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70 years ago, Air France launched its route to Guiana

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In 1947, Air France launched a route between Paris and Fort-de-France, extended to Pointe-à-Pitre, Colombia and Cayenne. For the first time, Guiana was connected to mainland France.

Officially designated a département of France in 1946, there were still no flights linking Guiana to metropolitan France. Moreover, little progress was being made to coordinate the network in the islands. However, as early as 1919, the Guianese Air Transport Services had begun operating two routes from Saint-Laurent du Maroni. The seaplane was the ideal aircraft for getting to places it would be impossible to get to any other way. But the young airline went bankrupt.

From the Latécoère to the Boeing

To get to Guiana, travellers had to take the train from Paris to Bordeaux. They were subsequently transferred to the Biscarosse seaplane base where a Laté 631 flew up out of the water in the middle of the night. After a stop-over in Port-Etienne, today Nouadhibou, in Mauritania, it landed in Fort-de-France on Saturday morning. The last leg was operated by the Catalina amphibious aircraft. Passengers finally arrived in Cayenne on Sunday. This epic route was suspended following the accident of a Laté 631 in 1948 and was definitively resumed in 1953, by Lockheed Constellation and DC-3.

Several daily flights currently connect Paris and Cayenne. A Best-equipped Boeing 777-200 has been operating the 9-hour trip by a non-stop flight since 6 February.

  

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