Escape to Devil’s Island
Tucked along the Amazonian Coast you’ll find an island paradise with a sinister past. A lush, tropical landscape, Devil’s Island comes with a storied history as the site of the notorious “le Bagne” penal colony, famously depicted in Henri Charrière’s “Papillon.” Today, the Island welcomes travelers seeking an adventurous escape.
Just across a narrow flank of the Atlantic from Devil’s Island, Kourou is the perfect spot to grab a bite of traditional French Guianan cuisine before embarking on a day of island exploration. An exotic mix of French and Creole cultures, listen to the sultry lilt of island French as you dine on roti couniard (grilled fish and chips) or green papaya gratin. Of course, it’d be simply regretful to not sample the local rum while here, so stop by a watering hole to try a ti-punch before departing for the Iles de Salut.
Fueled and ready for adventure, embark on a day of sightseeing. While visitors are no longer permitted on Devil’s Island, nearby Ile Royale offers just as much history. Once the headquarters of the prison commandant, meander through the eerily empty original buildings, see the convict-built rock swimming pool, and enjoy a dramatic view of the dense jungle foliage that clings to the abandoned prison walls on Devil’s Island. Of course, legend has it there are still inhabitants here. Lookout for the turtles, monkeys, and exotic birds that still call these parts home.