#WTMA17: The Seychelles playing an active role in conserving its biodiversity

During his talk at World Travel Market Africa 2017, David Germain, the director for Africa and America's Seychelles Tourism Board, took us through all that the Seychelles as a vibrant holiday destination has to offer, highlighting the Seychellois' welcoming personalities, open hearts, and consideration for the well-being of the island's flora, fauna, marine life, and beaches.
David Germain
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Home to islands Mahe, Praslin and La Digue, the Seychelles has become famous for its lively culture, welcoming locals, and eco-friendly environments, presenting visitors not only with a home-away-from-home experience, but one of relaxation, and appreciation for natural resources and the protection thereof.

The Seychelles way of life boasts authentic customs and traditions, including a selection of activities from a catch and release fishing system, sailing, and cruises to island hopping excursions. We all sat in admiration of the serene beauty of the Seychelles via a PowerPoint presentation that Germain prepared, where he showed us the various islands, their relationships and what visitors can expect on their holidays.

Sun, sea and sand

The Seychelles, as Germain explained, is a melting pot of multi-ethnic people, with a population of 95,000 people who live in harmony with one another. The majority of people live on the main island of Mahe, where one would find lots of fish, cooked in many ways with local aromas and spices, which is provided to international visitors.

The island prides itself on the safety and security of its guests and locals and enjoys a crime free environment where virtually no violence takes place. It is also known for its natural beauty and basks in the summer season all year round with temperatures of 26 degrees and 75-85 degrees Fahrenheit. Germain considers the Seychelles a niche destination and says that it is not mass, receiving just over 3,000 visitors a year, exercising and encouraging a strong sustainable programme.

Respecting the conservation

The programme, known as the Seychelles Sustainable Tourism Label was created to provide assistance to tourism establishments on how to operate sustainably, by conserving natural resources, reducing waste and supporting the local community.

As the Seychelles is a biodiversity hotspot, it includes a lot of restrictions as its biodiversity is at risk from human-induced pressures. Since the island is blessed with rare species of flora and fauna, including endangered birds and plants, it is vital to maintaining the protection of this natural heritage for future generations.

Playing a proactive role

Seychelles urges its visitors to stay in eco-friendly accommodation facilities, taking care to acquaint themselves with the flora and fauna of the Seychelles by visiting environmental websites.

Travellers are informed and reminded that the Seychelles’ quality tourism is dependent on the conservation of its natural resources, the protection of the environment and respecting both international and local regulations.

It's important to note that although Seychelles is considered a perfect getaway, it values its natural beauty and expects the same of visitors that are making their way to the island. I'll definitely be making a plan to make my way to Seychelles' sandy utopia and sticking to the biodiversity rules.

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