When we were planning for our wedding last year, Africa was the last place I could think of as a honeymoon destination. Every part of me wanted to go to Paris but my husband thought of an African destination with a French feel. True to his word, I was not disappointed because spending time in the Reunion Island is the best thing that has ever happened to me. In fact, I have not singing the praises of this magnificent but less popular Island to all my friends who love to travel the world for new experiences and adventure.
One of the things that you need to know before setting foot on this Island is that it is a pace of many contrasts. Not only is it an exotic destination but also home to a host of different flavors and ethnic diversities that makes it a great destination for couples as well as families. In addition, it also boasts of its well-preserved natural environment and being a playground for different forms of sports.
It was quite exciting to receive such a warm French welcome at the airport after so many hours of being airborne. We were lucky enough to and in the morning right into the Capricorn sun. Although we had experienced jetlag, the atmosphere was so tempting so we only freshened up and had breakfast at out hotel before beginning our adventure. One of the places that we enjoyed on this island are the pristine beaches. We had so much fun sun bathing considering that winter was setting in back home. The cool breeze blowing over the beaches took the entire experience to another level. You cannot trade this atmosphere for anything else. Moreover, the surrounding scenery was quite spectacular. The vacao and filao trees that line the beach also offer a great shade where we enjoyed quite a number of snacks especially during our afternoons in Reunion Island. We particularly loved the fact that we got to experience white sand beaches as well as the black sand beach. Some of the warm beaches that we experienced include Roches noires, Saint –Leu and Saint-Pierre as they were all full of life. We also went on a boat ride along the Reunionese coast and were lucky enough to experience the spectacular site of dophins and whales under the guidance of professionals from Le Grand Bleu company. This boat tour was truly magical as we had an opportunity to meet dolphins as well as discover the Reunion sea life even as the crew shared with us as much information on the local fauna and flora as possible. I recommend this activity for your itinerary while in Reunion Island because it is rewarding.
Apart from spending time at the beach, we engaged in a number of water sports that were so much fun. One of sports that we enjoyed the most during our honeymoon in Reunion Island that I can recommend is Kayak Transparent. However, this is only appealing if you are into kayaking or like water adventure. The staff here was so friendly and they ensured that we had so much fun. We had a great time relaxing over the lagoon water hole as well as paddling over the water. You need to try this next time you visit this island.
The Aquariaum de la Reunion is also another place where you can expect a different water experience. This is because though small, the aquarium holds a selection of fish species that are simply amazing from reef fish to sharks that are in small tanks. This place is also educational as we got to learn about the reef ecosystem as well as fish reproduction that was quite something. You can also bring your kids along it is children friendly. We later picked some souvenirs at the souvenir shop that is also worth dropping by for some unique pieces.
We also spent some time at the Shai Ena Ranch that is also a perfect place to watch the sun setting. It was amazing to not only see the Appaloosa horse but also ride it before setting down for a glass de Rose with the horses around a fire. Although we had never ridden on horses, we were given a quick introduction and soon we found the entire experience exciting. Besides, the views were incredible. This was such a romantic experience but not necessary for lovers alone as other people can equally have a great time here. I cannot describe this experience and the pleasure best so you will do well to visit for a firsthand experience. You will not be disappointed.
The Jardin d’Eden is also worth visiting as it is a beautiful garden that has different themes. Although there are many plants, few of these are flowers but a walk through this garden is refreshing. It is particularly a good stop after the beach as it is cool and quite as well as an ideal location for photos so bring your camera along. The other adventurous activity that we loved was the visit to Descente VTT where we enjoyed a variety of scenery for more than three hours that is refreshingly breathtaking while mountain biking. If you are into biking then this is a must do for you as you will experience some intriguing spots on earth. Alternatively you can opt for hiking or 4×4 excursions that are equally fun to engage in even though we preferred biking the best because of the enticing terrain.
Fishing was a first for us as we went to the Albacore Fishing club under the guidance of the proprietors of the premise whose names I cannot recall. Although I was not lucky to catch any fish, my husband was. It was exciting to see dolphins following us all through and I was sure to capture them on camera. After the entire experience, we are both considering fishing as a hobby. We also visited Kelonia, the tortoise museum and discovered that tortoises are actually interesting to watch. We learned so much about turtles besides getting up close and personal with them.
Although I have phobia for heights, we went for another first at paragliding courtesy of the Back Air Parapente sports camp. This experience was super awesome as we jumped over 1500m and had the best landscape view as well as views of other places. If you love being airborne you can also try paramotors, parachuting and hang gliding a of which are fun even though we never got to experience them. The Conservatoire Botanique Nationa de Mascarin is another very beautiful garden that boasts of a collection of plants that are on the island from euphorbia to orchids, fruit trees, palm trees, bamboos and even flowers.
I cannot fail to mention about the delicacies that Reunion Island has to offer. We sampled various exotic flavors as well as some Chinese and Indian flavors. We particularly loved their dumplings and samosas that are great appetizers. Their traditional cuisine comprises rice, rougali and beans while their curries are simply mouthwatering. The tropical fruits are quite something. I really wish I had purchased some of the spices but I guess there is always a next time. In terms of culture, it was not hard to tell that the Island has Chinese, Hindu and Islam influences. Overall, Reunion Island has a lot to offer. All you need to do is take time off to explore and enjoy the beauty therein.