Last updated on February 10th, 2022
Though neighboring Seychelles and Mauritius are known for their stunning beaches, Reunion Island also has its fair share of idyllic spots under the sun, as you would expect in a tropical island in the Indian Ocean. Though hiking and the outdoors are the main reason for visiting this destination, you’ll inevitably be drawn to get a taste of paradise. Here’s a list of the best beaches in Reunion Island.
Planning or thinking about a trip to Reunion Island? Have a look at additional Reunion Island travel guides, including a daily itinerary and the best hikes in Reunion Island. For a quick read, here are the top 10 things to do in Reunion Island.
The best beaches in Reunion Island are mostly concentrated along the sandy shores of its lagoon, on the sunny and dry west coast of the island. Protected by a coral reef, these beaches are the most suitable for swimming and watersports. Especially beyond the comforts of the lagoon, always adhere to specific regulations that might be signposted in Reunion’s beaches. The island is infamously known as the “shark attack capital” of the world and ocean swells can make swimming dangerous.
Here’s a quick video tour of Reunion Island!
Plage de L’Hermitage is ideally located in the middle of the lagoon, between St-Gilles and la Saline-les-Baines. It’s Reunion’s Island’s most popular beach so it gets quite crowded over the weekends and even on weekdays after schools are out for the day. The sand is as white as it gets on the island, the water is crystal clear and casuarina trees provide some shade. Don’t forget your snorkeling gear.
Away from the crowds, Plage de la Salines is a perfect stretch of salt and pepper sand, just south of Plage de l’Hermitage. The beach takes up a long stretch of sand so it’s never a challenge to find your spot, and you can enjoy views that stretch all the way south to Saint-Leu. There are a few clear patches for swimming but this is a great place for snorkeling. Sadly, the coral is mostly bleached but there are lots of tropical fish around. When you feel like socializing, head to either Planch’Alize or Copacabana for drinks on the beach. On the southern tip of the beach, Le Choka Bleu is also a popular spot.
This beach is the Reunionnaise version of Saint-Tropez. Tourists in nearby resorts and vacation rentals can easily swing by, enjoy drinks and meals along the concrete promenade, play some beach volleyball, and work on their tan. It’s one of the widest beaches on this section of the island and the further you head from the center, the more secluded it gets. Don’t forget to check out the natural pool!
Plage des Brisants extends from the port of Saint-Gilles south to Plage de l’Hermitage. It might not be the most idyllic in terms of tropical look and feel but the 2.5km of sand to choose from definitely award it extra points. The beach widens as it gets closer to Plage de l’Hermitage, not suitable for swimming on the St-Gilles side. Locals love this beach, especially for a weekend lunch or sunset drinks at the Sauvage bar and restaurant.
One of Reunion Island’s finest black sand beaches, Plage de l’Etang Sale is well outside the comforts of the lagoon but it’s a prime spot for watching the sunset or mixing with the locals. The village of Etang Sale has “island-time” written all over it and there are rumors that UFOs paid a visit in 2019.
The southernmost on this list of the best beaches in Reunion Island, Grand Anse has a beautiful setting, a palm-fringed beach hiding in a small horseshoe-shaped bay. It’s not safe for swimming but the scenery is enough to draw the locals to this beach. A large picnic area and a small park attract families who get here early on the weekend to claim prime real estate for the day.
Now that you where to find the best beaches in Reunion Island, you are ready to plan your own island adventure! Be sure to check out the rest of the Reunion Island travel guide collection, including a day-by-day Reunion Island itinerary, the best hikes on the island, essential travel tips, and lots more.
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