Seychelles Hiking

Seychelles hiking, or Seychelles trekking as some might call it, is one of the most rewarding things to do in Seychelles. The Seychelles archipelago's main granitic islands are certainly ideal for those looking to get in touch with the country's unique flora and fauna, but that doesn't mean that trekking about one of the coralline islands should be left out of the picture. Many top tourists islands in the Seychelles offer trails of some kind, some found within stunning nature reserves. Generally, Seychelles trails either follow along stunning beaches or eventually filter out to them, and the Seychelles beaches certainly don't disappoint. Mahe, Praslin, and La Digue are the main tourist islands of the Seychelles, and these granitic islands offer quite a lot in the way of topography, with sea-level shores giving way to rising inland mountains. Many Seychelles trails can be explored on your own, though some might prefer to arrange guided hiking tours to gain further insight into the various plants and animals that they will come across.

Mahe, Praslin, and La Digue are all a dream for those looking to include a Seychelles trek in their vacation. Many well-marked trails can be found along the coasts and leading into the interiors. On the main Seychelles island of Mahe, you'll find one of the most popular of all Seychelles trails. Coursing its way through Mahe's southern mountains, the route between the beaches of Anse Royale and Anse a la Mouche takes about 3 hours to trek, and often times, groups will take side tours of valleys full of palm trees and things the like. Closer to the capital city of Victoria, the Morne Seychellois Park has the country's tallest peak, which is the eponymous Morne Seychellois, which rises 2,969 feet above sea level. The park offers some of the best Seychelles trails, all of which can be tackled on half or full-day excursions. Besides the intriguing flora and fauna found here, hikers can also take detours to an old cinnamon distillery or to a one-time school that was intended for the children of freed slaves. Though the trails are well marked at Morne Seychellois National Park, you might also pick up a map at the information center to help plan your trek.

One of the most notable Seychelles hiking destinations is the Vallee de Mai Nature Reserve, which is found on the popular tourist island of Praslin. The Valle de Mai is a World Heritage Site, primarily for the fact that it is one of the few places on earth where the curious Coco de Mer palm tree can be found growing in the wild. A virgin slice of forest, the Valle de Mai remains very much a pristine environment, and besides checking out the Coco de Mer palms, trekkers will also want to keep their eyes peeled for rare black parrots. Birdwatching in the Seychelles is known for its excellence, and besides black parrots, visitors to the Valle de Mai can also expect to spot such species as blue pigeons and swiflets. The trails at the Valle de Mai are utterly ideal for Seychelles trekking excursions, and the park's information center is an excellent place to prepare yourself for either guided or solo hikes.

On the island of La Digue, more top Seychelles trails can be found at the Veuve Reserve, which is where birdwatchers will again get the chance to see one of the planet's rarest birds. The black paradise flycatcher is on its way to increasing its numbers, and visitors to the Veuve Reserve can also expect to see nesting tortoises. Generally, you'll have to make arrangements in advance to visit the Veuve Reserve, and visitors can even request to hit some of the trails outside of the reserve, which are excellent Seychelles trekking routes in their own rites. For those interested in trekking one of the more exclusive Seychelles islands, then a trip to Aldabra Island (Aldabra Atoll) might be in order. Only about a dozen or so people at a time are allowed to visit Aldabra, which is the only other World Heritage Site in the Seychelles besides the aforementioned Valle de Mai. Among the highlights of a hike here is the chance to see the resident population of giant tortoises, which number more than 100,000.

A Seychelles trek is certainly a wonderful thing regardless of which trails you decide to take, and since the Seychelles trails offer varying degrees of difficulty, hikers of all kinds can find the right fit for them. Rock climbing is becoming more and more popular in the Seychelles, particularly on the granitic islands, so pairing rock climbing with a Seychelles hike is always an option. Serious hiking enthusiasts might even want to consider booking an African island hiking/trekking vacation package that includes not only the Seychelles, but also other Indian Ocean islands, such as Madagascar and Mauritius. Whatever your Seychelles trekking plans are, there are a few things to consider first. Suitable footwear, preferably comfortable and durable hiking shoes or boots, are always important for hikers, so you'll want to pack those. Also, Seychelles hikers will want to bring bags with them for litter. The ecosystems here are pristine and fragile, so great care should be taken to leave things as you find them. Wandering from the main trails is not encouraged or recommended, lest you be with a guide who is cleared for such things. Last but not least, make sure you bring an adequate supply of water, not to mention a few snacks, and you're on your way!

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