfast in selected hotels
  • Documentation

What's not included?

Your international flights, the optional helicopter flight pre-bookable with this trip), the entry fees to the sites and parks, fuel, tips and personal expenses.

Good to Know

This day-to-day program is purely informative and inspirational. Steal your own itinerary together and choose from a dozen overnight stops.

Standard Price per person


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