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Island-hopping getaway guide to Seychelles

Anse Lazio, Praslin - Image courtesy of Torsten Dickmann - STB

Tucked away between India and Africa, Seychelles makes for an ideal island-hopping experience for when travel resumes fully

By Puja Gupta

June 8, 2021 (IANSlife) Seychelles, the Indian Ocean destination has more to it than meets the eye. From enchanting beaches to terrestrial national parks, extraordinary flora and fauna to friendly islanders, the small island nation is the perfect reason for a holiday like no other.

Tucked away between India and Africa, Seychelles makes for an ideal island-hopping experience.

Here is a guide to help plan your vacation to the Seychelles Islands once the travel corridor reopens.

Mahé:

Mahé is the largest of the 115 islands in the archipelago and home to the world’s smallest capital Victoria. Although small in size, Victoria has a lot of character making a visit worthwhile. Take a walk around Victoria Market or Sir Selwyn Selwyn-Clarke Market for a unique display of creole culture while shopping for handicrafts & souvenirs. Wander along the streets sampling local produce or savour Seychellois delicacies. Also, do not forget to keep a lookout for Victoria Clock Tower, a replica of London’s Big Ben. Away from the main city, Mahé also offers an abundance of lush greenery making it ideal for hikes and nature trails. Explore the historical Venn’s Town Mission Ruins and Mission Lodge Tea Factory or the popular Copolia trail that promises awe-inspiring views of Mahé Island from the top.

A trip to Mahé is incomplete without a visit to the Takamaka Rum Distillery housed in the 200-year-old La Plaine St. Andre estate. Takamaka rum is authentic to Seychelles and was crafted as a toast to the Islands. Before bidding adieu, hop aboard the Semi-Submarine, an underwater observatory at Eden Island to cruise along the spectacular reefs serving epic views of corals and a variety of marine life.

 

La_Digue_Source_d'Argent-Image courtesy of Paul Turcotte - STB
La_Digue_Source_d'Argent-Image courtesy of Paul Turcotte - STB

 

Praslin:

Praslin is the second largest island and home to picture-perfect beaches and an enchanting prehistoric nature reserve. One can opt for a 20-minute short flight or a scenic 75-minute ferry ride from Mahé.

Take a guided tour of the primeval forest of Vallée-de-Mai, a UNESCO World Heritage site and explore the ‘Garden of Eden’. Surround your senses with the sights & sounds of towering palm trees and the call of wild birds fleeting through the Vallée. Learn about the endemic Coco-de-Mer, the largest seed in the world and spot the endangered black parrot among other indigenous gems hidden in the botanical wonderland.

Having trailed the Vallée, soak in the breath-taking, powdery sand beaches of Anse-Lazio, ranked as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Include a visit to Cote d’Or or Anse Volbert for an incredible variety of activities such as snorkelling, sailing or fishing. Cote d’Or also houses Praslin Museum, a small informative gallery about art and popular local traditions.

 

Anse Lazio, Praslin - Image courtesy of Torsten Dickmann - STB
Anse Lazio, Praslin - Image courtesy of Torsten Dickmann - STB

 

La Digue:

A 15-minute ferry ride from Praslin, La Digue paints a beautiful picture of the perfect island life. With no cars on the island, the best way to explore the wonders of La Digue is with electric buggies, bicycle rentals or the traditional oxcart. Traverse the changing landscapes of stunning ocean views in the North to dense rainforests in the South.

Take a step back in time and visit L'Union Estate. Visit a traditional copra mill, watch the antics of the estate’s population of Aldabra giant tortoises or stroll around the majestic Plantation House framed by giant granite boulders in landscaped gardens. The estate is also home to the cemetery of the original settlers of La Digue and to one of the most pristine beaches in Seychelles, the legendary Anse Source d’ Argent.

Known for being one of the most photographed beaches on earth, Source d’ Argent is a spectacular sight to behold with crystal clear waters and unique granite rock formations. Other must-visit beaches include Anse Coco and Petit Anse. In a mood for adventure? Trek to the island’s highest point with a mountain tour of the Nid D'Aigle or ‘The Eagle’s Nest’ for sensational views of La Digue and its neighbouring islands.

Clock Tower, Victoria, Mahe - Image courtesy of Torsten Dickmann - STB
Clock Tower, Victoria, Mahe - Image courtesy of Torsten Dickmann - STB
Female Coco de Mer - Image courtesy of Gerald Larose - STB
Female Coco de Mer - Image courtesy of Gerald Larose - STB
Aldabra Giant Tortoise, La Digue - Image courtesy of Michel Denousse - STB
Aldabra Giant Tortoise, La Digue - Image courtesy of Michel Denousse - STB

 

 

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Puja Gupta can be contacted at puja.@ians.in