Most travelers choose their destinations for a basket of reasons including everything from famous museums to beautiful scenery, deep history to culinary delights. A few just want to tick off another destination.
I think the six of us came to Rodrigues because we all love Africa, and this is the most remote and unexpected part of Africa that exists. Like any Robinson Crusoe island hidden in the giant oceans, we also expected very unique beauty, history and ecology. We weren’t disappointed.
I’m in Mauritius, defined by geography, pirates and free money. I flew in from its much larger and much poorer cousin, Reunion, and the contrast between the two couldn’t be greater.
The ideological and even moral divide between these two main Mascarenes Islands are as great as the political divisions around the world between the right and the left, and one is forced into concluding that in a relatively short time, only one will still be standing.
Right now I’m in the longest country on earth, more than 5900 miles across. No I’m not in Russia, which is a measly 4500 miles wide.
I’m in Africa in …France(!) doing a reckie before returning with my group next week. The Île de la Réunion is a départément, one of the 18 “states” of the French Republic. It took an 11-hour nonstop flight from Paris to get here. When I return next week with my intrepid travelers I’ll describe the remarkable attractions of this remote ecological paradise in the Indian Ocean. But here are my first impressions as any first-time tourist: