Of all the dream destinations that cruise passengers have on their wish lists, few can be as alluring or evocative as the Seychelles. Basking in year round sunshine in the sparkling ocean, this amazing pastiche of one hundred and fifteen different islands is almost postcard pretty. Located some fifteen hundred kilometres from the east coast of Africa, they collectively form one of the most rewarding regions to visit on a cruise.
Current cruise deals also make them as accessible as they are affordable. Convenient packages tie in flights, hotels and transfers with the cruise itself. And a resort hotel on the water that moves between the islands allows you to see the Seychelles up close and personal, in a way that no land based package can match.
There is a lot to see. Vast swathes of honey coloured beaches shelve into an electric blue sea so clear as to be almost transparent. Rows of vast, stately palm trees crowd the sky, waving hypnotically back and forth. If you're lucky, you might even see the local giant tortoise come wallowing onto the beach, surfacing like some incredible prehistoric submarine.
Only a luxury cruise allows you to savour this sublime beauty from surroundings of total ease and splendour.
The islands make the bulk of their living from tourism, although the islands collectively export large amounts of fish, copra, cinnamon and salt. The Seychelles are very heavily French accented and this, along with English, is the main language spoken.
This is especially true in the larger towns like Mahe , where the amazing, vibrant spice market overflows with the sights, sounds and intoxicating scents of the islands. The Creole dialect is also heard a lot here.
More than fifty per cent of these beautiful islands have been set aside as natural parks. Cruise passengers can take part in activities such as diving, fishing, hiking, surfing and wind surfing in and against the backdrop of one of the most stunningly beautiful playgrounds on earth.
The Seychelles are so staggering in their beauty that two major features have earned UNESCO World Heritage status. Vallee de Mai on Praislin is often claimed to be the original site of the Garden of Eden, while beautiful Aldabra is the world's largest example of a raised coral atoll.
Cruising the islands is also a naturist's dream. As well as tortoise, the islands are a bird watchers nirvana, with the paradise flycatcher and warbler only two of the many local species. The jellyfish tree usually leaves visitors amazed.
Whatever style of cruise you opt for, from mainstream to top end luxury, the Seychelles will amaze, enchant and exhilarate by turns. Gifted by nature with both tranquillity and extraordinary beauty, they sit like emeralds in a sea of turquoise, permanently washed by warm sun and kissed by cool breezes. This makes them an ideal year round destination to visit.
Combining this superlative chain of islands with the luxury and inclusiveness of a cruise has to be one of the most compelling and appealing of all voyages, a true journey of a lifetime.
If you would like more information on Seychelles cruises, or would like to discuss a cruise, please call one of our Cruise Experts on 0800 008 6677.