A wicked seductress, Praslin has lots of temptations: stylish lodgings, tangled velvet jungle that’s ripe for exploration, curving hills dropping down to gin-clear seas, gorgeous stretches of silky sand edged with palm trees and a slow-motion ambience. No, you’re not dreaming, but this is the Seychelles you dreamed of when you first imagined this tropical archipelago.
Lying about 45km northeast of Mahé, the second-largest island in the Seychelles is closer to the sleepiness of La Digue than the relative hustle and bustle of Mahé. Like Mahé, Praslin is a granite island, with a ridge of small mountains running east–west along the centre, and the svelt interior, especially the Vallée de Mai, is fascinating for its flora and bird life. Its combination of manageable size (you’re never more than 90 minutes from anywhere else on the island) and stellar attractions makes Praslin a fine choice for your Seychelles holiday.
Talcum-powder beaches lapped by topaz waters, lush hills, a sublime laid-back tempo; these dreams of a tropical paradise become reality in the Seychelles.
Mother Nature was very generous with these 115 islands scattered in the Indian Ocean, and has spoiled them rotten. Undeniably, the beaches are the big attraction, and what beaches: exquisite ribbons of pearlescent sand lapped by topaz waters and backed by lush hills and big glacis boulders. And hardly a soul in sight. Choosing your favourite beach is like trying to pick a flavour of ice cream – they’re all so good! Hot favourites include world-famous Anse Source d’Argent, secluded Anse Marron, sexy Anse Takamaka and picture-postcard perfect Anse Lazio.
White-sand beaches, secluded coves, coral-coloured sunsets, swish hotels, slick restaurants, hushed spas. With such a dreamlike setting, it’s not surprising that honeymooners and those seeking a glamorous tropical getaway have long had the Seychelles at the top of their wish lists. You too can live the high life at one of the country’s star-spangled hotspots, provided you have the cash. If you’re not a millionaire, fear not. This paradise is more affordable than you think. On top of ultraluxurious options, the Seychelles has plenty of self-catering facilities and family-run guesthouses that are easier on the wallet and offer local colour.
Ecotourism & Wildlife Spotting
Charge your camera batteries, people – the Seychelles is not dubbed ‘The Galàpagos of the Indian Ocean’ for nothing. Watching sea turtles nesting on Bird Island’s sandy beaches or giant Aldabra tortoises roaming freely on Curieuse is one of those once-in-a-lifetime experiences. If you’re hoping to spot sooty terns, tropicbirds, warblers and magpie robins in their natural habitats, the bird sanctuaries of Aride, Cousin, and Bird Islands should figure heavily in your planning. And Praslin’s Vallée de Mai is a slice of Eden where you can see the very rare coco de mer palms in their natural state.
Diving and snorkelling are the most popular activities in the Seychelles, and rightly so. Healthy reefs, canyon-like terrain, shallow shelves, exciting shipwrecks, impressive granite outcrops and splendid coral gardens give divers and snorkellers almost instant access to a variety of environments. The water is warm and clear, and teeming with life from the tiniest juvenile tropical to the largest pelagic creature, including whale sharks. Whether you’re an experienced diver or slapping on fins for the first time, there are sites for all levels. And you’ll be welcomed by qualified, multilingual instructors in state-of-the-art dive centres.