Region to discover: Great South

Famous for so many things most notable of which is the unique red color of its soil, the great south comprising of the Yate and Mont-Dore municipalities is one of the most amazing places to live in or visit.

Yate as a commune is a combination of the scenic image of the rainforest with the wild laterite red of the mining region to produce a unique environmental diversity. Its apparent aridity on the basis of its soil, however, does not rob it of a dense network of abundant rivers, creeks as well as water reserves.

Mont-Dore which is the second largest of New Caledonia’s towns is mostly unoccupied. Located quite close to the town of Noumea the town is a gateway to the south and has an abundance of both natural and cultural features.

The great south is a destination that holds green tourism as a priority. Sporting activities are common both in the open natural spaces or in equipped areas. Regarding cultural heritage, the region is also home to several historical and heritage sites, such as the Ouen Island, the ancient village of Prony, or the Yaté dam.

The Blue River Park is one of the most exciting places to visit in the great south and perhaps even in New Caledonia. Covering about 9,000 hectares of land at a location about 60km southwards from Noumea, the blue river park is the home of the one-thousand-year-old great kaori tree. The trunk of the tree is about 3 meters wide. The park can be explored on foot, on horseback or on a bike.

Tourists wishing to visit the Forgotten coast can only do so only by sea or air, the forgotten coast is a 30km long coastline that has remained widely untouched true to its name due to its remoteness and seclusion.

You can also spend the day kayaking in the largest reservoir of freshwater in New Caledonia, the yate lake which is located in the drowned forest or take a hike through one of the most famous trails and a favorite of several hikers in New Caledonia the La Grande Randonnée 1 interpreted as the great hiking trail.

Another must-see location in the Deep South of New Caledonia is the Madeleine Falls which are located in Plaine des Lacs (Plain of Lakes). For a small entry fee, you gain access to the lush botanical trails which houses 168 different species of plants most of which occur only in Caledonia. The Les Chutes de La Madeleine” is located right at the heart of the Natural Reserve, quite close to the Blue River.

If you happen to visit the great south between July and August, that would be perfect timing because the period is the whale season and the best location to watch the majestic giants as they dance in the deep blue lagoon of New Caledonia is the deep south.

There are a lot of marvels to discover in the great south and a lot to keep you busy all through your visit.