There are a few decades ago the people of Rodrigues found their entertainment in traditional music, the sound of sega drum and accordion in small balls on Saturday evenings. Cultural awakening which occurred at the end of the 1970s allowed the construction and consolidation of the cultural identity of Rodrigues through the development of these various elements, which form the base of the culture of every nation: food, music, crafts...
It should be noted the great influence of the Catholic religion in everyday and cultural life of the population. Religion, respect for tradition and family are the pillars of Rodrigues life. Today, it can be seen that the local music and traditional dances are quite used during shows in hotels and other cultural events. It is the same for the traditional dishes; and crafts which are found everywhere in the market. These dishes which were despised have now become a luxury in major tourist and cultural events. The Rodrigues' music is present on the stage of international cultural events. Rodrigues’ culture is an asset that must not only be developed and exploited, but which above all also needs to be preserve as it is the essence of the Rodriguan cultural identity.
At a glance
At the heart of the Indian Ocean, at latitude 19°43’ S and longitude 63°25’ E, Rodrigues Island stretches over a surface area of 108 km2. Some 650 km to the north-east of Mauritius, it is the part of Africa that is closest to Australia. Born from volcanic activity between 1.3 and 1.5 million years ago, the island – 18 km long, 8 km wide – is the smallest of the Mascarene archipelago. Rodrigues is a mountainous island with a succession of valleys plunging to the 300 km2 lagoon, bringing an exhilarating feeling of weightlessness whilst meandering through steep escarpments and terraced fields towards its 80-km coastline. One of the most characteristic features of this enthralling though accessible island is its relief. The efforts of the most adventurous culminate in the joys of basking in one of the numerous deserted inlets, all the while gazing at white-tailed tropicbirds gliding through the air to and from their nests in surrounding cliffs. The island enjoys a tropical climate with temperatures varying between 28 and 35°C during the Southern summer, which coincides with the cyclonic season (November to April) and between 18 and 27°C in winter.