Ranked 8 among Places to Visit in Seychelles
A visit to Seychelles would not be complete without a trip to Morne Seychellois National Park, where you can truly experience the wild, untamed beauty of the tropics. The tropical island country is not all beaches - the best way to explore the unique diversity that this brilliant archipelago has to offer is to explore!
Morne Seychellois National Park is located in the island of Mahé, the largest island in Seychelles archipelago. This breathtaking park forms the area around Morne Seychellois, the highest peak in the country, at an awe-inspiring 900 metres above sea level. Covering an expansive area of 3045 hectares, the park comprises more than 20% of the entire island. Established in 1976, the Morne Seychellois was created with the intent of preserving flora and fauna of the land. Extending to about ten kilometres in length and four kilometres in breadth, it is accessible only through walking trails - these trails extend to more than fifteen kilometres! The ecosystems vary from mangroves, mountainsides and evergreen tropical forests, which means that the area is rich in biodiversity as well. The abundant vegetation, the stunning panoramic views from the mountain peak, and the dense forests make for a brilliant adventure. Walk the talk, as you explore this gorgeous and diverse park, trailing your way through the wild.
The indigenous flora and fauna of Seychelles are best experienced in More Seychellois. The park is home to different terrains like marshlands, streambeds, cliffs, mountains and plains, which house brilliant birds and animals. The hills come alive with trees like the thief palm and the jellyfish tree. You may also run into wily, carnivorous pitcher plants! The Vacoa Marron, Bois Calou, Bois de Montagne, Capuchin and Bois de Natte are palms endemic to this island. Ferns and tropical grasses are found abundantly.
The air is always abuzz with the calls of birds like the Seychelles kestrels, blue pigeons, swiftlets, white-tailed tropicbirds, Bulbuls, sunbirds and scops-owls. The island is home to seven endemic land birds, including the darting Seychelles scops-owl. Dragonflies, damselflies and toads are persistent. If you're lucky, you may spot the Sooglossus gardineri, which is the world's smallest frog! Get ready for interesting encounters with wolf snakes too.
The Morne Seychellois National Park spans an expansive area covering more than 20% of the island of Mahé. There are many places worth visiting inside the park. These stunning sights are all located along well-marked trails, so you are free to pursue them on foot and hike your way to these beautiful locales.
SeyTé Tea Factory
This fully functional tea factory is nestled in the park and is about three kilometres away from Port Glaud. The views from the area are breathtakingly beautiful. You can enjoy a free tour of the factory in the morning, and relish some soothing SeyTé tea as well. If you're fortunate, you may even spot some gorgeous tropicbirds here!
Mission Lodge is a piece of history nestled in the mountains. The farthest point you can reach in the park by road, the Mission Lodge was initially called Venn's Town and was a school run by missionaries. This school was meant exclusively for the freed children of the African slaves of yore. Today, the ruins serve as a reminder of bygone days and offer stunning views of the area. A shop nearby sells local snacks, so you have something to munch on while gazing at the vista. Even Queen Elizabeth II visited Mission Lodge! The avenue of Sandragon trees is a must-visit here.
Anse Major is a gorgeous beach on one end of Morne Seychellois National Park. Once considered indispensable for the production of copra, citrus fruit, cinnamon and vanilla, today it is a tourist destination for anyone looking for a relaxing tropical holiday.
Morne Blanc is an imposing mountain that towers at 667 metres above sea level. The hike is steep but navigable. The trial is bountiful, to say the least - you are sure to be rewarded with scintillating views at the top.
Mare aux Cochons
The valley of Mare aux Cochons was formerly used for cinnamon cultivation but is now a gorgeously marshy valley. You can find the ruins of many distilleries and old cinnamon factories on the way here. As you pass through acres of cinnamon trees, take a walk down memory lane and see if you can spot rivulets that were used to supply water to the distilleries. Spot dragonflies and damselflies fluttering over the marsh here! The trail to reach Mare au Cochons begins from Danzil and takes four hours to reach.
Trois Frères means Three Brothers in French. This refers to three stunning cliffs that tower over the city of Victoria, imposing to anyone who sees them. The trail to this ‘gorge-ous’ location starts from the Sans Souci road and takes about three hours to reach. The holy Trois Frères Cross marks the end of the trail. The perilous climb is worth it, for the panoramic views are truly exquisite.
Copolia is the easiest trail to follow, and it ends at an imposing granite plateau. The trail gives off very adventurous vibes but is quite easy to navigate. The evergreen forests are sure to welcome you with all their bounty, as you step into the trail.
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