Glorioso Islands

Flag of Glorioso Islands

Map of Glorioso Islands


A French possession since 1892, the Glorioso Islands are composed of two lushly vegetated coral islands (Ile Glorieuse and Ile du Lys) and three rock islets. A military garrison operates a weather and radio station on Ile Glorieuse.


Southern Africa, group of islands in the Indian Ocean, northwest of Madagascar

Geographic coordinates:

11 30 S, 47 20 E


total: 5 sq km
note: includes Ile Glorieuse, Ile du Lys, Verte Rocks, Wreck Rock, and South Rock
water: 0 sq km
land: 5 sq km




low and flat

Elevation extremes:

lowest point: Indian Ocean 0 m
highest point: unnamed location 12 m

Natural resources:

guano, coconuts

Natural hazards:

periodic cyclones

Geography - note:

the islands and rocks are surrounded by an extensive reef system


no indigenous inhabitants
note: there is a small French military garrison along with a few meteorologists; visited by scientists (July 2004 est.)

Dependency status:

possession of France; administered by a high commissioner of the Republic, resident in Reunion

Economy - overview:

no economic activity

Communications - note:

1 meteorological station

Ports and harbors:

none; offshore anchorage only


1 (2003 est.)

Airports - with unpaved runways:

total: 1
914 to 1,523 m: 1 (2003 est.)

Military - note:

defense is the responsibility of France

Disputes - international:

claimed by Madagascar