What to Expect in the Seychelles
Language: The Seychelles actually has three official languages: French, English, and Seselwa. When you overhear locals chatting, it’ll usually be in their French-based creole language, Seselwa. Most people are actually trilingual(!), and you’ll rarely have trouble finding people who speak English.
Currency: Seychelles rupees (SCR). $1 USD will give you 13.50 SCR.
Credit Cards and Banks: It’s good to have a mix of currencies. Many tourist spots prefer dollars and euros, so keep some of your own cash and exchange some for Seychelles rupees. Depending on your bank, you’ll likely get the best rate withdrawing rupees from an ATM, but you’ll also find banks and official exchange offices all over.
Voltage: The Seychelles uses three-pin UK plugs.
Climate: The Seychelles has a dream climate. The temperature rarely goes below seventy-five degrees Fahrenheit (twenty-four degrees Celsius) or above eighty-nine degrees Fahrenheit (thirty-two degrees Celsius).
Conditions for swimming, snorkeling and diving are best during March through May, October, and November, plus those are off-peak months.
Food: All over the Seychelles, you’ll find creole food made from Asian staples with European flair. Think rice, veggies, and tons of fresh fish. As you’re making plans to eat your way across the islands, keep in mind that a lot of places are closed on Sundays, so come prepared.
Water: Tap water in the Seychelles is safe to drink, but it’s pretty heavy on the chlorine, so many people opt to drink bottled water. If you are there during the summer, you might also find that the water gets turned off for a few hours a day in an effort to conserve.
Getting Around the Seychelles
Getting to Seychelles: When you arrive, you’ll fly into Seychelles International Airport in Mahé. This is the main airport and the hub for Air Seychelles, which is the local airline.
Getting between Islands:
You can opt to island hop by ferry or airplane. Depending on the time of year, you’ll find two to three ferries between Mahé
. In the morning, there’s also a direct ferry from Mahé to La Digue
In the evening, the ferry goes from Mahé to Praslin to La Digue. If you prefer to fly, Air Seychelles operates regular flights and has prices comparable to the ferry.
Getting around on the Islands: In Praslin and Mahé, it’s handy to rent a car, or grab a taxi, but you can also get around by bike. In La Digue, your easiest option is to travel by bike (although I’ve heard there are a few taxis on the island). You will find buses all over the islands, and they can be a fun experience. They aren’t a quick way to get around, however, and you can’t bring luggage on board.
The Main Islands
The Seychelles Islands are an archipelago in the Indian Ocean, off the coast of Africa. The islands are heavily-traveled during peak season, and I can see why! I was so excited to explore the picture perfect islands and dive below the crystal-clear, turquoise waters.
This is the main island and home to the capital city, Victoria. You’ll fly into this island and it’s definitely a place worth spending some time. There are stunning beaches and lush rainforests alongside the country’s top accommodations, shops, restaurants.
You won’t want to miss this spot! One of my favorite islands, Praslin is home to the coco de mer palms and the famous UNESCO World Heritage site, Vallée de Mai.
The most relaxing and “off the grid” island, La Digue has some of the best beaches in the world. If you want to dive, snorkel, swim, or just soak in the sun, this is the place to be.
Sainte Anne Island
Just two and a half miles off of Mahé, Sainte Anne Island was the first stop on my Seychelles yacht cruise. It’s the largest island in the must-see Sainte Anne Marine National Park, and the beaches here are amazing.
Part of the lovely Sainte Anne Marine National Park, this tiny island has a population of fewer than 50 people. It’s a quiet, peaceful spot with a few overnight accommodations.
Cousin Island is a special place. It is a Special Nature Reserve, and it’s ideal for exploring mangroves and the dense tropical forest. It’s also a bird-watching heaven.
Read More: A Guide to Cousin Island in the Seychelles
The harbor of Curieuse Island is filled with hundreds of giant parrotfish, and the landscape is breathtaking. In addition to Praslin, coco de mer palms grow on Curieuse as well. The island is also known for its giant tortoises, which took me back to memories of my Galápagos cruise.
Aride Island is one of most important seabird habitats in the Indian Ocean, and there are more species there than on any other island in Seychelles. But, you’ll be surprised to know that the island is very small, only 1 mile long, and the population consists only of rangers, conservation officers and volunteers.
Another sanctuary island, Bird Island is the perfect place to take in the local flora and fauna while you explore the wild beaches and turquoise water.
What to Do in the Seychelles
You can’t go wrong here. The snorkeling is incredible everywhere, especially at La Digue
The Seychelles is a beautiful spot for golfing. Whether you are a pro or a total newbie, get to Praslin
for a few holes.
There are lots of small shops in Mahé
at Baie St. Anne and on La Digue
in the Passe area. You’ll find tons of little seashell trinkets and other sea-inspired souvenirs and local handicrafts.
Curieuse Island: Just a quick boat trip from Praslin Island, Curieuse Island is home to giant aldabra tortoises.
The Morne Blanc trail out of Victoria (Mahé
) is a great spot to snap some photos. Start early in the day, and take your time exploring.
Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve:
The Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve on Praslin
is one of the Seychelles’ two UNESCO World Heritage Sites, and it’s the place to see the world’s largest seed from the famous coco de mer palm.
Of course, the beaches are incredible here. Anse Source D’Argent Beach on La Digue
is the most photographed beach in the world. Anse Lazio on Praslin Island
and Anse Intendance in Mahé
are insanely beautiful as well.
Le Jardin Du Roi Spice Garden: In Mahé, you’ll find an old French colony house on top of a hill. Wander through the lush gardens, smell the cinnamon trees, and visit the museum. Once you’ve worked up an appetite, check out the restaurant, and grab some homemade jams and spices from the gift shop.
Kayaking: One of the best views of the Seychelles is from the water! Spend at least one afternoon at sea.
Take a Cruise:
A common way of getting around the islands is by cruise ship or yacht. I explored on board the Crystal Cruises’ Esprit Yacht
Helicopter Rides: Of course, the greatest view of all is from above. The flights out of Praslin will give you an unforgettable view of the islands.
A popular spot for snorkeling and diving, the Coco Islands by ferry from La Digue
is the perfect place to take a day trip.