Enabling & Support


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ESA / Enabling & Support / Space Transportation / Europe's Spaceport

In addition to the Spaceport and the Space Museum there are many other interesting places to visit in French Guiana.

One of the main attractions is Devil’s Island, home of the famous penal colony until 1947. After its closure the buildings fell into ruins and were quickly taken over by the natural vegetation. However, this this has now been cleared and the islands have become national heritage sites. Ferries and catamarans visit the islands daily.

French Guiana is a nature lover’s paradise. To date more than 6000 plant species, 700 bird species and 160 species of mammals have been identified to date. Marine turtles nest close to the spaceport and the scarlet ibis has made the protected grounds of the spaceport its home.

Much of the interior is virgin forest, accessible only by river, and in many areas mangrove swamps extend to the sea. There are rapids, waterfalls, forest trails, creeks and marshland as well as remote villages that can be visited by the more intrepid traveller.

French Guiana's rich multicultural heritage can be seen in its towns and lively cafes. Visit the fish market in the old part of Kourou Vieux Bourg and the colourful markets filled with tropical fruit and vegetables, and exotic herbs and spices, such as the renowned Cayenne pepper. Markets are held in Kourou on Tuesdays and Fridays, and in Cayenne on Saturdays.

Other attractive sights in Cayenne are the Jesuit-built residence of the prefect in the Place de Grenoble, Canal Laussat built in 1777, the Botanical Gardens and the Museum of Culture. This shows exhibits on indigenous peoples and the penal settlements on Devil's Island.

Visitors will find that French Guiana has something to offer everyone, from nature lovers to sports enthusiasts, from beach fanatics to space buffs.

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