• Menu
  • Menu
Curieuse, Bild: Reisemagazin Online

Curieuse – A small island full of natural wonders

The Red Island or Île Rouge, as it was once called because of the bright red glowing laterite sand, is one of the 42 granite islands of the Seychelles. It only received its name Curieuse, which means “curious” in German, later from a French researcher who was traveling on the ship of the same name.

Although the tranquil island in the Indian Ocean is only about three square kilometers in size, it hides unique natural beauties that cannot be found anywhere else in the world. So it’s no wonder that the entire island is protected as a Curieuse Marine National Park. The national park also includes the Baie Curieuse, south of Curieuse. And so, la Curieuse, it really makes you curious about who might be at home there.

As part of the Inner Islands of the Seychelles, it is only a few kilometres away from the popular tourist islands of Praslin, La Digue and Cousine. It is also only 50 kilometres northwest from the main island of Mahé to Curieuse. Excursion boats from several providers regularly depart from the tourist islands for a day trip to the natural paradise. This also includes snorkeling and diving excursions, where you can explore the colorful and fish-rich underwater world of the coral reefs around the small island. Point Rouge in the east of Curieuse is a popular diving spot.

Unforgettable nature experiences for active holidaymakers, families and explorers

Fortunately, there is hardly anything left today to indicate that the island of Curieuse served as a leper island for lepers in the 19th century. Only in the small Doctor ́s House, a French colonial building that now houses a small café and a visitor center, can you find some information about it. Currently, few people live on the idyllic Seychelles island – most of them are employees of the research station who want to learn more about the life of turtles and protect them.

See also  Djerba – Where the sun goes on holiday
Turtles Curieuse
Image: Reisemagazin Online

The researchers are particularly fond of the Seychelles giant tortoise, which is only found in the Seychelles and can live up to 300 years. Scientists are still investigating the question of how a tortoise on a desert island could develop so large. At least as surprising is the closest relationship with the Madagascar giant tortoises, as the two island states are about 2,000 kilometers apart.

And the giant tortoise is a tortoise on top of that – so, how on earth did it get here? By the way, the rare hawksbill turtle has also found a home on Curieuse. Another species that can only be found on Curieuse and the neighboring island of Praslin is the palm Coco de Mer. The double nut of the palm tree with its huge seeds can weigh up to 20 kilograms and is the largest coconut in the world. Apart from these endemic species, extensive, dense mangrove forests and banana trees thrive on the tranquil Seychelles island.

Curieuse – A day trip for connoisseurs

On the island of Curieuse, there is also a beautiful, wide sandy beach, which stands out for its bright red color. If you’re lucky, one of the popular Creole barbecues is being held on the finely powdered beach. Since speedboats and water taxis regularly come with day tourists, this is quite often the case.

You can then explore the impressive nature park either on your own or with a professional national park ranger – who of course knows all the special features and interesting places where you can observe water birds and giant tortoises, where you can encounter unique landscapes or enjoy a breathtaking view. More or less paved paths lead through the entire, slightly hilly park over hill and dale, but you don’t necessarily have to use them.

See also  Sal – Surfing and snorkeling paradise on the coast of West Africa

The wetlands of the mangrove forests are accessible via wooden walkways. Although the giant tortoises mainly stay near the beach, where numerous shore crabs and sea snails also live, there are always unforgettable encounters with the relaxed animals in the untouched wilderness in the interior of the island. Here and there a gecko also crosses the path. Feeding the giant tortoises is allowed, but only with fresh palm or banana leaves. The animals would do anything to get their hands on the coveted leafy green and are therefore not shy. An encounter with the turtles on a day trip to Curieuse is a lasting experience on a Seychelles holiday.