Treasure hunting at Praslin Island | Seychelles
Praslin was the third and last island of the Seychelles we visited. We arrived by ferry from La Digue island and had almost two full days to enjoy this little piece of heaven.
Located only 45 km North-East from Mahé, it's the second largest island and is home to around 7000 people. As it is not that big (almost 38 km2), at first we thought of not renting a car. But then, having in mind that we only had two days, we decided that having a car is always a saving time bonus. Yes, but we were late. By the time we tried to book a vehicle, all rent-a-car companies were sold out. Luckily for us, when arriving at the ferry terminal, we were able to get (after some negotiation and paying cash) the last car standing at the dusty parking lot.
It was around noon and we wasted no time. Anse Volbert (also known as Côte D'Or) was our first stop. It was nice and chill, having in mind that this is Praslin's main tourist beach. It's around 3 km long, but its beauty can't be compared to all the breathtaking beaches we've already been on Seychelles' other islands. On its West side however, there were some cute souvenir stores I recommend checking out.
We had a delicious lunch at a small restaurant near Volbert beach and then headed North-West - to Anse Lazio. The concrete road ended before reaching any glimpse of a beach, but there was a bumpy, dusty road that led us straight to the white sand. Surrounded by huge, granite rocks, Takamaka and palm trees, this place was heaven indeed. It had the unique beauty of La Digue's Source D'Argent, but as it has no reef, the waves added a different, more familiar to us, "feeling" of a beach (at low tide the gorgeous beach at La Digue island looked more like a lake shore, as the water was extremely calm). This is what I'd call a hidden treasure. And the beach was actually almost empty...
When the sun started falling down, we headed to our hotel to check-in and watch the sunset from its overwater pavilion. And even though it rained for a while, the views were stunning. Including the one of the rainbow.
The next day, after a delicious breakfast, we headed to Fond Ferdinand - a nature reserve, near by our lodging, with some hiking trails and the famous Coco de Mer ("sea coconut") trees. There are so treasured at Praslin island and can be found everywhere, as part of the decoration - used as lamps, bowls, etc. Only the female trees produce the nuts and it can take 20-25 years for this to happen. Coco de Mer is an endemic specie, growing naturally at Praslin and Curieuse islands. The visit at the reserve is guided and possible only within a group (check guided tours timetable). Our tour lasted for around 2 hours and during that time we enjoyed fresh walks in the shadow of the high trees, saw several animals and even witnessed a Coco de Mer nut falling of a tree. This could actually be dangerous, as they weight between 15 to 25 kg. On our hike going up, we reached a viewpoint offering breathtaking views to Prasling itself, as well as to some of the surrounding islands. Climbing all those steps is so worth it, believe me. You would not want to miss those wonderful sights.
After we left Fond Ferdinand, we headed straight back to Anse Lazio - for sure our favourite beach within all the islands. And having in mind that we were leaving the next day, we wanted nothing but to experience the most of what that country is so famous about - its stunning beaches. We spent the entire afternoon just chilling on the white sand, enjoying the perfect temperature of the ocean and of course, the magnificent scenery.
The perfect day deserved a perfect ending, for sure. And for us, while at Praslin island, that meant enjoying the sunset from the overwater pavilion. Just like the day before. With one exception - there was no rain today. Just the light noise of the waves, an interesting book and a bottle of a great, white wine. The sun was shining warmly in front of us, while we were enjoying every single one of its lasts rays of light...
We still had almost half a day to enjoy on Praslin island before embarking on a tiny plane to Mahé and from there back to Nairobi. We spent it in the resort, reading on the hammock, at the pleasant shadow of the tall palm trees. By the way, the lodging we've stayed had the cutest hotel library. We also went for a walk to the closest beach (which was less than 5 minutes away), as the hotel's beach had disappeared at the high tide.
Seychelles islands are a dream destination that has something to offer to everybody. Whether you're a nature lover, looking for adventure or you just want to spend your entire vacation at the most beautiful beach - there are plenty of options to choose from. Blessed with great weather all year round and crystal clear water, rich with amazing variety of fish, this archipelago is one of my most favourite destinations so far. A real gem in the middle of the Indian Ocean.
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