Located on the edge of the Cirque de Salazie, Hell-bourg is truly one of the jewels in Reunion Island's crown. This lovely mountain village, named after an early governour, has long been lauded for its charm and is the deserving recipient of France's "most beautiful French village" award.
The town had its birth when nearby thermal springs were discovered in 1832. "Curists" encouraged visitors to come drink of the waters of Salazie in order to rid themselves of various diseases and disorders. Though the springs are no longer present here, due in part to the popularity of the more ample hot springs in Cilaos, one can still visit the once popular Hotel des Thermes, a former military hospital.
The Creole architecture in the town of Hell-bourg is stunning. Many visitors spend the majority of their time here strolling through town, touring and photographing these splendid homes and public buildings and the beautiful gardens that often grace the front yards. Hungry guests can also find a handful of restaurants here, serving local Creole cuisine at its finest.