As a popular holiday destination, Seychelles has exotic hideaways with its granite islands offering something exceptional to the adventure tourist. Try to visit more than an island during your stay, to experience the entire dimension of the stunning iconic desert beaches. With plenty of ferry services, domestic flights and even heli-hops, vacations in Seychelles are not out of the way.
This other worldly archipelago in the Indian Ocean consists of 115 islands and a total population of 81000. Seychelles is the second largest island in the world, with divine flora and fauna. Some of the plants grow nowhere else in the whole world, even within the Seychelles. Seychelles is less mountainous with its highest point only at 370 meters.
Situated at about 1500 kilometers east of midland Africa, Seychelles lies to the northeast of the island of Madagascar. Officially known as the Republic of Seychelles, it is located south of the equator, which provides a tropical climate all year round with high humidity levels and an average temperature ranging between 25 and 30 degree C.
A popular story doing the round with the natives in Seychelles is that after God had finished creating the world, he had a handful of diamonds left. He came to the east of Africa and wanted to create something marvelous. Therefore, he scattered the diamonds in the ocean and Seychelles was born. Another legend narrates how Seychelles islands were born from God's tears of emotion when gazing at his masterpiece.
True to this myth, the name Seychelles conjures up images of hidden treasure and tropical paradise. This is the original Garden of Eden, with mysteries locked inside its 650-year-old rocks - truly a unique paradise on Earth.
Praslin Island Seychelles
Many centuries earlier, on the beaches of Africa, strange coconuts would occasionally be washed ashore. This coconut was unusual in size, several times larger than the largest coconut. It was almost the size of two coconuts joined together. As its shape resembled a female anatomy, the coconut was seen as an object of sexual powers and called Coco de-Mar. This coconut only grows in Praslin.
Even today, we find that coconuts are given as presents to visitors and they are strictly guarded. Only a few Coco de-Mar are sold to tourists. Each coconut also has a unique registration number authorizing its sale and without this number, the buyer may not be able to take home the coconut. As it is valued greatly, it is expensive to buy and considered as a unique treasure to possess.
Praslin takes pride in some of the most beautiful beaches in Seychelles offering swimming and snorkeling, Praslin beaches are long and wide, a pure delight for the tourists. Among the best beaches of Praslin are Anse Lazio, Anse Georgette, Anse Kerlan and Anse Volbert.
Most residents of Praslin dwell in one of the two villages of Baie Ste Anne in the east and Grand Anse village in the south. The Valley de Mai is situated in the heart of the island, where the Coco de-Mar grow aplenty.
South of Praslin is a small port neighbor called La Digue. It takes about half an hour by ferry to reach this place. Excursions are common here, and to its neighboring islands of Aride, Curieuse and Cousine.
Denis Island Seychelles
This is a coral island, not far from the Bird Island. Denis lies on the edge of the Seychelles bank and is reachable by a half hour flight from Mahe. It is in Denis that one can find large tortoises, which seem to prefer the quiet island solitude. Windsurfing, sailing, deep-sea fishing and outdoor sports including tennis are offered here for the adventure tourists.
Denis is the desirable spot, which offers peace and quiet for those who wish it. There are no televisions, radios or newspapers to distract and Denis offers complete isolation. With the sea at a depth of 1800m, perhaps this is the place for enchanting diving and snorkeling. A glass boat adventure will reveal the wonders of the deep. Moreover, make a trip to the old chapel at the heart of the island, or to the Light House, which is still functioning, from 1910.
Labriz Silhouette Island
Labriz Silhouette is a 45-minute boat ride or a 15-minute heli hop from Seychelles International Airport in the Capital Mahe. Labriz is rich in natural beauty teeming with exotic wildlife. Silhouette Island is home to some of the most exciting wildlife - a perfect base for relaxing between sea and jungle expeditions.
Silhouette Island has a famous private beach with dining options include restaurant, bar and lounge - part of a luxury hotel which is near the Silhouette Island beach. This is a five star luxury resort with a 1.5-kilometer stretch of beach and offers the guests a romantic and relaxing getaway.
This is one of the forty granite islands of the Seychelles, which is located around Mahe and Praslin. This extremely fertile North Island has abundance of fresh water. A new concept, called 'Noah's Ark' is being worked out here, with a plan to turn back the Island's environmental clock two hundred years back through rehabilitation and reintroduction of many of the critically endangered species/wildlife of Seychelles, over a period of time.
North Island is the place for those who seek unspoiled tropical haven for peace and tranquility. It has four beaches located at the end of the compass, and accommodation for guests ensures private and wonderful enjoyment in the tropical beaches. As North Island is outside the cyclone belt, it is safe destination all year round.
Yet another development of the North Island is the 'barefoot luxury Robinson Crusoe', which aims to provide the very best in privacy, to the most discerning world travelers. North Island is larger than Monte Carlo is, yet has only twelve villas. A lounge, dining room and library, health spa and gym and excellent dive centre, memorable sunset, mountain biking and guided walks, boating, sea kayaking and scuba diving - North Island has it all.
Go to North Island to watch the essence of sustainable ecological sensitive utilization of precious Mother Nature. With unspoiled private resorts, edging a kilometer long ribbon of white sand, with coral rocks and memorable culinary experiences as well, North Island offers unforgettable views of the ocean and mountains.
Other places to see
Mahe is only 17 miles long and 5 miles wide - a slice of the paradise and is the largest of the Seychelles. With its 65 beautiful silver beaches, and popular Beau Vallon lush and verdant interiors, Mahe also has truly great restaurants, cafes, bars and casinos in its tiny capital Victoria. Popular pastimes include diving, snorkeling, and this Island capital is bustling with activities. Mahe Island has approximately 90 percent of the population living here.
The Seychelles are home to UNESCO heritage sites with the world's largest coral atoll Aldabra and Valley de Mai. La Digue is guarded with azure waters and fringed with coral reefs. There is an ageless tranquility in Digue, which defies reasoning. Digue is friendly with bikes and ox carts instead of cars. Soak in the sun, feast on tropical dishes and indulge in the breathtaking scenery.
As over a hundred islands are scattered throughout the warm tropical waters of the Indian Ocean, each of the Islands is distinct with its granite, coral, and boast of the lush flora and fauna, unmatched in any other tropical country.
Holidays in Seychelles
This holiday destination has several sporting activities to offer involving the sea - what with millions of square kilometers of ocean surrounding the islands of Seychelles.
Licensed divers galore in Seychelles, which is a great place for divers. With six natural marine parks, you can snorkel or Scuba. Diving safaris with divers take yacht trips to Aldabra, the world's greatest atoll. With the current at a steady 20 knots, it is not strange to see the sea creatures passing by in the opposite direction.
Fishing is another hot leisure activity - with fishing competitions organized for big game fishing and deep-sea fishing. The classic waters of Seychelles are the perfect place for international fishing competitions.
Luxurious spas abound in five star hotels in Seychelles to relax.
For bird lovers and ornithologists, Seychelles is the ideal place to visit. Enjoy the sight of Seychelles Flycatcher, Kestrel, and Blue pigeon, Sunbird, Swiftlet, White Eye or Scops Owl. Visit the Aride and Cousin Bird sanctuary and swim with turtle at Coco Island. Feed the fishes at sister Island or simply visit Curieuse. Nature trails in the primal tropical rain forests are well marked in Seychelles.
Seychelles Travel Guide