POPULAR THINGS TO SEE AND DO SEYCHELLES
"Searching for the best experiences in the Seychelles? Jonathan and his family share some of the best things to see and do in North Island, Seychelles..."
The harmony with nature and stillness here pretty much was an activity in itself for us! But North Island’s green status goes beyond eco-sensitive design. There is an ecological conservation policy on the island, with breeding grounds for turtles. And the activities on offer are designed to have minimum impact on the surroundings.
You don’t even need to leave your villa to enjoy the SPA TREATMENTS, which use organic ingredients unique to the island wherever they can. The gorgeous, clear waters are a natural for SCUBA DIVING and SNORKELING; and you can explore the coastline by KAYAK. But this was Sheira’s time. Trust me, she didn’t want to go biking along the island’s mountain trails or feel the fishing line strain with her catch. She wanted to see out the incoming decade on her overstuffed daybed!
We did take an excursion each day to the opposite side of the island in our “gree” buggy. This side of the island gets the sun in the afternoon and is the ideal place to watch the sun set. The little bar there is the perfect place to take in the 20th Century Fox, burning orange sunsets. Couples spread themselves out, sitting on lovely beanbags that have been strategically placed. There is a barman and waiter on hand to prepare drinks. This side of the island was also a great place to swim and drift into the late afternoon with a good book. An island holiday is about tranquility… There are plenty of spots to do nothing at all: there is a gorgeous library, four stunning empty beaches and the shade of the old Indian Almond tree on the terrace.
North Island doesn’t discourage KIDS, but with the sky-high prices and serenity, I am sure that they don’t get a lot passing though. There is only so much young kids can do with coconuts; they would probably get bored! North Island is much more about leaving them with granny and finally having that long-deserved second honeymoon.
North Island is a paradise for anyone like me who loves exploring a place by foot. There are beautiful sandy paths that wind around the coast, along the base of granite walls and into the tropical mountain jungle. If you are looking for a luxurious place where you can cut off and be alone with nature, this is it. You have a whole Garden of Eden playground to explore that is around the size of Monte Carlo. My morning run on my own was a great way to discover places that Sheira and I could return to together later, like a particularly gorgeous spot for an al fresco lunch.
I never saw another person that early and loved the island to myself. I ran across the island to where we had watched the sun set the previous evening, and came across turtles resting near the waters edge. There were so many of them it was so beautiful that I felt bad disturbing their peace.
There are sounds of the jungle as you run along the path back to where the villas are. I felt so alive. There are times I wished Sheira ran with me just to experience the magic moments I experience around the world on my early morning runs.
If you are flying from Johannesburg, Nairobi, London and major European, Middle and Far Eastern capitals then Seychelles is easily accessible by the national carrier, Air Seychelles.
We enjoyed our time in Mahé, the main island of the Seychelles - getting there five hours early after oh-so-regretfully taking off from North Island to come to the international airport. Wandering around the capital, with Victoria our guide, Sheira and I were fascinated to see the obvious, far-reaching European influence in the architecture, with villas and colonial homes right on the beaches or perched on cliffs.
North Island provides you with its own driver and guide and our lady was a lovely, softly spoken islander. Sheira really enjoyed this French colonial flavour, very like the West Indies, which is completely different for us.
The markets are vibrant and full of colours - they just pop in this part of the world, especially after the subtle minimalism and neutral palette of North Island. What a joy they are to photograph - and be amongst. The trays of plump eggplants and bright red chillis, mountains of freshly caught silver fish, big breasted women with floral skirts and scarves, the brightly coloured roofs… And the melting pot of cultures is a truly exotic jumble of Indians, Islanders and Francophone Europeans. We also traveled through a rainforest above the town - but didn’t have time to see the other smaller villages, Praslin and La Digue which we definitely would have if staying here overnight. Mahé has a colourful atmosphere and was a nice ‘chaser’ to the exclusivity and isolation of North Island.
We took to the skies and headed to the Maldives with Air India, ironically nothing brought us down to earth faster! What a place North Island is. I cannot wait to go back again one day.
Join Jonathan Said and his family on their luxury travel journeys as they share their best restaurants experiences and luxury hotels and resorts holidays around the world. The comprehensive travel tips and ideas include some of the most popular things to see and do at each destination including a local shopping guide, photos, video, music and much more.