The past two weeks we have been enjoying the ultimate #staycation, playing tourist as we show our good friend Sophie around our beautiful island nation.
Last week was spent island hopping between Praslin and La Digue, seeing all of the tourist hotspots such as the Vallee de Mai, L’Union Estate and the stunning beaches of Cote D’Or, Anse Lazio, Grand Anse (La Digue) and Anse Source D’Argent.
This week we enjoyed all that Mahe has to offer, including a fantastic day snorkelling the magic Baie Ternay Marine Park, visit to the colourful markets in Victoria, multiple beach days and many tropical nights sampling cocktails and delicious local delicacies.
Our recent visit was to the Seychelles National Botanic Gardens – one of Seychelles’ oldest National Monuments, dating back more than a century.
Located in Mont Fleuri on the outskirts of Victoria, the Seychelles National Botanical Gardens was established in 1901 by Mr. Paul Evenor Rivalz Dupont, the then Director of Agricultural Services and Naturalist of Seychelles, the site was originally set up as an experimental garden for crop species during colonial times.
Today however the gardens are an expansive, tranquil green space and colourful blooms, the ideal haven for tourists and locals to escape the hustle and bustle of the town centre and enjoy the peace, serenity, birdsong and shade of almost a century of existence.
The gardens boast a wide collection of mature, exotic and endemic plants all within its five acres of landscaped and beautifully maintained tropical gardens.
Majestic Coco-de-Mer palms line the grand entrance to the gardens, which splits into various winding pathways where you can see a view a variety of spice and fruit trees, brightly colour local orchids, babbling brooks and beautiful Thai and Chinese gardens.
You can even meet the local wildlife here. There is a giant tortoise enclosure featuring the famous Aldabra tortoise (some members over 150 years old) where you can touch and feed these prehistoric animals (for an additional fee). You can also view the many fruit bat colonies that nest and feed in the ancient tall trees overhead.
This beautiful spot is a must see for any horticultural enthusiasts or indeed anyone looking for a relaxing, peaceful nature walk with family and friends. The entry fee is SCR 100 with all proceeds going towards maintaining this wonderful and ancient green space.
FYI… there is a quaint little cafe midway which is the perfect spot to relax with a cup of local vanilla tea, or you can perch on a bench at the tranquil lily pond and watch the dragonflies dancing in the wind. Just magical.