SEYCHELLES - VICTORIA
REPUBLIC OF SEYCHELLES
• The Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean, off East Africa. It is a paradise with deep blue waters teeming with sea life and gorgeous nature.
• Victoria, the capital of Seychelles can be easily explored on foot in less than a day.
• Seychelles was uninhabited before being discovered by Europeans in the early 16th century. As such, there are no indigenous people in Seychelles.
• Seychelles was controlled by France (annexed in 1756) until the colony was ceded to Britain in 1814. Source: Britannica
• In 1976, Seychelles became independent with James Mancham as president and France Rene as prime minister.
• Seychelles has been described as “the original site of the Garden of Eden”. British Army officer General Gordon of Khartoum made the claim after he visited in 1881. He was specifically referring to the UNESCO-listed Vallée de Mai on the island of Praslin.
• Seychelles is the richest country in Africa when measured by GDP per capita based on purchasing power parity (PPP). It is also ranked as having a high standard of human development in 67th place, just one position behind Mauritius, Africa’s most developed nation.
• The largest and most developed island of Seychelles is Mahe, which is home to around 90% of the population and the capital city of Victoria.
- • Known for its beaches, marine life and luxury holidays, over 350,000 (2018 data) tourists travel to Seychelles every year.
• Seychelles is considered to be one of the safest countries in the world to visit. In 2022, it was assessed as carrying an ‘insignificant travel security risk’.
• The Seychelles was once a pirate hideout, in particular Anse Forbans (Pirate’s Cove) on Mahe and Cote d’Or on Praslin. It is believed that famous pirate Olivier Levasseur hid a treasure worth more than $160,000 that remains unfound
- • Bird Island is home to the heaviest land tortoise living in the wild, Esmeralda, who tips the scales at 670 pounds.
• James Bond author Ian Fleming visited the Seychelles in 1958 looking for adventure and inspiration for his then-latest collection of stories, For Your Eyes Only.
• The Seychelles has some of the rarest endemic birds, including the bare-legged Scops owl, which is so rare that it was once thought to have become extinct before being rediscovered in 1959.
• Seychelles is home to the world’s largest land-dwelling arthropod. The Coconut Crab has been nicknamed ‘Crabzilla’ as it can grow up to 1m (3.3ft) in size and weigh up to 4.1kg (9lb) and can even open coconuts.
- • Breadfruit is a staple of the island and can be eating in a variety of ways including been barbequed, boiled, baked or steamed, though it is most frequently eaten as fried chips
- • The coco de mer aka the forbidden fruit: native to the island, produces the largest seed in the world. The distinctly shaped nut can weigh up to 33 pounds.
• The population of Seychelles suffers from the worst air pollution in Africa when measured by the number of deaths per 100,000 people. Overall, it is 71st in the world.