Ultimate Seychelles with Aldabra Atoll

14 days
from
£11,140
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Trip code: 
ASC
Way to Travel:
Voyages
Activity:
Marine Wildlife
Max group size:
135
Min age:
17

Snorkel or dive among corals teeming with over 100 species of fish

This magical archipelago keeps bringing us back—2020 will mark our 29th voyage! And it’s not difficult to see why we return again and again, with the Seychelles’ sublime scenery, rare and endemic species, and some of the best snorkeling and diving in the world. You’ll step ashore on remote island paradises that are impossible to reach on your own, including two full days on Aldabra Atoll.

Highlights

  • Enjoy world-class snorkelling and diving, the Seychelles is home to some 850 species of rainbow-hued fish.
  • Spend two full days exploring the magnificent Aldabra Atoll, a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Photograph a variety of sublime vistas, including La Digue, where huge granite boulders and swaying palms frame the picture-perfect white-sand beaches.
  • Wander the labyrinth of serpentine alleyways in Zanzibar’s Stone Town—a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
  • Discover a wealth of rare and endemic species, including giant Indian Ocean tortoises, Aldabra white-throated rails, Seychelles paradise-flycatcher Seychelles blue-pigeons.

Key information

  • 14 days land only
  • 135 guests
  • 12 nights aboard Le Bougainville, 1 night hotel
  • 13 breakfasts, 13 lunches, 13 dinners
  • Countries visited: Seychelles

What's included

  • Daily activity options including nature walks, Zodiac cruises, and snorkeling
  • All accommodations
  • World-class lecture and expedition team
  • All onboard meals and group meals ashore, including soft drinks, beer, and wine with lunch and dinner
  • All entrance fees, taxes, and landing and port charges
  • Arrival and departure transfers on group dates
  • Gift certificates for recommended expedition gear
  • Medical expense coverage and emergency evacuation insurance

 

What's not included

  • Airfare from your home city/Zanzibar and Mahé/home city    
  • Excess baggage charges
  • Airport arrival and departure taxes
  • Transfers for independent arrivals and departures
  • Passport and/or visa fees
  • Travel insurance
  • Items of a personal nature such as laundry, alcoholic beverages (other than listed above), and other incidentals
  • Email/Internet/fax/telephone charges

 

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Itinerary

Zanzibar
to
Mahe
  • Day 1

    Arrive in exotic Zanzibar.

    Arrive in exotic Zanzibar and transfer to our group hotel. Enjoy an afternoon at leisure before gathering this evening for a welcome reception and dinner.

    Accommodation: Standard Hotel

    Meals included: Dinner
  • Day 2

    Visit Stone Town, a World Heritage Site.

    Zanzibar is a lush, palm-fringed island with a long and storied history. This morning, visit Stone Town—a World Heritage Site, its mélange of architecture reflects a unique mix of Moorish, Arab, Persian, Indian, and European influences. After lunch, take a hike along the nature trails of Jozani Natural Forest Reserve where you are likely to spot the red colobus monkey. Embark Le Bougainville this evening.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 3

    At Sea

    Today, relax on board enjoying the ship's amenities and attending informative lectures to prepare you for your exploration of the magical Seychelles islands.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 4

    Assumption Island is famous for its clear surrounding waters.

    Assumption Island is famous for clear surrounding waters populated by a profusion of marine life. These qualities led Jacques Cousteau to film much of his documentary The Silent World at Assumption. Snorkel or dive among corals teeming with over 100 species of fish, including black lionfish, blue-ribbon eels, and Indian Ocean steephead parrotfish.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Days 5-6

    Spend two full days at magnificent Aldabra.

    Spend two full days at magnificent Aldabra, a World Heritage Site, and a highlight of your adventure. With a perimeter of 70 miles, Aldabra is one of the largest atolls in the world, comprising four major islands separated by channels. Because of the atoll’s extreme isolation, many of Aldabra’s species are endemics. Giant Aldabra tortoises—estimated to number over 100,000—roam wild over the islands. Tides permitting, cruise by Zodiac through the narrow passes to drift through a landscape of fascinating, eroded limestone topography. The tides have sculpted small islets into fantastical formations known as champignons, or “mushrooms.” Hundreds of lesser and great frigatebirds soar overhead; on land, search for the rare Aldabra white-throated rail, the only flightless bird found on any Indian Ocean island. Keep an eye out for robber crabs, whose claws are strong enough to crack coconuts, as they scamper across the turf. Enjoy an exhilarating drift snorkel where the incoming tide whisks you through the pass and into a lagoon populated by turtles and eagle rays. Visit the small scientific research station on Picard Island and photograph the mighty tortoises of this magical, isolated island that few travelers ever have the privilege to see.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 7

    Board Zodiacs to land on the uninhabited Astove Atoll.

    Board Zodiacs to land on this uninhabited island’s sandy beach. Part of the Aldabra Group, Astove was formerly the home of African slaves who escaped a Portuguese ship in 1760. More recently, Astove was the site of a copra plantation—its houses, drying sheds, and other buildings in various states of disrepair since being abandoned in the 1980s. Mature casuarina and Indian almond trees host the pendant nests of Souimanga sunbird, while snorkelers will delight in the crystal-clear waters of the large lagoon, frequented by turtles, groupers, and schools of tropical fish.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 8

    Take a walk along the beach and snorkel in the vast, shallow lagoon.

    Part of the Aldabra group, the vast majority of this huge atoll, measuring about nine miles across, is lagoon. Approximately 15,000 pairs of red-footed boobies nest in the bushy vegetation of the island, the largest breeding colonies of this species in the entire Indian Ocean. Other species found here include brown and masked booby, red-tailed and white-tailed tropicbird; and black-naped, sooty, and great crested tern. Take a walk along the beach and snorkel in the vast, shallow lagoon where turtles can often be found grazing on sea grass.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 9

    At Sea

    Spend the day at sea attending lectures and joining naturalists on deck to search for sea birds and marine mammals.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 10

    Experience the beauty and serenity of these three islands.

    We anchor in the Alphonse Island group to experience the beauty and serenity of these three islands that lie in the heart of the Seychelles Archipelago. Their remote location provides many opportunities for unspoiled exploration, including beachcombing on powdery white-sand beaches, and snorkeling and diving to spot the Madras snapper or any of the nine species of butterflyfish.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 11

    Take Zodiacs to Poivre Atoll for beachcombing, nature walks, and birding.

    The Amirante Islands are named in honor of Portuguese admiral Vasco da Gama’s 1501 visit. Take Zodiacs to Poivre Atoll for beachcombing, nature walks, birding, and a visit to the copra plantation.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 12

    Desroches’ low-lying coral reef encloses a serene lagoon.

    Desroches’ low-lying coral reef encloses a serene lagoon. This reef-surrounded island offers opportunities for snorkelers and divers to spot more colorful tropical fish or even a hawksbill turtle, or to stroll the white-sand beaches.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 13

    Giant granite boulders and swaying palms offset the postcard-perfect white beaches of La Digue.

    Giant granite boulders and swaying palms offset the postcard-perfect white beaches of La Digue. Explore this tranquil island by bike or take a stroll along the picturesque, sandy roads. Pass quaint, balconied houses and shops, a vanilla plantation, and a copra factory to reach the small Veuve Nature Reserve, where you may observe the endangered Seychelles paradise-flycatcher in its native habitat. Other common sights include the Seychelles swiftlet, Seychelles blue-pigeon, and Seychelles bulbul. Spend time on one of the world’s most breathtakingly beautiful beaches, Anse La Source d’Argent, to beachcomb, swim, or simply soak in your surroundings. After lunch on board, step ashore on Praslin and visit enchanting Vallée de Mai National Park, a World Heritage Site. The high-canopied, primeval palm forest is home to 4,000 coco-de-mer palms, which can grow to over 100 feet and live 800-1,000 years. The palm bears the world’s largest nut, weighing 20 - 40 pounds. Several other endemic palm species, as well as the Seychelles flying fox, populate this magical valley. We may spot the rare Seychelles black parrot and other birds of interest, including the Seychelles blue-pigeon and Seychelles sunbird.

    Accommodation: Le Bougainville

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch Dinner
  • Day 14

    Disembark for a tour of the Seychelles’ charming capital city.

    After breakfast, disembark for a tour of the Seychelles’ charming capital city. Mahé’s century-old botanical garden is home to 80 indigenous plant species, including five palm species, the vanilla orchid, and the rare jellyfish tree. An abundance of birds inhabit the area as well, including the Seychelles kestrel, Seychelles white-eye, and the rare, endangered Seychelles sunbird. After lunch, transfer to the airport for your independent homeward flight.

    Tour ends.

    Meals included: Breakfast Lunch
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Essential Info

Visas

Seychelles

There are NO VISA requirements to enter Seychelles. However, the following documents must be shown in order to obtain immigration clearance at the Seychelles International Airport:

  • A passport valid on the date of entry to and exit from Seychelles
  • Return or onward ticket
  • Proof of accommodation; including contact details
  • Sufficient funds for the duration of the stay 

Presentation of all of the above documents will grant you a Visitor’s Permit that will be issued upon arrival by the Seychelles Department of Immigration.

The Visitor’s Permit is initially valid for the period of visit of up to one month. The visitor's permit is issued free of charge for the first three months after which there is a fee of SCR5,000 for extension covering each period of three months or any part thereof.

Vaccinations

Seychelles

Confirm primary courses and boosters are up to date as recommended for life in the UK -courses or boosters usually advised are Typhoid and Tetanus.

There is no risk of yellow fever in the Seychelles, however, there is a certificate requirement. Travellers over 1 year of age arriving from countries with risk of yellow fever transmission and for all travellers having transited more than 12 hours through the airport of a country with risk of yellow fever transmission need to provide a certificate.



Is this trip for you?

This tour is operated in partnership with our sister company Zegrahm Expeditions. As such the departures are not exclusive to Exodus and groups may be a mixture of Exodus, Zegrahm Expeditions, and other clients. This trip is booked through Exodus and you will receive the same award winning customer service that you would expect. Zegrahm Expeditions operate with the same core principles used by Exodus and champion the benefits of small group travel.

Know Before You Go
For most activities a moderate level of exertion is required. You will need to climb into and out of Zodiacs for excursions ashore. Snorkeling and diving activities may begin from the Zodiacs or from beaches. On shore excursions, you must be able to walk moderate distances over beaches and occasionally rough terrain, such as muddy trails with exposed roots, and steps without handrails. Average daily temperatures will range from the low to upper 80s°F, though high humidity can make it feel warmer.

Following a review of all our trips we have categorised this trip as generally not suitable for persons of reduced mobility. However if you are a regular traveller on such trips, please contact customer services to discuss the trip and your personal condition.

Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

Accommodation

Le Bougainville

Le Bougainville is currently in the process of being built and will be completed in 2019. It will feature innovative and environment-friendly equipment, elegantly designed suites, and lounge areas that open to the outside. All suites feature ocean views and private balconies, while public spaces include an underwater lounge, as well as a pool, outside bar and dining area, theater, single-seating dining room, panoramic lounge, sun deck, salon, and a spa and fitness room. Le Bougainville will carry a fleet of Zodiacs.

GENERAL

  • Six decks of guest facilities.

- Deck 0 (not pictured in deck plan)
– Blue Eye Underwater Lounge.    
- Deck 3 – guest suites, reception, main lounge, pool, outdoor bar and dining area, boutique, theater, and doctor’s office.
- Deck 4 – guest suites and restaurant.
- Deck 5 – guest suites and bridge.
- Deck 6 – guest suites, panoramic lounge, and outdoor seating.
- Deck 7 – guest suites, sun deck, outdoor seating, salon, spa and fitness room.

  • Stairs and an elevator service all decks.
  • The bridge is available to visit most times throughout the day, contingent upon weather, security, and navigation conditions.
  • Smoking is permitted only on outside decks.

SUITES

  • All suites feature ocean views and private balconies, with two twin beds that can be reconfigured into one king, a well-appointed   en suite bathroom, closets, desk, IpodTM players, small refrigerator, flat-screen TV, personal safe, hair dryer, bath robes, French toiletries, individually controlled air-conditioning and heating, and American style outlets (two flat prongs) at 110 volts.
  • Category 1, 2, 3, and 4 suites are 205 square feet and have a sliding glass door leading to a 43 square foot private balcony.
  • Category 5 suites are 291 square feet and have a sliding glass door leading to a 65 square foot private balcony.
  • Category 6 suites are 344 square feet and have a sliding glass door leading to a 86 square foot private balcony.
  • Suites are 484 square feet and have a sliding glass door leading to a 328 square foot private patio. The owner’s suite is the      same size as the suites and features a Jacuzzi on the private balcony.

DINING

  • The main restaurant can accommodate all guests at one seating.
  • Most diets can be catered for on board, but special dietary requests must be made in advance.
  • Breakfast and lunch are served buffet-style.
  • Dinner is served in the main restaurant with four, a la carte courses. When weather permits, meals can also be served on deck.  
  • Afternoon tea is served in the lounge and coffee and tea are available 24 hours a day.

SERVICES

  • Le Bougainville carries a fleet of Zodiacs.
  • Laundry services (no dry cleaning) and a small doctor’s office are available on board. Rates are posted.
  • The Euro is the currency used on board. Traveler’s checks, Visa, MasterCard, and American Express are accepted for payment of shipboard accounts.
  • Wi-fi access is available throughout the ship. Rates are posted.
Call for general departures:
020 8772 3936
Call for tailormade trips:
020 8772 3874
Trip Notes

Click on the button below for detailed Trip Notes containing all the particulars about this trip, including kit lists and practical information.

Note: these can vary by departure; you can check out the specific Trip Notes for your chosen adventure on the dates & prices page.

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Dates & Prices

An overview of flight options

Exodus is committed to making joining our tours as easy as possible, wherever you live. We generally only block book seats from London, but this certainly does not mean that you need to fly from there. Depending on the route and airlines available, there will usually be various options available for those who want to fly from their local airport.

This page aims to provide a useful overview of the options available to our clients. However, the best flight arrangements should be tailored to your personal requirements, so please contact our Sales team for expert advice.

 

What kind of options do I have ?

1. We can book for you: Flights from anywhere in the world - not via London  

Depending on the route, this may be direct or via an overseas hub like Amsterdam, the Middle East or elsewhere. On short haul routes there may be direct flights with low cost airlines, charter flights or scheduled airlines. Exodus can book most, but not all, of these for you. The most appropriate airline may be different to that which we use for the group flight from London, but many people now travel on different airlines and meet up with their fellow passengers at the destination.

Pros Cons
  • May be the most direct route
  • Often the extra fare compared to the London flight is minimal.
  • As you will be in the hands a single airline for your entire journey, the airline will be responsible for your bags and your connections.
  • You may not be able to join the group transfers. However, we can usually arrange private transfers, or book your flights to try and coincide with the group transfers. See notes on transfer arrangements below.

 

2. We can book for you: Connecting flights from your local airport to London

Exodus can book connecting flights to London so you can join the group flight there. Connecting times will be followed according to airline advice, or as requested by clients. There are two types of fares we can use for this option: a 'through-fare' or a 'published fare'.
 
a) A 'through-fare' is where you will be in the main airline's care throughout. You change planes, but your bags are checked all the way through to your final destination. 

b) A 'published fare' ticket is completely seperate from your onward ticket from London. It is usually cheaper than a through-fare but will need to be paid for and issued as soon as it is booked. This can be a problem if your tour has not yet reached minimum numbers. On 'published fares' neither airline is aware that you have connecting flights, so Exodus is responsible for timing your connection, not the airlines involved. The tickets are also usually non changeable and non refundable.

Pros Cons
  • Depending on the fare type, Exodus or the airline is responsible for flight connections.
  • Through fare tickets can be expensive.
  • On a published fare, tickets must be issued immediately; tickets on published fares can be very difficult to change if onward flight times change; bags are not checked though to your final destination.
  • Published fares are non-refundable.

 

3. Booking some or all of the flights yourself

You can also book connecting air travel yourself, either to London, or all the way to the start point. There may be certain airlines or routes we don't have access to, so this is always an option. However, if you make your own travel arrangements you become liable for any delays, cancellations or missed connections, and Exodus is not required to offer refunds if you have trouble reaching the start of your trip.

Pros Cons
  • You might find cheaper fares, or routes not available to Exodus.
  • You are responsible for any delays or missed connections, and the cost of the tour is not protected should you miss your flight be cancelled.

 

 Notes on transfer arrangements

Sometimes it is possible to travel on a different airline to the group flight from London. Where this is the case, we need to think about ensuring you meet up with the group with minimum extra cost and hassle.

  • On certain trips, it is easy to arrive on a different flight and still meet the group at the hotel with time in hand. We can usually arrange private transfers (at extra cost) or offer advice on taking a taxi to the start hotel.
  • On other trips (especially in Europe), the transfer meets the group flight and then travels some distance to the first night's accommodation. Where this is the case, our Sales team will try to arrange flights that arrive before (and depart after) the group. However, we do have to make it clear in your final documentation that if your flights are delayed, the transfer cannot wait for you. While Exodus or our local operators will do what we can to help you reach the start point of the tour, any additional costs must be paid by the client. 

 

Next steps? 

Call our Sales team on: 0203 733 0698

Email your query: [email protected]