WELCOME TO NORTH ISLAND
North Island’s majestic profile has long beckoned to onlookers on Mahé’s famous Beau Vallon Beach as they gaze out to sea in a north-easterly direction to where the Island’s rounded contours are visible next to its close neighbour Silhouette.
One of the most northerly of all the granitic Inner islands, North Island, which measures 2.5 km x 1km and with a surface area of around 210 hectares (462 acres), lies approximately 32 kilometres (20 miles) north west of Mahé and five kilometres north of Silhouette.
Three granitic mountains dominate the Island - Grand Paloss (180m/585 feet) to the north, Bernica (120m) to the southwest and Conglement (100m) to the southeast. These outcrops drop directly into the sea, bordered by giant boulders and between them lie three areas of flat coastal plain or “Island plateaux”.
There are four beaches on the Island, one of which will always be sheltered from the prevailing winds at any given time.
Grande Anse Beach, located on the Island’s western side, is about 1.5 km long and fringed by extensive coral reefs. The Sunset Bar is located at the northern end of this beach.
At the southern end of Grande Anse, a rocky outcrop has formed a small private beach, Bonnet Carré, where the vegetation is at its most pristine and where the Island's only Barringtonia Asiatica trees drop their exquisite pink, feathery flowers onto the soft white coral sands. Bonnet Carré is the French name for the Barringtonia Asiatica whose Creole name is Bonnen Kare.
The one kilometre long beach, Anse d'Est is situated on the eastern side of the Island. This is where North Island lodge is located. Anse d'Est houses a wide bay flanked by two granitic mountains.
Petite Anse, located on the south east of the Island, is a small beach bordered by granitic outcrops on each side. A path for boats to access the Island was cleared through the coral many years ago to enable the previous owners to transport, initially, guano and subsequently agricultural products from the Island.
Run-off from the granitic mountains combined with the geological structure of the plateau itself has resulted in two freshwater lakes being formed in the middle of the Island. During the wet season the water table in these lakes rises. Protection of the Island's valuable water resources through the removal of alien vegetation has been a critical part of the rehabilitation process.