Seychelles What is known for

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Fly from London on Air Seychelles. airseychelles.com

Hop from island to island on a chopper from Helicopter Seychelles LTD. helicopterseychelles.com

Drive around Praslin with Prestige Car Hire. 011-248-23-32-26

Stay at the Banyan Tree Seychelles. Some villas are decorated with eclectic paintings by local artist George Camille inspired by the coco de mer nut, banyantree.com. The Hilton Seychelles Northolme Resort and Spa has oceanfront and hillside villas. Seek out beach coves and visit the Duniye Spa, hilton.com. The Constance Lemuria Resort's palm-thatched villas are perched on Anse Kerlan, one of Praslin's longest beaches. Enjoy the three- tiered pool and private terraces, lemuriaresort.com. With only 40 guests allowed at one time at the resort called Fregate Island Private, this place is truly Edenesque. The two main restaurants feature produce from the island. Indulge in a lekor wrap (a body wrap using fresh papaya, mango and banana, followed by a full-body massage) at the Rock Spa. fregate.com

See the 48-acre Valle de Mai, centrally located in Praslin National Park, you'll find the infamous coco de mer nut and the endemic black parrot, sif.sc. Take the ferry from Praslin to enjoy one of the world's most beautiful and recognizable beaches. Rent bikes in town and ride to the famous sands, spectacular coves and sea-sculpted granite rocks. seychelles.net/iif

Buy coco de mer nuts at the Vallée de Mai's souvenir shop. sif.sc

Relax at the beaches. Mahé, the largest and most commercial island in the archipelago, is only about 17 miles long but boasts 75 fine beaches that are often uncrowded, if not altogether deserted. Praslin, which has been called the "blueprint for the perfect tropical island," also has a couple of world-class strands in Cote d'Or and Anse Lazio. The spectacular boulder-bordered shores at Anse Source d'Argent, on La Digue are famous. On private Fregate Island, Anse Parc is on the ISLANDS list of the Best Undiscovered Beaches. Part of the allure of Anse Parc is strolling the trail that leads to its sandy shores. Winding through an old copra plantation, the trail takes you on a tour of some of Frégate's most beloved attractions, including the ghostly ruins of a pirate settlement, the rare Seychelles magpie robin and the island's iconic tortoises lazing on the beach in perfect beach-bum fashion. Sink your toes into the sand (so soft it's like a memory-foam mattress) and try to count the lolling reptiles who seem to own this stretch of beach.

Dive more than 100 different species of coral make the offshore reefs a very pleasant place for snorkelers and serious underwater photographers alike. Bring your fish chart, and get ready to be dazzled. Watch for whale sharks in August and November.

Hike a network of easy trails - none requiring more than two hours of walking time - laces the Vallée de Mai National Park, on Praslin. Home to the famed coco-de-mer palm, whose oversize, sensuously shaped nut has been wowing nature-lovers for centuries, this remains one of the world's most pristine tropical forests.

Learn more at seychelles.com.