North Réunion Intercommunal Tourist Office

Sainte-Marie: "by sea, by sky, by land, sainte-marie will flourish"

hosting the Roland Garros international airport. This is where it all begins: an arrival, an immersion, but also a flight to neighboring island discoveries...

The immediate view of the cane fields and the mountain heights fills the most jaded traveler with happiness.

Is this due to her Madonna name? By the fervor of its inhabitants? Still, this city invites calm. Locals enjoy Parc Bois Madame for physical exercise or impromptu naps. Golf enthusiasts take over the Beauséjour Golf Course while the youngest enjoy Vélo Cross at the Rivière des Pluies. The old national road, on the seafront, is now dedicated to strolling. This vast paved strip is a delight for cyclists and walkers. Contact with the ocean is permanent. The sound of the surf contributes greatly to the beauty of the place.

Parc Bois Madame

 The peaks of Sainte-Marie are covered with a primary forest worthy of an adventure film with Indiana Johns: the Piton Fougères forest. The trail, well marked, allows you to venture there in complete safety. You will probably come out covered in mud and moss, but your retina imprinted with magical undergrowth.


Black Madonna

 It is impossible to talk about Sainte-Marie without associating it with the Black Madonna, a major place of pilgrimage. The site is accessible to everyone. Please respect the ambient fervor. But do you know the legend of Mario, at the origin of today's devotion to this little black virgin, placed on a rock? There she is :

This young slave was sold to a bad master. As a result of being mistreated, he leaves in maroonage (“to leave in maroonage” means to run away) taking with him the statuette of a Virgin that his first owner had given him. He finds refuge in a small cave at a place called the Black Madonna. One day, he hears the chestnut hunters approaching his hiding place. Not having time to escape, he puts down the statuette of the Virgin and addresses her a prayer, asking her to grant him protection. Immediately, bougainvillea began to grow, blocking the entrance to the place that sheltered it, thus preventing hunters from reaching it. ( Extracted from )

Let's return to the reality of a modern city, with two hyper shopping centers. Some families choose to go there for their Sunday outing, strolling through the air-conditioned shopping malls...

 The attractiveness and dynamism of Sainte-Marie has taken another step forward with the birth of the Beauséjour district, described as a “city within a city”. Launched in 2006, this 78-hectare urban project is shaking up the lines of new towns in Reunion.


Designed by the company CBO Territoria as a research and development laboratory, it evolves and redefines itself along the way. The first stone was laid on October 22, 2009 and the first families moved in the following year. Over time, facilities such as the bus interchange and the sports and leisure center were built.

And in 2020, 2,300 families live in Beauséjour. Has its objective of becoming a model of urbanization been achieved? Make up your own mind by exploring this new district of Sainte-Marie.