rooms at Banyan Tree, Seychelles

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Sep 17th, 2003, 12:56 AM
  #21
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Darren, thank you so much for your input. That was just the information I was looking for. Thanks.
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Sep 22nd, 2003, 10:14 AM
  #22
 
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Ericka,

Sainte Anne is a very beautiful resort. There is no question about that! Combining both Banyan Tree and Sainte Anne is a possibility and both are nice, but they are so close together. It is like packing up and moving to a resort around the corner. I might recommend staying on another island like Fregate Island, North Island, Denis Island, Cousine Island, or even Lemuria Resort on Praslin. These resorts are on other islands farther from Mahe that will give you a much better idea of the Seychelles and you will experience more of the beauty of the Seychelles. But that is just my opinion!
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Sep 22nd, 2003, 03:02 PM
  #23
 
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Thanks, Darren. I'll look into these. I'd like a second resort to offer good snorkeling right off the beach, and other flora/fauna as possible. Do any of these other options strike you as having that AND being luxurious?
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Sep 23rd, 2003, 02:08 AM
  #24
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And I'd like to ask what is the best suggestion for a 1/2 day snorkeling trip from Banyan Tree. (And, why is snorkeling no good there?)Is it feasible to go to another island for just a little snorkeling (and maybe lunch)? Any ideas? We'd also like to try a little fishing just for fun.
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Sep 23rd, 2003, 12:23 PM
  #25
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Not being a water person I can't comment on personal experience snorkling, but there is a worldwide issue of bleached coral from global warming and that might be the situation at Intendance Bay where the Banyan Tree is located. Maybe Darren has more specifics on this.

Intendance Bay is located at the southern tip of Mahe and while remote and secluded is known for strong SE winds between May-Sept - this might have an impact?

We had stayed on the Glacis coast north of Beau Vallon where there were a number of dive centers, so I would assume the waters are fine up that way. There's also diving and snorkling at the Ste. Anne Marine National Park around the islands of Cerf, Ronde and other small ones.

However, if you rent a car for a day or two you can drive around the island and simply pick a beach/bay (after checking with your hotel which are best) park and spend a few hours.

From Mahe, you can ferry to Praslin but that takes about 3-hrs (Mon-Fri), while a flite there is about 15-minutes (but more costly). And from Praslin it's easier to do trips to La Digue Is. by ferry or day-trips to close in islands with a tour (maybe 10-people); they do limit the number of people who can be on some of these islands at any one time.

On Praslin one of the most beautiful beaches in the world is Anse Lazio.

For that reason and with the exception of single-resort islands as Fregate and North (expensive) many people spend major portion of time on Praslin (4-5/days) which gives them more options to visit other islands, then finish up the last 2-3/days on Mahe.
 
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Sep 23rd, 2003, 03:25 PM
  #26
 
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My understanding about the snorkeling issue at Banyan Tree is related to both the strong waves/currents and also the lack of significant coral formations to attract the fish.

I would think that coral bleaching is a problem allover the Seychelles (and the Maldives, and the Great Barrier Reef), and not really targeted to specific locations.
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Sep 23rd, 2003, 04:23 PM
  #27
 
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Hello!

I don't want to scare you away from Banyan Tree. It really is very luxurious.

As for snorkelling, I judge a spot simply by how much I see underwater (fish, coral, and that sort of stuff). At Banyan Tree, we did not see many fish at all, just a few. I think this is because it is not a coral island and is on the Southwest side of the island. The water is extremely beautiful at Banyan Tree, some of the most beautiful looking water in all of the Seychelles.

Babette -
As for 1/2 or full day snorkelling trips, yes there is a great one. We went on a 1/2 day trip snorkelling in the St. Anne Marine Park. The snorkelling was a lot of fun and we were provided with a very nice BBQ lunch. It was a great day trip and I highly recommend it. The St. Anne Marine Park is located just off of Mahe and the ferry is only a couple of minutes. Sandi mentioned this in her above post. We booked the snorkel trip through our travel agent, but you can also do it easily in the Seychelles through one of the ground tour operators (it is a common day trip for tourists on Mahe).

Ericka -
Yes, all the resorts I mentioned above are very luxurious. Fregate, North, and Cousine are all very luxurious and are also expensive. My opinion is North has the best snorkelling and diving while Fregate is a little more luxurious (still good snorkeling). Fregate and Cousine probably have the best flora and fauna. Denis is a coral island and does have very good snorkeling. Denis is not quite the same luxury standards as Fregate, North, Cousine, Banyan Tree, or St. Anne, but is still very nice (and a little less than some of the others). All of these you would have your own villa I believe.

Lemuria is on Praslin and is more of a suite style resort so the rates are less. They do have villas and the villas are in the higher price range (and very very nice). Lemuria is larger than the other resorts and there is more to do. Lemuria has a couple of amazingly gorgeous beaches.

We once did a Banyan Tree/Lemuria vacation and liked it because we could be active at Lemuria (golf, tennis, swimming, snorkeling) and then relax at Banyan Tree (spa is amazing). But Lemuria is not as intimate as some of the other resorts unless you stay in the villas.

My personal favorites are North Island, Fregate Island, Banyan Tree (Mahe), Lemuria (Praslin Island), and Sainte Anne (just off Mahe), and Sandi made a good point that a lot of people spend time on Praslin and from Praslin there are a lot of islands close to go to like La Digue.

You might also try giving the people at www.linaratravel.com an email. They were knowledgeable and nice.

I hope this helps!

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Sep 24th, 2003, 03:52 AM
  #28
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Darren -
Thanks for the heads-up with the Linara website. Seeing the picture of tiny St. Pierre Islette - felt I was back in the Indian Ocean.
 
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Sep 24th, 2003, 05:13 PM
  #29
 
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Thanks Darren. Lots of great info!
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Oct 8th, 2003, 04:18 PM
  #30
 
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Ericka,

Have you made any decisions?
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Oct 9th, 2003, 03:26 PM
  #31
 
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Probably just thinking Banyan Tree now after having investigated the other resorts - they cost even more. For that kind of money we will likely do a combined trip into South Africa at Singita. So....still thinking. If only there were an Aman resort in the Seychelles! Then, we'd be done thinking!
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Oct 9th, 2003, 05:20 PM
  #32
 
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Erica, if you enjoy Aman resorts I think that Seychelles will disapoint you. If you ever visited Bora Bora Aman resort you know what I am talking about. Seychelles is not even close to that one. There are nice beaches and decent resorts in Seychelles but Bora Bora wins hands down. After Bora Bora Seychelles is nothing exceptional. Before you decide, please do some research on Mauritius where you find unbelivable number of resorts more to your standards and surprisingly they are much cheaper. So you get more for less. Something to think about. And if you don't know about transportation it is much easier to get to Mauritius than to Seychelles from SA or France or anywhere. There are two or sometimes three flights per week from Paris to Seychelles (they are often canceled if there are not enough seats sold). But there are two flights a day from Paris to Mauritius. Again , just something to consider. Good luck with your choices and please let us know.
Pat
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Oct 10th, 2003, 05:35 AM
  #33
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Alot comes down to oncs own preferences and where they are in the world that they decide on a destination.

The original post from "babette" I believe, had her in Southern Africa, so the choices would be the Seychelles or Mauritius.

Likewise if you're on the West Coast or returning from Asia/Australia, French Polynesia is an option.

My best friend and her husband returned from Tahiti last week, having spent most of their time on the out islands (Rari) and on return, spent two days on Bora Bora, which they were only too glad to leave - so touristy, loaded with both Americans, and even more French. And while Rari was wonderful, and a different experience than the Seychelles. They can't wait to return to the Seychelles, especially now that North Island is open.

They've been to the Seychelles twice ongoing from trips in Africa and one time to Mauritius. For them, the Seychelles win hands-over - less people in general, more options of things to do, more relaxing and most importantly "handly any Americans at all"

We had the option of the Seychelles or Mauritius after our East African trip and chose the former and not disappointed in the least.

So, I guess because there is such a big world out there with so much to see, thankfully, we have options to meet our different needs.

 
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Oct 10th, 2003, 03:16 PM
  #34
 
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Pat2003, not to get off topic, but, have you ever been to Amanpuri on Phuket? That's still a strong consideration for us.

By the way, I honeymooned at the Hotel Bora Bora and just got back from Amankila on Bali. I believe anything may be a dissapointment from here on out!
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Oct 11th, 2003, 03:44 AM
  #35
 
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Erica, we are thinking about Phuket-Amanpuri. Our Parisian friends left on Thursday for two weeks in this place. We are leaving this evening for Paris to house-sit their place. Isn't this funny how things work? Until two months ago we did not hear about Amanpuri and now you're asking about it. It suppose to be amazing place and they do travel a lot (Bora Bora, Seychelles, Mauritius, Maldives among many other places) as he is a fashion photographer. They are staying in the deluxe full-ocean view Pavilion.
Hotel Bora Bora was something. You won't find anything like that in Seychelles.
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Oct 14th, 2003, 03:32 PM
  #36
 
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Hi Pat2003,
Sounds like you and your friends are becoming Aman-junkies, as we are. We are leaning toward Phuket Amanpuri for 2004. November or December perhaps. I just have to convince my husband to shell out for the full-ocean view pavillions (103/105). This is the type of accomodation we had at Amankila (Bali) just a few weeks ago and it would be hard to go back!

Please let us know how your friends like Amanpuri....perhaps start a post on the Asia board when you get back. We'd love to compare notes with you.
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