Saturday, 21 October 2017

Seychelles Tourism News

Seychelles Tourism Board Launches its First Hiking Guidebook in Paris

The Seychelles islands are famed for their natural beauty with several of the archipelago’s powder-white beaches regularly featured among the world’s best. Aside of its sun, sea and sand, mouth-watering cuisine, a wide range of accommodation including world-class hotels and warm hospitality of its people, Seychelles also has much to offer to the more adventurous visitors wishing to explore the wilder side of the archipelago.

One of the best ways to discover some of the Seychelles’ extraordinary biological heritage is to indulge in some slightly sweaty walks across the nature trails or up the mountainous regions of the islands. On top of getting up-close with some amazing flora and fauna, the hiking trips almost always end with magnificent and breath-taking views from some of the islands’ picture-perfect spots.

It is to ensure that visitors get the most enriching experience when exploring the Seychelles’ nature trails that the Seychelles Tourism Board (STB) has launched its first official guide to hiking in Seychelles.

The guidebook was presented to the press, travel trade partners including airlines, hotels, DMCs, tour operators and travel agencies in Paris, on Tuesday October 17, 2017.

The launch at one of Paris’ historical and architectural venue – the Vivienne Art Gallery -- was held in the presence of STB’s Chief Executive Mrs Sherin Francis, and the Seychelles Ambassador based in Paris Mr Sylvestre Radegonde. The event also provided guests with the opportunity to meet the two authors of the hiking guidebook -- Rémy Ravon and Romain Latournerie.

In her address Mrs Francis said: “France is a nation of hikers. I have come to understand that globally some 16 to 18 million people go hiking every year, and more than 5 million French nationals do it on a regular basis. Your customers, our visitors, your readers, and the journalists, certainly love to go hiking on the weekends, and there is no reason why they would not wish to do the same while on holiday in the Seychelles. But again, we had to ensure that we guide their first steps. We had to measure the hiking distance, map out the trails, assess their difficulty, and identify the best trails throughout the islands. This is the considerable work that the authors of this guide have done.”

“Hiking, becomes an additional tool in promoting Seychelles as a tourist destination. One more activity to promote, in the same way we promote scuba diving or golf. It’s a popular activity, accessible to all and an ecological one, which should go a long way in helping us to protect a natural heritage,” she added.

The idea for the guidebook was conceived one and a half year ago, when Remy Ravon and Romain Latournerie -- two photographers, publishers, graphic designers and journalists -- approached the Seychelles Tourism Board office in Paris.

The project was well received by STB’s regional Director for Europe, Mrs Bernadette Willemin, who was convinced that the guidebook will be a relevant and important promotional tool, not only for people who love hiking but for all nature lovers, as Seychelles is well-known for its unique fauna and flora.

This new promotional tool of around 80 pages provides detailed information on 15 trails spread across the Seychelles’ four largest islands, Mahé, Praslin, La Digue and Silhouette, for the benefit of visitors in search of an active and adventurous holiday in the Indian Ocean archipelago.

“This guide will definitely promote Seychelles’ biodiversity and encourage our visitors to preserve our beautiful nature while discovering our wealth, which is our greenery found on various trails. The hiking guidebook has been completed thanks to many partners. The Seychelles National Parks Authority (SNPA) is one of the partners that has played a key role in providing the expertise of its personnel who accompanied the authors to ensure that that they get to discover all of the trails’ hidden treasures,” said Mrs Willemin.

Aside of the SNPA Chief Executive Flavien Jouvert and his staff, STB is also thankful for the support received from its overseas offices, Air Seychelles, Creole Travel Services and hotels partners: Hilton Seychelles Labriz Resort and Spa, Coral Strand & Savoy Resort and Spa, Indian Ocean Lodge, Islander hotel, Copolia Lodge, Avani Seychelles Barbarons Resort and Spa.

The hiking guidebook is currently available in hard copies in both French and English. The digital version will be out soon and aside of English and French, it will also be available in Italian, German and Chinese.

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