Created in 1979, the Morne Seychellois Park on the island of Mahé is the largest national park in Seychelles. The park comprises a total area of 3,045 hectares, which is more than 20% of Mahé Island.
The stunning coastline of Mahé is definitely the main draw for travelers in Seychelles. However, visitors must take the time to explore the island's hilly interior. The beautiful Morne Seychellois National Park harbors a wide variety of habitats ranging from coastal mangroves to Morne Seychellois. At 905 meters above sea level, Morne Seychellois is the highest peak in Seychelles. Nestled in a dense forest, the central region of the park is only accessible by walking trails.
Copolia peak is 500 meters above sea level and therefore, it allows a spectacular view of the east coast of Mahe and nearby granitic islands. It takes around 4 hours to complete the trek to the peak, both up and down. Visitors should allow extra time for activities at the top like picnicking. Since most of the trail is through dense forest, visitors can go on this walk at any time of the day.
Visitors can experience the indigenous flora and fauna of Mahé Island. The park has an extensive trail network of more than 15 kilometers. In fact, a total of 12 trails can be explored on foot by half or full day excursions. Visitors at Morne Seychellois National Park should also explore Valley Mare aux Cochons for an entire day. The valley features a freshwater marsh fed by a mountain stream, making it an ideal spot for group picnic.
The national park has steep terrain of cliffs and boulders covered with dense forest and woodland. Nepenthes pervillei, Phoenicophorium (thief palm), and Medusagyne (jellyfish tree) are the endemic plants in the national park. Seychelles kestrels, blue pigeons, scops owls, swiftlets, bulbuls, white-eyes, and sunbirds are some of native birds that can be spotted in the national park. The best time to visit Morne Seychellois National Park is from June to November.