La Reunion diary – Part III

November 19, 2017
La Reunion Nikon Holidays Photo Adventures Traveling Hiking Night Sky Astrophotography Vulcano

Exactly after two months from our holidays I am happy to share with you that I managed to process all (~2000) pictures. Out of those only 500 were finally developed and ~200 I shared on the website.

Coming back to the part III of the La Reunion adventures, today you can go with us to one of the most active volcanoes in the world. Piton de la Fournaise, also called le Volcan (The Volcano), is a massive shield volcano, located in the eastern part of the La Reunion island. In comparison to Piton des Neiges, it is still active and its last eruption was in January – March 2017. Access to the volcano is very easy but requires a car – no public transport goes directly to the Gîte du Volcan. The shelter however, is much better equipped than this one we visited during Piton des Neiges hike. The road from south coast to Le Volcan is very beautiful and goes through many cattle fields covered in clouds. The closer the volcano is, the less vegetation we observed. After almost 1.5 h of ride we finally arrived to the entrance to the caldera – a huge valley formed by magma collapse. Indeed, the view was intriguing – you could really feel there like the Curiosity rower on Mars. We arrived at the shelter late afternoon. Similarly like on Piton des Neiges, we were above the clouds, so the night sky was perfect without any light pollution. Next day we woken up early in the morning and started our long approach to the summit of the volcano. First, we had to pass through the second caldera which walls were really massive, roughly 6 km distance. Hike to the volcano peak was quite challenging because of the extremely sharp edges of solidified lava. The summit was 2632 meters above the sea level but the view from there was quite disappointing – everything around was covered with clouds and volcano was rather inactive. However, the crater named Dolomieu, is massive ~400 m hole. Unfortunately, no activity was inside and no boiling lava :(. We spent some time at the top and later went back to shelter for our car and slowly move toward the airport.

The next night we spent in Saint Philippe and we visited the most south and the wildest part of the island. No big cities in this area and the land is mostly inhabited by local people. It is also more quiet because it’s not crowded by tourists. Following few days we spent travelling north and visiting some smaller attractions like Pointe de la Table, Plage verte, Anse des cascades, Point de vue sur Takamaka and Bassin Boeuf. We also stopped over a church, Notre Dame des Laves in Sainte-Rose, which was spared during a huge eruption in 1977. Finally, on the last day we arrived to Saint Denis, where our adventure started. Time on La Reunion was perfect 2 weeks holidays, full of attractions, perfect views and ocean. Nevertheless, two weeks time was not enough to discover all the places. It would be also better to go there summer time, when all fruits ripen and it is a bit more warm. What is also unfortunate is that swimming experience is limited by sharks activity. Beside this, La Reunion is a perfect place to go and enjoy all it has to offer.

This is the end of my La Reunion diary, however I will add one more post with only night sky pictures which were modified in different way than all others. I hope you enjoyed the adventure and I convinced you that La Reunion is another beautiful place to consider as a next holidays destination.