This book focuses on Seychelles’ largest land-based national park, the 3,067 ha-big Morne Seychellois National Park in the northwest of Mahé.
The national park is being presented in a way where the authors have let the 11 main public trails tell the story. It has resulted in a spell-binding journey, striking a balance between historical, cultural, and natural elements. The book touches on the pilgrimage at Trois Frères; the slavery at Mission Lodge; the Ethiopian Gallas-people at Dans Gallas; the so-called Doctor’s House (which has, however, nothing to do with a doctor nor a clinic) at Mare aux Cochons. We hear about the Swiss Fathers’ stone bridge at Mare aux Cochons; about the former agro-forestry attempts at Bernica Hill and likewise at Mare aux Cochons; and we hear about the Cinnamon era from the beginning of the 1900s till the end of the 1960s and hereafter the former forestry authority’s attempt to try to compensate for the loss of cinnamon income by planting a number of different, potential lumber trees in central parts of the park. And we hear about the stunning mist forest with dense moss and lichen cover all over and obviously about the many outstanding plants and animals as well, of which an impressively high number are endemic, rare and globally threatened – rising in numbers with the altitude. And finally, we hear about the almost desperate global need for sanctuaries like the Morne Seychellois National Park.
"I have always enjoyed hiking through the lush green mountains of Seychelles. With every turn, the journey gets just that more exciting as you discover a realm of undiscovered and untouched beauty that is a paradise within a forest. Getting in close touch with nature has a mesmerizing and unexplainable feeling that begs you to come back for more. Therapeutic at best, hiking can also be a solid test of your stamina. Nonetheless, having done a trail more than a few times, the discovery of the many hidden treasures along the way coupled with the feeling of accomplishment leaves you in anticipation for the next trip. Being very well written, lavishly illustrated with high quality and unseen photos, and innovative laid out, this book has all the qualities that will enable one to experience a wondrous journey through the lavish tropical rainforest of the Morne Seychellois National Park. Since it moreover is a solid tribute to the beauty of our islands, it can guarantee the best quality of experience even to someone who has never visited Morne Seychellois but after having read the book most undoubtedly would be attracted to visit – or re-visit – this the biggest and most outstanding national park in the Seychelles"
– Devika Vidot, Seychelles' Minister for Investment, Entrepreneurship & Industry
"This is a must-have book for all nature-lovers visiting or living in Seychelles! Within the 140 information-packed pages the authors provide practical tips for exploring no less than eleven trails in the Morne Seychellois National Park – covering the whole spectrum of our tropical island's habitats, from coastal cliffs lapped by the Indian Ocean to uphill marshes adorned with majestic screw-pines, and mountain mist forests festooned with moisture-drenched mosses and ferns. The illustrations, carefully selected from thousands of high quality photographs amassed during years of crisscrossing the islands on foot, complement the text perfectly. They draw attention to interesting topographical features, to the unique plants that, in these out of the way places, have managed to survive the onslaught of development, and to the animal denizens that rest, feed and mate under the cover of palms, ferns and broad-leaved trees, many of which are found nowhere else on Earth. History and culture are not forgotten. The description of every trail comes with its share of fascinating facts. This is the therefore sort of book that fills many different niches. It will serve to plan your hikes, to put a name to plants and animals you come across, as the perfect souvenir of your immersion in Seychellois nature, and as the ideal gift for friends, whether they have visited Seychelles already or are still to discover these islands and their real treasure including an intriguing flora and fauna that will yield some of their secrets thanks to this engaging and enlightening book."
– Pat Matyot, Producer, Seychelles Broadcasting Corporation (SBC)