Visit Of The Giant Tortoises Park (Rodrigues)
|Operating Hours||09:00 - 17:00|
|Operating Days||All Days|
|Comment||We offer the guided tour of the Reserve & Cave at: 09:30, 10:30, 13:30 and 14:30|
Visit Of The Giant Tortoises Park (Rodrigues) - Overview
Discover Rodrigues like it was 300 years ago! The Giant Tortoises Park which is situated in the southern part of Rodrigues Island is a 20 hectare nature reserve where you will get to discover more than 110,000 endemic and native plants as well as the giant tortoises - a truly unique experience.
The region has been very minimally invaded by humans and hence is as natural as it gets! You will fall in love with the nature reserve and the friendly giant tortoises!
Highlights of this activity:
- Encounter the giant tortoises in the nature reserve
- Discover more than 110,000 endemic and native plants
- Accompanied by and experienced guides who will ensure enjoyment and safety
- Explore a network of eleven caves below the surface
- Learn more about the extinct species which were once found on the island
- Venture in the Shop to buy some souvenirs items
The Visit Of The Giant Tortoises Park (Rodrigues) includes:
- Visit of the Tortoises Reserve Park
- Guided tour of the Caves
- Visit to the Giant Tortoises museum
- Access to the Souvenir Shop
- Optional: Lunch at the park's restaurant
The Rodrigues Island Airport transfer service is offered in all parts of the island, taking you to any region across the island. Do note that the transfer is subject to availability.
You can choose from a selection of vehicles types:
All drivers speak fluent English and French.The drivers, citizens of Rodrigues will be happy to provide you with information about Rodrigues and each of its sights.
There is high emphasis on being on time and providing reliable service to customers.
Francois Leguat Reserve, South Region
||2 hours including the Giant Tortoises Park and the caves. Additional time will be needed for the visit of the museum, shop and café|
|Operational Days:||Monday to Sunday|
|Operating Hours:||09.00 - 17:00|
|Activity time:||09:30, 10:30, 13:30 and 14:30 (Guided tour of the Reserve & Cave)|
|Opening hours of the restaurant:||11:00 - 16:00|
About the Giant Tortoises Park
The Giant Tortoises Park which is situated in the southern part of Rodrigues Island is a 20 hectare nature reserve where you will enjoy a unique experience of discovering more than 110,000 endemic and native plants as well as the giant tortoises.
The reserve is a conservation project that was started by Owen Griffiths, a zoologist whose dream was to recreate the fauna and flora as it was when the first settlers arrived in Rodrigues.
As part of your park’s visit you will get to stroll through the reserve along a 2km long trail allowing you to discover an emerging forest and some very rare plants. You could easily imagine yourself back in time, with the luxuriant greenery a stark contrast to the rest of the island. You will be able to stroll amongst giant tortoises, see the rare Rodrigues fruit bat and also opt for a guided tour of the magnificent caves, which is unique to this area of the island.
Guided tour of the Caves
The visit to the cave is a guided tour where you will be accompanied by experienced (and quite entertaining) guides who will ensure your enjoyment and safety during the caves tour.
Below the surface, you will discover a network of eleven caves, the largest of which is 500m in length and which is called Grande Caverne. There you will see the beautifully illuminated stalactites and stalagmites, formed over thousands of years.
The caves also provide us clues to the history of Rodrigues and its native wildlife; This is because they are the key source of fossils found so far on Rodrigues. The caves have been found to contain bones of long-dead animals, enabling the researchers to learn more about the extinct species which were once found on the island. Some of these rare bones are found at the reserve’s museum.
As part of the caves tour, you will also discover the limestone plateau, called Plaine Corail. This unique area was created by the wind blowing coral through the limestone rocks.
At the Giant Tortoises Park museum you will find 3 separate exhibitions, providing an in-depth information about the following:
- History of Rodrigues, from its discovery through to modern day
- The natural history of the island, showcasing the endemic flora and fauna, including several extinct species
- The limestone geology of the Plaine Corail, explaining the formation of caves and their striking features.
This excellent museum, also exhibits a real size sculpture of one of the extinct species of giant tortoise once found on Rodrigues, as well as carapaces of different species of tortoises. It is also possible to see many of the bones found in the caves of the reserve of various extinct species such as the solitaire (a relative of the dodo of Mauritius).
In the shop, you will find a wide range of souvenirs, gifts, books, curios and typical handicrafts made locally, which will be memorable for you on your visit to the reserve.
Note: During your visit to the reserve, you can have your photograph taken with a tortoise and even have it printed on a mug as a souvenir of your visit.
About the Tortoises
The reserve now consists of more than 650 radiated tortoises and 600 Aldabra tortoises. The radiated tortoises are considered to be one of the most beautiful tortoises in the world, with a carapace (shell) decorated with brilliant yellow lines radiating from the centre of each plate, creating a very distinctive pattern which also provides them with camouflage in their natural habitat. The Aldabra tortoises are the last surviving giant tortoise species that once inhabited the Indian Ocean islands and all the young tortoises seen were born in the reserve.
- It is recommended to wear sports shoes and appropriate clothes
After your visit to the park, you can enjoy a relaxed time in the outdoor terrace of the Restaurant allowing you to enjoy the spectacular view across the turquoise-blue lagoon.
|Visit Of The Giant Tortoises Park (Rodrigues)|
|Price per Adult:||16 Euros|
|Price per Child (ages 2-12):||9 Euros|
|Price for Baby(ages 0-1):||Free of Charge|