Coming home to nest – Turtle Watch Lémuria

At Constance Lémuria there is more to celebrate this month than Christmas, for December is the peak of the turtle-nesting season.

Baby turtles at Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

Baby turtles at Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

The endangered hawksbill and green turtles return year after year to our quiet, idyllic beaches on the island of Praslin in the Seychelles between October and February. This season our Turtle Manager has already had four nests of turtles hatching out.

Each female turtle can lay up to a thousand eggs a season, returning to the beach to lay as many as five times and laying up to 200 eggs at a time.

Monitoring turtle activity

At Lémuria we monitor each nest and each turtle to ensure their safety. We will continue to watch the nests for the next two months until all the eggs have hatched.

Under the supervision of our Turtle Manager, guests at Lémuria can have the unique experience of watching the females come up on the beach to lay and later see the baby turtles move down to the sea.

Our Turtle Preservation Programme, run alongside the Marine Conservation Society Seychelles and with support from the local community and hotel guests, is crucial to the survival of these beautiful creatures. Ask at the resort to find out more about our nesting turtles.

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Diving deep into scuba blogging

Discovering diving is to discover a new world of glorious colours and beautiful sea creatures. Here’s a round-up of the best scuba-diving blogs out there right now.

Diving Indian Ocean, Madagascar

Diving off the coast of Madagascar

Aquaviews – this blog makes up part of the Aquaviews online magazine and takes a global view of scuba diving. Posts include news, reviews, features and photos from around the world. An informative all-rounder.

Divescover – Divescover is a destination guide site for divers and its blog features posts on everything from ocean conservation and dive site reviews to information about some of the amazing species divers are likely to see all featuring beautiful photos.

Dive in – An on-line scuba diving magazine with a blog covering diving tips and safety issues, review and fun features as well as species spotlights.

Dive – Including guest bloggers such as comedienne turned clinical psychologist Pamela Stephenson, this is a site which takes a lively, edgy and informed look at the world of diving. Follow Pamela Stephenson on Twitter @PamelaStephensn.

Tsarabanjina – a special garden in the Indian Ocean

Madagascar has always been a land of promise to travellers attracted by the island’s unique natural environment. The lush tropical forests of Tsarabanjina hold many magnificent prizes for nature lovers.

Traveller's Palm, Madagascar

Traveller’s Palm, photo taken by Fabrice Rose

Highlights amongst its exotic flora include:

The Traveller’s Palm – No-one is quite sure of the origin of this nickname for the ravenala madagascariensis. One theory says that it was considered a gift for thirsty travellers because of the rainwater held in its stems. Another theory says its name came from the fact that its fans tends to grow in an east-west direction making it a crude compass for lost travellers. In fact the plant is not even a true palm but a member of the bird-of-paradise family with similar white flowers.

Vanilla – Not indigenous to the island, vanilla has become one of the island’s most important exports, its lush, tropical climate making it ideal for growing the beautiful, fragrant plant. In order to harvest the prized pods growers can wait up to 5 years for the vine to mature and flower.

Pachypodium – this thick green spiny tree is related to group of succulent spine-bearing trees and shrubs native to Africa and belongs to the dogbane family.

Come and stay with us on Tsarabanjina and let our expert guides show you around this beautiful island and introduce you to these and other fascinating species on a series of guided walks.

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Something for everyone at Lémuria

We’d agree with Richard Green of The Sunday Times Travel Clinic who advised a reader looking for a resort to cater for her love of diving and her husband’s love of golf to visit Constance Lémuria.

Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

Constance Lemuria, Seychelles

Green wrote, ‘The mountainous Seychelles aren’t golf country, but there is an extraordinary course on Praslin island, at the Constance Lémuria Resort. It features remarkable perched greens, and guests can play free. The hotel’s dive centre runs trips to granite reefs and wreck sites.’

Subscribers to The Sunday Times online can read the full article on The Sunday Times website, Your travel section or visit our Constance Lémuria website.

The best apps of 2012

From providing entertainment to sourcing information that helps us manage our day, tablets and smartphones are a central part of modern life.

iPhone user,

iPhone user, photo taken by Yago Veith

Here we round up our favourite apps from 2012:

1. Barclays Pingit – iPhone/iPad/Android/Blackberry (Free)

All the signs seem to point to the fact that in the future we will move away from cash and cards to using mobile devices to transfer cash. This innovative app gets the ball rolling, allowing users to send money to friends simply and electronically.

2. Airbnb – iPhone/iPad/Android/Blackberry (Free)

Are you looking for an apartment to rent for a couple of nights in Paris or a loft in New York? This clever app puts you in touch with people with properties to rent all over the world. With reviews, maps and guides this travel app proved so popular it was voted iPhone App of the Year by Apple.

3. Radioplayer – iPhone/Android (Free)

Home or abroad now you never need miss the sounds of your favourite radio station with this free app. Radioplayer streams hundreds of UK radio stations including all of the BBC’s.

4. Barefoot World Atlas – iPhone/iPad (£2.99)

Forget the printed atlases of your childhood this is the very best in new interactive, digital information with an illustrated globe you can spin and tap zooming in and out. With a tap of your finger you can access facts and photos of any region you’re interested in. A treat for children and parents alike.

5. The Room– iPhone (Free) iPad (£1.49) Voted Apple’s Best Game

of the Year for the iPad this intricate puzzle with stunning graphics and challenging mysteries will keep you enthralled for hours.

Read more reviews about the best apps for 2012

Condé Nast Traveller recommends Le Prince Maurice spa

In the January edition of Condé Nast Traveller, retail editor Thea Darricotte features the spa at Le Prince Maurice in her ‘Most wanted’ column.

Suite on stilts at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Suite on stilts Le Prince Maurice

Of the recently refurbished spa, Darricotte gives it her ‘Thea loves’ seal of approval:

‘We recommend Sisleya Face & Body Exceptional Ritual which involves two and a half hours of pampering to remove signs of fatigue and leave you looking younger, healthier and ready for the sun’.

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