The huge baobab tree at Musical Beach

Mayotte - in a Nutshell

Author: Sue Rogers
Date: 30th September 2018

Where is Mayotte?

  • Mayotte is an archipelago in the Indian Ocean, so it is geographically part of Africa.
  • Of the 5 islands in the archipelago, only 3 are inhabited.
  • The total land area of Mayotte is 144 square miles and Mayotte’s population was 223,762 in 2015.

Who Colonised Mayotte?

Mayotte was incorporated into various sultanates before finally being sold to the French by a Malagasy sultan in 1841. Together with Comoros the islands were known as Mayotte and Dependencies.

Is Mayotte Part of the EU?

  • Mayotte (also known as or Maore) became independent from The Comoros Islands in 1978, (Comoros continues to lay claim to Mayotte, supported by many UN states), but elected to remain a French overseas territory and subsequently a departement of France.
  • Mayotte is the newest of the five French overseas departements, having changed from an overseas collectivity with OCT status on 31 March 2011. It became an outermost region, and thus part of the EU, on 1 January 2014
  • The currency is the euro and the official language (of course) is French. Fluent French is almost a necessity for travellers. Most of the locals do not have French as their first language, though nearly all of them speak French. Those locals who do speak English are not very interested in using this knowledge.

Is Mayotte a Poor Country?

The department status of Mayotte is recent and the region remains, by a significant margin, the poorest in France. Mayotte is nevertheless much more prosperous than the other countries of the Mozambique Channel, making it a major destination for illegal immigration.

What to See in Mayotte?

Mayotte is surrounded by a typical tropical coral reef. It consists of a large outer barrier reef, enclosing one of the world's largest and deepest lagoons, followed by a fringing reef, interrupted by many mangroves. All Mayotte waters are included in the National Marine Park, and many places are natural reserves. So water sports are the order of the day. Diving, snorkelling, or looking out for marine life: whales, dolphins and turtles.

There are beautiful beaches and some great French cooking - at a price.

Here's my trip.

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