London lifestyle & travels with kids and babies
This iconic beach of Mahe lured us back after 8 years and we were delighted to find Anse Intendance Seychelles as unspoilt and stunning as last time around. Banyan Tree Seychelles Ocean View Pool Villa was an amazing treat, highly private, gorgeous Creole architecture with stunning views over Intendance bay. Seychelles luxury villas in here feel blissful and out of this world!
Seaturtles slice of heaven : Intendance beach Seychelles
Set in a bay backed by lush vegetation, Anse Intendance Seychelles has almost 1 kilometre stretch of white sand that feels like paradise. A zillion shades of blue, including postcard turquoise water. Granitic formations make it particularly photogenic plus perfect for kids to climb on. Banyan Tree Seychelles luxury villas are beautifully secluded and hid behind the coconut trees. And we are eternally grateful to Banyan Tree for their sustainable and environmental conscious approach, which leaves the beach pristine to the green and hawksbills seaturtles to lay eggs in their needed privacy and thereafter babies to hatch.
October to January is the nesting season, so there were few nests by the beach marked by Banyan Tree Conservation Centre – some hatching early January and some later in February and March. We haven’t been as lucky as at Ras Al Jinz Oman on this occasion to witness either mother turtles coming to lay eggs or babies hatching. However, Banyan Tree other guests during our stay witnessed one late afternoon a green sea turtle laying eggs right by Anse Intendance – it must have been one sunset we decided to spend in our hillside villa!
Swimming at Intendance Bay Seychelles
Anse Intendance Seychelles is as beautiful as La Digue’s Anse Source d’Argent but its southwestern location on Mahe means the waves in here are larger and more powerful than on many Seychelles beaches as there’s no offshore reef sheltering the shoreline. Anse Intedance bay with kids is fun but one should be cautious at all times. With our young monkeys, we found the end opposite Banyan Tree the best and we managed swimming even on red flag beach days. We explored daily also various other points: few feasible with a 6 years old swimmer but the waves a tad too scary for the 3 years old in the other parts. I would go in and test first for few minutes; thereafter, will pick up the 3 or 6 years old and the father would bring the other child. The kids loved the fun in the waves; but just like us, became aware quickly of the strength of the waves, so no monkey business by themselves.
Best sunsets in Mahe, beachbar and seafront food treats
Anse Intendance Seychelles makes our favourite beach to see the sunset in Mahe. We’d either stop at the Rum Shack (Banyan Tree beach bar) and sip a lime kefir mojito and coconuts to watch the sun going down, or walk around and climb the boulders, jump by the shores and play with the waves. La Varangue is the other Banyan Tree bar which is perfect for sunsets and light bites. Should one feel peckish, Au Jardin d’Epices terrace is superb for dinners – the sound of crashing waves, sunset dramatic orange skies and thereafter stars coming out makes it pretty magic. We found the food Au Jardin exquisite – ink risotto, tuna tataki, fish soup, salads – all beautiful. The boys tested the steaks and were pleased and the wine of course world class.
Banyan Tree Seychelles conservation centre
And just behind Banyan Tree beachside villas, there are Banyan Tree wetlands where one can observe native beautiful birds, frogs and if you’re really lucky terrapins (mud turtles). Banyan Tree conservation centre closely monitors the activities for seaturtles and plenty of other wetland species which are under serious threat of extinction. The terrapins are one of them (in 2005 there were just 120 in the wild), so we considered ourselves super lucky to have met a couple! The conservation centre had also a veterinary Xray machine – broken wings for bats (or flying foxes) can be detected and fixed, terrapins and seaturtles injured and so on. Banyan Tree Seychelles conservation team is quite impressive, and we had the pleasure of seeing them in action twice on our stay. We also met a couple of volunteers who enthusiastically talked to 6 years old and me about their work, the wildlife and exotic flora.
Delightful to see so many sustainable initiatives from Banyan Tree in this slice of paradise: from protecting seaturtles and their environment, the wetlands and their wildlife (under serious threat given all the coastal developments), to caring for their own garden of vegetables, fruits and herbs, sugar cane for their own rum and beehives for honey.
Wildlife & flora at Anse Intendance Seychelles
Seychelles is a living museum of natural history and a sanctuary for some of the rarest species of flora and fauna – and Anse Intendance is a great place to observe it in awe. Our kids loved the huge crabs by the shores by sunsets; the wetlands just few metres away are beaming with life: from common frogs, to tiny Seychelles sunbird and red flamboyant ones, to egrets, fodies and flying foxes (or fruit bats ). The flora and Banyan Tree garden by the Conservation Centre is stunning: frangipani trees and exotic flowers, lemongrass, baby banana trees, green orange trees, papaya, mango, passion fruit, star fruit and even sugar cane.
Banyan Tree Ocean View Pool Villa, our stay and dining full review are coming shortly – keep an eye on ! We felt in love with their signature Thai restaurant Saffron 8 years ago; it’s as great and exquisite as back then, just the location changed next to the wonderful wetlands.
For more seaturtles retreats round the world, head to our favourite 10 places round the world. For a gorgeous child friendly sibbling property of Banyan Tree Seychelles, head to our review of Angsana Velavaru, perfect for snorkelling, diving and Maldives with kids. For Seychelles with toddler, check also our second stay at Kempinski Baie Lazare – there’s more fine powdery white sand, lush tropical jungle to be trekked, hundrends of shades of crystal blue beaming with sealife. And for Seychelles versus Maldives and which one suits you best, head here.
Banyan Tree is now closed for a change in ownership, rebranding and refurbishment by 2022 – but one will truly find at Four Seasons all magical ingredients from former Banyan Tree Mahe and perhaps even more, with fab bay swimming, snorkelling and diving right on Petite Anse. For further Seychelles inspiration, check our article on Best of Island hopping Seychelles : Praslin, Silhouette island, Courieuse and La Digue are so diverse and unique!
Disclosure: Many thanks to Banyan Tree for the media rate and wonderful treats. All pics, overexcited kids and ecstatic impressions – ours.