Beckoning from the Indian Ocean and lying like an emerald gem on the glassy sea, floats Silhouette Island, the third largest island in the Seychelles archipelago. Composed of granite, it has less than 200 inhabitants, mostly workers in resorts and hotels, and five lush mountain peaks jutting towards the sky.
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Silhouette Island, named after a French dignitary, is dedicated to environmental and animal preservation and is home to a plethora of endemic and endangered species, both flora and fauna.
For this reason, there are no streets or roads here at all, everything is moved or gotten to by foot. There are two paths on the island connecting the north half to the south half, and nothing more. These paths cut through the mountainous terrain, as well.
Do not expect to rent a vehicle here for exploration and entrance to the island is by helicopter. This is new development that allows for more visitations, as before the coral reefs around Silhouette made it very difficult for ferries and boats to land.
The coral reefs, now a designated National Marine Park, are extremely healthy and teeming with all manner of sea life, including manta rays and giant sea tortoises. This allows for excellent snorkeling conditions in the protected lagoons, but be sure to bring water shoes. There are also caves to explore, and the old remains of Grande Barbe, the original settlers’ village. Old Creole houses still pepper the island and an amazing plantation house, dating far back, is still one of the most glorious in the Seychelles. It belonged originally to the Dauban family, who settled on the island in 1830, and was the influence for all the plantations on Silhouette. Their family mausoleum still stands on the island, somewhat at odds with its naturalistic surroundings.
The five peaks on Silhouette Island are all over 500 meters in height, with the largest being Mont Dauban at 740 meters high. In descending order, the others are Mont-Pot-a-Eau at 621 meters in height, Gratte Fesse standing 515 meters high, Mont Corgat stretching upwards at 502 meters tall, and Mont Cocos Marron, the shortest at 500 meters. These rugged, but lavishly covered peaks, give Silhouette the best views and scenery of the archipelago islands.
There are beaches here, of course, and they are the stuff of dreams: virginal, striking blues and greens against velvety pale sands, palm tree forests, lapping waves and gorgeous rock formations. Breathtaking, every glance is like gazing at a postcard. Its status as preserve means special permission must be granted for access to the island. This is adventure as few experience it with secluded luxury and gourmet restaurants that serve Creole food, fusion, teppanyaki and Italian cuisines. There is also a beautiful, modern bar, and everything here is elegant, sublime and designed to be perfection, perfected. While only a comparative handful of visitors can be on the island at one time, it is loaded with every indulgence. The wildlife, much of which can be seen no where else in the world, is fascinating and abundant. A true haven, a genuine paradise, life will never be quite the same again after an incredible visit to Silhouette Island.