Victoria, Mahe, Seychelles

Scattered across the surface of the Indian Ocean, the Seychelles is and archipelago of 115 islands, mixed between granitic isles, coral islands and atolls. Mahe, the largest island, is granitic and home to about 90% of the archipelago's population. Being an island nation in the midst of a huge ocean traversed by diverse populations during the annual monsoon cycles, the population of the Seychelles is among the most genetically diverse on earth. As a result, the handsome, hardy Seychelloise reflect every color of the human rainbow, and it is not uncommon to encounter a person of a café-au-lait hue with startling blue eyes. The island's architecture is also affected by this diversity, tempered by the demands of living in a tropical climate. Careful inspection of some antique buildings will reveal shards of Ming Chinese pottery and ancient Delft worked into the decorative mosaics. In Victoria, see the Clock Tower and the Botanic Gardens to marvel at several endemic species of flora. The island is ringed with the gorgeous beaches for which the islands are famous, and there are nature hiking trails and marine parks for snorkeling everywhere. The Victoria Market is a cultural experience, and usually holds a wide variety of colorful fishes from the surrounding seas and many varieties of tropical fruits and vegetables, as well as crafts and souvenirs.