We had some toast and cereal delivered to the room and within minutes of the Captain announcing we had Immigration clearance, and at about half past eight, we left the ship. There was a shuttle from the ugly container port in which we were berthed to St Gilles De Bain and although the advice was to wait until after 11 to avoid the queues, we thought that if we left the ship quickly we’d get on one without waiting. We were right.
We knew nothing about St Gilles. The Port Lecturer – about which more later – had told us earlier in the week that the shuttle would go to St Paul and I’d researched that resort. So on arrival in St Gilles we quickly found a cafe – with Wi Fi of course – and had a look at where we were.
In fact St Gilles was lovely. It was very simple and very French – just a small seaside town with lots of pleasant cafes and attractive and interesting tourist shops. We bought yet another item for one of the grandchildren and I got a Reunion tee shirt. We spent quite a bit of the morning drinking cold La Pression and wine in a lovely bar overlooking a beautiful beach, later having a wade into the ocean which was beautifully clear and very, very warm.
Later, a little further from the beach and quieter because of it we found a little French restaurant, The Piccolo, where we had excellent Pizzas with volcanic Pizza Oil, beer and a quarter pichet all for about 35 Euros. That of course would have been too much for the crew who, as usual, were clustered around any source of free WiFi, not being able easily to afford a drink. Here they are clamoured around the beach bar:
It’s a long time since we’ve visited somewhere new as lovely as Reunion and Mauritius will have a lot to live up to tomorrow. We were back at the ship for about five and, rather than have our usual Margaritas in the bar we drank on the balcony as we slipped away from our moorings. Later after dinner we sat on the balcony a little more and watched this almost full moon light up the sea: