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The Kerguelen Archipelago. Grande-Terre Island - the largest in the archipelago

Many interesting and mysterious places exist on our planet. Scientists are in a hurry to investigate them, and tourists - travel far and wide for the purpose of active recreation. Both will be delighted with the Kerguelen archipelago and the island of Grande-Terre. About them and will be discussed in this article.

Grand-ter - a sight in history

On the large islands that make up Guadeloupe, lived Arawak tribes of the Indians. This time refers to the 300th year BC. Much later, the Caribs settled here. They forcefully expelled the Arawaks and they went to the north, where they began to develop the Antilles.

Christopher Columbus in 1493 discovered Guadalupe. The group of islands in the Atlantic Ocean was originally taken for one island. Further research helped to put everything in its place. The Spaniards met an aggressive local population in Guadeloupe and the lack of any resources, so they did not colonize the islands. The French took advantage of the situation and in 1635 conquered it. Resisted the Indians destroyed and founded a colony here.

To work on plantations of sugar cane brought slaves from Africa. Only thirty-nine years later, France officially received islands in the ocean in its ownership. She became a full-fledged master of all the islands now part of Guateloupe. Over the course of two centuries - the seventeenth and eighteenth - the islands went now to the UK, then to Sweden, but always returned to their owner - France.

Grande-Terre Island

This truly paradise is located in the Caribbean Sea. To get from the island of Grande Ter to the coast of South America, you need to overcome 640 kilometers of waterway. This is the French overseas department of Guadeloupe and the territory of the archipelago of the Lesser Antilles. Their shores are washed by the Atlantic Ocean. The Salt River strait divides Guadeloupe into two equal parts: the West and the East, where the island of Grande-Terre is located.

Its height above sea level is only one hundred and thirty meters. This is the lowest island of the whole department. It is composed of limestones and volcanic tuffs. Has the form of an indefinite geometric figure with a winding coastline. The surface of the island in the ocean It is covered with cliffs and hills, on which lie vast green and silver plantations of sugar cane. The island of Grande-Ter is known to tourists around the world. It is famous for its picturesque beaches and numerous resort towns. They are often called Riviera.

The center of economic territory and the main city is Pointe-a-Pitre. It is located on the coast from the south-west side of the island. Around the city, tourist and resort complexes were comfortably located. People come here to relax on the magnificent beaches with white clean sand, surrounded by coral reefs.

The Kerguelen Archipelago

It is a group of islands in the Indian Ocean, which includes one large island with the same name and about three hundred small islets and rocks. Kerguelen belongs to France, being part of its territories, the area of which is 7,215 square kilometers. If we talk about geography, then the islands belong to the Antarctic. The distance from Kerguelen to its banks is two thousand kilometers.

The discovery of the archipelago dates back to 1772, when the French made an expedition to Antarctica. Its commander was Yves Joseph de Kerguelen. In honor of him, the archipelago was named. For a hundred and fifty years, from time to time whalers from Norway came here. They brought wild deer here. Animals adapted and quickly bred.

For the first time to settle the island the French tried in 1928. They built a factory for canning lobster. But one day the workers got drunk and started using pistols. No one was alive. Kerguelen again became habitable in the middle of the twentieth century, when the French founded a scientific station on the island.

Kerguelen Island

It is called the main island of the archipelago. It covers an area of 6675 kilometers square. The length in the direction of the west-east is one hundred and fifty kilometers, and the north-south is one hundred and twenty. The highest point of the island and the archipelago is Mount Ross - 1850 m above sea level. It is covered by the Cook glacier. The coastline is uneven, like rugged. This indicates that Kerguelen is an island that has a large number of peninsulas.

No one lives permanently on the island. For the winter period, about a hundred people come here for work related to various studies. About two times more remain for the summer with the same purpose. The main base of the island and the capital of the whole archipelago is Port-a-France. Kerguelen once had a whaling base, it operated since 1908. Now it is the port of Joan of Arc.


Kerguelen is an island that is characterized by a sub-Antarctic climate, severe and rainy with strong winds reaching one hundred and fifty kilometers per hour. The coldest month is August with an air temperature one degree below zero. The warmest is February. At this time, the temperature rises to plus nine degrees. Kerguelen's antipode is the state of Montana. On one with Kerguelen's latitude, if you look at the map, you can find Poltava and Khabarovsk. Despite approximately the same average annual air temperature on the island, which is washed by the southern part of the Indian Ocean, and its antipodes, it can be noted that for Kerguelen, neither big frosts nor intense heat are typical.

Animal world

If you ask, in which ocean the island of Kerguelen is located, no one will have difficulties with the answer. Even the schoolboy knows the largest colonies of penguins, seabirds, seals. For these animals, an island in the ocean, Where practically no people live, - native home. Kerguelen boasts a large population of rabbits.

Here you can meet cats. They were once domestic, but eventually they were wild and scattered all over the island. Rabbits and cats are not local residents of the island, they brought here a man. People who live by necessity are engaged in the seal industry.

Vegetable world

Flora does not differ in variety. Kerguelen (island) is covered with meager grassy vegetation. In some places you can find a creeping shrub. He was bent to the ground by strong winds. The most common plant is the Kerguelen cabbage.

It is interesting

  • At Kerguelen, the researchers found the destroyed hut. For its construction, obviously, the wreckage of the ship was used. A wooden board was found in the hut, on which the surname of the sailor from Theodosia was written. This plate was crushed almost completely decayed pages of the diary. The sailor described the shipwreck that took place off the coast of Kerguelen. The last record indicated that a ship appeared on the horizon. It was possible to save Russian sailors or not, remains a mystery.
  • Kerguelen is an island that does not have highways. But people living there actively use SUVs. They go hunting and fishing, which are the main types of their leisure. The coast of Kerguelen is teeming with macrouras, notothenia, bivalve molluscs, krill.

  • A reliable fact is that the most southern grave of a German soldier is located on Kerguelen. The fact is that the intelligence officer of the United States of America, David Shore, wrote a book in which it was about the experiments conducted on Japanese soldiers to create a zombie. Once, when assisting the injured crew of the sunken ship on board, two people were taken, one of the rescued was a zombie. He managed to bite a German sailor, who became the same monster. Both heads were cut off.

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