5 nutrition tips for boosting your energy

When energy levels slump it’s tempting to reach for coffee or sugar to give yourself a quick pick-me-up. But adopting good nutritional habits will give your energy levels a natural boost, and increase your wellbeing in the longer term.

Boost your wellness at Constance

Boost your wellness at Constance

1. Make sure what you eat is packed with nutrients

We need nutrients in the form of vitamins and minerals to ensure optimal energy metabolism and to allow every cell in our bodies to release their full energy potential. If our food is low in nutrients we feel tired and lacking energy. The best way to ensure a nutrient rich diet is to eat a variety of healthy whole foods, beneficial omega fats, soluble fibres and healthy proteins every day. Make sure everything you eat is offering your body some kind of nutritional benefit and avoid ‘empty’ calories. Kick start your healthy eating lifestyle at Constance where our ‘Wellness Cuisine’ dishes featured on all menus include fresh fruits, vegetables, meat and seafood all prepared in ways that retain the nutrients of each ingredient.

2. Remember protein

Protein is a major building block that our bodies need to stay healthy and active so that, in itself, keeps our energy levels up. It is also important in preventing big fluctuations in our blood glucose levels which can lead to energy slumps. Fresh seafood and lean meat are both good sources of protein as are dairy products, eggs, soya, nuts, beans, pulses, quinoa, seitan and tempeh.

3. Omega-3s focus the mind

High levels of omega-3 fatty acids in our diet have been proved to affect mood, memory and thinking helping us to feel energised and alert throughout the day. Our bodies do not create omega-3 so it is essential to make it part of our diet. Try to eat at least one form of omega-3s a day in foods such as edamame (green soybeans), wild rice, walnuts, canola oil, winter squashes, flax, beans and seafood.

U Spa at Constance Le Prince Maurice

U Spa at Constance Le Prince Maurice

4. Stick to complex carbohydrates

The body breaks down carbohydrates into sugar to burn as fuel for our body and brain making them essential energy foods but there’s a big difference between ‘bad’ (simple) carbohydrates and ‘good’ (complex) carbohydrates. Complex carbohydrates found in whole grains, some fruits and vegetables nuts, seeds, legumes and low fat dairy products are broken down slowly by the body supplying a steady supply of sugar into the bloodstream which it can then burn gradually to give us stable energy levels. Simple carbohydrates such as refined sugar and flour, on the other hand, are broken down quickly giving us a rapid energy spike or ‘sugar rush’ followed by an energy crash. The side effect of this rapid release of sugar is that the body can’t use it all at once and so stores it as fat.

5. Look for foods high in antioxidants

Antioxidants are the body’s little helpers searching out and destroying potentially damaging oxidizing agents in our system which over time can cause damage, make us tired and eventually, potentially, ill. Antioxidants are nutrients found in vitamins, minerals and proteins in foods such as colourful juicy fruits like dark grapes and berries, leafy green vegetables like kale, broccoli and spinach, legumes, beans and artichoke.

U Spa by Constance

At Constance we have launched the new U Spa experience, incorporating an holistic approach to our guests’ needs to create a wellbeing program specifically tailored to meet your needs, preferences and goals. U Spa includes a range of treatments, fitness activities and nutrition. Read more about U Spa at Constance.

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5 hidden corners of the Seychelles

Discover secret places in the Seychelles from secluded beaches and waterfalls to restaurants serving authentic Creole food.

Hidden gems of the Seychelles: Anse Georgette

Hidden gems of the Seychelles: Anse Georgette

Here’s our pick of hidden gems in the archipelago:

1. Anse Georgette

The competition for ‘most beautiful beach in Seychelles’ is a tough one but this beautiful, secluded bay with white sand sloping gently into clear water on Praslin has to be a contender. Inaccessible by car the easiest way to access it is along a nature trail that runs through the grounds of Constance Lémuria.

2. Aride Island Nature Reserve

While many tour guides will advise you to visit Cousin or Curieuse Island because it is closer, nature lovers will find the number of bird species on Aride, north of Praslin, breathtaking. The island is home to one of the most important seabird populations in the Indian Ocean with more breeding species than any other island in Seychelles. A nature reserve since 1973, Aride is completely unspoilt with endemic flora and fauna not found anywhere else on earth. Tour operators run tours from Praslin or a helicopter service is available.

3. The ancient mangrove forest of Port Launay

The mangrove forest in the coastal wetlands of Port Launay beside Constance Ephélia is considered by RAMSAR as the best on Mahé. All seven species of mangrove can be found here offering a unique environment for the spawning, nursery and feeding of many endemic fish species as well as nesting for birds and the endangered Sheath-tailed Bat. Guests at Constance Ephélia are able to enjoy a guided kayak tour through this stunning natural environment.

The fantastic Port Launay

The fantastic Port Launay

4. Marie Antoinette Restaurant

Immerse yourself in the authentic scents and flavours of Creole food at this popular eating-place on Mahé just a 10 minute walk from the centre of Victoria. From parrotfish and tuna steak to pumpkin chutney and aubergine fritters all the food is local and organic. Set in an old colonial wooden house unchanged for nearly 100 years, the building itself has been declared a national monument. But dining here is less about sightseeing and more about eating good Seychellois food while soaking up the lively Creole atmosphere.

5. Waterfall at Port Glaud

Signposted from the beach at Port Launay, adjacent to Constance Ephélia on Mahé, this stunning waterfall is about a 1km walk from the main road. Set in the heart of dense jungle, the waterfall tumbles into a clear, freshwater pool perfect for swimming in. After a refreshing dip you can lie back on warm granite rocks and breathe in the scents, sounds and sights of this leafy, tropical paradise.

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Executive Chef brings fresh thinking to Constance Halaveli

Jordi Vila, the executive chef at Constance Halaveli, has taken the long journey round to the Maldives, working his way through some of the world’s most famous kitchens before arriving at this luxury outpost in the middle of the Indian Ocean.

Executive Chef, Jordi Vila brings his new menu to the Jahaz Restaurant

Executive Chef, Jordi Vila brings his new menu to the Jahaz Restaurant

Thanks to stints in some of Europe’s leading Michelin-starred restaurants including the legendary El Bulli in Spain, the Barcelona-born chef has developed a love of the best quality ingredients prepared in fresh and exciting ways.

New ingredients, new menus

For the new menus at Halaveli, Jordi is injecting fresh ideas and fresh ingredients including white asparagus chawanmushi, Iberico chorizo, bulgur, spring onions and parmesan ganache.

One of his favourite ingredients is the Maldivian Yellowfin Tuna, which is delivered daily by the local fisherman Captain Abdullah.

The local favourite is given a fine-dining twist by Jordi to create dishes such as tuna tartar with gazpacho jelly, marinated tuna steak with coconut salsa and traditional Maldivian Gullah.

Healthy eating at Constance Halaveli

With the new menus Jordi is trying to enhance the healthy options offered to guests.

As well as the new U Spa menu with its emphasis on fresh ingredients, low calories, low saturated fats and healthy cooking methods, Jordi is incorporating these ideas into his general menus with dishes like:

  • Wagyu beef carpaccio with sesame seeds and Yuzu dressing
  • Grilled reef fish Balinese style with bok choy, green pepper and oyster sauce
  • Maldivian fish curry with chapatti and steamed rice
  • Raspberry sorbet with tamarillo coulis and dark chocolate.

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4 romantic restaurants in the Indian Ocean

Imagine a candlelit table for two with views across calm, clear waters. The islands of the Indian Ocean offer a unique, romantic ambience unlike anywhere else on earth.

Here’s a selection of four fabulously romantic restaurants in the Indian Ocean.

Le Barachois – Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Romantic restaurants in the Indian Ocean: Le Barachois

Romantic restaurants in the Indian Ocean: Le Barachois

Walk through stunning tropical mangroves, along a torch-lit gangplank and you reach the elegant Le Barachois. Floating on timber platforms on the tranquil waters of a lagoon with a perfect view of the sunset there is no more romantic spot in Mauritius.

Jing – Constance Halaveli, Maldives

Constance Halaveli's Jing Restaurant

Constance Halaveli’s Jing Restaurant

Hovering above the waters of the Indian Ocean, Jing offers diners the opportunity to enjoy a sumptuous romantic Asian-inspired meal against a backdrop of uninterrupted panoramic ocean views.

Beach Bar & Grill – Constance Lémuria, Seychelles

Island romance: Constance Lémuria's Beach Bar & Grill

Island romance: Constance Lémuria’s Beach Bar & Grill

Be sure to ask for the table nestled into the rocks and you will enjoy a romantic, secluded Creole meal for two on the granite cliffs overlooking the ocean and the beautiful Petite Anse Kerlan.

Alizee – Constance Moofushi, Maldives

Beach dining at the Alizee

Beach dining at the Alizee

Share a candlelit meal for two under a canopy of a thousand stars with your feet in the sand and the sound of waves gently lapping at Moofushi’s romantic, lantern-lit beach restaurant, Alizee.

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PADI advice on avoiding top 5 scuba diving mistakes

Diving in the Indian Ocean: PADI offers it's top tips

Diving in the Indian Ocean: PADI offers it’s top tips

For all rookie divers, the PADI blog has an interesting article with tips on how to avoid common scuba diving mistakes.

The article warns novices to take their time assembling their equipment, doing their buddy checks and on their descent as rushing can lead to mishaps.

The other common mistake made by rookies, according to the blog, is to try to do too many things at once. It advises waiting until you are more experienced before trying your hand at underwater photography or video.

And remember, practice makes perfect, so don’t leave it too long between getting your PADI certificate and actually putting your new skills into practice.

Read the article in full: PADI’s Common Mistakes New Scuba Divers Make.

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Madagascar: a travel guide

A vast, beautiful island off the coast of southern Africa, Madagascar offers an abundance of sights to discover from stunning landscapes to beautiful beaches, secluded wildernesses to the island’s unique biodiversity.

The ultimate Madagascan travel guide: Isalo National Park

The ultimate Madagascan travel guide: Isalo National Park

The Malagasy people

Settled around 2,000 years ago by Indonesians, then later by Africans and other ethnic groups including Arabs, Indians and Europeans, Madagascar is a country where religious beliefs, traditions and even ethnicity alter from region to region.

Beliefs and customs

Most Malagasy people hold traditional beliefs about the importance and worship of their ancestors, even when these have become bound up with the traditions of more mainstream religions.

But whatever their religious beliefs, most Madagascans live their life according to a series of ‘fadys’, rules governing what is allowed and acceptable. Fadys vary from region to region, and from village to village.

The Malagasy language

Although the culture and people of Madagascar can vary greatly from region to region they are connected by the Malagasy language. French may be the other official language but if you’re going off the beaten track it might be worth learning a phrase or two in Malagasy.

See our guide to the rich culture of Madagascar for some key phrases.

Must-see sights

Discover the tsingys found at Ankarana National Park

Discover the tsingys found at Ankarana National Park

• Ankarana National Park

A spectacular landscape of Jurassic limestone eroded into jagged needles known locally as ‘tsingy’ characterise this northern national park which also features dense tropical jungle and deep caves.

• Montagne d’Ambre National Park

Volcanic hills shrouded in dense rainforest featuring beautiful waterfalls, the Montagne d’Ambre National Park is home to a number of species of lemur.

• Bermaraha

A UNESCO World Heritage Site is a moonscape land of limestone needles, canyons and mountains. Its protected forests and mangrove swamps are home to a variety of rare wildlife.

• Isalo National Park

Deep sandstone canyons mark the dramatic semi-arid landscape interrupted only by natural pools, caves and waterfalls in this beautiful park in central Madagascar.

• Andringitra Mountains

High altitude biodiversity thrives in the relatively accessible stunning mountain prairies of this national park in the southeast.

The avenue of Baobabs

The avenue of Baobabs

• The Spiny Desert

Home of the ring-tailed lemur the thorny trees here make it a difficult environment for wildlife which has adapted to survive.

• Avenue of the Baobabs

All that is left of a once mighty forest the stunning avenue of Baobabs has trees reaching up to 40 meters tall.

• Kirindy Reserve

This dry tropical deciduous forest in the south is protected and features a stunning array of local wildlife.

Islands to visit

• Constance Tsarabanjina

Located off the northwest of Madagascar, to the north of Nosy Be, this tiny private island resort offers the ultimate in barefoot luxury. Just 25 secluded villas run along two perfect white-sand beaches with uninterrupted ocean views. In the evening enjoy a cocktail in the beach bar before dining on seafood caught by local fishermen that same day. • Ile Sainte Marie

Every year between June and September more than 7,000 humpback whales migrate through the waters of Madagascar and Ile Sainte Marie is a great place from which to watch their acrobatics.

Constance Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

Constance Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

• Nosy Be

A popular spot for travellers to take a break and enjoy the beach, Nosy Be is a laidback beach haven with some great diving opportunities.

Towns and villages

Madagascar has a rich history and bustling culture in its capital city, towns and villages.

• Antananarivo

The buzzing capital is a great place to get a feel for Malagasy life with bustling markets, churches, restaurants, museums and even a botanical garden to explore.

• Antsiranana

The gateway to the Montagne d’Ambre and Ankarana National Parks, this brightly coloured port with its beautiful, crumbling colonial architecture is well worth a visit.

• Ifaty

This is the collective term for two beautiful fishing villages which have become popular with travellers thanks to their long beaches, good surfing and diving.

• Anakao

Another spot popular with travellers are the bustling fishing villages of Anakao A and Anakao B. With their perfect white sand beaches, turquoise water and assortment of accommodation this is a lovely spot to stop and catch your breath.

Things to do

Whale watching

Whale watching

There is much more to Madagascar than Lemurs and Baobabs trees so take the time while you’re there to soak up a bit of local culture and colour.

• The Rova

The Rova is the royal palace and burial ground of the Merina royal dynasty set high on a hill outside Antananarivo with views over Lac Anosy.

• Musée Andafivaratra

Also in the old royal quarter, just a short walk from the Rova, is the Musée Andafivaratra a baroque palace full of artifacts from the reign of the Merina Kings and queens.

• Whale watching

If you visit Madagascar between June and November then make sure you take a trip to watch the migration of thousands of humpback whales through the country’s waters. From June to September the best sightings can be made from Ile Ste Marie but from August to November head to Nosy Be or Tsarabanjina to catch this amazing sight. See our guide when to go whale watching in Madagascar

• La Varangue

Experience world-class Madagascan cuisine at the beautiful La Varangue. All the food is organic and locally sourced and can be enjoyed (weather permitting) on the beautiful terrace overlooking the capital.

• Sports fishing

The waters off Madagascar are teaming with big game fish including Marlin, Sailfish, Yellowfin and Dogtooth Tuna. See our guide to big game fishing in Madagascar.

Discover the vibrant colours when scuba diving in the Indian Ocean

Discover the vibrant colours when scuba diving in the Indian Ocean

• Scuba diving

Thanks to the late development of tourism in the country the waters around Madagascar have remained relatively undiscovered by scuba divers. Be the first to explore its stunning coral reefs, huge sponge gardens and dramatic rock formations. See our guide to diving in Madagascar.

Time of year to visit

Madagascar has two distinct seasons but within each there is much local variation of temperature and rainfall.

The wet season runs from November to April while the cooler, drier season runs from May to October. For divers it is the months in which the seasons shift which offer the best underwater visibility.

Getting around

Getting around Madagascar requires part organisation and part Zen-like patience as local public taxis ‘taxi-brousse’ or local minibuses will rarely go at the time promised, preferring instead to wait until they are full.

The larger bus company based in the capital, offers a more comfortable option, ferrying tourists between major points of interest in the south and east.

It is possible to rent a car but as the roads can be difficult most rental companies will insist on you hiring a driver too. Motorcycles and mopeds can also be hired in some places.

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