Note: Current p/p indicative rate. Final price may change due to currency fluctuations.
Mahe to Mahe
Isolated in the Indian Ocean and the only mid-ocean islands of granite formation to be found on earth, the Seychelles archipelago is often mentioned in the same breath as the lost 'Garden of Eden.' The highest peaks of a submerged mountain range that broke apart from the supercontinent of Gondwana millions of years ago, the Seychelles' inner islands are the most ancient islands on earth - no other mid-ocean isles of granite formation can be found anywhere else. This curious geological feature was one of several curiosities about the islands that led the famed British General, Charles Gordon, to declare Seychelles the site of the biblical Garden of Eden. Situated some 1,500 kilometers east of mainland Africa, and northeast of the island of Madagascar, this tiny island group boasts a population of just 90,000 inhabitants, with a warm, tropical climate all year-round and some of the most stunningly beautiful beaches in the world. Mahé, the largest island, is home to the majority of the population and represents the archipelago's commercial and transportation hub, with the country's only international airport linking the islands to the rest of the globe. The island is characterised by its towering granite peaks, lush mist forests and dozens of striking coves and beaches. The second largest island, Praslin, is home to the legendary Vallée de Mai, the UNESCO World Heritage Site where the Coco de Mer grows in abundance. This double coconut, which curiously resembles the shape of a woman's pelvis, was another facet of General Gordon's theory about Seychelles as the Garden of Eden - he believed it to be the real forbidden fruit. La Digue, the third-most populous island, moves at an even slower pace: bicycles remain the most common mode of transportation, for both its residents and visiting tourists. The huge granite boulders that adorn the coastline at Anse Source D'Argent have led some to believe that it could very well be the most photographed beach in the world. While Mahé, Praslin and La Digue may be the principal islands, dozens of smaller 'satellite' isles nearby offer further opportunity to explore and admire. Every island has a character and charm all of its own, with colorful individual histories and unique natural features, some with steep granite cliffs and others comprising pristine coral atolls. Together, they make up a surprisingly diverse destination of great natural beauty, rare flora and fauna that have been cocooned in isolation for millions of years, and a friendly multi-cultural people eager to welcome you to their shores. The cruise includes:- • Accommodation on board • Friendly service from a 8/9x crew complement including captain, engineer, deckhands, dive instructor and stewardesses • Full board meals (breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea and dinner) prepared by a dedicated chef. (Please note that table water and tea/coffee are included with all meals.) Bottled water, soft drinks, beer, wine and spirits are all available on board. Price list available on request. We serve a combination of International and authentic Creole cuisine. Please contact us for special dietary needs. • Snorkeling, kayaking and bottom-line fishing equipment
Embarkation at the Inter-Island Quay at 1030hrs, followed by the Captain's welcome briefing. Depart Port Victoria at 1200hrs, sailing from Mahé to a late afternoon anchorage at Round Island, just off the isle of Praslin. In the evening, introduce yourself to Creole cuisine with a welcome barbecue dinner onboard.
Sail to Praslin, Seychelles' second-largest inhabited island, for disembarkation to the famous World Heritage Site, the Vallee de Mai Nature Reserve. This ancient forest is home to the curiously shaped double coconut, the coco de mer, as well as the Black Parrot, unique to Praslin. Explore the valley's eerie pathways beneath its canopy of massive palms, before returning onboard for afternoon opportunities to dive, snorkel or enjoy other water sports
A morning sail brings the vessel to La Digue, a sleepy island community where ox-carts and bicycles still remain the most common mode of transportation throughout the island. La Digue is home to the endemic Seychelles Paradise Flycatcher, and is perhaps most famous for its massive granite boulder formations at Anse Source d'Argent, which is thought to be the most photographed beach on earth. Explore the entire island by bicycle, perhaps stopping by Union Estate, a sprawling network of traditional island activities, including a copra mill, vanilla plantation, and shipyard
In the morning the vessel sails toward Grande Soeur and Petite Soeur (the Sisters) for excellent snorkelling and diving, and for a relaxing visit of these unique and completely uninhabited tropical islands. In the afternoon, visit Coco Island, one of Seychelles’ tiny granite jewels, a fantastic spot for snorkelling within a kaleidoscope of tropical fish.
Sail to Booby Island for a morning of diving and water sports. After lunch, sail to Aride Island, a globally important nature reserve with more native bird species than any other island, including five endemics and the world's largest population of 3 species (Lesser Noddy, Audubon's Shearwater and Seychelles Warbler). The nature trail leads to a spectacular cliff-top view with the largest frigatebird roost outside of Aldabra. Aride is the only natural location in the world for Wright's Gardenia and 400 species of fish have been recorded around the island.
In the morning disembark at Curieuse for a visit of this virtually uninhabited island. Experience the island's vast mangrove forests and its giant tortoise farm, along with the historic ruins of this former leper colony. After a barbecue lunch on the island, enjoy an array of water sports or simply relax and enjoy the island's beautiful beach and turquoise waters.
After breakfast, enjoy a leisurely sail back towards Mahé, with a last stop at Ile Seche for more snorkelling or diving, followed by a farewell barbecue. The vessel then sails into Port Victoria for an overnight stay
Disembarkation at the Inter-Island Quay at 08.30hrs
Itineraries are subject to change.
Vessel Type: Sail Ship Schooner Length: 35m Passenger Capacity: 20 Built: 1915 / Recent Refurbishment: 1997 / 1999 ACCOMMODATION Air-conditioned Dining Salon TV, DVD, stereo, ice-machine, washing machine, dryer Upper Sun Deck and Bow Net for sun bathing Covered Back Deck Lounge Fully air-conditioned cabins with wash basin: 6 Double-bed cabins +1 bunk (Category A) 2 Triple cabins with 3 bunk beds (Category B) 4 Showers - 3 Toilets - 1 Deck Shower CREW 1 Captain 1 Chef 1 Mechanic 2 Stewardesses 1 Dive instructor 2 Deckhands
• Diving and snorkelling in the Seychelles reveal the best of the magical underwater world that the Indian Ocean has to offer. Unique granite boulder formations, coral reefs and wrecks are home to colourful tropical fish, turtles, sharks, rays and many other species. Some of the best dive sites in Seychelles’ inner islands are easily accessible on our cruises. Each vessel is certified as a PADI dive resort, and has a dedicated PADI dive instructor onboard to accommodate the needs of both seasoned and novice divers alike. • All of our cruises include complimentary equipment for kayaking and snorkelling (masks and fins). We also offer the opportunity to enjoy traditional bottom-line fishing in certain areas, with our chef ready to prepare fresh Seychelles-style sashimi or grilled fish in the event of a successful catch. • For Sailing enthusiasts Sea Star and Sea Bird feature a modern furling system. • Each day onboard presents a new opportunity to explore isolated bays and coves, colourful marine parks, and protected nature reserves or uninhabited islands. Spotting the incredibly rare Magpie Robin and other endemic birds, visiting the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Vallee de Mai, or getting up close and personal with a giant tortoise, are just a few of the many special experiences that await on the islands we visit.