Amazing National Parks
Sainte Anne Marine National Park
Encompassing six islands a 15- to 20-minute boat ride off the coast of Mahé near Victoria, Sainte Anne National Marine Park became the first national park in the Indian Ocean in 1973. Snorkeling, scuba diving, and glass-bottom boat excursions reveal the rich diversity of marine life in the park's coral reefs. You can explore most of the islands within the reserve on day excursions from Mahé.
Morne Seychellois National Park
The Morne Blanc hike is one of the most popular trails. It offers spectacular views from its summit. Walking west through the park, hikers will reach the Baie Ternay and Port Launay Marine Parks. To the northwest lies the hamlet of Bel Ombre and the isolated beach at Anse Major.
Vallée de Mai National Park, Praslin
Nature lovers, birders, and photographers will enjoy exploring this reserve, where the trees form an overhead canopy, and large prehistoric boulders are strewn across the forest floor. The valley is home to many species of lizards and rare birds, such as the Seychelles bulbul, fruit pigeon and the national bird of Seychelles - the black parrot.
Anse Intendance, Mahé
The lack of a protective reef makes swimming a little rough when tradewinds blow from the southeast, but sunbathers, beachcombers, and photographers will enjoy this picturesque, palm-framed strand at any time of year. Turtles nest along the powdery shores here.
Anse Lazio, Praslin
Flanked by rounded granite boulders, this long stretch of soft blond sand merges with crystal clear waters in dreamy shades of blue. Takamaka trees and coconut palms fringe the beach, providing patches of shade. Hungry bathers can refuel at restaurants on both ends of the beach. The best time to visit is in the early morning or late afternoon when most of the tour buses have left.
Baie Lazare, Mahé
The pretty village of Baie Lazare on Mahé was named after 18th-century French explorer Lazare Picault, who landed here when the French government sent him to explore the islands.
La Digue Island
La Digue Island is home to the endangered black paradise flycatcher, also called "the widow" because of its streaming black tail feathers. Diving and rock climbing are also popular things to do on the island, and hikers will enjoy La Pass to Grand Anse Trail, which threads past French colonial houses through woodlands and marsh areas to gorgeous Grand Anse beach.