Cape Town – Joburg – Mahé – Praslin – La Digue.

Cape Town – Joburg – Mahé – Praslin – La Digue.

After 14 long hours of Travel Day 1 we arrived at our luxurious hotel – La Digue Island Lodge – greeted by some seriously friendly faces and their local ice cold beer ‘SeyBrew’ in hand. With a polite ‘Merci Beaucoup’ along with the first prolonged sip, there are only a few things in this world that could have topped the end off that 90% humidity 37 Degree Celsius Seychellois day.

5am call time; we hopped into the minivan and down to the harbour where we found our speed boat and Captain for the day long Island recci.

Circumnavigating the Island our production manager (Allan Mc Cullough – North South Productions), Art Director and now Head of Camp David Mens Division (Marcus Huchrak) and First photographer (Moritz Attenberger) were blown away by the scenery, natural light and shoot sites around the chain of Islands, one in particular namely il Koko which took their fancy. It is a tiny island due West of the Island of La Digue. With perfect white sand and crystal clear turquoise water it makes for an Island paradise and an unbelievable site to shoot our first look.

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Day 2 of shooting saw me riding an 1800cc Turbo Injected Jet ski around the photographer’s boat, with hard turns and waves of spray it surely will show off the board short range nicely! Looking forward to seeing the final outcome of these pictures in particular.

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2 days down and we were flying! Perfect light from 5am to 8pm sees us shoot almost half of the Camp David Summer Range. Also partly due to the fact that the models were just so damn good.

We sat down to a well-deserved meal after copious amounts of sunscreen reapplication. On the menu we had, which was by far my favourite and pretty much staple diet for the 2 weeks, Octopus Curry Creole Style www.grouprecipes.com Recipes. Do yourself a favour!

After a couple days of waking up before the sunrise, shooting 5 looks, eat, sleep and repeat. We finally wrap things up with a few down days to chill and enjoy the most unbelievable Island. The photography and video crew head straight for the comfort of their air-conditioned rooms to eagerly scan over all that they had captured..and to get some relief from the beating sun. While others went straight to the pool to relax with their book and G&T.

All I could think about was… SO MUCH ROOM FOR ACTIVITIES!!

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Most of my time was spent snorkeling the many World Class coral reefs, hiking the highest point of the island and even did a little bit of surfing believe it or not. All of which was thoroughly GoPro’d and is currently in edit for my upcoming and debut Vlog.

In my time snorkelling I was blown away by the vast amount of fish variety there were and how well in tact the coral reef still remained after so much tourism.

My most memorable hike was one The Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve; it is a nature park and UNESCO World Heritage Site. The site consists of a well preserved palm forest with a flagship species made up of the island-endemic Coco De Mer tree. It’s kind of like a coconut but in the shape of a heart with the street value of over 400Euro. Legend has it that The Vallée de Mai was envisioned as the Garden of Eden and the Coco-de-Mer as the forbidden fruit due to its aphrodisiac quality.

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Wrap Dinner, on our final night we were treated to some of La Digues finest seafood, all done over hot coals and sticks as grid protectors. From Dorado fish to Crayfish… not to mention some of Seychelles finest homemade coconut rum. ‘Cough’…  did that do some damage!

Sadly after 2 days of non-stop ‘tourist time’ it was time to bid this island paradise a farewell. We boarded the ferry and headed in the direction of Praslin where our 10 seater ‘Island Hopper’ awaited to transport us back to the Island of Mahé.

Our arrival back in South Africa was one with mixed emotions. We were happy to be home and looked forward to some down time but knew that we would yearn for the friendly banter, friendship, laughs and all round happy disposition of each and every crew member who played a part in this magnificent and unforgettable journey. It is always hard to grasp that feeling of spending so much time with your crew and getting to know each and every one of them individually, making such strong bonds only to suddenly depart in different directions, left only with memories. Such is life.

A massive shout out has to go to Camp David and of course North South Productions for a perfect away shoot, where everything went off without a hitch. Thanks to the Seychellois Tourism Board for allowing us to shoot in such remote locations where normally we wouldn’t be allowed to visit.

And of course to the people of Seychelles who showed us such hospitality and always gave us service with a smile.

Warwick D.

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