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Monday, November 7, 2011

Seychelles resorts nothing short of fantastic

Paradise! Most of the islands that make up the Seychelles archipelago in the Indian Ocean off the east coast of Africa feature idyllic beaches and scenic vistas as far as the eye can see. The crystal clear waters and reefs are perfect for swimming, snorkelling and scuba diving. Plus there are forests to be explored, excursion opportunities aplenty, and the resorts on the islands offer a variety of sporting and adventure activities in addition to a wide choice of accommodation and dining options.

There’s a myriad options in terms of where to stay and it pays to heed the recommendations of specialists such as African Encounters, a highly experienced wholesale tour operator servicing South Africa’s top retail travel agencies. African Encounters represent some of the best resort destinations in the Seychelles, destinations such as the Sunset Beach Hotel, Coral Strand Hotel and the Eden Villas on Mahe, the largest of the islands and renowned for its three marine parks.

The Sunset Beach hotel built on a granite outcrop and stretching out over the sea is a private retreat whose many attractions include a high-speed boat charter. The Coral Strand boasts five restaurants/bars, offers excursions in a glass-bottomed boat and runs tours focusing on the culture, history, fauna and flora of Mahe. And the Eden Villas in a small fishing village called Port Glaud are particularly appealing to travellers who enjoy self-catering.

Whereas on Praslin, the Seychelles’ second-largest island, Coco de Mer stands out as a luxurious resort including a private section of beach dotted with palm trees, being great for nature walks and bird-watching, and featuring boat charters and deep-sea fishing amongst the many activities that can be arranged. Berjaya Praslin, on the other hand, is punted by African Encounters for its tropical gardens, its convenient location close to theairport from which to visit some of the other islands, and the resort’s popularity as a wedding venue.

The Seychelles is stunningly beautiful and the resorts make the most of this by offering great views from their rooms. You can take a plane to hop from one island to the next but the boat trips are spectacular in their own right. The food on the archipelago is characterised by interesting Creole dishes, and relaxing at one of the islands’ many cocktail bars just a few steps away from lapping waves is pure bliss.

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