Published on : Friday, February 18, 2022
Isolated for millennia, the Seychelles Islands exist as a chain of Noah’s Arks, harbouring some of the rarest species of flora & fauna on the planet.
Trees covering the granitic islands and 1500 species of flowering plants contain some of the rarest specimens on the planet, and many found nowhere else on Earth.
Several islands are home to birds found only there. Altogether, the islands are home to 13 species and 17 sub-species of birdlife which occur nowhere else in the world. Much of Seychelles’ extraordinary biodiversity may be discovered on its extensive network of guided walks and trails as well as in its National Parks.
With over 15 trails to choose from, Seychelles has become known for some of the most amazing nature walks and trails in the Indian Ocean. For nature lovers, each network of walks and trails criss-crossing the islands of Mahé, Praslin, La Digue are different and exhibit the richness and wealth of the islands.
Here are some of the top nature trails to pick from on your next holiday:
Copolia Lodge Trail, Mahé
Located in Morne Seychellois National Park, Copolia Trail is one of the most popular hiking spots in Seychelles. The view is simply spectacular, overlooking the east coast of the main island up to the country’s international airport. The trail is covered underneath luxuriant growth of the forest, containing many endemic palms, higher up the area is covered in boulders. Here is your chance to locate the country’s smallest frog and endemic non-venomous snakes.
Anse Major Trail, Mahé
If you are looking for a relaxing beach day at the end of a hike, then the Anse Major trail will not disappoint. A relatively easy walk, traversing through giant boulders makes way to the isolated beach of Anse Major. The walk to the beach and back takes around three hours, but the balmy blue sea and a lagoon makes a perfect spot for a picnic.
Vallée de Mai, Praslin
Seychelles boasts two UNESCO World Heritage sites and the legendary Vallée de Mai is one of the world’s smallest natural UNESCO World Heritage Sites and millions of years of isolation have led to the evolution of many unique species in this forest that are found nowhere else in the world. A living remnant of the ancient palm forests, the Vallée de Mai is the green heart of Praslin Island and contains Seychelles’ largest intact forest of the endemic coco de mer palm. And if lucky, one could spot the rare Seychelles Black Parrot too.
Fond Ferdinand, Praslin
Even though the Vallée de Mai is undoubtedly the main attraction of Praslin, the alternative Fond Ferdinand Nature Reserve is also well-worth a visit. This 122-hectare park is six times larger than the Vallée de Mai, and has more endemic plant species and animals to discover. From the elevated lookout point, enjoy endless views of Praslin, as well as several other Inner Seychelles Islands, including Curieuse, La Digue, Coco Island, and many more.
Nid d’Aigle, La Digue
Looking for an adventure like never before, consider the climb up to the Nid d’Aigle when in La Digue. This 333-metre ‘mountain’ (1092 ft) is the highest peak on La Digue, and is also known as the Eagle’s Nest. The path winds through soft forest floors, granite boulders, and red earth. The highest point offers an incredible view of Praslin, Félicité, and Marianne Island.