Devil's Island, Cayenne

(150+ reviews on the web)
Island
The penal colony of Cayenne, commonly known as Devil's Island, was a famous prison of the 19th and 20th century. It operated at several locations in French Guiana. Opened in 1852, it was notorious for being used for internal exile of French political prisoners during that period, the most famous of whom was Captain Alfred Dreyfus. It is also known for its harsh treatment of criminals, who were deported there from all parts of the French empire. The system was closed down in 1953.OrganizationThe prison system stretched over several locations, on the mainland and in the off-shore Îles du Salut group. Île Royale was the reception centre for the general population of the penal colony; they were housed in moderate freedom due to the difficulty of escape from the island. Île Saint-Joseph was the Reclusion, where inmates were sent to be punished by solitary confinement in silence and darkness for escapes or offences committed in the penal colony. Île du Diable was for political prisoners. In the 19th century, the most famous such prisoner was Captain Alfred Dreyfus. In addition to the prisons on each of the three islands in the Salut island group, the French constructed three related prison facilities on the South American mainland, just across the straits at Kourou; 30 miles east in Cayenne, which later became the capital of French Guiana; and a hundred miles west at St. Laurent.
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9 days in French Guiana BY A USER FROM BANGLADESH July, popular PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 1 day in Cayenne BY A USER FROM AUSTRALIA October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, shopping, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: October, culture, outdoors, historic sites, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 20 days in Cayenne BY A USER FROM GERMANY May, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: May, kids, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Cayenne BY A USER FROM GERMANY July, popular PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 15 days in Cayenne BY A USER FROM FRENCH GUIANA October, kids, popular PREFERENCES: October, kids ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 3 days in Cayenne BY A USER FROM UNITED KINGDOM July, popular PREFERENCES: July ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 18 days in Cayenne BY A USER FROM ROMANIA November, popular PREFERENCES: November ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 30 days in Caribbean, South America & Central America BY A USER FROM SOUTH KOREA June, fast-paced, popular PREFERENCES: June ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Fast-paced 7 days in French Guiana BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES April, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping, popular PREFERENCES: April, culture, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, historic sites, museums, shopping ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular PACE: Medium 60 days in South America, Caribbean, Europe & Asia BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, teens, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, teens, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 60 days in Asia, Europe, Caribbean & South America BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, slow & easy, popular & hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Popular & hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy 60 days in Europe, Asia, Caribbean & South America BY A USER FROM UNITED STATES December, teens, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches, slow & easy, hidden gems PREFERENCES: December, teens, kids, outdoors, relaxing, beaches ATTRACTION STYLE: Hidden gems PACE: Slow & easy
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • A site of Guyana to visit filled with relics and well maintained. You can as well visit in one day (bring a small hammock to land) or even spend a night in the hostel-restaurant. Choose a room facing the devil island. To do.
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  • Very nice visit with the historical remnants of the painful period of the penal colony in French Guiana, but also with the quite original (animals) environment on-site.
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  • Lots of french dark history, but the place is beautiful. We made the reservation online with Promaritime (shuttle) in Kourou. Everything went really well. There is one good restaurant on Ile Royale, t...  more »