The Seychelles group of islands lies approximately 1,500 miles off Africa's east coast - and to the north west of Madagascar - and is o­ne of the last natural paradises left o­n earth.

Vallee de Mai
Although The Seychelles are well known for their unsurpassed water-sport activities, the country has much more to offer including the Vallee de Mai Nature Reserve, which is situated o­n Praslin Island. This reserve was declared a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1983 and is home to the magnificent endemic Coco de Mer palm trees with their enormous seed pods as well as several exotic bird, mammal and reptile species like the endangered Seychelles black parrot.

On these islands visitors can party in the sun and surf all day and then party at the Lovenut nightclub all night. The Lovenut lies in the heart of the country's capital, Port Victoria, which is located o­n Mahe Island and which is also home to the Victoria Botanical Gardens, the Victoria National Museum of History and the Selwyn Selwyn-Clarke Market.

Anse Major Beach
Praslin Beach
The Seychelles' most well known attractions are its spectacular beaches, however, where a person can snorkel, scuba dive and surf to their heart's content. Also popular are excursions o­n catamarans, sailing vessels and power boats and the nearby Aldabra Atoll is, at 22 miles long, the largest coral atoll in the world. Visitors troll the calm waters of the atoll's lagoon looking for manta rays and tiger sharks, and it's also home to the giant land tortoise.

Land sports are also not forgotten, and walking and cycling tours are particularly popular. Bird watching, however, could be the island's national sport as there are over 300,000 birds nesting o­n Cousin Island alone.