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Aride island is the northern most granitic island in the Seychelles and lies about 30 km from Mahe. It was given its name because of the period of drought that the explorers noted at the time of discovery. Once belonging to chocolate baron Christopher Cadbury, all 68 hectares of the island is a nature reserve and is leased and managed by the Island Conservation Society of Seychelles. Except for 4 rangers and 6 wardens, the island is uninhabited.

Millions of seabirds breed on Aride each year including the worlds largest colony of lesser noddy, the largest Seychelles population of roseate terns and the worlds largest colony of Tropical Shearwater. The Seychelles warbler was introduced to Aride in 1988 and its population is now the largest in the world with over 2,000 breeding pairs.

All over the islands, thousands of green lizards and green Seychelles day gecko can be seen, completely untroubled by the presence of man, as they go about their business. Those with a keen eye can spot the more timid grass snakes and giant millipedes hiding in between rocks.

Giant tortoises were brought over to Aride from Aldabra with the aim of building a new tortoise colony on the island. Aride is also the only place in the world where the Wrights Gardenia flower is endemic.

Visits can be arranged to the island between the months of October to April, Monday to Thursday and visitors must pay a landing fee. Aride Special Reserve extends 200 metres out into the ocean and it is forbidden to collect shells, picnic, fish or sail in the protected zone.


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