French Guiana Stories and Tips

A trip to the Devil Islands

One hour by boat from Kourou, you can visit the infamous Devil Islands. The "Iles du Salut" in French used to be the place of choice for all the worst convicts. Indeed, the current are so strong, the sharks so numerous, and the coast so far that it was absolutely impossible to escape. Famous convicts include “Papillon”, Dreyfus---a Jewish soldier who was accused of treason at the beginning of the 20th century---and Seznec, another famous French convict. The islands are very beautiful, filled with forest, monkeys, and “Agouti”, a kind of fat rat. The remains of the prison have since been swallowed by the jungle and they make a very impressive sight. The smallest of the three islands, Devil Island, used to be completely barren and is famous for having kept the political prisoners, including Dreyfus. It is still so dangerous to go there because of the current that it is currently closed to tourism.

Overall this day trip is fascinating and it gives a rare opportunity to discover a truly beautiful site.

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