Réunion or as the French call it La Reunion is a French island, the population is tiny, in comparison to western cities, with just over 800,000 inhabitants. The island itself is in the Indian Ocean, a stone throw away from Mauritius and east of Madagascar.
It should come as no surprise then that the island comprises of many different ethnicities and races. Those being African, Indian, European and Chinese. Therefore many of the members of La Réunion are immigrants that were either willing or unwilling participants that came to La Réunion from Europe, Asia and Africa. And it is preceisely this “melting pot” of ethnicities that creates the blend of Creole and mixed Creole heritage.
Like La Réunion the Seychelles Island is also bustling with a strong cultural heritage. West of the Seychelles you’ll find Mauritius, Rodrigues, Agalega and La Réunion. Although the population is much smaller, with just over 80,000 residents it becomes evident why the Seychelles and La Réunion would collaborate to promote both islands side by side in the hope that this would drive in more tourism.
Subsequently the Reunion Island Tourism Board and the Seychelles Tourism Board have been attempting to intertwine the holiday options between the Seychelles and La Réunion. The minister of the Seychelles, Alain St.Ange and the president of La Réunion were in discussion about the potential loss of tourists from La Réunion due to insufficient transportation options. Currently there is a transit stop between the La Réunion and the Seychelles which is in Mauritius, and unfortunately this means that visitors will have to spend an average of 2 more hours (4 to 6) getting from La Réunion to the Seychelles, as opposed to them taking a direct flight with no interchanges, cutting there journey time in half to an average of 2 hours. This is worrying to Alain St.Ange as he is afraid that the unique selling point of the island will be overlooked with visitors opting to stay in Mauritius instead of taking the connecting flight to the Seychelles.
Although La Réunion will also feel the pinch, if La Réunion doesn’t partner up with the Seychelles Island they can successfully be an extension of the Seychelles island. Being that they are already so similar already. Some of the similarities they both share include they both have residents that derive from the four corners of the earth, making there cultural stamp Creole, they are fairly close in proximity (both in the Indian Ocean) and they both have a thriving agriculture and climate. Therefore when visitors decide which they would rather visit there isn’t much separating the two in terms of differentiation.