The Complete Guide to the National Parks of the Seychelles

Morne Seychellois National Park - Mahe - Seychelles
KarlosXII / Getty Images

The Seychelles offers numerous designated national parks ranging from terrestrial parks like Morne Seychellois National Park and Praslin National Park to marine parks such as Port Launay, Ile Coco, and Curieuse. Each national park in the Seychelles offers lush flora and fauna, jaw-dropping landscapes, and incredible views that keep thousands of visitors coming back to enjoy them every year. All of the parks have their own distinctive characteristics that appeal to the masses.

If you're planning a trip, use this guide to learn more about the marvels you'll encounter on the idyllic islands of the Seychelles.

 

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Morne Seychellois National Park

Morne Seychellois National Park - Mahe - Seychelles

Getty Images/KarlosXII

Address
9C29+FQ5, N.Y.S. Village, Seychelles

With a massive coverage of over 3,000 hectares, Morne Seychellois National Park is the top park to visit on any trip to the Seychelles. It offers rich green tropical rainforests, huge mountainous landscapes, and commanding mangroves to delight upon during a trek through the park. One of the most attractive features of the park is its birdwatching offerings. Visitors who come to hike here will be able to spot several of the Seychelles' endemic land birds, like the blue pigeon or the scops owl, one of the most elusive species of them all.

Where Is It: Morne Seychellois National Park is located on Mahe island, covering over 20 percent of the island’s mainland.

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Praslin National Park 

Tropical Rainforest with Waterfall - Vallee de Mai National Park

Getty Images/ Siegfried Layda

Address
MPCQ+292, Baie Ste Anne, Seychelles

The second largest terrestrial national park in the Seychelles, many visitors come to Praslin National Park to find World Heritage site Vallée de Mai. It is famous for being one of the few parks which is home to the famed coco de mer palm. The park is made up of a range of lush green landscapes and stunning viewpoints and features hiking trails, indigenous and local plants, as well as a range of animals, such as the black parrot. The stunning Glacis Noire Trail is a must to experience, as it is not visited by many visitors and thus offers authentic views of nearby islands La Digue, Ile Ronde, Felicite, Marianne, and Denis.

Where Is It: The park is located on Praslin, the second largest island in Seychelles.

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Veuve Reserve

Seychelles paradise flycatcher - Terpsiphone corvina rare bird from Terpsiphone within the family Monarchidae, forest-dwelling bird endemic to the Seychelles island of La Digue
phototrip / Getty Images
Address
La Digue, Seychelles

Famous for its paradise flycatchers, a bird native to Africa and Asia, Veuve Reserve is a birdwatcher's paradise. Conservation efforts in the park have ranged from providing a protected breeding and feeding environment for the birds as well as promoting educational activities to locals and tourists alike on the natural processes that occur in the Seychelles. Alongside its birds, the reserve is also home to a wide range of animals and plant species, many of which are endemic to the Seychelles. 

Where Is It: A small natural park in the middle of La Digue island, the Veuve Reserve is located on the Western side of the island, Anse Reunion.

 

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Ste Anne Marine National Park

Ste. Anne Marine National Park

Getty Images/ nik wheeler

Address
Seychelles
Phone +248 4 225 114

Ste Anne Marine National Park is a snorkeler’s paradise, as it is home to hosts of colorful corals of all shapes and sizes. It features one of the largest area of seagrass meadows in the Seychellois islands, where visitors can view green turtles feasting at all times of day. The park is made up of 6 islands just off the coast of Mahe which include Ste Anne, Ile Moyenne, Ile Ronde, Ile Longue, Ile Cachee and Ile aux Cerfs. Additional popular excursions available at the park include enjoying a glass bottom boat ride, dolphin watching, swimming and relaxing on one of the pristine beaches throughout the park.

Where Is It: Ste Anne Marine National Park is positioned about 5 kilometers from the main island of Mahé.

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Ile Cocos

Seaview of the Ile Cocos marine National Park (Cocos Island)

Getty Images/ Massimiliano Finzi

Address
Cocos Island, Seychelles, Seychelles

Ile Cocos is one of the most famous marine parks in the Seychelles, as it is often heavily featured in media and photography depicting the islands. It is known for its crystal clear waters which are great for snorkeling in the archipelago region. The park contains 3 small islets, Ile Cocos, Ile La Fouche, and Ilot Plate. While this marine park is a bit smaller than some of the others, it packs a strong punch of beauty, which makes it one of the most sought after destinations in all of the Seychelles.

Where Is It: Ile Cocos is best reached by boat charters or organized tours from either Praslin or La Digue.

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Port Launay Marine Park

Turquoise waters of Port Launay Marine National Park, Port Glaud district.

Getty Images/ David C Tomlinson

Address
89XX+329, N.Y.S. Village, Seychelles

As the only marine park in the Seychelles accessible by both land and sea, Port Launay offers stunning seascapes and an opportunity to relax or enjoy a bit of sightseeing. The park is made up of eight idyllic beaches, the five-star resort Constance Ephelia Hotel, and abundant opportunities for diving, snorkeling, and even whale watching. Tourists can lounge on yachts sailing around the various ports or relax under a takamaka tree while taking in the stunning lush green landscape views surrounding the park.

Where Is It: Port Launay is situated 30 minutes from Victoria, via La Misère, on the north-western coast of Mahé by car or by boat a short distance to the south of Baie Ternay Marine Park.

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Baie Ternay Marine National Park

The bay of Baie Ternay, Mahe Island, Seychelles

Getty Images/ Martin Moxter

Address
996F+GG8, Cap Ternay, Seychelles

Known for its calm blue waters full of beautiful sea life, Baie Ternay is a treasure trove for divers and snorkelers. Its coastal area is made up of coral reefs, sea grass beds, mangroves, and relaxing sandy shores. Visitors can relish in viewing sea turtles, whale sharks, and dolphins. Baie Ternay is also a popular destination for yachters to take shelter due to its location between two mountains bordering the Morne Seychellois National Park.

Where Is It: Only accessible by sea, this marine park lies around 5 km to the south west of Beau Vallon.

 

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Curieuse Marine National Park

Curieuse Marine National Park, near Praslin Island.

Getty Images/ Holger Leue

Address
Curieuse, Seychelles

Situated on the smaller island of Curieuse, Curieuse Marine National Park is best known as a preserve for flora and fauna. It is home to a host of Seychelles' endemic species including giant tortoises from Aldabra, birds, and the famed coco de mer. It is the only other location in the Seychelles that grows the coco de mer palm naturally outside of Vallee de Mai. Activities that visitors can enjoy include hiking the various trails from Anse Badamier to Baie Laraie, bird watching, snorkeling, and diving.

Where Is It: Curieuse island lies around 2 km off the Northeast coast of Praslin, which is the second largest island in the Seychelles group. It can be reached by taking a 20-minute boat ride from Cote’ D’or Praslin.

 

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The Complete Guide to the National Parks of the Seychelles