7 Reasons to travel La Réunion with baby & toddler

By Nomad Mum
Have you ever heard of La Réunion? It is the most distant European island – it is close to Madagascar. It’s an exotic hideaway and a great destinations for families with babies or toddlers!

1. Explore “Mini Hawaii”

This magical island will already remind you of Hawaii when you approach it by plane. Mountains that protrude from the ocean,  covered by lush jungle and waterfalls. What a paradise! If you were always dreaming of visiting Hawaii this is the best alternative!

2. Feel safe in Africa

La Réunion is part of the African continent but administratively it belongs to France. So it probably is the safest part of Africa!

3. Get good medical care and infrastructure

One of France’ best hospitals is on this remote island. So you don’t have to lower your sights in terms of medical care of your kids! It is the exact same standard as in France. We went to a physician to get a regular toddler check-up and follow-up vaccination. Everything was easy and uncomplicated.
As the island gets a lot of European support, the infrastructure is very good. The streets are great, it’s clean and you can drink the tap water.

3. Travel cheaper

Spending some time in this paradise won’t burst your budget! There are some good priced Airbnb options and the food is not expensive either. We spent 78 USD per night for accomodationon on average. Keep in mind that outside of Saint Denis you will need a rental car as public transport is very limited.

4. Relax at great beaches for babies and toddlers

These are our favorite ones:
Grande Anse
This is the best beach for babies and toddlers! It’s a stunning beach surrounded by palm trees. There is a large lawn under the palm trees. So you don’t need to bring any sun protection. The waves are big and it’s not allowed to swim. Yet, you’ll find a calm rock pool which is perfect for dipping in with a baby or toddler. There are also toilets and three low-key restaurants.

La Saline les Bains

The water is calm and shallow here as a surrounding coral reef protects it. You’ll love the powder white sand and the turquoise water! There aren’t many trees to protect you from the sun. But the beach cafes offer some beach chairs and umbrellas, e.g. the Copacabana or the Planch Alizé. Don’t worry, there are only a few of them and it’s not overcrowded.

Boucan Canot
Although this beach is well known among tourists we found it quite convenient. At the southern end you’ll find rocks that provide some shade. Here, it also gets quite tranquil. At the very center of the beach it gets busy with lots of restaurants.  Also, here are some trees that make a perfect escape from the sun. It’s a beach with small waves that has a shark-protective net. If you want your baby or toddler to enjoy a bit of salty water go to the rock pool at the northern end of the beach.

5. See the world’s second tallest waterfall and many more

Believe me, the world’s second tallest waterfall really is… TALL! And that’s one of thousands other waterfalls on this special island. I am a waterfall addict. But never in my life have I seen so many waterfalls! They are everywhere. This is definitely an unforgettable exotic experience.

6. Admire picturesque architecture in Saint Denis

Saint Denis is great for walking – no car or public transport needed. I love these kind of decent size cities that are perfect for strolling through the streets! Enjoy a beautiful mix of wooden colonial style buildings and French monumental architecture.

7. Get lost in the highlands

Outdoor addicts will love this place. The highlands are breathtaking, as are the roads! There are three mountainous regions.  Cirque de Cilaos, Cirque de Salazie and Cirque de Mafate. The first one is the most beautiful one but it also is more difficult to access. Cirque de Salazie is quite close to Saint Denis and offers waterfalls all around. Besides, you should be aware that even the “easy” hiking routes are quite difficult. They are doable with a baby or toddler in a carrier but you should be a fit person. Otherwise just relax in the cute villages and enjoy the views! 

About us

When our first daughter was seven weeks old, we started traveling the world. That was almost two years ago. Today we have visited more than 14 countries with baby(s)/toddler and share our experiences and best tipps with you on this blog. Want to find out what we do for a living? – Have a look.

4 thoughts on “7 Reasons to travel La Réunion with baby & toddler

  • Ines March 10, 2018 at 5:44 pm Reply

    Hi, thank you so much for that wonderful article! We are heading to Reunion in June with a one year old toddler and are currently planning our trip. In order to avoid a daily accommodation change, I was wondering which places you can recommend for visiting several sights? Many thanks! Kind regards, Ines

    • Nomad Mum March 25, 2018 at 10:31 am Reply

      Hi Ines!
      That’s really the best idea – stay at one place and make day trips from there! The middle of the east coast is the best idea.
      I would pick La Saline Les Bains – beautiful and good reach to the main sights.

  • Juliane March 12, 2019 at 10:29 am Reply

    Hi, thanks a lot for this great article! We’ll be travelling in May to La Reunion with our kids (4 yrs and 9 months) and I was wondering if you felt save there regarding the mosquitos. I’ve read about Dengue and now I’m a bit concerned. How did you protect your babies?

    • Nomad Mum June 26, 2019 at 7:41 pm Reply

      Definitely use mosquito repellent in the mornings and evening hours. But honestly, the mosquitos were not bad. However, in any tropical destination you have some risk of Dengue. But as far as I understand (I did my research) the Dengue outbreaks are not severe. Also, avoid the raining season 😉

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