When one says Signal Hill, South Africans immediately think of the iconic mound in Cape Town. However, The Seychelles has its own Signal Hill promising adventure for travellers.
Keen hikers will be pleased to hear that the hiking trail to Signal Hill - the one which overlooks the Seychellois harbour town of Victoria on Mahé island - is being widened.
Perched 160m above sea level, Signal Hill was recently declared a national monument site, but in the past served as “signalling” station to keep a look-out for incoming ships before telegraph or radio communication existed.
Back then, The Seychelles relied heavily on steam ships for their connection to the rest of the world. The archipelago needed to import goods it couldn’t produce itself, and also used steamships as a mail service. Today, it has the potential to be one of Seychelles top attractions alongside the Mission Ruins or Copolia.
A lookout was stationed on the peak of Signal Hill at all times. The signal master, as he was called, lived there with his family in the signal station (whose ruins can still be visited today). Communicating with the Port Victoria office below, the signal master used different coloured flags, hoisted on a flagstaff, so that the harbour could make the necessary preparations for incoming ships. The Port Victoria office would know exactly what each flag pattern and flag colour meant.
As a historic maritime monument, Signal Hill is now being developed as a tourist attraction that’s important for both its historic significance and the breath-taking panoramic views it offers of the harbour, neighbouring island, city and azure-blue ocean that stretch out below.
So if you're thinking of visiting The Seychelles, consider putting Signal Hill on your to-do list.