Famous for its volcanic mountains, rainforest, beautiful waterfalls, and tropical beaches, there are many reasons you should consider visiting Reunion Island.
Réunion National Park covers 42% of the Island and this UNESCO World Heritage Site protects the endemic ecosystems of Les Hauts, Réunion’s mountainous interior dominated by volcanic peaks and cliffs, comprises “subtropical rainforests, cloud forests and heaths creating a remarkable and visually appealing mosaic of ecosystems and landscape features.
The Island only has one five star hotel, located on the western side of the island, the resort sits on a protected lagoon and is also home to the island’s largest swimming pool.
Where Is Reunion Island
La Reunion is a French overseas island located in the midst of the Indian Ocean, Just 200 kilometers South-West of Mauritius and 700 kilometers east of the island of Madagascar. The island was previously known as île Bourbon.
How to get to Reunion Island from Johannesburg
The distance from Johannesburg, South Africa to Reunion Island is 3,417 kilometers. The flight time from Johannesburg to St Denis de la Reunion is 3 hours 50 minutes.
Air Austral is the national carrier of Reunion Island. but Air Mauritius also has flights to Reunion Island.
How to get to Reunion Island from Mauritius
The distance from Mauritius to Reunion Island is 233KM.
Why visit Reunion Island
Reunion is a multicultural island with roots from Africa, Madagascar, Asia, and Europe. The island is rich in culture and you find a blend of many cuisine, traditions, and languages.
Despite being a tropical island of incredible beauty and a popular escape for the French, the island is yet to truly develop its hotel industry. At present, Lux Saint Gilles (owned by the Mauritian hotel and resort chain Lux) is the only five-star resort on the island. Located on the western side of the island, the resort sits on a protected lagoon and is also home to the island’s largest swimming pool.
Not only is Reunion a hiker paradise but the Island a great a year-round destination for all types of travelers!
Best time for visiting Reunion Island
|Best Month to visit Reunion Island||Season||Crowds||Vacation in Reunion Island Cost|
|Visiting Reunion Island in January||Frequent and heavy showers||Moderate||Moderate|
|Traveling to Reunion Island in February||The hottest month of the year with heavy and regular showers||High||High|
|Visiting Reunion Island in March||Average temperature of 25°, some showers||Moderate||High|
|Visiting Reunion Island in April||the end of the cyclone season||High||High|
|Visiting Reunion Island in May||Around 28° by the coast||High||High|
|Visiting Reunion Island in June||The beginning of the austral winter||Low||Moderate|
|Visiting Reunion Island in July||26° on average, 23° in the lagoon. Sea breezes, especially in the south||Low||Moderate|
|Visiting Reunion Island in August||The middle of the austral winter||Low||Moderate|
|Visiting Reunion Island in September||Some frost possible up in the mountains at night||Moderate||Moderate|
|Visiting Reunion Island in October||Between seasons||Moderate||Moderate|
|Traveling to Reunion Island in November||The beginning of the cyclone season||Moderate||Moderate|
|Visiting Reunion Island in December||The onset of summer||High||High|
Interesting facts about Reunion Island
What time is it in Reunion Island right now?
Reunion Standard Time is 4 hours ahead of Greenwich Mean Time (GMT+4). Reunion does not operate Daylight Saving Time.
Population of Reunion Island
The population of reunion island is 860 000 in January 2020.
Reunion Island Currency
Euro (€) .
Languages of Reunion Island
French is the official language of Reunion Island and Creole is the language of everyday life. Based on French, with a mixture of Malagasy and Tamil words, it is used with relatives and for informal interactions. French is generally used in formal situations. Although everybody understands it, many people cannot speak it; therefore, its use is a marker of educational achievement and social status.
Largest French city outside France
The island’s capital city, Saint-Denis is the 21st largest French city, and also the largest French city not physically attached to the land of France.
Reunion Island is part of the European Union
Although Reunion Island is located close to Africa, its a French Island which means the currency is Euro and people are “Europeans”.
Do I need a Schengen Visa to visit Reunion Island
Reunion Island, French overseas department, is not a member of the Schengen area. No visa required for South Africans with a valid passport qualifying for a 90-day stay. Passports must be valid for at least 6 months and have at least 2 blank pages.
How many volcanoes are in Reunion?
The island of Reunion is made up of two volcanic mountains, Piton des Neiges which covers the central part of the island and Piton de la Fouranaise that is located on the eastern part of the island. These twin summits have been highly eroded over time.
Olivier Levasseur Is buried in Reunion Island
A pirate nicknamed La Buse or La Bouche because of the speed and ruthlessness with which he always attacked his enemies was executed and buried in Reunion in 1730. It’s believed that his treasure ( estimated value bigger than 4.5 billion Euros) still remains somewhere in the Indian Ocean or even on Reunion Island.
Important Reunion Island Laws to know
Reunion Island is an ideal destination for nature lovers. Whether you’re visiting Reunion Island or moving there, there are important laws to know before you go.
Cannabis in Reunion Island
Cannabis is illegal in Réunion, but it’s grown illicitly and is locally known as zamal, a term that appears to be of Malagasy origin but does not currently exist in Madagascar. Cannabis in Réunion is used both recreationally and ritually.
Driving in Reunion Island
Here is some extra information you might need when driving in Reunion:
- Cars drive on the right-hand side like in France.
- It is strictly forbidden to drive while using items such as earphones or headsets.
- The permitted blood alcohol level is 0.2 g/l for probationary permits, that is to say until 3 years after your license has been issued and 0.5 g/l for other drivers. Nonetheless, our insurance policy requires you to be 100 % sober.
- All passengers are mandatory to wear seat belts.
- The speed limit is indicated by road signs. However, you must stay cautious at all time because roads are mountainous and have some tight turns, which makes it potentially dangerous to go too fast. It is also recommended to let the locals pass you.
- Pedestrians are particularly vulnerable in Reunion. Always look out for them on the side of the road and let them cross when needed.
Amazing Island Guides
Travel Insurance for Reunion Island
Use travel insurance while visiting South Africa so you are covered for theft and medical expenses. There are a lot of adventurous things to do in Reunion Island, and it’s best to have peace of mind while driving, hiking and trying some of the best food in the world.
Find out why I recommend World Nomads, check out my World Nomads Insurance review.