La Reunion is an adventure island and not the best place for hanging around at the beach. We crossed this amazing place, which is part of the European Union and belongs to France, in 2012 by foot.
The island consists of 3 main cirques (volcanic craters) that are named Cirque de Mafate (can only be accessed by foot or helicopter), Cirque de Salazie and Cirque de Cilaos. We started in Salazie, hiked up to the highest peak Piton des Neiges (3070m), before we entered Cilaos and finally returned via Mafate back to Salazie.
The trails were in great shape – but there are hardly any flat parts so be prepared for plenty of elevation meters. You will meet plenty of crazy trail runners on these jungle paths. In case you have some weeks to stay, you can do an extensive hike through the three cirques and also include the volcano Piton de la Fournaise afterwards which is located on the southern part of the island and is still quite active.
Huts were available for hikers to be booked (in advance) – camping was not allowed. (Unfortunately, none of the links we used for hut booking are still online – you need to do your own research).