We heard lots of things about Rodrigues island. Kitesurfers will tell you how peaceful life is there and how wonderful are the weather conditions for their passion. But city people will tell you how this island is a godforsaken place.
Since we were tired of seeing my cousins go there, go back multiple times a year, we decided to follow their advice and have our own opinion about Rodrigues. More seriously, when we heard the magical words “grilled lobster on the beach”, it was all set. And then, at that time, it was what we were looking for : a peaceful destination, not far from here, just for a few days.
When people tell you that Rodrigues looks like Reunion island years ago, it is true. But like many many years ago, at a time when we were not born yet. City addicted will be bored very quickly or have some mystical revelation about their purpose in their lifetime. We personally did like this Rodriguese lifestyle : easy in the morning, not too fast in the evening, “we can let the keys in the car, we don’t care”. Just no stress. And I think that, despite what some could call “poverty”, these people are geniunely happy and you can feel it in their sincere smiles.
We have tested two types of accomodations : 2 nights in a B&B at Case Corail and 2 nights in the new 4 stars hotel Tekoma. Two different experiences of course and we recommend both.
What to do ?
As for the tourist attractions, we enjoyed driving around the island at 50 km/h, despite the bad weather. The walk from St François to the Trou d’argent and Graviers is easy and nice. You can have access to beautiful creeks. The market in Port Mathurin is interesting for souvenirs and local food, but not so big. We didn’t go to the tortoise park, and we’ve heard different opinions about it. The small islands around are worth the trip, even if you get seasick like David. We had a nice barbecue on the Cats Island, and it was really great ! (especially if Vivian is cooking)
Let’s talk about the Rodriguese food. Many dishes look like the ones in Reunion. But the only and substantial différence is that all the products are very fresh : grilled fish / lobster that was caught and cooked in the same day, chicken and vegetables from the courtyard. We get the real taste of the food.
When to go ?
One last advice, it’s best to go there in October-November when it’s not too hot or windy. Otherwise, you won’t fully enjoy your time around the beaches and be careful in some B&B, they sometimes don’t have hot water.
Five days are enough if you don’t practice any water sports (kitesurf, fishing, diving…) to get a first experience of the island. After this Internet and stress detox, we came back fully rested from Rodrigues. And that’s the real purpose of a vacation, isn’t it ?