Where is Seychelles?
Have you ever wondered what tasted Africa but one class above? Well, take your map point just an iota below the equator some 1500 km to the southeastern coast of the African continent. Congratulations. You’ve just spotted the Seychelles islands.
The Seychelles islands have the perfect geographic location to shame any other tropical island. Its geographical location makes of this insular state without contest one of the pearls of the Indian Ocean, with one of the most preserved fauna and flora of the whole world.
You may be asking yourself what makes the Seychelles so distinct from the rest of Africa. Well, the answer is everything.
To begin with, with a population of only 90,024 (2014), the Seychelles is demographically the smallest of all the African states.
Out of its 155 islands, the archipelago of 459 square kilometers has about 90% of its population staying on the island of Mahé which is home to the capital city Victoria. La Digue and Praslin accommodate for the rest of the inhabitants. The other remaining islands are uninhabited or declared nature reserve.
The population density of the Seychelles is therefore very small. You will find it astonishing that the vast majority of its soft sandy beaches are almost unfrequented giving the sensation of lost paradise.
Seychelles Granite blocks
The islands of the Seychelles are either of granitic or coral origins. As a matter of fact, the Seychelles granitic islands are considered the oldest and hardest granite in the world.
A walk on the beaches will reveal enormous blocks of granite, that when coupled with the azure of the sea and the green of the flora, increase your sensation of ecstasy.
Seychelles has the typical historical blueprint as the majority of islands in the Indian Ocean.
Situated on the travel route of merchants of the past European golden era, Seychelles was a transit point between Africa and Asia. It is of no wonder that Seychelles saw itself first colonised by the French in 1756 when a stone was laid by Captain Nicolas Morphey. The islands were named after Jean Moreau de Séchelles, Louis XV’s Minister of Finance. The British later contested control over the island.
The buildings and infrastructures are perfect vestiges of its past colonial era. The State house and the district tower clock both situated in Victoria are perfect example.
The colonial past can also be traced in Seychelles culture which is a mix of French and African (Creole) influences. Although having French and English as official languages, Seychellois Creole (Kreol), a creole language derived from French and African tongues, is the native language. English and French are also commonly used. English remains the language of government and commerce.
The Seychellois are beautiful people with the majority of the population being racially mixed which is the same as the surrounding islands of La Réunion, Mauritius, Mayotte and Rodrigues.
Seychellois are well mannered and polite people. They are very warm welcoming to visitors and will without hesitation invite you to share their meal.
Gastronomy is one of the major aspects of your visit to the Seychelles. If you are a ‘fin’ gourmet, you will find restaurants which will do nothing except arouse your taste buds. You will find whatever type of food you are looking for in the Seychelles- even Chinese food, since the Chinese make up about 1% of the population. Inner Indian Ocean islands have their own type of cuisine which is distinctive from the rest of the African continent. Seychellois cuisine is not to be excluded from the custom.
Seychellois foodIts cuisine is a unique mélange of Indian, African and French food. Hot and spicy food is generally preferred. Fish is ubiquitous in the Seychelles kitchen. Freshly caught it is savored grilled, with rice and eggplant or pumpkin puree. Hot pepper sauce, which is part of the Seychelles habits is to be eaten with moderation! Specialities of the Seychelles are the “ladob”, shark chutney, “bourgeoise grille” and the famous “kat-katbanane”. For dessert, enjoy the many tropical fruits.
The most fascinating fact about the Seychelles is that regardless of nationality of the visitor, no visas are required for entry. This makes the Seychelles a unique travel destination.
Unlike some African countries Seychelles enjoys amazing peace. Peace and tranquility is what every traveler research for their holiday trips. And this is exactly what the Seychelles has to offer to you. Seychelles has the lowest criminality level of Africa. Personal safety is a major factor to take into consideration while planning your holiday. One of the best tips while choosing your holiday destination is to choose the safest place for you and your family.
There is a wide range of hotels you can choose from when planning your trip. From 5 star hotels to villas or guest houses, chose whatever location you prefer. From the slow motion life of Victoria, to time freezed sea coasts and mountain foots. The Seychelles offers you accommodation according to your budget.
Seychelles Islands nature reserves
Seychelles is home to several national parks and nature reserves.
At Mahé, the highlight of the Seychelles archipelago is protected by the Morne Seychellois National Park.
At Praslin National Park, Vallée de Mai is a World Heritage Site by UNESCO.
This site, unique to the Seychelles, has a forest of Coco de Mer, also called coco fesses. The fins of these coconuts shade several rare plants and many birds.
At La Digue, the reserve hosts in a lush tropical vegetation an endemic species of bird called the “red collared widow-bird.”
Several islands are located in the immediate vicinity of Mahé or Praslin. Sainte-Anne and Cerf Island are next to Mahé. Cousin, Cousine and Curieuse are close to Praslin.
In these small islands, nature rules, and marine parks are home to a beautiful underwater world. Silhouette, Bird Island, Denis Island and Fregate are islands near Mahé worth seeing.
These are small paradise where hotels are scarce and the beaches paradisiacal.
Live on these pristine islands of Seychelles giant tortoises. These animals are the endemic emblem of the island. Through your visit, do not try to disturb their routine.
At nightfall, the music of Seychelles launches its rhythms in hotels inviting you to dance in a friendly atmosphere, in these extraordinary islands.
Are you under the spell of a trip to the Seychelles?