We made a short stop at Curieuse Island on our way to Cousin Island, to drop off the cook and all the ingredients for our lunch. After our visit to Cousin, we headed back to Curieuse. On the way, we cruised close to the coastline to see some of the splendid beaches of Praslin from the sea. As we slowly approach Curieuse, a heavy rain starts to fall from the sky. When it is my turn to get off our boat, I have my camera backpack on me, as well as two pairs of shoes. My left hand slips from the wet hold, my feet are not firmly placed on the small foothold, and a wave pushes the boat forward. I fall forward, face down into the thick seaweed. I had imagined my arrival on this tropical island a little more exotic than being drenched and covered in seaweed. It turns out that we have a very capable cook and we enjoy a tasty lunch at the station while the rain hammers the corrugated roof.
Once we finish lunch, the rain stops - perfect timing! We roam around the field of the station for a while, as it is filled with Aldabra giant tortoises. Some fifty years ago, tortoises from Aldabra island were brought here, and nowadays, a large population crawls around the island. When you look at the island, almost completely covered by vegetation, it is hard to believe that a large fire destroyed much of the vegetation. Among it, tall coco de mer trees perished. Now that the island is part of a national park, it is hopefully better protected. Named after a schooner of French explorers in the late 18th century. As on other islands in the region, the original tortoise population was decimated soon after the arrival of humans - tortoises are an easy source of proteins.
It is time to go for a walk. We take the trail that leads to the south side of the island. It takes us through mangrove swamp over a boardwalk. We take a side trail, in search of coco de mer trees, but unfortunately don't see them. Following the trail along the coastline, we climb to viewpoints offering panoramas of the bay of the eastern side of Curieuse island. We pass some enormous granite rocks before we descend to the south side of the island. We see the ruins of a small building, supposedly a doctor's house when the island was a leper colony, before we reach the beach of Anse St. José. This is where our boat picks us up. The ride back to Baie St. Anne is smoother than expected.
Around the World in 80 Clicks
Personal travel impressions both in words and images from Curieuse island (Seychelles). Clicking on the pictures enlarges them and enables you to send the picture as a free e-card or download it for personal use, for instance, on your weblog. Or click on the map above to visit more places close to Curieuse island. Read more about this site.