Travel inspiration 2014: Madagascar

If you dream of a Robinson Crusoe-style island, deserted beaches, walks through landscapes unchanged for thousands of years and close encounters with rare wildlife then Madagascar should be top of your wish list this year.

Travel inspiration: Madagascar

Travel inspiration: Madagascar

Off the well-worn tourist trail, Madagascar remains a relatively untouched paradise with rich cultural traditions and landscapes teeming with unique biodiversity.

Madagascan landscapes

Spend time on the mainland and go trekking in the breathtaking national parks (including the dramatic UNESCO World Heritage Site, Bermaraha with its startling landscape of limestone needles) and visiting the country’s many vibrant bustling markets before heading to the beach for a little R&R.

Culinary traditions of Madagascar

In Madagascar even relaxation can feel like a cultural adventure with meals of fresh seafood still caught in the traditional way and prepared with the warm spices of the island in the same way it has been for hundreds of years.

At Constance Tsarabanjina guests will see local fishermen turning up on the beach to sell their catch to the hotel’s restaurant. Our chefs create delicious Madagascan dishes with an elegant twist.

Guests who want to immerse themselves in the island’s fishing heritage further can even take a trip on a pirogue (a traditional wooden fishing boat) and try Madagascan net fishing for themselves.

Bring home your catch and the chefs at the resort will prepare and cook it for you to enjoy in the evening.

Unique biodiversity of Madagascar

Of course, one of the main reasons people visit Madagascar is to encounter the unique biodiversity, more than 80 per cent of the flora and fauna here is not found anywhere else on Earth.

Landscapes range from tropical rainforest to spiny deserts, reefs, sea grass beds and mangrove forests. Species include the unique lemurs, endangered serpent eagle as well as rare chameleons and geckos.

Constance Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

Constance Tsarabanjina, Madagascar

4 Deserts race, Madagascar

This year Madagascar has been selected to host the Roving Race section of the 4 Deserts race, the world’s leading endurance footrace. In August around 250 runners from more than 40 countries will take on the island’s varied terrain racing over 250km in seven days.

Scuba diving in Madagascar

Once you’ve seen the sights on land dive in to the warm waters of the Indian Ocean and discover a submarine world still largely unexplored. The relatively recent growth of tourism in the region means that much of the ocean around the island has not been dived extensively before.

Off the coast of Tsarabanjina you can be among the first to discover vibrant coral reefs, stunning sponge gardens and a plethora of colourful marine life. The many dive sites include exciting tunnels, caves, overhangs, cliff-faces and beautiful reefs, providing something for divers of all levels.

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Global Adventuress praises Constance Hotels & Resorts in Seychelles

Global Adventuress visits Constance Lémuria, Seychelles

Global Adventuress visits Constance Lémuria, Seychelles

Travel website Global Adventuress has described Constance as ‘a hotel group that offers incredible luxury resorts, spas and golf courses throughout the Indian Ocean’.

Travel writer and consultant Patricia Stone visited Constance Ephélia and Constance Lémuria in the Seychelles, a trip which, she said, created many ‘wonderful memories’.

Writing for Global Adventuress, Stone says of her time at Constance Ephélia, ‘We found lots to do and stayed active bicycling around the resort property, exploring the beaches, working out at the fully equipped gym and even challenged ourselves to rock climb and zip line with onsite SMAC Adventures’.

Stone describes Constance Lémuria as a ‘family friendly resort set on the northwest side of Praslin with three of the most beautiful sandy beaches in the world’.

Global Adventuress is a website dedicated to female travellers encouraging its readers to share their experiences, photos and advice.

Read more about Stones time in the Seychelles at Global Adventuress.

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Constance culinary spirit

The annual Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau, held at Constance Belle Mare Plage, brings together leading Michelin-starred chefs and Constance chefs in a week-long event of sharing ideas, skills and culinary traditions.

The Constance culinary spirit

The Constance culinary spirit

At the heart of the festival lies the Constance culinary spirit. Our hotels and resorts have built their reputation on the exceptional culinary experience that we offer guests.

Each of our talented chefs has their own style and character while following the philosophy that underpins this culinary spirit:

  • using fresh, top-quality produce to create a sophisticated, international cuisine
  • working together as a team to create culinary delights for the pleasure of our guests.

Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau

Since 2006 we have worked closely with Relais Bernard Loiseau to create a festival that demonstrates our passion for culinary adventure, delicious fresh ingredients and sophisticated international cuisine.

We showcase the best of the produce and culinary wonders of Mauritius and the Indian Ocean. One of the basic rules of the competition is to use local produce and spices as much as possible.

To date, we’ve created a high profile event that exudes warmth and humanity.

The Michelin-starred chefs at this year’s festival, taking place from 31 March to 7 April, will include:

Mirto Marchesi – Relais & Châteaux le Chalet d’Adrien, La Table d’Adrien, Verbier, Switzerland
Jacob Holmström, Gastrologik Restaurant, Stockholm, Sweden
Nicolas Massé, Les Sources de Caudalie, La Grand Vigne, Bordeaux-Martillac, France
Tim Allen, Launceston Place, London, England
Jens Rittmeyer, Budersand Hotel – Golf & Spa, Sylt, Restaurant Kai 3, Hörnum, Germany

Visit the website for more information on this event : Culinary Festival Bernard Loiseau

Book our Passion of Gastronomy Package in Mauritius

Guests can experience food created by all of these prestigious chefs at a special 6 star dinner held at Constance Belle Mare Plage and Constance Le Prince Maurice during the culinary festival as part of our 7 Nights Passion of Gastronomy Package.

Visit our website to find out more about our hotels and resorts – Constance Hotels & Resorts

Find out more about our restaurants and bars at:

 

7 things to do in Mauritius

When you think of Mauritius you imagine soft white sand beaches and clear turquoise seas. The Indian Ocean island has these in abundance along with a host of other delights that make this the ideal destination for those looking to combine a luxury beach holiday with a taste of adventure.

Things to do in Mauritius - Helicopter ride over the island

Things to do in Mauritius – Helicopter ride over the island

Here’s our pick of exhilarating days out in Mauritius.

1. Casela Nature and Leisure Park

There is so much to do in this beautiful natural park that your hardest challenge will be fitting it all into one day. The park’s 14 hectares are home to everything from lions and monkeys to giant tortoises. How you choose to explore is up to you with options including guided treks, jeep safaris, Segway, quad bike or, if you’re feeling adventurous, the longest zipline circuit in the Indian Ocean.

2. Take a helicopter trip around the island (available from Constance Belle Mare Plage)

Take an aerial tour of this stunning island by helicopter and get a panoramic view of Mauritius. Explore the stunning coast with it’s picture-perfect lagoons and surrounding islands then go inland to see the undulating sugar cane fields, mountains and forests of the island’s interior.

3. Domaine de L’Étoile

This beautiful former sugar plantation offers visitors the chance to discover Mauritius’ stunning interior with a landscape of rich verdant forests, spectacular views out towards the ocean and open valleys. Again there is a choice of transport on which to explore including quad bikes and 4×4 buggies, horseback, trekking and mountain biking. There’s even an opportunity to live out your Hunger Games fantasy with a 10 hectare circuit for archers featuring 10 artificial 3D animal targets.

4. Explore the capital Port Louis 

Whether you want to visit the capital’s bustling food market with fresh exotic produce brought in daily from around the island, or see a dodo skeleton at the city’s Natural History Museum there’s plenty to see and do in Port Louis. If you want to shop, eat or just sit back and people watch then visit the Caudan Waterfront.

Big game fishing at Constance

Big game fishing at Constance

5. Take a catamaran cruise (available at Constance Le Prince Maurice and Constance Belle Mare Plage)

Feel the ocean spray on your face and the wind in your sails on an exhilarating catamaran cruise to local beaches and deserted islands. Zip across the water to empty beaches where you can swim in crystal waters and enjoy lunch on the sand.

6. Eureka ‘La Maison Créole’

Set in a nature reserve at the very heart of the island this colonial house converted into a museum offers a tranquil day of walking in beautiful gardens spotting rare flora and fauna before taking a dip in its refreshing waterfall-fed swimming hole.

7. Big game fishing (available from Constance Le Prince Maurice and Constance Belle Mare Plage)

Spend the day on the open water pitting your wits against the great game fish of the Indian Ocean including the blue marlin, sailfish, barracuda, wahoo and yellowfin tuna.

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JustLuxe declares Halaveli a ‘sigh-inducingly relaxing’ destination

JustLuxe describes Constance Halaveli as 'Heaven'

JustLuxe describes Constance Halaveli as ‘Heaven’

Prestigious luxury website JustLuxe describes Constance Halaveli as ‘heaven’ in a recent review.

JustLuxe journalist Carol Driver says, ‘Constance Halaveli, an incredible five-star resort set on its own idyllic island, has only 84 villas, making it a sigh-inducingly relaxing and private destination. It’s perfect for a luxurious getaway, honeymoon, or a memorable wedding location.’

In her review Driver goes on to praise the secluded location of the resort, the elegant, spacious accommodation, the exciting diving opportunities and the excellent food and wine.

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Discover the Kickstart Fast Diet at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Whisk yourself away to Constance Le Prince Maurice in Mauritius where you can combine a luxury holiday with healthy eating on the Kickstart Fast Diet.

Constance Le Prince Maurice - Yoga

The Kick Fast Diet at Constance Le Prince Maurice

Developed in partnership with best-selling author and Fast Diet creator Mimi Spencer, the Kickstart Fast Diet is the perfect way for you to begin the Fast Diet or to give it a boost if you’re already on it.

A combination of food, fitness and relaxation, the Prince Maurice Kickstart Fast Diet includes special menus adhering to the Fast Diet principle of 5:2 – eating normally for five days and fasting for two.

Specially prepared Fast Diet menus

Our chefs have created delicious, freshly prepared dishes that include grilled seafood and locally grown fruit and vegetables with a strict calorie-count so they can be enjoyed on fast days.

For non-fast days there is a range of sumptuous, healthy dishes recommended by Mimi Spencer herself under the ‘Mimi Recommends’ banner.

Kickstart a Fast Diet fitness program

Working with the resort’s personal trainers, guests on the Kickstart Fast Diet can receive a program of one-to-one training sessions including yoga fusion and pilates to make the most of the diet.

Under the guidance of a trainer, exercising on ‘fast’ days can provide particularly effective results.

And relax…

Our Spa de Constance offers a range of treatments, also part of the ‘Mimi Recommends’ range, to help your body reap the benefits of the Fast Diet program. Improve your circulation with a lymphatic body drainage session or try one of our detoxifying wraps.

Win a holiday to Constance Le Prince Maurice

The Mail on Sunday (UK) is offering readers the chance to win a 7 night luxury holiday for 2 to Constance Le Prince Maurice including flights with Air Mauritius, half board with a complimentary spa treatment and personal training session for each person.

Buy The Mail on Sunday on 26 January 2014 for your chance to win.

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