Most of the festivals and events in Réunion are modern celebrations of cultural features like dance, music, and theatre. However, the large international influence upon Réunion also means the island celebrates foreign festivals. The Leu Tempo Festival is the largest arts event in Réunion, while for a taste of France culture, Bastille Day is another one not to miss.
Leu Tempo Festival
Often regarded as the best of Réunion’s festivals, the Leu Tempo Festival brings artists from all over the world to take part in the many theatrical performances around Saint-Leu. This fun event takes place in May each year.
Unsurprisingly, the fruit Guava takes center stage during reunion’s Guava Festival. The major cities and towns of Réunion all celebrate this event with gusto, as markets and street stalls are infested with guava products. Plaine-des-Palmistes is where the largest guava carnival is found during this June festival.
Adventure Film Festival
The Adventure Film Festival is where adventures come alive. Tourists can visit the movie theaters in Le Tampon and in Saint-Denis and watch some incredible productions. From inside the cinema, viewers can experience amazing natural landscapes, including thunderous waterfalls and searing deserts.
Safiko Musik Festival
Held across three eventful days, the Safiko Musik Festival hosts the best local and international musical talents. Billed as one of the top 25 musical festivals in the world, the Safiko Musik Festival is home to rock, reggae, and a mix of other musical genres. Tourists are advised to make hotel reservations in advance, as the island gets quite busy during the June event.
On July 14, France celebrates the start of the French Revolution, and since Réunion is a department of France, so too does the island. Visitors are highly recommended to stay in Saint-Denis, Saint-Pierre, or Saint-Gilles, where the best fireworks displays are held. Even after the amazing light shows are completed, locals celebrate long into the night.
Le Grand Raid
If tourists are fit, enjoy being challenged, and are looking for an adventure of a lifetime, then taking part in Le Grand Raid is highly recommended. This race is one of the most grueling events in the world. Competitors travel from the northern reaches of Réunion, through the mountainous interior, and finish in the south. The October event usually lures more than 2,500 competitors.
As there is a large Indian population in Réunion, it is not surprising that Divali, the Festival of Lights, is held in high regard here. The brightest Hindu festival of the year is celebrated with performances, feasts, and other cultural activities in the main cities, especially Saint-Denis. Divali is celebrated in November.