The Republic of Seychelles is an archipelago state in the Indian Ocean. The 115 islands are located 1500 km east of the African mainland. Most of the islands are uninhabited, 42% of the area is a protected area for the preservation of the country’s natural resources. The islands were long uninhabited until they were taken over by Austronesian navigators and traders from the Maldives and Arabia. The first Europeans arrived in 1502 with Vasco da Gama. Real habitation only came when France planted its flag there in 1756. The archipelago was named after Jean Moreau de Séchelles, then Minister of Finance. To protect the population, the Administrator immediately capitulated during the Franco-British War of 1794-1810. After that, the Seychelles came under British rule, but since 1976 they have been independent. With more than 94,000 inhabitants, this is the smallest independent country in Africa. French and English are still the official languages, alongside Seychellois Creole. You pay with the Seychellois Rupee. Due to their British past, people in the Seychelles still drive on the left. Check topmbadirectory for how to get to Seychelles.
Top 10 sights of the Seychelles
#1. Anse Source D’Argent
Anse Source D’Argent is located on La Digue, the smallest of the three main islands of the Seychelles. At 1.1 km long, this beach is one of the most photographed beaches in the world. Not incomprehensible, given the beautiful golden white sand, imposing granite rocks and clear blue water. The beach is not very wide and can be completely submerged at high tide. To get to the beach you have to walk through L’Union Estate.
#2. Vallee de Mai
The Vallée de Mai is located in the middle of Praslin, the second largest island in the Seychelles archipelago. It is the smallest Unesco World Heritage area in the world and forms the heart of the Praslin National Park. This place was untouched until 1930, after which the valley was embellished with botanical gardens, ornamental plants and fruit trees. In 1948 the park came into government hands and since 1966 it has been a nature reserve. Charles George Gordon, a British officer, started the legend in 1881 that this was once the Garden of Eden, and the famous fruit Coco-de-mer, according to him, was the forbidden fruit. Because it resembles a female bottom, that logic is not difficult to follow. The trees only grow here and on neighboring Curieuse. Check simplyyellowpages for mass media and culture of Seychelles.
#3. Anse Lazio
In the northwest is one of the most beautiful beaches on the island of Praslin. This 600 m long pearly white sandy beach is surrounded by water that is so clear that you can see the bottom. Flowering plants and impressive granite rocks provide shade. This is the only beach in the Seychelles that is not protected by a coral reef. You can snorkel here with manta rays, small sharks and brightly colored fish.
#4. Mission Lodge
On Mahé, the largest island in the archipelago, you will find the Mission Lodge, a historic site in the Morne Seychellois National Park. The lodge is located near one of the highest points that you can reach by road in Mahé, and therefore offers spectacular views over the center and the west coast of the island. However, you will also be able to see ruins of a school that was established there for children of freed slaves. In 1972, Queen Elizabeth stopped by this small Lodge to enjoy her tea break in peace and quiet.
Originally Curieuse was the “Ile Rouge”, named after the red earth on the island. After being taken by the French, the small island was renamed “Curieuse”, after the ship of explorer Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne. 250 years later, traces of the fire that sailors started in 1771 to make it easier to harvest the Coco-de-mer can still be seen. Much of the local fauna and flora was lost. In 1829 Curieuse was put into use as a leper colony, and it remained that way until 1965. Due to less human interference, the ecosystem was able to flourish. The former leprosy center can still be visited. The doctor’s residence on Anse St. Joseph became an education center and museum.
The capital of the Seychelles is located in the northeast of the island of Mahé. With more than 25,000 inhabitants, it is the only major city in the Seychelles. However, there are only 24 streets and two traffic lights in this colorful town. The wooden and stone houses almost all date from the early 20th century. The only real port of the Seychelles is located in Victoria and in 1971 the international airport was built nearby. Originally the area was inhabited by the French, but Victoria only really became a major city after the British victory. The cathedral’s clock tower was inspired by the Vauxhall Clock Tower, also known as Little Ben in London. The botanical gardens are definitely worth it, as are the National History Museum and the Museum of Natural History. The real local hotspot, however, is the market with its colorful fish and fruit stalls.
#7. Morne Seychellois National Park
With its 3045 hectares, the Morne Seychellois National Park covers about 20% of the surface of the island of Mahé. This makes it the largest national park in the Seychelles. There are 15 km of spectacular hiking trails around the highest point of the archipelago, the Morne Seychellois at 905 m. You can see, among other things, the “La Gogue Reservoir”, which regulates the water supply for Victoria and the north of Mahé. Coffee and cinnamon were once grown here. The ruins of the plantations are reminders of the agricultural past. There are also several waterfalls, such as the Cascade River Waterfall and the Sauzier Waterfall, the most spectacular on Mahé.
#8. Union Estate
Union Estate is a former coconut and vanilla plantation on La Digue. Until 1980, real coconuts were grown here to produce copra, from which coconut oil is made. There is still an authentic copra mill with ox set so you can see how it was made. The plantation house is one of the oldest examples of French architecture here, and the cemetery of the first inhabitants is also located in the domain. Vanilla is only grown on a small scale; pollination has to be done manually in the absence of bees.
#9. La Digue Veuve Réserve
“La Digue Veuve Réserve” is a small park on la Digue, specially reserved for the Seychelles Paradise Flycatcher. Its long, black tail has earned this bird the nickname ‘widower’, ‘veuve’ in the local Creole. Originally the bird was spotted on Praslin, later also on the other islands. When it became clear in the 1960s that the bird was threatened with extinction, it was given this piece of 21 hectares to be able to reproduce in a protected way.
#10. Baie Ternay Marine National Park
In the Baie Ternay Marine National Park on the island of Mahé you can snorkel and dive among whale sharks, dolphins and sea turtles. The views and scenery of this park are impressive, with a pristine coast fringed by calm turquoise waters and an abundance of marine life. This exclusive park is home to an interesting combination of coastal landscapes: from mangroves and sandy shores to rocky shores and coral reefs. A boat trip along the west coast is also a top tourist attraction. Not only is it the only way to access the park, but it also offers a magnificent view of the peak of the Morne Seychellois, the highest mountain in the Seychelles.