During the 1950s, Air France linked Mauritius from Nairobi with the Super Constellation aircraft with its 4 propeller engines and from testimonials of those who had the chance to board these flights, the narrated experience was quite spectacular. During night flights, flames could be visible from the four engines, which was a sign of normal operation. Among the routes, the Super Constellation took over from the Boeing 707 to Mauritius because the latter could not land at Plaisance in those days. From the above picture, we also have a nice glimpse of those 2 very awesome vintage Citroen Cars; the Citroen 2CV (background), and the Citroen Traction Avant (foreground).
Quantas Airline also used to fly a Super Constellation to Perth via Cocos Island, the longest non stop flight over the sea in those days. The Constellation was heavily loaded with fuel and passengers. In the late 1950’s, one Constellation did not manage to take off and ended its take off run in the sugar cane field not far from Le Chaland. All passengers managed to get out but the plane exploded soon after, a miracle! Qantas always boasteds that it never had any crashes but that was one of them they tend to forget about. (Courtesy: Patrick Desvaux de Marigny)
Another view of the Air France Super Constellation on the tarmac at Plaisance in 1965. At that time boarding the plane meant walking from the departure ‘lounge’, through the airfield and to the airplane.