Stroll the fabled Source d’Argent beach before discovering Zanzibar’s dazzling history. Marvel at vibrant palettes of marine life as you enjoy a snorkel off tiny atolls. Study and interact with the endemic wildlife of unspoilt Aldabra for two full days. Experience everything the Maldives and the Seychelles have to offer on this 18-day adventure.
Please note: Voyage prices are indicative and can fluctuate - please check for details.
• Swim and snorkel in crystal clear waters among hundreds of colourful reef fish
• Visit Aldabra –a UNESCO World Heritage Site
• See the giant tortoises in the wild
• Stroll under Coco-de-Mer palm trees
• Marvel at Nature’s ability to create art on Praslin
• Discover Zanzibar’s spices and hear about Zanzibar’s Arabian and European history
Embark Silver Discoverer and depart on your exciting expedition — “Atolls and Spices -World Heritage Sites of the Indian Ocean”. After settling in you will attend a safety briefing and be introduced to your Expedition Team. Weather permitting we will have a sail-away cocktail on deck -an aperitif might help to relax after your travels towards Silver Discoverer.
We invite you to familiarise yourself with your new home away from home, meet some of your fellow travellers and enjoy the first of many memorable meals in The Restaurant.
Unwind from your travels to Silver Discoverer and relax on the open decks, visit the Spa or gym. Follow our lecturers in their presentations about the natural history of the Indian Ocean’s islands and animals.
Tonight the Captain will invite you to the Captain’s Welcome cocktail party while our Executive Chef and Restaurant Manager will invite you to The Restaurant and the Welcome dinner.
The Maldives are made up of 1190 islands, of which 200 are inhabited. Atolls are the perfect place to unwind on a beach and watch the waves lapping onto the sand. These islands are also a geographical marvel, where thousands of fish swimming around the vivid corals are just a few feet away from where you sit.
Uligamu is one of the northernmost inhabited islands of Haa Alif Atoll and the Maldives. Based on its location the island is visited by many yachts on their way into or out of the Arabian Sea.
While Silver Discoverer is going to be cleared into the Maldives in Uligamu we will have a look at the community of some 300 inhabitants. The island has been selected as the first in the Maldives to use a combination of renewable energies via wind turbines and solar panels in a micro grid, helping the island through more efficient and non-pollutant energy distribution.
The Baa Atoll Biosphere Reserve comprises 75 islands, 13 of which are inhabited by a population of approximately 12,000 people.
Maldivian coral reefs support a high diversity of reef animals, including some 250 species of soft and hard corals and 1,200 reef and reef-associated fish species. Hanifaru Bay and its resources were designated as a Marine Protected Area in 2009. Hawksbill and green turtles, manta rays, whale sharks and different species of seabirds use the reserve. Napoleon wrasses and tawny nurse sharks frequent the area. Since this is also a Core Area of the Biosphere Reserve scuba diving activities within the area are not allowed.
A small vegetated sand cay is located on the western corner of the reef and the lagoon is relatively shallow, dominated by sand and has no direct channels to the ocean. Turtles and seabirds utilize the island for nesting purposes. On the south-eastern side a small bay attracts mega fauna and at certain times over 250 individual manta rays and several whale sharks have been recorded actively feeding in this area –obviously, such numbers are exceptional.
In the afternoon we will visit tiny Olhugiri. Olhugiri Island is an uninhabited island located at the southern end of Baa Atoll. The island, lagoon and the surrounding reef area are protected. Olhugiri is one of two islands in the entire Maldives with regular roosting frigatebirds, mainly Lesser Frigate (Fregata ariel), and Red-billed Tropicbirds. The island’s beaches are used by turtles for nesting.
Meemu Atoll has a population of 6500 inhabitants and 33 islands, of which 9 are inhabited. Set like pearls on a necklace the islands circle the lagoon, which our divers and snorkelers will want to inspect at Maalhaveli — to see what underwater creatures will pose for them. The surrounding coral reefs and dive sites are virtually pristine, with intact and healthy corals and an abundance of aquatic life where manta rays, turtles, reef sharks and all manner of tropical reef fish can be seen.
During the afternoon we will head south. Let our lecturers introduce you to further wonders lying ahead, both above and below the water.
Be prepared for a possible visit by Neptune, as we are about to cross the Equator.
Addu is the southernmost of the Maldives’ atolls and Addu City is one of only two cities in the Maldives. Since Addu is some 540 kilometres south of Male, there even is an international airport on Gan, one of Addu Atoll’s islands.
We have the full day to explore both land and sea. Our Expedition Team will accompany you on walks looking for birds and other wildlife, while our Marine Biologist(s) will be there to show you some exceptional reefs and underwater creatures
To cover the vast expanse of the Indian Ocean, we will be at sea for three days. Our lecturers will offer talks preparing you for our visit to the Seychelles, be it about its historical aspects or natural history.
In addition you can unwind, relax, and make use of the gym or Spa, or any of the other amenities Silver Discoverer can offer.
Silver Discoverer will clear into the Seychelles in Victoria, on the island of Mahe, during the morning.
We will take our time to have a look at Mahe which houses almost 90% of the country’s inhabitants, yet the forests have rare endemic plants found only in the Seychelles. Apart from the forests there are three Marine Parks protecting underwater life.
A visit to the nation’s capital Victoria would have to include ‘Big Ben’, the local version of England’s iconic building. To get an idea of the wide variety of plants found in the tropics, stroll through the Botanic Gardens. A good viewpoint towards Morne Seychellois, the island’s highest point, is from the former Capuchin Mission.
La Digue probably is the best-known island of the Seychelles since its rock formations are spectacular. The huge granite boulders that are scattered along the shore resemble modern art sculptures and have been featured in many books and on many postcards. Apart from its brilliant white beaches and strangely shaped rocks, the island has a nature reserve and colonial houses — all making for excellent photography. Take a step back in time and visit L’Union Estate — see a traditional copra mill and kiln and watch the antics of the estate’s population of giant land tortoises or stroll around the majestic Plantation House framed by giant granite boulders in landscaped gardens. This natural wonder is classified as a National Monument.
The estate is also home to the cemetery of the original settlers of La Digue and to one of the most pristine beaches in Seychelles — the legendary ‘Source d’Argent’ — among the most photographed beaches on earth.
During lunch Silver Discoverer repositions and will anchor off Praslin Island, the site of the fabulous Vallée de Mai, one of Seychelles’ two UNESCO World Heritage Sites. We disembark after lunch via Zodiac to the picturesque Baie Ste. Anne jetty, to drive up the scenic coastal road through a quaint fishing village and dense forest of contrasting shades of green, to Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve. With a population of 6,500 people, Praslin, Seychelles’ second largest island, measures only 10km by 3.7km, but it has substantial tracts of tropical forests with over 6,000 Coco-de-Mer palms with enormous fan-shaped fronds. These trees can grow more than 100 feet tall, living 800-1,000 years and are home to endemic birds, such as the Seychelles Bulbul and the Seychelles Black Parrot. During our walking tour, you will discover this mystical World Heritage Site famous for the Coco de Mer — the largest seed in the plant kingdom weighing up to 40 pounds. Capture the cathedral feel of this primeval forest and listen for the high-pitched whistles of the Black Parrot. Later we depart Vallée de Mai for Cote d’Or Beach, where we have time for an afternoon swim or stroll along this beautiful beach. Enjoy afternoon refreshments before heading back to Silver Discoverer in time for dinner.
Desroches Island is one of the Outer Islands of the Seychelles and the main island of the Amirante Islands. Located 230 km southwest of Mahé, it has a land area of only 3.24 km², but 15 kilometres of fine sand beaches. The northern part of the island is run as a coconut plantation and farm, and there is a settlement on the northern shore. The first coconut plantations were started in 1875 and copra is still processed on the island before being transported to Mahé. We spend the morning exploring Desroches’ beautiful beach, returning to Silver Discoverer for lunch.
During the afternoon we will continue our lecture programme and prepare you for another spectacular UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Our lecturers will continue to provide several talks and seminars to prepare you for the UNESCO World Heritage Site Aldabra.
The atoll of Aldabra is one of the best-researched atoll ecosystems in the world as a scientific research station was established there and research has gone on and is going on -and our Marine Biologist, Botanist and Ornithologist will all want to explain what makes the island and its inhabitants so special.
Part of the Outer Islands of the Seychelles, Aldabra is reputedly the world’s second-largest atoll and has been described as “one of nature’s treasures”, a “sanctuary”, and it will truly be a privilege to be able to visit this UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Because of its extreme isolation, Aldabra is virtually untouched by humans. Its distinctive island fauna includes the Aldabra Giant Tortoise (Aldabrachelys gigantea). About two thirds of the world population of giant tortoises lives on Aldabra. As Aldabra lacks freshwater and is difficult to access, Aldabra has not been developed for tourism. No airport has been built, and only a handful of smaller ships (with special permits) are allowed to call at this unique atoll.
Silver Discoverer will anchor off Aldabra for two days. We enjoy exhilarating drift snorkels as the incoming tide whisks us into a lagoon populated with eagle rays, turtles, and coral gardens teeming with marine life. Time and tides permitting, we cruise via Zodiac through narrow channels between fossilised coral islands, and we cruise between mangrove-covered islands to observe large colonies of nesting boobies and Great Frigatebirds soaring overhead. As the tides pump water in and out of the lagoon, massive numbers of fish come and go through channels to feed. We can snorkel in these same channels, allowing the current to carry us along a magical scene.
We go ashore to visit the small scientific research station on Picard Island and photograph the mighty tortoises living on this isolated island that few travellers have the privilege to see.
Silver Discoverer will head for the Spice Islands -as the archipelago around Zanzibar was known in former days. Our lecturers will prepare you for a visit to Zanzibar and its truly surprising history of European and Arabian influence and the trade that made Zanzibar famous.
Today we will visit the last UNESCO World Heritage Site of our voyage: Stone Town — a fine example of a Swahili coastal trading town. At the City Market we can see and smell the tropical fruits that are on offer and can see the freshly ground spices. Within walking distance is the Anglican Church, built over the old Great Slave Market. Slaves from all over East Africa had once been brought here and had been kept in underground chambers. Our next stop will be a spice farm in the countryside. To get there we will drive past the Old Arab Fort and Dr. Livingstone’s house.
At the spice farm you will have a guided tour and can taste some of the exotic spices and fruits grown here. The different plants are grown for food flavouring, for cosmetics, as dyes and for traditional medicine. The visit to the spice farm will be followed by lunch at a beach resort and free time at the beach for swimming, beachcombing or relaxation.
Alternatively you might only want to go swimming and snorkelling at a Sandbank. To get there you will be taken by traditional dhows. The crystal clear waters invite you to explore the underwater world, looking for coral and fishes.
After breakfast, disembark Silver Discoverer.
Expedition highlights and wildlife listed here are possible experiences only and cannot be guaranteed. Your Expedition Leader and Captain will work together to ensure opportunities for adventure and exploration are the best possible, taking into account the prevailing weather, wildlife activity and ice conditions. Expedition Team members scheduled for this voyage are subject to change or cancellation.
Overall size of 186 SQ.FT. / 17.3 M2. Enjoy a sitting area to watch brilliant scenery through a view window. With preferred midship location, Deck 4 Explorer Suites accommodate three guests. As on Deck 4, the Explorer Suites on Deck 3 offer an ample view window and relaxing sitting area, with enough room for three guests. An enchanting retreat suitable for three guests, Deck 2 suites exude cozy opulence, with porthole window views and a cushy sitting area. Features: View window or portholes, Sitting area, Twin beds or queen-sized bed, Marbled bathroom, Writing desk, Personal safe, Hair dryer, Flat screen television
Overall size of 181 SQ. FT. / 16.8 M2. Welcoming and comfortable, the View Suite provides a relaxing haven for even the utmost adventure-seeking guests. Complete a day spent exploring onshore with an evening unwinding in the comfort of your sitting area. Capture passing ocean scenes through your view window. Freshen up in your beautiful marbled bathroom before enjoying an elegant onboard dinner. Or cozy up under fine bed linens to watch an on-demand movie on the flat-screen television. Fall asleep easily, dreaming of the incredible experiences that await you the following day. Features: View window, Sitting area, Twin beds or queen-sized bed, Marbled bathroom, Choice of bathroom amenities, Writing desk, Hair dryer, Personal safe, Flat screen television with DVD and satellite reception, Wifi available (fees apply)
Overall size of 269 SQ. FT. / 25 M2. A quiet sanctuary. The suite’s sitting area has plenty of room to relax while on your cruise. Large picture windows frame panoramic ocean views. The perfect backdrop for breakfast in bed. Some Vista Suites accommodate three guests. Features: Large view window(s), Sitting area, Twin beds or queen-sized bed, Marbled bathroom, Choice of bathroom amenities, Personal safe, Hair dryer, Writing desk, Flat screen television with DVD and satellite reception, Wifi available (fees apply)
Overall size of 280 SQ. FT. / 26 M2 (including a private balcony 35.5 SQ. FT. / 3.2 M2 ). Veranda Suites 601, 602, 603 and 604 can accommodate three guests. A Silversea signature, complete with floor-to-ceiling glass doors that open onto a private balcony with patio furniture. Veranda Suites lavishly accommodate three guests. Features: Veranda or balcony with floor-to-ceiling glass doors, Sitting area, Twin beds or queen-sized bed, Marbled bathroom, Personal safe, Hair dryer, Writing desk, Flat screen television
Overall size of 408 SQ. FT. / 38 M2 (including a private balcony 27 SQ. FT. / 2.5 M2). A mark of distinction. Sumptuous. Spacious. Rich textures and panoramic views surround you with distinguished luxury. The perfect summary of The Medallion Suite offered by the world’s best cruise line. Features: Large teak veranda with patio furniture and floor-to-ceiling glass doors, Sitting area, Twin beds or queen-sized bed, Marbled bathroom with shower, Personal safe, Hair dryer,Writing desk, Flat screen television(s) with DVD and satellite reception
Vessel Type: Luxury Expedition
Length: 338 Feet/102.9 Metres
Passenger Capacity: 120 passengers
Her small size and shallow draft allow close-up access to rugged coasts well beyond the reach of ordinary vessels. And she has been newly refurbished to help guests maximize their experience and build a genuine connection with the regions they visit.
Spacious decks and panoramic public rooms mean the drama of the unexpected is never far from view. A fleet of Zodiacs allows exploration from the water or remote landings anywhere nature or curiosity dictate. Since many of our expeditions sail to some of the world's most pristine coral reef systems, there's a glass-bottom boat for underwater viewing along with a full complement of snorkelling equipment and a dive programme for advanced divers.
We've also taken great care to assemble a truly outstanding Expedition Team, composed of experts in the culture, history and wild life of the destinations, to present informal talks, guide Zodiac outings and lead small-group explorations ashore. While back on board, every creature comfort awaits: an ocean-view suite, in-suite bar and the head-to-toe pampering of a butler; elegant lounges and open bar where fellow travellers gather to swap tales about their day's adventures; and cuisine that meets Silversea's standards of culinary excellence — which are lofty, indeed. Imaginative menus in The Restaurant feature both regional offerings and dishes inspired by Relais & Châteaux. Additional amenities include a sun-catching pool deck, an internet cafe, a fitness centre, and a beauty and massage centre — particularly alluring after an adventurous day ashore.