History and cultural heritage

Explorer treasures

The conquest of the south

Further to a colonization started in 1665 by France, the Bourbon island met a huge boom thanks to the coffee planted for the King Louis XIV. Pirate and privateers rushed all over the island. In the 18th century, people runned towards the wild south, christened “Mahavel, land of living”. Joseph Hubert introduced, with successful results spices and cloves. In the 19th century, the sugar cane production enabled Saint Pierre’s area to fl ourish. The Kerveguen family marked the history of the island by launching a financial and agricultural empire in the south. At this time Saint-Pierre benefitted from a merchant port. This period
was fi rstly marked by the African slavery then by the Indian indentured labour. Experience the story of the south visiting places qualified with the label “ Land of Art and History”

An extraordinary culture

The heritage of the island comes from the wealth of its agricultural and marine past but also from its important cross-cultural population. Admire in Saint Louis the property “Le Domaine de Maison Rouge” and its Museum of Decorative Arts, registered as a historic French monument, unique witness of the coffee production.

Go back in time and travel through the history of the Bourbon island walking in the botanic garden of the Domaine Du Café Grillé (Property of the Grilled Coffee). Experience the sugar cane and rhum period visiting the sugar plant of the Gol and the museum “Saga du rhum”.

Discover the old town: marine warehouses of the Kerveguen family, buildings of the Compagnie des Indes (East india Company), its port, the Guan Di pagoda,..Listen to town speakers who share with you this incredible history. They might even reveal the existence of pirates!