Flora and Fauna

When you’re on the plane and coming in for a landing on the hot tarmac of Seychelles Airport, the first thing you might notice, besides the ocean is the lush green vegetation, covering a majority of the island like a thick carpet.

The Seychelles Islands are home to over 100 endemic plant species; 75 of them being on the granitic islands and the rest on the outer atolls. The most well known plant species of Seychelles, but not endemic to our islands, is the Coco De Mer; a rather suggestive looking nut, but valuable and beautiful none the less. We have also become a World Heritage Site for the species and have controlled trades and protections in place to ensure their longevity and safety. The main area of these nuts is the Vallee De Mai on Praslin.

The Jellyfish tree however is endemic to Seychelles. What makes this tree so special is that none of its seeds have been able to germinate in the wild, leaving it up to botanists to ensure their survival. Three known populations of this plant are protected by Morne Seychellois National Park in three different locations.

For the fauna part of Seychelles our main endemic species is that of birds. We have around 12 different species that inhabit our islands.

The Seychelles Kestrel is one of my favorite native birds. This bird happens to be one of the only day-flying birds of prey on our islands. Its diet consists of a variety of small animals and insects including lizards and mice. A pair of kestrels will defend a territory they reside in and keep other kestrels away, making it easier for them to hunt and not run out of space and food. Most people, like my grandmother, believe that kestrels are bad omens that bring about bad luck to those it visits. This has yet to be confirmed by me, seeing as kestrels live around my house and seek shelter from the rainy days! If you haven’t caught sight of this gorgeous bird in real life, have no fear! You can see a picture of it on our 500 Rupee bills.

Another fan favorite and endemic bird is the Seychelles Black Paradise Flycatcher.  The Flycatcher, or Vev in Creole, was once widespread on the island of Praslin and then moved to La Digue where they are quite common. Nearly 30 birds were transported to Denis Island in hopes of bringing their population up to 50, in 2008. The Vev is known to thrive in native trees such as Bodanmyen and Takamaka. Just like its name, this bird consumes insects by catching them in mid air. Its population is said to have gone up to nearly 300.

Animals such as dolphins, and turtles are also on a watch list of sorts, due to the fact that Seychelles culture had made it a possibility to consume these creatures. Dwindling numbers caused the government to place certain restrictions on the poaching of dolphins and turtles and now made them known as ‘Manze Rar’. Other creatures that are not quite endemic but famous in Seychelles, are the Land Tortoise and Fruit Bats.

Fright Night

With my birthday fast approaching along with Halloween, I find myself more in the mood to stay home and watch scary movies while working on my Halloween costume for next week.

With my needle and thread in one hand and my phone in the other, I scroll through Facebook looking for any event that might happen for that night. Despite the dwindling nightlife on Mahé , a majority of clubs and restaurants (or hotels) have put together some spooky deals and events out for others to enjoy.

So as I take a break from putting together my spook-tacular costume, I’ll be writing up some interesting things to do for Halloween this year.

The Boardwalk is offering prizes for the best costumes for groups, couples and male and female categories as well as SR50 Jager and Zappa shots all night long! Get your groove on at Boardwalk with DJ Aubrey & Solo with your friends!

At the Fire and Ice Bar & Lounge, enjoy from 7.00pm onwards by the marina while vying for prizes for the most alluring costume, most creative and best Fire or Ice costume. If you don’t have your costume together, that’s okay! Try out the glow in the dark face painting available.

If you happen to be in the North of the island then be sure to check out A Night at the Cemetary at Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort. From ten onwards, enjoy DJ Zombie and maybe try your luck at winning a thousand rupees for best male or female costume!

but if partying it up with loud music isn’t for you then try a spooky dinner at Eden Bleu Hotel. For SR595 per person, you can have a three course set meal and a cocktail on the house! Make sure to dress up for maximum fun though!

last but not least, stand the chance to win this Halloween with Club Liberté Casino. At this costume party you can participate in a lottery draw at 10 o’clock pm and win some fun prizes!

So now that I’ve given you some ideas to celebrate Halloween this Tuesday, keep in mine to stay safe in your travels!

 

Top 3 Most Relaxing Beaches on La Digue

If you are looking to unwind your mind from a busy day then let me help you find the best way to relax on the perfect beach.

With maybe even a drink in hand.

My not so super secret list of the most relaxing beaches in the Seychelles Islands can help you in your time of need.

Anse Reunion

This small, narrow strip of sand may not seem like much but Anse Reunion has its qualities. For example, the shallow clear waters provide a perfect opportunity to snorkel your troubles away and make friends with the brightly colored fish. Once you’ve given that a try, you can lay back on your towel and bake in the sun or even snap a couple of pictures of Praslin from where you lay down.


Anse Severe

Despite the ‘severity’ of its name, this gorgeous small beach is actually perfect for swimming and sunbathing. Don’t let the fact that it’s surrounded by two hotels fool you; this beach is actually a lovely quiet spot that allows you time with your own thoughts.


Anse Union

This gorgeous beach is found in the plantation of the Union Estate and does cost to gain access to for tourists. The 10 euros entrance fee also gives access to Anse Source d’Argent, a more busy and popular beach.
From here you can lay your towel down and soak up some sun all while seeing the island of Praslin across the water. When you want to cool of you can dip into the clear water for some swimming or snorkeling. This is a perfect beach for relaxing.


Check out the Top 3 Relaxing Beaches on Mahé here and Praslin here.

Top 3 Most Relaxing Beaches on Praslin

It’s perfectly normal to just want to relax for a day or two from all your strenuous activities. If you’ve been exploring the island of Praslin and just want to take a day of repose then check out these three not so secret beaches to unwind.

Anse Boudin

As you come along from behind the Raffles Hotel be sure to check out this mostly deserted beach for some good rest and relaxation. Here you can have a fantastic snorkeling session with some sea turtles if you happen to be lucky. When you feel like taking a break, stop by the shop nearby for refreshments and snacks to keep you going throughout the day. It’s perfectly calming and quiet and just what you need to step away from a busy week.


ANSE GEORGETTE

These turquoise waters may be difficult to access by foot but is available through the Lemuria Resort. The fact that it is well hidden means that it is even better to relax here without the worry of the outside world. Allow this hypnotic space to entice you into spending the day under the shade of the palm trees. Truly excellent for swimming, snorkeling and diving


Anse lazio

Now don’t let the fact that this is Praslin’s most popular beach deter you from coming to relax here; the lengthiness of the beach allows for the illusion of alone time. Because it is so spread out, you don’t have to deal with loudness and rowdiness.
The beautiful white sand plays its part in putting Anse Lazio into the top ten most gorgeous beaches of the world and swimming and snorkeling in the bright blue waters is a must!
Come watch the sunset here and bathe in the beautiful warm colors of the end of the day and forget all your worries.


Check out the Top 3 Relaxing Beaches on Mahé here and La Digue here.

La Digue Lounging

Get your luggage ready for some great activities to keep you busy while vacationing in the Seychelles Islands, specifically La Digue.

In this post I will be splitting up itineraries between three different holiday lengths on La Digue as well as appealing to people of all tastes.

4 DAYS LONG

Take it easy for your short holiday with these small suggestions.

  1. Beaches: Like every itinerary before, beaches are at the forefront of every trip to the islands. The pride of La Digue is Anse Source D’Argent and it’s not difficult to see why. This beach is an ideal spot for weddings and honeymooners. The clear turquoise water is relatively calm and perfect for swimming and snorkeling.
  2. Hiking: Get your hiking shoes on and head on over to the highest point on La Digue called Nid d’Aigle. You’ll be spending an average time of 3 hours on this trail, to and from, depending on how fast or slow you walk. Capture the most spectacular views of La Digue and neighboring islands from this point.
  3. Art: A definite must see on La Digue is the art gallery of George Camille, a famous artist here in the Seychelles Islands.

1 week vacation

One weeks seems like enough time to do some more activities and delve into the deep rich history of the island.

  1. Beaches: Go and relax on one of La Digue’s many secluded beaches for prime tanning and privacy.
  2. L’Union Estate: This piece of land covers over a third of La Digue and is a big tourist attraction. Here you can find an accumulation of local life activities and places of interest. The coconut farm which is found here shows demonstrations of extracting oil which is a staple in most Seychellois homes. Another tourist favorite is the tortoise park where you can take pictures with the giant land tortoises.
  3. La Digue Cemetery: Another small tourist attraction is the cemetery. This plot of land isn’t relatively spooky but it is home to many of the first settlers on the island.
  4. Ox Ride: Ride in style on carts pulled by large oxen, something that was very common for newly weds leaving the church back in the day. It may be a slow mode of transport but it is an experience, once you reach your destination you can carry on by foot or the preferred transport: bicycles.
  5. Eustache Sarde’s House: This beautiful house is one of the last remaining homes made out of timber in the whole of Seychelles.

2 weeks stay

Try different things while you extend your stay.

  1. Beaches: Lengthen your summer tan on the various beaches La Digue has to offer.
  2. Veuve Reserve: Find out more about La Digue’s endemic animals and plants at this small but beautiful nature reserve in the forest.
  3. Island Hopping: Find yourself a boat charter and check out the other islands that surround La Digue. Find out about their specific history and facts!
  4. Restaurants and Bars: Entice your taste buds with delicious creole cooking from a large variety of restaurants and bars.
  5. Helicopter Rides: See the island from a birds eye view with a lovely helicopter ride that takes off from La Digue.
  6. Lafet La Digue: This event more commonly known as the Feast of Assumption in English, is a major event that is marked in every Seychellois’ calendar from every island. On the 15th of August everyone comes down to celebrate the Virgin Mary and partake in the open-air mass and procession. The festivities continue with street parties, live music shows and food-stalls for both locals and visitors alike.

Find a full list of beaches here.

Find the Mahé itinerary here and the Praslin itinerary here.

Mahé Living

Get your planners ready for some great activities to keep you busy while vacationing in the Seychelles Islands, specifically Mahé.

In this post I will be splitting up itineraries between three different holiday lengths on Mahé as well as appealing to people of all tastes.

4 Days long

If you’ll be spending a short time in Mahé then don’t stress; you can do just enough to get a Creole experience.

  1. Beaches: The beaches of Mahé are a must see and should always be a focal point of a visit here. Depending on the time of year, you can enjoy a variety of beaches that range from small, quiet coves, to large, touristy areas. Check out our tips for safe swimming here.
  2. Market: Another place to visit is the local market; here you can delve deep into some Seychellois culture by watching the locals interact over fresh produce and get some spices and souvenirs to bring back home. Check out the location here.
  3. Bazar Labrin: Depending on the days that you are here, you can visit the Bazar Labrin that is every Wednesday evening along the Beau Vallon Beach promenade. Here you can find local handicrafts and food to keep you busy and intrigued. It would be wise to stay late to watch the Moutya show that surrounds the Bonfire for an extra cultural experience.

1 week vacation

For a seven day trip to the Mahé, your week can be spent lounging in the sun or going on adventurous escapades.

  1. Nature Trails: On Mahé, there is a variety of nature trails for tourists and locals alike and every single hike can vary between easy and strenuous. It is very important to pay attention to your surroundings and always have the essentials for outdoor activities.
  2. Water Sports: Some other things to do on Mahé can be water sports or boat excursions, where you can enjoy the clear blue oceans in a multitude of ways.
  3. Art and History: The art studios, museums and monuments would also appreciate a visit from those who want to learn more about Seychellois culture through history and art. These various places can show true hidden beauty and depths.
  4. Island Hopping: By finding a boat excursion or boat tour company, you can find yourself visiting several small islands in one or two days. Hop on over to these quaint outer islands for a tasty barbecue and interesting history lessons.

2 weeks stay

The longer you stay, the more time you have to enjoy yourself. For the fourteen day trip you can visit a variety of things and maybe even be around for some local events.

  1. Beaches and Water Sports: The beach is always open and more than often, you can find water sport activities to entertain you. Such as jet skiing, parasailing, windsurfing and banana boating to name a few.
  2. Another Island: Something that is always recommended is visiting Praslin and La Digue which you can do by taking the usual ferry or by organizing a boat charter activity through hotels or locals.
  3. Diving and Snorkeling: Diving and snorkeling is also heavily recommended for a whole day activity and can be achieved through diving companies or glass bottom boats.
  4. Events: Events that may take place on Mahé could be local concerts or mini culture festivals that are held in various areas around the island. You can also find live music playing at select restaurants and hotels in the evenings.
  5. Tours: If you want to traipse around the island but are afraid to get lost, then find yourself a tour guide and head on out. Depending on the guide you can end up in different nooks and crannies of Mahé. You can find out little facts and small business that help Seychelles flourish.
  6. Fishing: If big game is what you are looking for, then fishing is your must do activity. With various fishing agencies you can be taken anywhere in Seychelles to find as much fish as you can under the guidance of your boat guides. You may also be able to eat your catch of the day depending on your charter.
  7. Spa Day: Relax your weary head with a pampered day at any spa. You can find full body massages, facials and mud baths at various locations. Check out our full list here.

Find a small list of essential items here and the Top Three Relaxing Beaches on Mahé here.

Full lists:
Art Galleries
Boat Charters
Dive Operators
Events
Excursions

Leisure
Places of Interest
Tour Guides

Safe Swimming

The most common leisure activity to do in Seychelles is definitely swimming and although it is thoroughly relaxing and fun it can also be a bit dangerous.

A huge thing to be aware of is currents and the wind patterns during the year; either side of the island can be calm while the other is rough depending on the months.

It is extremely important that tourists and locals alike are aware of the dangers that might befall them and how to avoid them. Be sure to check out a list of various beaches here.

  • Always check in with your hotel or travel agent representative about any sea conditions before heading to said beach
  • Be on the look out for warning signs and lifeguards
  • Pay close attention to children and the elderly in the water if you are with your family
  • Avoid swimming alone
  • If caught in breaking waves, duck under them and allow them to pass over you while you maneuver yourself into calmer waters
  • Never go swimming under the influence of alcohol or any mind altering substance.

Emergency Numbers

Police: 999

Hospital: 151

Life Guard: 252 99 76

List of embassies here.

Drive Away With Me

If you want to explore the beautiful island of Praslin then you are definitely going to need transport. It’s also very important to remember that we drive on the LEFT hand side of the road.

Here you will find a variety of car hires waiting for you to choose the right car for your stay. A majority of these cars will be on the smaller size which happen to be ideal for the narrow roads of Praslin. This makes it easier to navigate around the island and get to hard-to-reach places.

A tourist must see is the Valle De Mai which is the well known landmark of Seychelles. A car is a must have if you want to visit the sanctuary and see the native Coco De Mer trees we are so famous for.

You can also find other cars that can handle the various rocky roads to make your trip smoother. Whichever car you rent, you will definitely have enough space for your bags and gear for a sunny day out.

Stay The Night

Praslin is the island of plenty. Plenty accommodations that is. The island may be smaller than Mahé but it packs a punch when it comes to lodgings.

The self-catering places are ideal for those who wish to be alone and go by their own schedule. In these establishments you can find a personal kitchen that can give you the liberty of eating whenever you want. What might be seen as a downside is that you may have to clean up after yourself, depending on the business.

Tourists looking for a homier vibe can stay at guest houses. Depending on the place, you may enjoy breakfast and dinner or just one of each. Most guest houses are heavily inspired by creole furnishings that makes the place feel closer to the island. The guest house might also have an eating schedule that you may or may not want to stick to.

If you want to kick your feet up and let go then a hotel is where you need to be. With luxury of spa service and the constant availability of food, you will always be taken care of. You won’t have to worry about cleaning up and you can have perks that guest houses and self-caterings may not have.

Villas are also a hit when it comes to seclusiveness and tranquility. Some villas may only hold a couple but others can be ideal when you have a family group or wedding party by keeping everyone close. These villas are almost a combination of the comfort of hotels and the closeness of guest houses and might have a self-catering option.

Depending on the establishment, you can also find a car hire to rent from.

Wherever you choose to stay, the lovely people of Praslin will definitely make sure you have a pleasant stay.

A full list of different accommodations can be found here on the Seychelles Promo website.