Curieuse Island is a small granitic island, 2.9 km2 in the Seychelles close to the north coast of the island of Praslin. It is the fifth-largest of the Inner Seychelles islands, known for its outstanding granite rock beaches, several bird species, the Coco de Mer palm trees and the mangrove forests. The island is a protected island and a major tourist destination for day trips. Curieuse other than Praslin are the only places in the world where the Coco de Mer grows naturally.
From 1829 to 1965, Curieuse Island was used as a leper colony where leprosy sufferers were kept and cared for. Today the remains of the leprosarium are still in existence though in a dilapidated state. The former doctor’s house which dates back to 1870, an example of Creole colonial architecture used as a museum and educational center serves as a testimony to the history of the island.
In 1979, Curieuse Island was declared a National Park and is now being managed by the Seychelles National Parks Authority.
It is home to around 150 Aldabra giant land tortoises freely roaming around on the island; an exciting and unforgettable encounter for the young and old and not forgetting the popular photo opportunities. Several plant species are native and endemic to the island.
A trip to Curieuse can be combined with snorkeling trips at Cocos Island and visit to La Digue or snorkeling at Cocos and barbecue lunch on Sister Island.