The Seychelles Islands…where romance is always in the air.
Very few places on earth possess the same charm and natural allure as sensual Seychelles when it comes to choosing an idyllic venue for a wedding, anniversary or that impromptu, romantic break. For many years, just the name ‘Seychelles’ has conjured up magical images of a necklace of surreally beautiful islands, lost to the world and Time itself, where dappled sapphire seas conspire with silver sands and emerald palms to offer the very best in romantic experiences.
Even if such a sublime location required endorsement, well, that has recently been provided in the most emphatic way by the couple behind the wedding of the decade: the newly-married Duke & Duchess of Cambridge who chose to honeymoon in Seychelles, having already visited the islands once before. The royal couple is only the latest in a long line of V.V.I.P’s who make the pilgrimage to the islands considered by many to be the most beautiful in the world. They are attracted, not only by the extraordinary natural beauty and tranquillity of the place, but also by the remoteness of the islands from the madding crowd and from the cohorts of paparazzi who find it difficult to follow them there.
When you add to the mix the innate romantic ambiance which holds sway over Seychelles’ 115 islands, the natural friendliness of their tiny, 87,000- strong population and the grand diversity of experiences that the islands offer, it’s easy to see why a Seychelles’ Romantic Holiday is so high on many people’s bucket list. Apart from the near-perfect climate, one of the chief reasons is the fact that the
Seychelles Islands offer such diversity – not only in the islands themselves (74 low-lying coral atolls and 41, steep, granitic Inner Isles), but also in their flora & fauna, ethnicity, architecture, cuisine, traditions and activities. The islands offer amazing diving, fishing, sailing, trekking, eco-holidays, spa & wellness vacations and golf.Whether exchanging vows in the spectacular grounds of your hotel, beneath waving palms on a secluded beach or on one of the several enchanting, island getaways, you will be spoiled for choice when it comes to the many venues of heart-stopping beauty available to you.
Beyond a Seychelles wedding making a lot of economic sense when compared with the costs of tying the knot at home, when planning a wedding in Seychelles, it’s also handy to know that Seychelles is one country that does not require a visa from anyone. All that is required to enter the country is a return ticket, proof of accommodation and sufficient funds for the stay to qualify for a one-month visa.
Why not share your celebration with your family and friends by having them present to witness your union? Or, if you prefer total intimacy, then say ‘I do’ in splendid solitude – just the two of you. Whichever you choose, you will be swept off your feet by the attention of the dedicated teams of Seychelles’ international tour operators or the local destination management companies who are highly-experienced wedding specialists. Perhaps of particular note is that the hotels in Seychelles perform only one wedding per day, so clients are assured of the wedding team’s full attention, right down to the minute details. Where necessary, members of the wedding team are also able to serve as witnesses.
When you come to tie the knot among these fairy-tale islands, bear in mind that you should just arrive in Seychelles and be at the hotel at least three days prior to the ceremony in order to add the final touches to the wedding arrangements, which is actually a pre-requisite from most hotels when they draw up their wedding contracts.
You should also ensure that all required paperwork and documents are presented in either French or English and forwarded on time as per the Registrar’s requirements while noting that, in the case of church weddings, these require the approval of the Bishop of the couple’s religious denomination. Getting down to details, it is strongly advised that you book the services of a professional photographer and, also, those of a hair and make-up artist. You can also arrange for a special candle-lit dinner, either on the beach or in your villa on your special day but you should pre-book the menu to avoid disappointment.
There is even the option of engaging a solo musician to serenade you at the ceremony, and also of marrying on a catamaran in the late afternoon so that you may also enjoy the spectacular pleasures of a sunset cruise. The choice of accommodation in Seychelles is very wide and there is something to suit every budget, from the unbridled opulence of the many 5-star hotels and exclusive island resorts, to the charms of the smaller Creole hotels, guesthouses and self- caterings. Each occupies its own special niche and offers its own brand of unforgettable, Seychelles hospitality.
Seychelles is the perfect backdrop for a wedding, honeymoon or indeed any type of romantic break. There, among islands lapped by sapphire seas in the land of perpetual summer, there is a certain timeless quality to life that is hard to replicate anywhere else. It is almost as if the Creator designed these islands with lovers in mind.
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Images from Larchapel Hotel Praslin