Itinerary Highlights

  • Beautiful Indian Island scenery
  • Exhilarating hikes
  • Stunning waterfalls
  • Relax on the lagoon
  • Freedom to explore at your own pace
  • Hikes up to the summit of the Volcano, Piton De La Fournaise

What's Included

  • Flights
  • Accommodation Throughout
16 nights from £2,950 per person

Craig Kaufman

Travel Specialist

I'm here to tailor-make your perfect holiday. Give me a call and I'll use my expertise to create your personalised experience.

This two-week Reunion driving tour combines the active volcano, Piton de la Fournaise, breathtaking scenery and picturesque mountain towns in the three Cirques, with a beach holiday where you can dive, surf, play golf, windsurf and paraglide. The itinerary is completely flexible - you can start on the coast and end in the mountains and spend more or less time in each place. It's a wonderful island and one of our favourite places for a self-drive holiday.

Itinerary

Depart from the UK on the Air France flight to Réunion via Paris.
Arrive in Réunion and collect your hire car. Drive east, through lush fields of sugar cane and past Tamil temples built by plantation workers, to Hell-Bourg, voted one of the most beautiful villages in France. Hell-Bourg is the main settlement in the lovely Cirque de Salazie and has many delightful Creole buildings here. Stay 2 nights at Diana Dea Lodge in a standard room with breakfast included.
Salazie is the lushest of the three amphitheatres. Its 100 waterfalls plummet down spectacular gorges and cliffs like giant, silver ribbons. Walk to the hot springs, Les Sources Pétrifiantes, or drive to the outstanding viewpoint at Le Point du Jour and the nearby cascade. Go canyonning, mountain-biking or climbing or explore the Forest of Bélouve, with its endemic silvery tamarind trees.
Drive south and cross the high plains, the area that separates the three cirques from the volcano. Nature enthusiasts should explore Bébour Forest, with its carpet of white lilies and dominated by enormous, prehistoric-looking tree-ferns. It is possible to see all the locally endemic birds and a variety of rare plants during one walk in Bébour Forest. Pause in Bourg Murat to visit the volcano centre. Stay at Les Géraniums, with its views of Piton des Neiges, at 3069m, the highest mountain in the Indian Ocean, with breakfast included.
Explore the awesome volcano, Piton de la Fournaise (‘peak of the furnace’), which has erupted several times in recent years (most recently in September 2008). Then drive to the village of St Philippe on the verdant, tropical southeast coast. To discover why St Philippe is one of Réunion’s easternmost settlements, drive a short distance towards Tremblet to see the recent flows of lava. In this part of the island, the rugged coast is one of black pebble beaches or black volcanic cliffs. Retrace your route to stay 2 nights at Villa Belle near St Pierre with breakfast included.
Staying at   Villa Belle
From Villa Belle you could visit St Pierre, with its charming fishing port, 19th-century dry dock, and craft market. Walk to La Rivière Langevin with its amazing waterfalls. Or do the botanical ramble at Mare-Longue and the Garden of Perfume & Spices (1½ hour-walk in the middle of tropical trees, flowers and spices) near St Philippe.
Drive west along the coastal highway and inland to the mountain town of Cilaos. This is a superb, scenic drive with views of the island’s high mountains and steep gorges – you will understand why Réunion has been called 'the Nepal of the Indian Ocean’. In Cilaos, stay 2 nights at the very comfortable Hotel Tsilaosa with breakfast included which has wonderful views over the cirque, friendly service – and good cooking.
The Cilaos amphitheatre is the largest of the cirques, with a beauty akin to the Alps in summer. There are wonderful hiking trails up into the mountain forests and among the ravines – and gentle, shorter walks. There are scenic drives to La Roche Merveilleuse and the hamlet of Ilet a Cordes. Just outside town, the Irenée Accot health spa offers a wide range of treatments. Activities include canyonning (abseiling down waterfalls), mountain biking, guided walks and tennis. Alternatively, we can arrange an overnight hike – Piton des Neiges is one popular choice.
Wind your way back down to the coastal highway and drive to Hermitage-les-Bains to spend 7 nights at the refurbished 5-star LUX* Ile de la Réunion (formally Grand Hotel du Lagon) in a superior room with breakfast included.
The hotel has tennis courts, bikes, the largest pool on the island and a choice of four restaurants. The beach is protected by a coral reef and the snorkelling is very good. Diving, and surfing, golf and paragliding are available nearby. Drive up to Le Maido, on the rim of the Cirque de Mafate for breathtaking views of the peaks and into the cirque itself. You could make a day hike along the rim to the summit of Le Grand Benard or descend to the village of Roche Plate – or from St Gilles, take a helicopter trip into the cirque.
Drive to the airport, return your hire car, and check in for the Air France flight to the UK via Paris.

Craig Kaufman

Travel Specialist

I'm here to tailor-make your perfect holiday. Give me a call and I'll use my expertise to create your personalised experience.

Pricing Information & Dates

16 nights from £2,950 per person
Itinerary Dates
Pricing

10th Jan 2023 -
31st Dec 2023

Craig Kaufman

Travel Specialist

I'm here to tailor-make your perfect holiday. Give me a call and I'll use my expertise to create your personalised experience.

Price Includes

  • Return International Flights as per the itinerary
  • All airport taxes and security charges
  • Accommodation and meals as specified
  • Transfers as specified
  • Activities and excursions as specified
  • All entrace fees on sightseeing tours as specified
International flights via Paris from London, airport taxes, Group A car hire and 14 nights accommodation with breakfasts daily.

Price Excludes

  • Travel Insurance
  • Any meals not specified in the itinerary
  • Tips and gratuities
  • Optional excursions
Items of a personal nature, drink, additional meals, activities, entrance fees, fuel, car hire extras, visa fees.

Pricing Notes

Flight supplements apply in peak season.

Why Choose Us?

Passionate travel experts

  • We've been leading wildlife travel since our first South Africa tours over 25 years ago
  • Our Travel Specialists have lived in their specialist area for years
  • We work with local guides to immerse you deeper in our diverse range of experiences

Personal & tailor-made

  • You'll speak to your own expert who'll share their first-hand knowledge
  • We'll make your itinerary seamless with 24/7 emergency contact available
  • Your Travel Specialist will listen to ensure you have the best chance of seeing the wildlife you love

Responsible by nature

  • We take care to actively contribute to the conservation of environments we visit
  • For select countries, we make a charitable donation on your behalf when you make your booking
  • We've partnered with conservation experts and NGOs to curate responsible tours
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For the latest travel advice from the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office check www.gov.uk/travelaware

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