French Southern and Antarctic Lands are a group of islands of the Southern Ocean, about equidistant between Africa, Antarctica, and Australia. (They also include a small strip of Antarctica itself).
The Southern Lands consist of two near-polar archipelagos, Iles Crozet and Iles Kerguelen, and two volcanic islands, Ile Amsterdam and Ile Saint-Paul. They have no permanent inhabitants and are visited only by researchers studying the native fauna. The "Antarctic Lands" portion consists of Adelie Land, a thin slice of the Antarctic continent discovered and claimed by the French in 1840, and set aside by the Antarctic Treaty.
There are no airports in these islands.
There are no harbors in these islands. The Marion Dufresne, an oceanographic ship, travels four times a year from Reunion to these isles.
Economic activity is limited to servicing meteorological and geophysical research stations and French and other fishing fleets. The fish catches landed on Iles Kerguelen by foreign ships are exported to France and Reunion.
There is no public accommodation in these islands.
Ile Amsterdam and Ile Saint-Paul are extinct volcanoes.
All of these islands have harsh environments, especially in the austral winter. a small hospital exists in Port aux Francaises, Kerguelen.