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Explore the wilder Seychelles on these 12 nature trails

Victoria, Seychelles | January 19, 2017, Thursday @ 14:13 in Entertainment » SEYCHELLES BUZZ | By: Betymie Bonnelame | Views: 14269
Explore the wilder Seychelles on these 12 nature trails

(David Stanley/flickr) Photo License: CC BY 2.0

(Seychelles News Agency) - The islands of Seychelles are popular for their tropical beauty, which includes amazing beaches and lush green forests. While many prefer to laze on our white sands, the more adventurous enjoy discovering the wilder side of the islands. SNA proposes 12 nature trails to hit for an island adventure.

Note that trail brochures produced by the Ministry of Environment can be purchased at Antigone book store in the capital Victoria and the Botanical Gardens on the outskirt of the capital.

1. Anse Major

A relatively easy trail along the rocky northwestern coastline of Mahé which can be reached from the bus terminal at Danzil, in the northern district of Bel Ombre. Go up the hill then take the right fork in the road, passing through the small but expanding settlement of Danzil following the yellow route markers. Where the road turns into a walking path, take the left uphill one. This one leads to the small secluded beach of Anse Major.

(Nature trail in Seychelles) Photo License: CC-BY


2. Cassedent

Just off the main road on the western coast of Mahe before the entrance to the Constance Ephelia hotel, this trail is a long walk along the ridge of a mountain base. It involves continuous ascents and descents through fascinating communities of screw pines, a palm marsh and endemic trees. A natural waterfall at the end gives a chance to cool off and a perfect spot for resting.

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3. Copolia

Another trail situated in the Morne Seychellois National Park in the northwest corner of Seychelles' main island, Mahe. The trail starts at Val Riche, Port Glaud. There is a trail sign in a bend near the road. It’s easy at the beginning but more difficult as you progress. This is seen as one of the best and easiest accessible areas to see most of the country’s specialised glacis flora at intermediate altitude.

(Nature trail in Seychelles) Photo License: CC-BY


4. Dans Gallas

The trail can be accessed at the Le Niol last bus stop -- on the opposite side of the road is an information point for the Morne Seychellois National Park, where you can get more detailed information during working hours. This is a much tougher trail but worth the trouble as it offers a magnificent bird’s eye view of the capital, Victoria. The main features are the panoramic views and the scenery which you discover as you follow the route.

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5. Glacis La Reserve

This trail in the south of Mahe varies from easy to moderate and there are occasional steep climbs which add a bit of challenge. The trail starts just off the Montagne Posee road that links Anse aux Pins on the eastern side of Mahé to Anse Boileau on the western coast. The circular tracks allow hikers to see beautiful palm forests and five out of the six native species of Seychelles. Three lookout points give a rewarding view of Mahe.

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6. Glacis noire

This one is located on the east coast of the second-most populated island, Praslin. It overlooks the east coast of the island and offers a fine view of La Digue, the third-most populated island. This trail allows visitors to discover all six of the Seychelles' endemic palms, including the world -amous coco de mer.

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7. Glacis Trois Freres

From the Sans Soucis Forestry Station on Mahe, there is a secondary road which goes uphill, indicated with a wooden sign 'Trois Frères'. Follow the sign up the hill – the trail goes up to an altitude of 300 metres through the Morne Seychellois National Park and offers a magnificent view of Victoria, the capital, and the Ste Anne Marine Park. It is not an easy walk and steep in certain places.

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8. Mare aux Cochons

This one is a series of interlinked trails leading deep in the Morne Seychellois National Park. Start at Danzil, Bel Ombre in the north of Mahe – at the signpost to Anse Major, turn right and go uphill until you reach a signpost "Dans Bernard". It’s an uphill walk through dense forest and can take up to four hours. The reward is the incredible flora and fauna native to the area, several historical ruins and a stunning waterfall.

(Nature trail in Seychelles) Photo License: CC-BY 

9. Mission lodge

This one is recommended as it is a place of great historic and cultural value to the Seychellois. Up in the hills of Sans Souci on Mahe, you will see a signboard that will indicate you to the Mission Lodge. The trail leads to the ruins of the school built by the Anglican mission for children of freed slaves. An easy trail that offers the most famous vantage point in all of Seychelles -- spectacular sea and mountain views looking southward across Mahé, all under a small pavilion where Queen Elizabeth II sat for tea in 1972.

(Nature trail in Seychelles) Photo License: CC-BY 

10. Morne Blanc

The initial part of the trail passes through an old tea plantation, from there it is a continuous uphill climb from an already high-altitude in the Morne Seychellois National Park in the western part of Mahe. Along the way, hikers can see many of the fascinating and diverse plant community which is unique to Seychelles. An early start is recommended to avoid the sun and mountain mist which sometimes form later in the day.

(Nature trail in Seychelles) Photo License: CC-BY 

11. Vacoa Mahe

The trail starts close to Le Meridiens Barbarons hotel at Anse Boileau in the south of Mahe. It’s a fairly easy trail which traces a path up and around the Dauban River, from its network of mangroves to the forest further inland. It is dominated by the Seychelles screw pines or vakwa in Creole that dominate the area hence its name. Other interesting features are immense granite boulders.


12. Vallee de mai

Located in the district of Grand Anse Praslin, follow the signs for Vallée de Mai. Numerous trails lead through this emerald-tinged forest, which remains virtually untouched. At the Vallee You can start at the fok The shortest is about 1km and the longest is 2km -- all clearly marked and easy going. This is the place where you see the legendary coco de mer growing in its natural habitat.

(Nature trail in Seychelles) Photo License: CC-BY 
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