Land, People, and Economy

The island is composed mainly of one active and several extinct volcanoes; its highest point is Le Piton des Neiges (10,069 ft/3,069 m). Le Piton de la Fournaise in S Réunion is one of the earth's most active volcanoes. Settlement and cultivation are concentrated in the coastal lowlands. Most of the inhabitants are Roman Catholic and speak a creole patois. Since the 19th cent. sugar has been by far the island's chief product and export. Molasses, vanilla, tobacco, tropical fruits, and rum are also produced.

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