In the heart of the lagoon surrounding Rodrigues island lies Ile Hermitage. No, I mean literally, in the heart. The way the coral reefs are set around the islet creates a colour contrast shaped like a heart in shades of turquoise and blue immediately surrounding Ile Hermitage. It’s a beautiful site to behold from the mountain areas.
In an attempt to find the hidden treasure said to still be buried on Ile Hermitage, I take a boat from the Mourouk Ebony hotel, set against the hilly landscape facing the lagoon. It’s a windy morning and kitesurfers are making the most of it. Some reckon this is one of the best places in the world to kitesurf because of the large lagoon and the amount of wind that the island gets on the south eastern side.
The little blue boat makes it safely to Ile Hermitage despite the slightly restless sea. While my boatman makes a fire (allowed since this is not a nature reserve like Ile aux Cocos) in order to prepare some fish for lunch, I head off to explore. First up is the top of the hill, from where I get a good idea of the area. At a reasonable pace, it would probably take me fifteen minutes or so to walk around the whole islet.
Despite the size there are lots of little beaches and nooks in between the rocks. Finally I find my spot, a tiny beach just big enough for my sarong and the paw paw that washed up with the seashells. I sit down for a bit to soak up the sunshine and the lullaby of the waves. Other than the boat man I am alone here on Ile Hermitage today and I imagine that this is my island - lets call it 'Ile Lize' - suitably set inside a big turquoise heart.
My treasure is not buried underneath the sand but inside my own heart. All I need is the magic words. I whisper a dream out onto the wind and send it off with a prayer.