Le Sud Sauvage (French for The Wild South) is off the beaten
track in La Reunion Island but it’s worth the trip to escape the busy touristic
spots around Saint-Gilles. Between Saint-Joseph and Saint-Philippe is the
starting point for a spectacular road along the Langevin River
bordered with trees. On weekends, the river is a focal point for Reunionese
families who come for a swim, a picnic or a hike along its footpaths. The
valley bed stretches on for ten kilometers along which we can contemplate a
couple of magnificent waterfalls among which the most spectacular is Le Trou Noir. Nested at the end of the road is the hamlet
of Grand Galet. A dirt road leads up to a small reservoir from where a very
nice and easy trail stretches for another 3.5 km up to the end of the valley to
a place called Le Grand Pays. People used to live there but in the sixties, due
to landslides, they had to move down the valley and resettled in Grand Galet or
the town of Langevin.
Ruins can still be seen as well as some abandoned vegetable and crop fields.