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Réunion’s coast as seen from the helicopter

Le Reunion where the ocean meets the sky

From where I stood, I could see the horizon of the Indian Ocean seamlessly meet azure skies. Réunion Island was made of so many diverse elements and yet they smoothly blended into one another.

Island Break in the Indian Ocean

From where I stood, I could see the horizon of the Indian Ocean seamlessly meet azure skies. Réunion Island was made of so many diverse elements and yet they smoothly blended into one another. This I understood as I explored each of its individual geographic elements.

Cascading waterfalls of Reunion by IRT Dronecopters
Cascading waterfalls of Reunion by IRT Dronecopters

Three million years ago, volcanic eruptions resulted in the cratered landscape of La Réunion. The Piton des Neiges, at 3071 metres above sea level, is now extinct leaving behind three lunar-like cirques or calderas on its geography— Mafate, Salazie and Cilaos.

However, the existing, Piton de la Fournaise (Peak of the Furnace or ‘le Volcan’), is one of the most active volcanoes in the world. It stands at a height of 2632 metres and has erupted several times in history. In 1977, enormous spews of lava flowed eastwards towards Sainte- Rosa and magically stopped at the doors of Notre Dame des Laves (Our Lady of the Lava).

The more recent 2007 lava flow joined the Indian Ocean after drifting through RN2 (also known as Lava Road), between Sainte-Rosa and Saint Phillipe. On Lava Road, black dried lava added a unique element to the landscape. I hopped from one mould to another and noticed the wrinkles of cooled lava form impressive patterns. Some had white woolly cracks and others nurtured stout green shrubs.

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