Cargados Carajos Shoals (also known as the Saint Brandon Rocks) are a group of about 16 small islands and islets on an extended reef in the Indian Ocean northeast of Mauritius. The islands have a total land area of 1.3 km². The reef measures more than 50 km from north to south, and is 5 km wide, cut by three passes. The reef area is 190 km². The islands have a small transient population, mostly fishermen, 63 in number on census night (Census of 2000). They are rich in flora and fauna. The islands are classified as a dependency of Mauritius, which is more than 300 km south, and are administered from Port Louis. The islands are part of the Mascarene Islands.
In the past, Cargados Carajos was a large, volcanic island (part of the Mascarenes, caused by the Réunion hotspot). Over time however, the island eroded until it became submerged and a coral atoll was left behind.
The formation might be considered an atoll. Individual islets on the reef include, from north to south, with their respective locations:
A number of unnamed islands and sand cays complete the Cargados. The total number of islands on the reef is close to 40.