Curieuse Island – A trip to the giant tortoises (Seychelles)

Categories: Travel reports, Africa, Seychelles

Today’s excursion we had already been looking forward to, because we went together with Geoli Charters to the giant tortoises on Curieuse Island. In addition, two snorkelstops and a delicious barbecue on the beach awaited us.

Curieuse

Curieuse Island’s businesses

The island of Curieuse is only about one kilometer from Praslin and is therefore perfectly accessible with a small boat trip as part of a day trip. Like all granite islands in the Seychelles, Curieuse belongs to the inner Seychelles. The island is only 3 km2 in size, has no notable infrastructure and is inhabited by very few people. Curieuse served in the 19th century as a leper’s camp for leprosy sufferers. Today there is a research station for water turtles, a lot of endemic flora and fauna as well as a colony of Seychelles giant turtles. And that is exactly why the island is visited by many tourists every day.

Curieuse Island is open to visitors every day from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Entering the island, an entrance fee of 200 SCR per person (approximately 13 EUR) is due, which is to be paid in a small kiosk not far from the main beach.

Our day trip to Curieuse Island

Today’s day trip to Curieuse Island consisted of many highlights: snorkeling in the turquoise blue water, walking with Seychelles giant tortoises, a hike through the jungle and mangrove forests as well as a delicious barbecue at the end.

The provider Geoli Charters

Geoli Charters is a tour operator specialising in glass bottom boat tours, snorkelling, fishing and island excursions. We booked our glass floor booot tour to Curieuse Island via the platform TourBookers.com. The German agency offers over 750 tours, activities and experiences in different countries on its online platform. The tours are offered and arranged directly online by a number of independent local tour operators.

From our tour provider we were picked up at 9.20 a.m. directly from our hotel Acajou Beach Resort. There were already 7 other tourists on the bus, so we were a small group of 9 people. Around 9.30 a.m. our tour started at the Anse La Blague, where Geoli Charters is based and the boats are located. By the way, the hotel transfer, lunch, soft drinks and water as well as the Marine Park and Landing Fees were already included in our tour.

The island of St. Pierre

Our first small stop was the island of St. Pierre, which lies north of Praslin on the edge of the Curieuse Marine National Park. The uninhabited island consists of Grantis rocks and some coconut trees and is only half an acre in size.

We actually only stopped here for a two-minute photo spot and the skipper promised us that we would make another snorkelstop here on the way back, if the conditions are good. We were really looking forward to it, because then we would have sent our drone into the air to take some pictures of the island. Because the island is virtually the epitome of a Seychelles island and is often used as a motive for advertising campaigns. But unfortunately nothing came of it, because on the way back we – without any prior information – unfortunately passed the island like a lightning bolt. Afterwards, the skipper had said that the snorkeling conditions would not have been good because the sea was too restless. Super a pity!

St. Pierre, Island, Seychelles, Praslin, Excursion, Boat, Travel Report

The beautiful little island of St. Pierre

Snorkeling off Curieuse Island

A few minutes later we anchored a few meters off the south coast of Curieuse Island to snorkel. The scenery was really fantastic.

As passionate divers we found the underwater world rather boring. Therefore, we only snorkeled for a little bit and preferred to use the time to send our drone into the air. And in the process, some very beautiful pictures were created. After the 30-minute snorkelling stop we went on to Curieuse Island.

The walk to Doctor’s House

Around 10.30 am we arrived at Anse St. Jose on Curieuse Island and walked from here only a few minutes to Doctor’s House.

Doctor’s House dates back to the time when Curieuse Island was used as a quarantine station for leprosy sufferers from 1829 to 1900 and from 1937 to 1965. The house used to be used for sick visits and doctor’s consultations when medical staff came to visit. The building, built in Creole style, is now completely restored and houses a small historical museum where you can learn a lot about the history of the leprosy station but also about the flora and fauna of the island.

The hike to Laraie Bay

With the hike to the opposite Laraie bay began the active part of our day trip. It took us about 50 minutes for the 1.7 km long hiking trail from Doctor’s House to the bay. It went over stick and stone, past mangrove forests and beautiful views until we could already discover the first giant tortoises from wooden walkways.

Giant Tortoise Farm – The Giant Turtles in the Seychelles

The center and highlight of Curieuse Island and the reason why many tourists come here every day is the Giant Tortoise Farm. It is not a farm in the true sense, because the giant tortoises live here completely free and can move anywhere on the island. We didn’t have to wait until we discovered the animal islanders 🙂

Our guide had equipped us with fresh branches, on which the turtles were actually quite crazy. It was great how they ate the leaves and branches out of our hands. After that we rewarded them with a lot of petting, which they certainly enjoyed as much as the food. By the way, the best place to claw giant tortoises is under the long neck – they love that and sometimes even stand up.

In a small demarcated enclosure we could discover some cute baby giant tortoises, which stay here protected from the sun. The babies are between 0 and 5 years old and are housed in the enclosure to protect them from predators on the one hand and for research purposes on the other.

Our lunch

After almost 45 minutes to interact with the giant tortoises, a delicious barbecue was prepared for us in the meantime. There was fresh grilled fish, grilled chicken and all sorts of salad side dishes and rice. Super tasty!

Relaxing on the beach

After our delicious lunch we had some time to relax on the beach and enjoy the time. Of course, we also let our drone fly here, because we just love the perspectives from the air. In particular, the scenery of the beach, the granite rocks, the sea and the palm trees looks simply indescribably beautiful every time ♥

Curieuse is the only island, besides Praslin, where the Seychelles palm Coco de Mer is endemic. A seed of this palm species, which is one of the largest seeds in the whole plant kingdom, we could look at in a small exhibition house near the beach.

Snorkeling in front of Praslin and relaxing at Anse La Farine

On the way back from Curieuse Island we made a little snorkeling stop off the coast of Praslin. A short time later we moored at the nearby Anse La Farine to relax a bit and start the great excursion with a Takamaka Rum.

An eventful day is coming to an end, which we really liked!

Our travelogues from the Seychelles

White dream beaches, crystal clear water, sun and palm trees: the Seychelles are the epitome of an island paradise. For 2 weeks we explored the main islands of Mahé, Praslin and La Digue and saw the most beautiful sights: From gorgeous beaches, fascinating nature parks to hidden photo spots, animal islanders and beautiful viewpoints. Route Seychellen, Mahe, Praslin, La Digue, Kombination, Reisebericht Seychelles: Things to know & Travel Tips (Mahé, Praslin & La Digue)
Seychelles: Travel Planning, Flight & Rental Car
Mahé: Things to know & places of interest
Mahé: Tropical Hideaway Apartement & Beau Vallon Beach
Mahé: Victoria – Things to do & beautiful photo spots
Mahé: The Rock Pool (Ros Sodyer) at Anse Takamaka
Mahé: Top 10 most beautiful beaches on the island
Cerf Island: Snorkeling in Sainte Anne Marine Park
Praslin: Things to know & places of interest on Praslin
Praslin: Acajou Beach Resort on the Cote d’Or Beach
Praslin: Fond Ferdinand – Coco de Mer Nature Reserve on Praslin
Praslin: Vallée de Mai – UNESCO National Park on Praslin
Praslin: Top 5 most beautiful beaches on the island of Praslin
Curieuse Island: A trip to the giant tortoises
Félicité: The luxury resort Six Senses Zil Pasyon
La Digue: Things to know & Travel Tips from the island of La Digue
La Digue: Cat Cocos Ferry & La Diguoise Guesthouse
La Digue: Crystal Water Kayaks – Transparent kayak tours on La Digue
La Digue: Anse Marron – Hike around the south coast of La Digue
La Digue: Top 10 – The most beautiful beaches on La Digue
La Digue: The resort Le Domaine de L’Orangeraie