A 30- to 45-minute boat trip from Praslin, Aride is one of the most pristine of the Seychelles islands and is known as the "seabird citadel" of the Indian Ocean, with more than a million seabirds breeding here each year. Protected as a reserve since 1967, Aride hosts 18 species of native birds, including the world's only hilltop colony of sooty terns and the only granitic breeding sites for the world's largest colony of lesser noddies. The Seychelles warbler was introduced from Cousin in 1988, as were the Seychelles fody and magpie robin in 2002. Aride also boasts one of the densest populations of lizards on earth, as well as unique endemic plants. A beautiful reef surrounds the island, and in season it is common to see whale sharks and flying fish in the waters just offshore. Visitors to the island must land between 9:30 and 10, but then may spend the whole day on the island if desired. Numerous operators can take you to Aride, and usually include lunch in the trip; inquire at your hotel. Due to weather conditions, Aride closes to visitors from May to September, when strong winds can prevent boats from landing.