Holiday inspiration: wildlife of the Seychelles

The Seychelles is an archipelago of 155 islands, situated approximately 1000 miles east of Kenya.

Constance Lemuria Resort

Constance Lemuria Resort

Favoured as a top honeymoon destination, the island nation is also one of the world’s great success stories when it comes to protecting its flora and fauna.

Conservation work in the Seychelles was started in the 1960s by a group of local conservationists. Since then, the government has successfully introduced strict laws protecting the natural heritage of theSeychelles.

UNESCO World Heritage Sites

The Seychelles is home to two UNESCO World Heritage Sites.

1. The atoll of Aldabra
The world’s largest raised coral atoll, Aldabra is isolated and uninhabited. It’s home to the Aldabra giant tortoises. The average weight of one of these male tortoises is a whopping 550lbs (250 kgs).

2. Vallée de Mai on Praslin Island
Said to be the original ‘Garden of Eden’, Vallée de Mai is home to the world’s largest nut and prized fertility symbol, the Coco de Mer.

At Vallée de Mai, you’ll also find giant endemic palm trees and the rare Seychelles Black Parrot.

Coral reefs

Fish hiding in coral

Fish hiding in coral

The Seychelles has six national marine parks and the reefs around the islands are brimming with marine life.

Over 1000 species of fish have been recorded here, including yellow snappers, jack fish, fusilier, clown fish, humphead parrot fish, rays, lion fish, scorpion fish and barracuda. You’ll also find dolphins, whale sharks and sea turtles.

Colourful soft and hard corals fill the reefs, making this one of the top destinations in the world for diving and snorkelling.

Bird life

Seychelles birdlife on Cousin Island

Seychelles birdlife on Cousin Island

The Seychelles has 12 endemic bird species. The national bird is the Seychelles Black Parrot. The Seychelles Magpie Robin and Seychelles Warbler were successfully brought back from near extinction. Other birds include the Aldabra Drongo, Seychelles Paradise Flycatcher and the Seychelles Sunbird.

The bird and marine sanctuary at Cousin Island Special Reserve has won several awards for conservation and ecotourism.

Turtle preservation in the Seychelles

The beaches at Constance Lémuria, on Praslin Island, Seychelles, are important nesting sites for the endangered hawksbill and green turtles.

Turtle at Lemuria, Praslin Island

Turtle at Lemuria, Praslin Island

The turtles return to the same beaches year after year to lay their eggs. Find out more about the work we’re doing preserving turtle habitats at Constance Lemuria.

Conservation work is also happening across theSeychelles to protect the sea turtles from extinction.

Find out more

Read more on our blog about the flora and fauna of the Seychelles:

Constance hotels in the Seychelles

5 places to pause with a book at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Aerial view of beach and infinity pool at Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Beach and infinity pool at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Guests at Constance Le Prince Maurice enjoy 60 hectares of beautiful tropical gardens bordering the still waters of the lagoon.

The resort is brimming with quiet spaces decked out with enormous sofas, chaise longues and sun loungers.

Grab a book and head to these 5 spots at Constance Le Prince Maurice, where you can indulge your literary senses, and enjoy the peace and stillness.

 

The beach

Here you’ll find fine white sand, calm turquoise waters, palm trees, super-comfortable sun loungers and first class service from the ‘sand butlers’. The beach is just a stone’s throw from the junior suites and villas. The beach gets the sun all day, and you can even watch the sun set out to the West from the comfort of your sun lounger.

 Looking East over the bay

Tucked away behind the junior suites, you’ll find this tranquil spot overlooking the easterly side of the resort. Hidden away from the restaurants and bars, the only sound here is of the sea and a gentle breeze.

The Pool Bar

The infinity pool is breathtakingly beautiful, warm and comes complete with a bar that you can swim up to. Take a seat at the water’s edge, ring the bell for service and soak up the views across the pool. The pool bar is warmed by the afternoon sun, making it perfect for languid moments when all you want to do is pause and enjoy.

Laguna Bar

Laguna Bar

The Library

If you’re hankering after a more traditional space where you can put your feet up and get stuck into your literary tome, head to the library. It’s air-conditioned and furnished with comfy arm chairs and shelves of books, newspapers and DVDs to borrow.

Laguna Bar

Flanking the infinity pool is the Laguna Bar. Fans whirr above huge chairs and sofas furnished in purples and reds, and the polished wooden floor feels super-luxurious. There are no walls or windows along the side of the bar so you can enjoy uninterrupted views across the pool and out to sea. If there’s a downpour of summer rain, head here – enjoy the chill out music and sound of water from the pool, order drinks and snacks from the bar, and get reading.

Can you recommend a good read? We’d love to know what books you’d suggest taking to read in these places.

You can get in contact with us via Twitter, Facebook or the comments section below.

Videos of paradise!

Our Facebook page now has a number of video clips and tours of our resorts in the Maldives, Seychelles, Mauritius and Madagascar.

Below is a taster of the wonderful Constance Ephelia Resort in Seychelles. You can find more videos, photos and information on our Facebook page.

Movie night on the beach at Constance Moofushi, Maldives

At our Constance Moofushi resort in the Maldives, couples can now enjoy an evening under the stars watching a film of their choice.

Couple enjoying movie night on the beach at Constance Moofushi

Movie night on the beach at Constance Moofushi, Maldives

A private area is set up on the beach where you can relax on comfortable loungers in front of the screen, and enjoy snacks, popcorn and drinks.

This chilled out evening is a great way to relax after a day’s diving or snorkelling on the reef.

Weekly roundup: competitions, holiday inspiration and culinary delights

This new weekly feature offers a roundup of the content on our blog from the past week, in case you missed anything. Split into categories, it’s another way for you to easily find the posts of value to you.

13 – 19 June

Exclusive offers and competitions

Constance Le Prince Maurice, Mauritius

Could you win a trip with flights to Constance Le Prince Maurice in Mauritius?

Only 2 days to go to win the holiday of a lifetime!
The deadline for entry to our Win a 5 Star Holiday to Mauritius competition is looming – if you haven’t entered yet, do so before midnight GMT on Wednesday 22 June!

New competition: the item I can’t go on holiday without is…
This week we launched a new week long competition on our blog, twitter and Facebook page. Winners can choose from a magnum of champagne, a Serge Lutens fragrance or a bottle of wine.

Competition winners announced: Most Romantic Holiday Pictures
We announced the winner’s of last week’s Twitter competition to win a bottle of Deutz Champagne – all they had to do was enter their most romantic holiday snaps to us.

Culinary

Constance Belle Mare Plage, Blue Penny table decorations

Constance Belle Mare Plage, Blue Penny

Recipe: chicken and prawn fricassee, stewed Chinese bredes with boucane
Want to create some of our chef’s amazing dishes yourself at home? Every Friday, we post some of the most amazing, delicious and popular recipes online. Why not try this chicken and prawn fricassee out at your next dinner party?

Constance Star Martini
Talking of dinner parties, why not kick things off with this unique cocktail created by our very own head bartender, Guillaume Grafeuille?

Inspiration

Frog, Madagascar

Frog, Madagascar

Holiday inspiration: Madagascar – walks on the wild side
Planning the trip of a lifetime and need some inspiration? Our regular ‘holiday inspiration’ features will give you the information you need. Last week, we gave you the low down on the unique island of Madagascar, where the Constance Tsarabanjina Lodge is located.

Spa & Sports

Fish underwater in the Maldives

Snorkeling in the Maldives

Snorkeling paradise: The Maldives
Love snorkeling? Then you’ll love the Maldives. Check out our guide to what makes snorkeling in the Maldives a unique experience.

US Open Golf 2011 gets underway, 16–19 June
The US Open got underway last week and as Constance Hotels Experience has some championship golf courses of our very own, we thought we’d tell you the places you can find out all you need to know about the Open.

News and Events

Winners of 2011 Le Prince Maurice prize for literature

Winners of 2011 Le Prince Maurice prize for literature

Le Prince Maurice Prize for romantic literature
The winner of the 2011 Le Prince Maurice Prize was announced last week at a wonderful awards ceremony in Mauritius. Find out who won and see photos from the evening here.

BBC Good Food Show Summer 2011
A round up the BBC’s Good Food Show from Summer 2011 in the UK.

Holiday inspiration: Madagascar – walks on the wild side

Bungalow at Lodge Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

Bungalow at Lodge Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

Madagascar, the world’s fourth largest island, is brimming with lush forests, endemic wildlife, coral reefs and mile upon mile of beautiful beaches.

Visitors to the island are spoilt for choice when it comes to discovering the natural landscape. There are a number of different walks and tours you can do around the island, depending on how adventurous you want to be and your fitness levels.

Easy walking – Andasibe-Mantadia National Park

Lemur, Madagascar

Lemur, Madagascar

If you prefer to see the island’s best known animals – the tree-dwelling lemurs – without too much difficulty, Andasibe-Mantadia National Park is an easy drive east from the capital Antananarivo. Andasibe (also known as Perinet) and Mantadia are, in fact, two parks adjacent to each other.

At Andasibe there are well marked, flat trails through the lush humid forest covered with moss, ferns and over 100 species of orchid that bloom from September – January.

Due to the number of visitors to the park, the wildlife is fairly used to humans. You’re likely to see the largest lemur, the indri, as well as bamboo and brown lemurs. Their loud calls echo through the forests in the early morning and again in the late afternoon.

There are over 100 different species of birds including the Madagascar baza, wagtail, yellowbrow and vanga. You’ll also find chameleons, geckos and a host of insects in the thick undergrowth.

Mantadia is larger and more remote than its neighbour, situated 15km north of Andasibe. Less visited by tourists, the trails are more varied, steeper and can be slippery after rain. There are several short circuits to choose from.

The park is home to many lemurs including the rare black and white ruffed lemurs. Rare birds including mesites, ground rollers, greenbuls and asitys have all been spotted here.

For the more adventurous – Ankarana National Park

Chameleon, Madagascar

Chameleon, Madagascar

If you like the idea of wildlife but also want to get off the beaten track and enjoy a challenging hike, then Ankarana National Park in the north of the island is the place to head. It’s recommended that you hire a guide to take you into the park.

Ankarana’s defining feature is the ‘tsingy’ – spectacular eroded limestone spires, set against tropical rainforest, deciduous forest, lakes, caves and canyons.

The reserve has a high number of primates, as well as large populations of crowned lemurs, black lemurs and dwarf lemurs. There are some 100 species of birds, as well as reptiles and frogs. The labyrinth of caves is home to 14 different species of bat and the world’s only cave-living crocodiles. Some of Madagascar’s endemic Baobab trees can also be found here.

There are a number of half day hikes you can take into the reserve.  If you’re looking for a longer trek, consult with your guide about options that can take in all of the locations listed below. The three entry points to the park are:

  • Mahamasina – the most accessible
  • to the West near Amboandriky, which requires a 4×4
  • North at Matsaborimanga, only accessible during the dry season.

For nature lovers looking for an all-out challenge – Marojejy National Park

Frog, Madagascar

Frog, Madagascar

If you want wild, breathtaking and unspoilt natural landscapes then Marojejy National Park to the North East of the island is undoubtedly one of the most impressive places you could visit in the world.

Some 90% of the park is covered with original primary forest. For years the park was only open to scientists, and so has remained relatively untouched. Marojejy was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 2007.

Marojejy National Park is just one of two sites where the highly endangered silky sifaka lemur can be found, along with the Indri, bamboo and Weasel sportive lemurs among others. There are over 100 bird species, including the helmet vanga and short legged ground roller, some 60 frogs, and geckos and chameleons. There are at least 275 species of ferns and over 50 varieties of palms.

Typically, visitors to the park explore during a strenuous three day hike, entering the park at the main entrance of Andapa.

Constance Lodge Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

Our luxury resort, Constance Lodge Tsarabanjina, is situated on the beautiful island of Madagascar. For more details and booking, visit the website.