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Wednesday, 21 November 2012

Jaro went on a bike trip to the Indian Ocean.......

If you are looking at a globe, find Madagascar off the coast of Africa - the islands are to the right - Reunion (first three months) and Mauritius for the remainder.  Jaro went from mid November to the end of April.  Here is his blog....

It's a very long trip to get here - about 6 hours from Montreal to Paris, and then another 11 hours from Paris to Reunion.  Mauritius is only about 130 km away, so there is a choice of flying or taking the overnight ferry, which is much cheaper.  Of course, I rented a place in Reunion, and will do likewise in Mauritius.

                          Bike survived the flights and bus rides OK, didn't have to retrue the wheels or anything....

When you think about it, there aren't really that many places around the world where one may bicycle comfortably during the months from November to April that has a reasonably modern infrastructure, and lots of good paved roads - preferably with interesting scenery as well.

Reunion and Mauritius certainly qualify, plus the currency exchange is not bad right now either.
And I didn't even consider Mauritius until I found out that I can't stay on French territory for longer than 90 days without a visa  (and it was too late to get one by the time I found out, and the flight was booked)....

                                                            Arrival at Roland Garosse airport, Reunion.

After nearly three weeks here, I have yet to see any big tourist beach hotels.  Part of the reason is that I haven't been to the beach yet, but I can see from my location several km away that there aren't any, at least not on this part of the island ( I think that cities in the north end of the island tend to be more touristy...)

The economy here is problematic - I heard that the unemployment rate is around 30%.  There is much subsidization from the French mainland, and the rest is mostly sugar cane and small scale construction.

Photos belong to Jaro Franta

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