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Beach at L'Archipel

L'Archipel and Le Repaire La Digue

Explore the small, sleepy island of La Digue before flying over to Praslin island to relax on the beautiful beach at L'Archipel.

Whats Included:
2 nights La Digue including breakfast; 7 nights L’Archipel including breakfast. Includes flights and transfers.

12 days from £2,630pp

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Audley Travel specialist Sarah

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On the beach - 8 days

L'Archipel, Praslin

Small and enchanting, the independently owned Hotel L'Archipel offers excellent value for money and great charm and character. Set in a natural rock amphitheatre blanketed in mature gardens, it offers an intimate Seychelles experience a world apart from the international chains.

Hotel L'Archipel is in a wonderfully peaceful location in the northeast of Praslin and is set on a secluded bay flanked by rocky outcrops. The elegant whitewashed buildings are built in a colonial style with the cottages scattered across the hillside. Choose to laze by the infinity pool or on the beach, take snorkelling trips from the hotel's private boat, or kayak in the crystal-clear waters. The gentle crescent of white sand here shelves gently into the sea making it perfect for swimming and guests can also try scuba diving or fishing with a professional guide. The hotel has two restaurants, La Gigolette right on the beach and the more formal Feuille d'Or, which serves locally-caught fish and international dishes. Twice a week a Creole buffet is served on the beach. Two villages with a choice of shops and restaurants are close by should you wish to venture further afield.

The 32 rooms and suites are joined by winding paths fringed by hibiscus and frangipani and each room has a spacious terrace with panoramic views of the gardens and ocean.

After the beach - 2 days

La Digue

Pretty coves and exquisite white-sand beaches line the coast of La Digue island, where ox carts and bicycles are the main form of transport. Relax and enjoy the slow pace of life, cycle along the coast passing coconut plantations and small Creole houses or take to the water for incredible snorkelling and diving. You can also take boat trips to the tranquil islands of Iles Cocos, Marianne and Les Soeurs or explore the trails of La Digue Vev Reserve, a lovely spot that is home to black paradise flycatchers that are unique to the area.

Le Repaire is a charming hotel set on a lovely beach, within easy walking distance of the shops, jetty and bicycle hire. The 18 stylish rooms offer sea, mountain or garden views while the restaurant and pool overlook the ocean.

L'Archipel, Praslin

32 rooms, 2 restaurants, 1 pool

Description

L'Archipel sits in a natural amphitheatre of mature gardens, leading out onto a gentle crescent of sand that’s framed by rocky outcrops. Winding paths lead through the gardens and up the hillside to your room or suite, passing palms, flowering hibiscus and bougainvillea trees.

This family-run property is an intimate Seychelles experience that’s worlds apart from the international chain alternatives. There’s an informal, laid-back atmosphere and lots of space to relax around the hotel.

The hotel was one of the first in the Seychelles, and has a colonial feel with white-washed panelling and plenty of polished wood. Rooms are set in cottages scattered across the hillside, all looking out towards the Indian Ocean.

For families

L'Archipel welcomes families although there are no specific children's facilities.

L'Archipel is located in a secluded cove in the northeast of Praslin, just 25 minutes’ drive from the airport at the end of Côte d'Or beach. The beach has soft white sand that shelves gently into the sea and is set in a sheltered bay flanked at both ends by rocky outcrops making the beach feel very private.

Although the location feels quite remote, the hotel is set between two villages, Baie Ste Anne and Anse Volbert, putting restaurants and shops within 5-10 minutes’ drive.

Our opinion

L'Archipel is built in a typical Creole style, tucked away in a peaceful location on its own beach. This is very much a boutique hotel, with lots of character.

Given the secluded and intimate atmosphere, it’s popular with honeymooners and couples, but anyone looking to enjoy the relaxed island pace of life and explore the Seychelles would find this characterful hotel a good choice.

Rooms

The rooms are in two-storey buildings scattered across the gardens and up the hillside, connected by winding paths lined with hibiscus and bougainvillea. Some are near the beach whilst others are higher up on the hillside, all with ocean views. Each of the spacious rooms opens out onto a well-sized balcony that wraps around the front of the building.

Please note, that as the resort is set over a hillside, there are many steps to reach most rooms and as there is no buggy service, this hotel may not be suitable for those who are less mobile.

Family suite

These two suites are the largest room type at the hotel at 120 sq m (1,291 sq ft). Set on the top floor of the main building these spacious suites have a separate lounge and an expansive veranda.

Deluxe

Spacious deluxe rooms are 60 sq m (645 sq ft) set on the hillside, gardens or close to the beach with a balcony overlooking the Indian Ocean.

Senior suite

The senior suites are slightly larger than the rooms at 65 sq m (699 sq ft). They offer a lounge adjacent to the bedroom and are set on the hillside with enviable views from the balcony.

Pictures of the rooms

Activities, diving & excursions

The infinity pool located on the upper level of the main building has views overlooking the silvery sand beach and gently curving bay. Kayaks and stand-up paddle boards are complimentary, and there’s a small reef a few meters off shore for snorkelling. The hotel arranges snorkelling trips further afield and you can also hire bicycles to explore the surrounding area. 

As you’d expect given the size of the hotel, there isn’t as wide a range of facilities as some of the large international chain hotels. However, it’s perfect for those who would like to explore independently or spend some time relaxing by the beach or pool.

Seychelles has a wide variety of diving opportunities including wall dives, drift dives and wreck dives for more experienced divers. You might spot turtles, manta rays, reef sharks or sting rays.

In general, the best conditions are April-May and October-November when visibility is best and the water temperature is warm.

The hotel doesn’t have its own dive centre but can help you arrange diving with local operators.

Food & drink

The restaurants are set in the main building overlooking the Indian Ocean, with the mountainous interior of Praslin rising up in the background.  On the ground floor, La Gigolette is at the beachfront while on the upper floor, La Feuille d'Or has a more formal setting. Dishes include seafood, creole and international dishes and varies between table d'hote and buffet. The dishes are created with a focus on local ingredients and seasonal produce.

A Creole buffet is served on the beach weekly with live music and traditional moutya dancing. There are also dining options in the two nearby villages — staff at the hotel will be able to secure a reservation for you and many local restaurants will provide complimentary transfers to and from the hotel.

Please note, gentleman are expected to wear trousers at the bar and restaurants in the evenings. The drinks in the bar tend to be good value compared with other Seychelles hotels, so you’ll often find a lively atmosphere in the evenings.

Spa Facilities

The hotel doesn’t have a spa however in-room treatments can be organised on request.

La Digue

Location: La Digue

La Digue is a sleepy island where life is relaxed and nobody is ever in a hurry.

Creole houses nestle under papaya trees with flowers overflowing from window boxes and plant pots. Fishermen dawdle along the road with fish hanging from sticks, wooden pirogues glide across the water and ox-carts and bicycles are the principal forms of transport.

Wildlife of La Digue

Offshore, La Digue is surrounded by a necklace of coral reefs. Here, snorkelling will reveal corals, sponges, and all manner of fish from emperor angelfish to starfish and turtles. Hundreds of black paradise flycatchers are protected in La Digue Vev Reserve, a lovely spot to while away a few hours, where gentle trails lead through takamaka and badamier trees.

Beaches

Whilst small, just 5 kilometres long and 3 kilometres wide, La Digue is not short of exquisite beaches. The coast is lined with pretty coves, soft, white sand, interspersed with granite boulders that turn pink in the sunset. The beaches are flanked by coconut palms and fairy terns and white-tailed tropicbirds are a common sight.

La Digue is ideal for relaxation, although there are gentle activities to enjoy as well. You can enjoy bike rides along the coast, visit the coconut plantation and ramble to view points and deserted beaches. You can also take boat trips to the islands of Iles Cocos, Marianne and Les Soeurs, all of which are even quieter than La Digue.

Le Repaire

Accommodation: Le Repaire

This charming small hotel has a good central location on La Digue, in easy walking distance of the shops, jetty and bicycle hire shop.

There are just 18 rooms here, all spacious and all feature air conditioning, fan, a safe, television, hair dryer, mini fridge, tea and coffee making facilities and an ensuite bathroom with shower. Four of the rooms have sea views, three have garden views and two have a mountain view. It is possible to add an extra bed for a child into all of the rooms, making this a good option for families.

There is a restaurant which overlooks the sea, serving light lunches and dinner, using a mix of Italian and Seychellois influences. There is also a small swimming pool, as well as the lovely beach of course.

Itinerary

Day by day

Day 1

Board your plane for the overnight flight to the Seychelles .

Day 2

On landing in Mahe you will be met by an Audley representative who will show you around to the domestic terminal for your flight to Praslin. This flight is only about 15 minutes and you can enjoy the beautiful views over the islands as you go. Once you arrive in Praslin you will be collected at the airport and taken over to the jetty to catch the 15minute ferry to La Digue. When you arrive at the jetty in La Digue you will be collected and taken over to your hotel.

Day 3

Today perhaps have a walk down to the main street where you can hire a bicycle for a few days or for the duration of your stay. This is the best way to get around the island and gives you complete independence to go where you want, and when. They come with baskets in the front so you can pack a picnic, and snorkel masks and fins, and just head to a secluded beach!

Day 4

Today you will be collected from your hotel and taken over to the jetty in time for the ferry to Praslin.

When you arrive on Praslin you will be met and taken to L'Archipel for a week of relaxation and exploration.

Day 5

L`Archipel is well suited to a spot of relaxation with an excellent beach, shady pool and very attentive staff.

During your stay you can relax or enjoy activities to explore the island or surrounding waters.

Day 6

Why not take a sailing trip to explore some of the fascinating islands off the coast of Praslin as well as enjoying great snorkelling opportunities.

Day 7

Aride Island is one of the most striking islands of the Seychelles and well worth a visit not only for the scenery but also to discover its birdlife and flora.

Day 8

Situated east of Praslin, Coco and Felicite are beautiful islands with white sandy beaches frequented by turtles. The rare green turtle can be seen from June to September and so you may just be lucky enough to catch them while you are there.

Day 9

One option for seeing more of the island is to arrange a visit to the Vallée de Mai. Here a guide will show you some of the plants which are endemic to the Seychelles such as the Coco de mer, and if you're lucky you may even spot the very rare black parrot.

Day 10

Enjoy your last day at L'Archipel before preparing to return home.

Day 11

Today you will be collected from your hotel and taken over to the airport for your flight home.

Day 12

Arrive home.

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This itinerary is designed to give you a flavour of what is possible.

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