Seychelles- is an archipelago of 115 islands in the Indian Ocean, off East Africa. It's home to numerous beaches, coral reefs and nature reserves, as well as rare animals such as giant Aldabra tortoises. Mahé, a hub for visiting the other islands, is home to capital Victoria. It also has the mountain rainforests of Morne Seychellois National Park and beaches, including Beau Vallon and Anse Takamaka. Seychelles was uninhabited prior to being encountered by Europeans in the 16th century. It faced competing French and British interests until coming under full British control in the late 18th century. Since proclaiming independence from the United Kingdom in 1976, it has developed from a largely agricultural society to a market-based diversified economy, characterized by rapidly rising service, public sector, and tourism activities. From 1976 to 2015, nominal GDP grew nearly 700%, and purchasing power parity nearly 1600%. Since the late 2010s, the government has taken steps to encourage foreign investment.
Trip Planning: The planning stage of your trip can be instrumental in its success and an enjoyable part of the experience itself. You have a world of options...and plenty to consider.
Entry and Exit formalities: Visitors must hold a passport valid for at least six months & beyond at the time of entering the country. Most nationalities can obtain visa on arrival and for nationalities who requires visa please refer to Seychelles consulate/embassy.
Transportation: Figuring out how to get around is one of your biggest pre-trip decisions. Get our holiday expert best advice on deciding between your options. Based on your trip itinerary, our experts will help you choose wisely. You'll also find a wealth of practical travel tips.
Money: Use your money wisely. Know the best time to use cash or card — and how to avoid unnecessary fees either way — as well as tipping etiquette.
Phones and Technology: Phones and other smart devices can be huge time-savers...or expensive distractions. Get our tips for making the best use of technology during your trip, and for calling home with or without your own phone.
Packing Light: On your trip you'll meet two kinds of travelers: those who pack light and those who wish they had.
Sleeping and Eating: Your hotel and restaurant choices can be a matter-of-face chore…or they can provide rich opportunities to connect with locals and their culture.
Health & Hygiene: Take comfort: Doctors, hospitals, launderettes, and bathrooms aren’t that different. Dealing with them can even be part of the fun of travel.
Sightseeing & Activities: Once you're on the ground, the real fun begins…but it pays to have a thoughtful plan. Our experts will help you get oriented to your surroundings, use your sightseeing hours wisely, and find your way off the beaten path.
Things to see & do:
Mahé-is the largest island of Seychelles, with an area of 157.3 square kilometres (60.7 sq mi), lying in the northeast of the Seychellean nation in the Somali Sea part of the Indian Ocean. It contains the capital city of Victoria and accommodates 86% of the country's total population. The island was named after Bertrand-François Mahé de La Bourdonnais, a French governor of Isle de France (modern-day Mauritius). Mahé's tallest peak is Morne Seychellois at 905 m (2,969 ft), which lies in the Morne Seychellois National Park. The northern and eastern parts of the island are home to much of the population and the Seychelles International Airport which opened in 1971. The southern and western parts have Baie Ternay Marine National Park, Port Launay Marine National Park, and University of Seychelles. The Sainte Anne Marine National Park lies offshore, as do Conception Island, Thérèse Island, Anonyme Island and several smaller islands. Mahé was first visited by the British in 1609 and not visited by Europeans again until Lazare Picault's expedition of 1742. The French navy frégate Le Cerf (English: The Deer) arrived at Port Victoria on 1 November 1756. On board was Corneille Nicholas Morphey, leader of the French expedition, which claimed the island for the King of France by laying a Stone of Possession on Mahé, Seychelles’ oldest monument, now on display in the National Museum, Victoria. In August 1801 a Royal Navy frigate HMS Sibylle captured the French frigate Chiffonne on the island. Mahé remained a French possession until 1812 when it became a British colony. It remained a colony until 1976 when Seychelles became an independent nation. Mahé's forests have rare endemic plants found only in Seychelles, such as the critically endangered Medusagyne oppositifolia (the jellyfish tree), the carnivorous Nepenthes pervillei (Seychelles pitcher plant), and many unique species of orchid. Mahé had a huge land reclamation project due to a shortage of housing, in the areas of Bel Ombre and the Port of Victoria.
Praslin Island, also called Île de Palme- island, second largest of the Seychelles archipelago, Republic of Seychelles, in the western Indian Ocean. Praslin is an island in the Seychelles, in the Indian Ocean. It’s known for palm-fringed beaches, like Anse Georgette and Anse Lazio, both bordered by large granite boulders. The main beach, Anse Volbert-Côte D’Or, faces the offshore islet Chauve Souris. Praslin’s rugged, jungle-covered interior is home to Praslin National Park, which encompasses Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve. The island is 2.5 miles (4 km) wide and 7 miles (11 km) long and is 25 miles (40 km) northeast of Mahé Island. Praslin is granitic in origin and mountainous. Seven percent of the population of the Republic of Seychelles lives on the island. Copra, timber, vanilla, and vegetables—in particular, tomatoes—are grown there. The Côte d’Or beach and the settlements of Grande Anse and Baie Sainte-Anne are centres of tourism.
La Digue-is the third most populated island of the Seychelles, and fourth largest by land area, lying east of Praslin and west of Felicite Island. In size, it is the fourth-largest granitic island of Seychelles after Mahé, Praslin and Silhouette Island. La Digue is an island in the Seychelles, in the Indian Ocean off East Africa. It’s known for its beaches, like Anse Source d’Argent, dotted with granite boulders, on the west coast. To the south, isolated Anse Bonnet Carré Beach, with calm, shallow water, is accessible only on foot, as is Anse Cocos Beach, in a protected bay on the east coast. La Digue’s diverse wildlife can be seen in the Veuve Nature Reserve. Most of the inhabitants live in the west coast villages of La Passe (linked by ferry to Praslin and Mahé) and Anse Réunion. There is no airport on La Digue, so to get there from a foreign country, one must fly to Victoria and continue by ferry, usually via Praslin. It has an area of 10.08 km2, which makes it relatively easy to travel around by bike or on foot. La Digue was named after a ship in the fleet of French explorer Marc-Joseph Marion du Fresne, who visited the Seychelles in 1768. According to modern historians, La Digue was first sighted by the French navigator Lazare Picault in 1742, but it was not named until 1768. The first people settled on the island in 1789, when French colonists arrived with their African slaves. Most of them went back to France, but some people were left and some of today's inhabitants carry their names. Later, more French deportees arrived, followed by a large number of liberated slaves and Asian immigrants. In 1854, the first Catholic chapel was built on La Digue by Father Theophile. Most inhabitants of the island are of the Catholic faith. French colonists on La Digue manufactured coral lime, and they are believed to be responsible for the decline of the island's coral reefs. They also made copra out of coconuts, and they planted vanilla on their plantations. This tradition has been continued.
Sainte Anne Island- is the largest of eight islands in Ste Anne Marine National Park of the Seychelles. These islands are part of the Mont Fleuri District of the Seychelles. It is 4 km off the east coast of Mahé and has abundant tropical vegetation. The highest peak on Sainte Anne is 246 meters.
Frégate Island-is an island in Seychelles. The island is the easternmost of the granitic Inner Islands of the Seychelles. It is 2.07 square kilometres and is primarily known for the Oetker Collection's secluded private luxury resort which funds an environmental programme to restore habitat and protect rare species.
Denis Island-is the second northeasternmost island in the Seychelles. It is 60 kilometres north of Mahé and lies at the northern edge of the Seychelles bank, along with the nearby Bird Island, which is the northernmost Seychelles island.
Félicité Island-is a heavy forested granitic island 4 kilometres east of La Digue in the Seychelles. It is the fifth-largest island in the Seychelles archipelago, measuring 2.68 square kilometres. Until the 1970s it was a coconut plantation that had a population of about 50.
Bird Island-is the northernmost island in the Seychelles archipelago, 100 km from Mahe. The 0.94 km² coral island is known for its birdlife, including sooty terns, fairy terns and common noddies, and for hawksbill and green turtles.
Curieuse Island-is a small granitic island 1.13 sq mi in the Seychelles close to the north coast of the island of Praslin. Curieuse is notable for its bare red earth intermingled with the unique coco de mer palms, one of the cultural icons of the Seychelles, only growing on the two neighboring islands.
The Outer Islands or Coralline Seychelles- is a collective term for those islands of the Seychelles that are not on the shallow Seychelles Bank which defines the location of the granitic Inner Islands archipelago to the east.
Aldabra- is the world's second-largest coral atoll. It is situated in the Aldabra Group of islands in the Indian Ocean that are part of the Outer Islands of the Seychelles, with a distance of 1,120 km southwest of the capital, Victoria, on Mahé Island.
Cousin Island-is a small granitic island of the Seychelles, lying 2 km west of Praslin. It is a nature reserve protected under Seychelles law as a Special Reserve.
The Granitic Seychelles-are the islands in Seychelles which lie in central position on the Seychelles Bank and are composed of granite rock. They make up the majority of the Inner Islands, which in addition include the coral islands along of the rim of the Seychelles Bank, namely Bird Island and Denis Island.
Eden Island-is an artificial island in Seychelles, lying 3.5 km from the capital Victoria.
Alphonse Atoll- is one of two atolls of the Alphonse Group, the other being St. François Atoll — both in the Outer Islands coral archipelago of the Seychelles.
Aride Island- is the northernmost granitic island in the Seychelles. A nature reserve, it is leased and managed by the Island Conservation Society of Seychelles.
Cerf Island- lies 4 km off the northeast coast of Mahé in the Seychelles.
Cosmoledo Atoll is an atoll of the Aldabra Group and belongs to the Outer Islands of the Seychelles, and is located 1,029 km southwest of the capital, Victoria, on Mahé Island.
Astove Atoll- is a large atoll, part of the Aldabra Group, lying in the Outer Islands of Seychelles, with a distance of 1,041 km southwest of the capital, Victoria, on Mahé Island.
Moyenne Island- is a small island in the Ste Anne Marine National Park off the north coast of Mahé, Seychelles. Since the 1970s it has been a flora and fauna reserve. From 1915 until the 1960s, the island was abandoned until its purchase by Brendon Grimshaw for about 10,000 dollars.
Round Island-is an island in Seychelles, lying in the northeast shores of Mahe. There is also a Round Island near the island of Praslin.
Assumption Island-is a small island in the Outer Islands of Seychelles north of Madagascar, 1,135 km south-west of the capital, Victoria, on Mahé Island.
Grande Soeur Island-also called Big Sister, East Sister, is an island in the Seychelles archipelago, Located north of La Digue. It is part of Iles Soeurs with Petite Soeur. It is a granitic island covered with tropical forests. The island is privately owned.
Cocos Islands- also called Ile Aux Cocos, are a group of small islets in the Seychelles archipelago. They can be found 7 km north of La Digue and lies in close proximity to La Digue's other neighbours, Félicité Island and the Sisters Islands.
Île Cachée- is an islet in Seychelles. The tiny island is also known as Faon island. The name of the island in French means "hidden", and as its name suggests it appears ‘hidden’ either behind Cerf or appear to be part of Cerf Island. The tiny islet is located about 100 meters from Cerf Island in the St. Anne Islands.
Coëtivy Island-is a small coral island in the Seychelles 290 km south of Mahé. Along with Île Platte, the nearest neighbor 171 km northwest, it comprises the Southern Coral Group and therefore belongs to the Outer Islands.
The Farquhar Atoll-is part of the Farquhar Group of islands in the Seychelles that are part of the Outer Islands. It is located 770 kilometres southwest of the capital, Victoria, on Mahé Island.
Île aux Vaches Marines-is one of many islands in the Seychelles, lying in the west shores of Mahe. Île aux Vaches Marines is a granite rock, only slightly covered with vegetation. The island is a popular nesting site for sea-birds.
The African Banks are the uninhabited northernmost islands of the Amirante Islands, of the Outer Islands of the Republic of Seychelles, in the western Indian Ocean.
Chauve Souris-is an island in Seychelles, lying 400 m northeast of the island of Praslin. Another nearby island - Saint-Pierre Island is located immediately in the north. The island is a granite island covered with tropical forest.
The Providence Atoll- is part of the Farquhar Group of islands in the Seychelles that are part of the Outer Islands, with a distance of 705 km southwest of the capital, Victoria, on Mahé Island.
Mamelles- is an island in Seychelles, lying 14 kilometres northeast of Mahe. It is uninhabited and has an area of 6 hectares.
Ile St. Pierre-is an uninhabited island of the Seychelles. It is located north of the island of Praslin in the east of Curieuse Island on the edge of the Curieuse Marine National Park. The distance from the island to Pointe Zanguilles on Praslin is 1.5 km.
Desnœufs Island- is an island in Seychelles, lying at the southern edge of the Amirantes group, in the Outer Islands, with a distance of 321 km south of Victoria, Seychelles.
Victoria-The Capital of the Seychelles. In the north-east of Mahé, bordered on one side by steep mountain slopes, is the capital of the Republic of the Seychelles. At first glance, it isn't really clear just how important the city is as the country's cultural and administrative centre; there are only two dozen streets, which not only characterises the cosy feel of the city but of the Seychellois way of life itself. With the spirit of 'Beauty Acts Silently' coursing through the veins of the city, visitors will struggle to find anything in terms of parking garages, neon signs, or showmanship in general; the city only has two traffic lights! That said, with around 25,000 inhabitants, Victoria is still the largest settlement in the Seychelles, and its only city. Its foundation harks back to the French settler period in 1778, before it was later given its name by the British, after Queen Victoria.
Arul Mihu Navasakthi Vinayagar Temple-One of the most-visited sites in the Seychelles and one of the most-admired, certainly by photographers, is the colourful, decorated temple roof to the Hindu God Vinayagar. This brightly-coloured construction at Quincy Street was built in 1992, and serves as the place of worship for around 5,000 Hindus living in Victoria. Those willing to take off their shoes and leave them at the entrance may visit the small temple outside of ceremony hours.
Bicentennial Monument-This statue can be found in Freedom Square, at the eastern end of Independence Avenue. The statue consists of three pairs of extended white wings, and was built in 1978 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of Victoria. The monument was created by Italian artist Lorenzo Appiani, who lived in the Seychelles at the time. The three wings symbolise the origins of the Seychelles' population, and represent the three continents represented in the country: Africa, Europe, and Asia.
Clock Tower-In the middle of the intersection of Independence Avenue and Albert Street stands the Clock Tower (French: l'Horloge, Creole: Lorloz), now a symbol of the island's capital. It was erected in 1903 to honour the Queen. Despite often taking the name 'Little Big Ben', it is actually based on the less-famous clock tower in London, located at the intersection of Victoria Street and Vauxhall Bridge Road since 1897. The governor of the time saw the clock on a visit to London and ordered the smaller copy to be made. A special quirk of the clock is that it strikes twice on the hour, instead of once, inspiring the chorus of the song "Going back to the Seychelles, where the clock strikes twice".
Cathedral of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception-The largest Catholic church in the Seychelles, built in 1892 and renovated in the mid-1990s, is located in a slightly elevated position at the edge of the city. The design of the cathedral harks back to Seyhellois architect Gilbert Frichot, while the tabernacles and doors were designed by sculptor Egbert Marday. Brilliant colours shimmer through the stained-glass windows of the building, which is surrounded by a beautiful garden. Beside the cathedral lies the two-storey Priest house, La Domus, built in 1934. This house consists of granite, and can legitimately be claimed to be one of the most impressive buildings in the Seychelles. The church serves as a quiet, contemplative space, not far from the bustle of the market, and one that is primarily used by women for worship or to lay down flowers. The bell tower is located behind the building, and dates back to 1898, while the small house next door was built in 1933. The church itself is large enough for around 700 worshippers.
Kenwyn House-Next to the Cable & Wireless building is Kenwyn House, renovated to remain in-keeping with its original style, and undoubtedly one of the most beautiful buildings displaying French colonial architecture. Inside, you will find an exclusive souvenir shop where you can buy precious items such as South African jewellery, while the house's art gallery displays Seychellois painting exhibitions.
Mosque in Victoria-Mahé is home to many different religious beliefs which co-exist in harmony, hence this small mosque in Victoria. The gilded dome of the building really contrasts the green that surrounds it.
National Museum of History-Here, you can discover more about the history and development of the city. Prehistoric maps, old firearms, and other commodities are among the exhibits on show in the modern building of the National Library.
National Botanical Gardens-The green jewel of the city should definitely be on the agenda for all who visit Mahé. Here, you can get an overview of the different Seychelles flora species, as well as discover some of the local wildlife. At the entrance, you can pick up a brochure detailing the domestic and foreign plant species (a combined total of around 500 plants), including 40 species of palm trees. If you want to see everything, we recommend one or two hours. Some of the beautiful sights on offer include breadfruit, papaya, and nutmeg trees, Indian tamarind, exotic plants and ornamentals, and of course the famous Coco de Mer palm tree. Besides that, the comprehensive orchid garden offers 150 different species, while native birds and bats can be admired in the upper regions of the gardens. The tour concludes with a large enclosure, in which giant Aldabra tortoises live.
National Library Building-A modern steel/glass structure that lies on the corner of Francis Rachel Street/4th June Avenue houses an extensive library. Anyone who wishes to delve into the history, geography, culture, or literature of the Seychelles in air-conditioned surroundings should stop off here during their trip. Since 1995, the archive has been open to the public, and admission is free.
Seychelles Natural History Museum-Next to the main post office on Independence Avenue is a small museum, containing replicas, images, plants, and taxidermied animals. While not the most exciting exhibition, anyone interested in history or geography will find something to enjoy here, with ship models, maps, photographs, drawings and documents from historical periods. The so called 'Pierre de Possession' - the 'Stone of Seizure' - is probably the most important exhibit. This stone was installed in 1756 to symbolise the possession of the Seychelles by the French royal family. Another exhibit is the 180 million year-old granite stone that was found in 1981 while test-drilling for oil. This serves as proof that the rocks in the Seychelles and the plateau on which the islands stand are among the oldest formations on Earth, as well as strengthening the theory that the islands used to be part of Gondwana, the supercontinent.
State House-Around 200 m (656 ft) west of the Clock Tower lies an entrance gate, behind which a lush, landscaped garden and statehouse, built in 1913, can be found. Formerly the residence of British governors, since the 1970s the building has served as the President's home and working space, so you can generally only see it from afar. That said, it can sometimes be worthwhile asking in one of the city's travel agencies for their help in getting a little closer, as the glorious idyll that can be found on-site is uniquely beautiful. All guests of the government have handed over various gifts over the years, including flowers, shrubs, and trees, and all of these have been given a place here and are carefully maintained.
St. Paul’s Cathedral-This church is located on Revolution Avenue, opposite the Clock Tower, and is the oldest and largest Anglican church in the Seychelles, and considered the second landmark of the archipelago. Consecrated in 1859 by the first Anglican Bishop of Mauritius, and subjected to a renovation in the early 21st century, the church now seats 800, twice as many as before. Since 1920, the Seychelles and Mauritius have shared their own diocese, with St. Paul serving as the second bishop's see.
Sir Selwyn Selwyn Clarke Market-One of the two 'city centres' in Victoria runs through the middle of the city in the shade of a large mango tree, around the Sir Selwyn Selwyn Clarke Market. Built in 1840, the market was named after a French governor who built the stands himself for the local farmers and fishermen to use to sell their goods. Nowadays, the stalls have become more commercial, and are rarely run by the farmers themselves, but rather by merchants. Even early in the morning, the market is awash with people and stalls containing fruits, vegetables, spices, and artisanal works. The colourful, aromatic displays consist of limes, bananas, papaya, mango, passion fruit, guava, pineapple, sweet potato, aubergine, breadfruit, fish, chilli, star anise, tamarind, cinnamon, vanilla pods, hats, baskets, carvings, postcards, clothing, and much more! From the first floor of the market, you can look down on the hustle and bustle below, as well as enjoy souvenir shops and craft booths. Besides that, there's a quality café where you can sit and enjoy the intense colours, sounds, and smells of the market while enjoying breakfast or a snack for lunch.
Beau Vallon Bay-Looking at Mahé on a map, the northern part of the island almost looks like a thumbs up! On the western flank of this region lies Beau Vallon Bay, the island's tourist centre. The beach here is several kilometres long, and incredibly beautiful. Thanks to this, there are numerous hotels and other holiday accommodations nestled here alongside restaurants, shops, and much more. Besides that, you can also find a wide range of excursions and watersport centres, including some excellent diving schools.
Glacis-Part of the western portion of this route, winding through tropical greenery above the coast, is the village of Glacis. This beautiful area was the site of many European houses in the 1950s, with European settlers fulfilling their dream of owning property in the Seychelles. Besides that, there are some luxury villas and beautiful resorts located along this coast, many of which promise a truly unforgettable holiday. British writer Ian Fleming was inspired by this region in the 1960s, something he incorporated into his James Bond novels.
La Bastille-The old colonial building La Bastille, north of the centre of Victoria, is the seat of the Seychelles Ministry of Culture and Information, and can be visited as a national monument by the public (open Mon - Fri: 8.00 - 16.00).
Kreol Fleurage-Following the road past the island's northernmost point, round to the south-east, visitors will reach North-East Point, where the Kreol Fleurage company bases itself. Kreol Fleurage is the Indian Ocean's only existing fragrance company, and it is well-worth making a little detour to take a look at their workshop and laboratory. Those who are interested will gladly be shown how many of the perfumes are prepared, while it is also possible to take a guided tour of the garden, where the classic floral ingredients for perfumes are grown, including lemongrass, patchouli, and ylang-ylang.
Eden Island-Driving past Victoria in a southerly direction, following the coastal road, you will come across the island's industrial area, including a brewery and a few brick factories. To the east, you may spot some lagoons in the water, which were actually artificially created in the 1990s by placing artificial islands in the water. When the tide falls, some of this area, protected from the ocean by the string of small islands, seem almost dry. The mangroves, which were resettled into this region, are these days designated a breeding and conservation zone for fish.
Sans Souci Road-From Victoria, it's well-worth taking a drive on the Sans Souci Road to the island's western coast. This spectacular panoramic stretch extends across the island, as well as past various landmarks, ensuring plenty of highlights during your tour. The road can be quite steep here and there, and winds here and there too, so be sure that you are confident in your own driving abilities before attempting the route.
Mission Lodge-At the ruins of the former Mission Lodge, located shortly after the pass, around 500 metres above sea level (1,640 ft), you can look out over the island's west coast for the first time. The lodge was built in 1875 by church organisations, and once served as a home for freed slaves. It is said that even Queen Elizabeth II has enjoyed a cup of tea and the view from the lodge's pavillion.
Tea Factory-Immerse yourself in the world of tea at the Tea Factory. The accompanying kiosk, which is open Mon - Fri from 7.00 - 16.00 allows you to peruse a rich selection of local varieties. And, anyone interested in taking a tour of the factory can do so (Tue - Fri: 8.30 - 12.00). The tea plants here, originally imported from Kenya, thrive in the rich rainfall of this mountainous region, allowing this entire private area to be covered in tea, with a total of approximately 110 hectares of tea growing. In the 'Tea Tavern' café, next to the factory, visitors can enjoy a fine drink or a small snack (open Mon - Sat: 9.00 - 16.00) before continuing on their journey.
Port Glaud-West of the Tea Factory, follow the winding road down towards Port Glaud and enjoy the fabulous views of turquoise lagoon water and offshore islands. The last passable piece of road heading north runs from Port Glaud past a mangrove area. A short time later, approximately 1.5 km (1 mile) down the road, the wonderful Port Launay can be found, idea for a quick swim. Anyone looking for something a bit adventurous can try out the Zip Lining at the Ephelia Resort, which even non-guests can enjoy. Travel up a hill on an electric buggy before travelling back down again thanks to the different connected cable routes, with eight stages in total. Near the end, you are suspended a full 120 metres (nearly 400 ft) above a small jungle valley! Also in the region are another sandy bay between rocky formations, north of Port Launay. This is Baie Ternay, and offers excellent snorkelling conditions. The road ends at this point, but you can walk to Beau Vallon thanks to a small footpath.
Grand Anse-Leaving Port Glaud in a southerly direction, and following a short drive through forests above the coast, you arrive at the majestic Grand Anse. Surrounded by huge granite mountains in the background, the turquoise ocean and sandy bay make for a really picturesque sight. The untouched nature of the region is also evident, and the lack of offshore reef adds to this 'wild' atmosphere. From Grand Anse Village, the La Misère Road snakes through the mountainous scenery towards the east of the island. The so-called Vacoa Nature Trail is located approximately 700 metres south of the turnoff to La Misère (the starting point can be found at the cap park of the Avani hotel), and leads you on a thirty-minute tour of the Dauban River's mangroves. After passing the swamp area, granite formations, and a bridge, the road leads through an impressive forest area which features the endemic 'Screw Pine' (Vacoa in Creole), after which the road is named.
Barbarons-Travelling further south on the western coast of the island, you come to Barbarons, a sprawling village between Grand Anse and Anse Barbarons. Not far from Barbarons, and following fifteen years of building works, a nineteen-hectare nature park was opened in 2014, named the Seychelles National Biodiversity Centre. The ultimate goal of the park is the protection and maintenance of the local biodiversity of the region. In a specially-constructed area of forest, visitors can find all five endemic palm species of the Seychelles, while another section represents the flora of the Seychelles' Aldabra Atoll. In the arboretum, prominent visitors to the Seychelles are sometimes asked to plant a Coco de Mer palm. The modern botanical garden can be visited from Monday to Saturday from 7.00 - 15.00.
Anse Boileau-Along the coast a little further lie a number of bays that are well-worth a look despite their relative difficulty of access: Anse Cimitière, Anse Polite, and Anse Lisette. By the time you get to Anse Boileau, the Montagne Posée Road branches off to the east and meanders over the ridge up to Anse aux Pins. Protected only by a narrow coral reef, the small beach of Anse Louis is a beautiful beach when the sea is calm. At the north end of the beach, towering 60 metres (196 ft) above the sea, is a cliff, atop which the palm roofs of the Maia Luxury Resort can be seen, along with dense forest - undoubtedly an unforgettable spot for your luxury holiday.
Thérèse Island & L'Islette-Driving along the north-west coast, a few islands come into view, just a few hundred metres offshore. These are Thérèse Island and l'Islette, both of which are beautiful spots that can only be reached via private boats. From the peak of the 160 metres (525 ft) mountain on Thérèse, you have a really good view of Mahé's mountains and the Pointe l'Escalier. This point, whose name translates as 'Stair Point', takes its name from the mysterious rock stairs that can be found in the granite here. Whether these steps were naturally formed by erosion or beaten into the rock by early settlers, no-one knows, but the latter theory entices popular speculation as to whether there is treasure buried here.
Ile aux Vaches-Off the coast of Barbarons lies the uninhabited Ile aux Vaches (island of the manatees). These marine mammals once lived there for hundreds of years until they were one day slaughtered and irrevocably eradicated, proving that even in the Seychelles environmental protection and sustainability is not always successful. The island is not particularly attractive to visit, but the waters between the island and the coast are more worthy of attention.
Bel Ombre-Driving from Victoria towards Beau Vallon Bay, approximately 50 metres (165 ft) before the beach (at the entrance to the Beau Vallon Bay Hotel), the road extends up to Bel Ombre. This site stretches out over several kilometres, and is a little less touristy, which a church, two shops, and quiet beaches. The beaches are separated by picturesque granite formations, and these views can be enjoyed from the various guesthouses that are located on the coast. Those who prefer a more luxurious setting for their trip could try the Fisherman's Cove Hotel, which lies on the outer western edge of Beau Vallon Bay. The Bel Ombre road eventually ends up in Danzil, a small village where the Italian Restaurant 'La Scala' can be found, which enjoys the reputation of being one of the best in the Seychelles.
Creole Institute-A cultural attraction of the region is the Creole Institute, whose purpose is to explore and maintain Creole culture. The Maison St. Joseph, which was designed in 1920 by a German architect, is a colonial mansion that houses Seychelles Creole literature, written in the native Creole tongue, Kreol Seselwa. Seychellois Creole is the native tongue of approximately 90% of the local population, and arose from the French of the first colonisers, as well as different elements taken from African slaves at the time. The resulting Creole culture that developed is an essential part of the Seychellois identity in modern times. In 1976, when the country gained its independence from the United Kingdom, the young state decided to take on Creole as its official language, with the law passing in 1981. As a tourist, you will probably encounter this language in strange-looking French on various signs, banknotes, and stamps.
Le Domaine de Val des Près-The small Artisanal Village (also known as the Craft Village or Le Domaine de Val des Près) is located just a few hundred metres away, and can be reached by following a small side road. Local artisans and artists work on their designs at this location, and also sell their products here, as well as live in the village. The project was funded in the 1980s by the US government for the local artisans, and its main purpose was and remains to be the preservation of the buildings of the former plantation The workshops contain many different works of art and craft objects, including jewellery, clothing, soap, and hats. In 1870, the largest of the houses in the village was built, the Grand Kaz, which was the former plantation house. Nowadays, this is home to a museum, where you can see very clearly how the lives of the white upper class were (the so-called 'Grands Blancs').
Trois Frères Rum Distillery-Also in the region is the Trois Frères Rum Distillery, where you can taste the rum specialities that are distilled on-site. In fact, seeing the rum being made is a real treat: after sugar cane is crushed in a sugar for its juice, the liquid is fermented for four or five days in tanks. After repeated distillation, the essence of this is stored in oak barrels. Rum aficionados can try five different on-site varieties. The adjacent restaurant La Pleine St. André offers a Creole atmosphere and a variety of local cuisine (open Mon - Sat: 10.00 - 00.00). The restaurant is located within an old planter house that was stylishly-renovated in 2007, and is nowadays considered one of the best-preserved colonial houses in the Seychelles.
Anse Royale-If you drive from Anse aux Pins heading further south, the road rises up after a short time and leads out to a small ridge. From here, you can enjoy a unique view of the south-east coast, down towards Pointe Capucins at the southern tip of Mahé. Before that, you can see Anse Royale, the 'Royal Bay', and the small town of the same name.
The Jardin du Roi (Garden of the King)-is not only a botanical attraction, but also continues the traditions of the former spice garden. You can reach the area by taking the Les Cannelles route behind Anse Royale, and then taking Sweet Escoot Road on the left after 1 km. There, you can see a rather discrete sign after 200 m (656 ft) or so, after which you have about two more steep kilometres to go. Once you arrive at the top of the climb, you will see a rustic, hilly property, surrounded by tall trees. Covering an area of 25 hectares, the Jardin offers spice plantations, a botanical garden, and sanctuaries. The family who currently own the Jardin have committed a lot of time to the project, taking the 1770s Jardin du Roi as an example. The family even suggests that their ancestor was a certain Monsieur Poiret, who arrived in the Seychelles in the 19th century. If this is true, the blood of the French royal family would flow through the veins of the current owners, and the garden would rightly bear his name as the 'Garden of the King'.
The Southern Tip of Mahé-The southern edge of Mahé is the least-developed part of the island, and extends from the south end of Anse Royale, around the southern tip, to Anse à la Mouche in the east of the island. In fact, south of St. Joseph's Church on Anse Royale, only wild natural landscape follows, with Anse Baleine, Anse Bougainville, and Anse Parnel scattered along the coastline.
Anse Forbans and Anse Marie-Louise-1 km south of Anse Bougainville lies the long beach of Anse Forbans, then Anse Marie-Louise. These two bays are the southernmost on the island, and are almost completely undeveloped. That said, there are a few guesthouses here, allowing you to spend your holiday relaxing in solitude. Old maps call this area Pirate's Bay, as this was historically a strategically-beneficial place for pirates to berth.
Anse Intendance-Whether you take in this 'extra tour' or not, the road itself curves around to the Quatre Bornes, where there isn't much to see except for a church and some small shops. From there, it's just a short way to Anse Intendance. It is not advisable, however, to drive straight through to the bay, but rather take a left to Grande Police Road and follow this down to the end. Following this trail will take you down to the beautiful beaches of Petite Police and Police Bay.
Anse Takamaka-From the Quarte Bornes, you can also follow the east-west link road. Along this way, you will come across the bay of Anse Takamaka, protected from the wind and the waves most of the year, which many Seychelles experts suggest is even more beautiful than Anse Intendance. Whatever the case, these are both examples of the variety and charm of the south of Mahé, which add up to ensure that a visit to the area is well-worth it for any Seychelles holidaymaker. This bay, which takes its name from the trees that line the edge of the sand, is also framed by classic Seychelles granite formations, and is perfectly-suited for a relaxing afternoon before dining at the Chez Batista restaurant, located on the beach itself. Here, visitors can enjoy snacks, grilled fish, or a Creole buffet on Sundays.
Baie Lazare-The picturesque Anse Takamaka is followed by the horseshoe-shaped Baie Lazare, and the village of the same name, both of which are named for the first French from Mauritius, Captain Lazare Picault, who was sent to the Seychelles in 1742 to determine whether settlement was possible and, after, to successfully establish a colony. Today, the name serves as a modest reminder of the former explorers of the island, as does the name of the island, which was taken from former governor Mahé. The historical consensus of Picault is that he actually landed further north in Anse Boileau, but the name has stuck regardless, and also applies to the nearby village. Baie Lazare village covers the centre of the bay, and contains a school, café, gas station, and a small police station. There is also a small artists' village that has emerged here, with local painter Gerard Devoud operating his gallery here, where he displays landscapes and portraits of people.
Anse Soleil, Petite Anse & Anse Government-Starting at Baie Lazare, past the police station on the left, another trail leads to some other nearby bays: Anse Soleil, Petite Anse, and Anse Gouvernement. The last part of this road however consists of narrow slopes, so when driving to Anse Soleil, make sure you always have one foot on the brake pedal! For those who successfully navigate this road, however, the reward is a beautiful picturesque bay next to a fine sandy beach, a small guesthouse, and a restaurant.
Anse aux Poules Bleues-Rejoining the western coastal road in the direction of Anse à la Mouche, you will pass by Anse aux Poules Bleues (literally, the 'Bay of Blue Chicken'). The main attraction here is the studio owned by English painter Michael Adams. Tucked away to the left of the road is an old but lovingly-maintained colonial house, of which the studio forms a part. Adams and his wife have lived in the Seychelles since 1975, and he uses the country's beauty as a backdrop and inspiration for his sketches, watercolours, and silk screens. The Seychelles' tropical nature, along with the rest of its natural world, serves as the central theme of his artistic expression. Many a luxury hotel reception in the Seychelles or Mauritius is decorated with his works, and the artist has managed to obtain a high degree of awareness without extensive marketing. Besides his paintings, he has also designed book covers, postcard motifs, and even the Air Seychelles uniforms.
The South-East Coast of Mahé-Anse aux Pins-For those who want to take a tour of the south of Mahé, a whole day is usually enough time. Taking the four-lane motorway on the east coast, drive in a southerly direction past the airport and into the southern half of the island. The coast here is initially a little monotonous before reaching the seafront and Anse aux Pins, a 5 km (3 mile) bay after which the nearby settlement is named. This whole stretch of coastline is characterised by a coral reef and shallow, sloping beaches. Here, you can take a walk at low tide, with swimming only really possible at high tide. Observe fishermen as they go about their daily work in spots where the reef recedes, setting traps to catch various marine animals such as squid. The nearby village offers banks, several shops, and a petrol station, and there are also a number of small hotels and guesthouses here.
Starfish - Odezir Catamaran-Once home to the French settlers, the Ste. Anne Marine Park Islands has now become the relics of the Seychelles. Experience more of the Seychelles’ natural world than you could if exploring alone with this cruise in the St. Anne Marine Park. Sail around the park’s islands, with stops and encounter the free-roaming Tortoises on Moyenne Island. Along the way, hear about the marine world from the onboard commentary—insight you’d otherwise miss. Hotel transfers are provided for convenience.
Semi Submarine Tour in Saint Anne Marine National Park-The one hour Semi-Submarine tour is designed to have you experience the magic of Sainte Anne National Marine Park, from both above and below the water. The tour departs from Eden Island and heads to specific viewing areas inside the Marine Park where you will go in the underwater cabin to view the corals and amazing marine life like you never have before. You do not require any special clothing when going for the trip and are expected to remain dry during the entire tour which is suitable for people of all ages.
St Anne Marine Park & Moyenne Island- You will spend the day experiencing the wonderful St. Anne Marine park, with its excellent snorkeling spots, rich in marine life and beautiful sceneries, like the large exposed sandbars are low tide. Great for snorkeling, swimming or just lazing about. Lunch will be served on Moyenne Island. One of the must do tours while visiting Mahe.
La Digue, Curiuese, St. Pierre, Anse Lazio- You will spend the day experiencing some of the most beautiful places in the world, with their excellent snorkeling spots, rich in marine life and beautiful scenery, like the fascinating rock formations at Source D'Argent beach or the giant tortoise on Curiuese. Great for snorkeling, swimming or just lazing about. Lunch will be served on Curiuese Island. One of the must do tours while visiting Seychelles all at your own pace in the comfort of your private boat and crew.
Snorkeling & reef Safari Seychelles Marine park- Be amazed by the vibrant underwater life in our unique marine park in our glass bottom boat. Snorkel around with the tropical fish from coral reef to coral reef. Swim with sea turtles and angel fish in the Sainte Anne marine park.
Moyenne island will also amaze you, the abundance of giant tortoises roaming around freely without rush. A true paradise on earth our friendly crew will keep you entertained for the whole day and treat your taste buds with our freshly cooked meal.
Reef Safari at St Anne Marine National Park- Opportunity to explore the fascinating underwater world by snorkeling and swimming with the fishes and also can feed the fish, in this full-day tour in Ste Anne Marine National Park. Also there is ample time for marine enthusiasts to explore the reefs through the windows of our semi-submersible vessel or for those more geared to relaxation, take a swim or simply take a nap on the beach of Moyenne Island.
Rock pool, fantastic & unique experience- Not everyone who travels to the Seychelles has or had the opportunity to visit the Rock Pool. It's not that easy to find, but we'll take you there. The rock pool is unique and the hike there is easy to walk. It is a pleasant tour because you will see quite a bit of Mahé on the way there and it can be seen ideally as a half day tour.
The hike takes about an hour there and an hour back. We spend up to an hour at the pool. You can jump into the pool (approx. 3-4 meters high, depending on the water level approx. 10 meters deep. Swimming, bathing or simply relaxing in it is also possible. Furthermore, our company is accredited and insured, certified by the tourism authority and licensed by the government.
Day Cruise and Snorkeling in Saint-Anne marine Park- Spend three and a half hours on board of our luxury sensation 26 deck boat. You will enjoy the breathtaking scenery of the island and pristine beaches. We will stop in the Saint-Anne Marine National Park and our crew will help you discover the marine life of the Indian Ocean. The marine park includes Saint-Anne Island, Cerf Island, Round Island, Moyenne Island & Long Island and is famous for its excellent snorkeling conditions. With this half-day trip, you can enjoy a gentle cruise on the ocean and explore surroundings and beautiful marine life.
Beautiful island tour Mahé- An island tour with Sheena (Seychelloise) around Mahé is a real MUST. Only then can you see how beautiful Mahé is & that the main island of the Seychelles does not have to hide from any other islands (Praslin & La Digue). The sights / access points mentioned represent a few options. In reality, you will see a lot more on this island tour than we can describe. Culture, country & people, historical, all in a day trip. We have water with us and there is always the possibility of buying additional drinks (optional), having lunch, snacks & take-aways on the tour. As Seychellois, we know the Seychelles, are very flexible with your wishes, and are happy to cater to everything you want to see and discover.
Nature Trail (Hike)- Visiting Seychelles and enjoy the beauty of the intense forest, A guided hike that you will explore and get informations about the pure and lush flora and fauna. Able to see some endangered spices of the island such as the black snail, Sooglossidae frog and more. Where you will have the best panoramic view over Mahe and the close island of the Seychelles.
Mahe Island tour-The tour will allow clients to discover Mahe island with a local licensed guide who will provide information on the history, geography, culture and all other aspects of Seychelles and living in Seychelles. The tour includes a visit of the capital Victoria, and the Sir Selwyn Clarke Market. Island Exploration offers clients customized tours according to their interests and requirements. Other activities such as trail hiking or garden visits can also be included into the tour.
Island tour with the beach buggy- You'll start at North Coast Road or you can also get picked up. Visit Sauzier Waterfall-Stop for 30 min. Admission excluded. Then proceed to Le Jardin Du Roi Spice Garden for 60 min. Admission excluded. Then visit Domaine de Val des Pres - Craft Village, for around 30 min.
Photo Session with a Local Photographer in Victoria-Want to capture your amazing honeymoon? Family vacation while the kids are still little? Your perfect couples retreat from everyday busy life? A solo trip without asking strangers to take pictures of you? Stop searching, we got you here! We are the largest network of local vacation photographers in the world! Besides Victoria, Seychelles, we operate in over 700 destinations worldwide! We always make sure that every special moment of each client is captured well. We believe in our service and quality of our photos so much that we even offer a 100% money back satisfaction guarantee for your photo shoot. Which means, if you don’t like the result of your photo shoot, you can contact us within 7 days and claim your money back! So what are you waiting for? Become one of our hundreds of happy customers by treating yourself to this special experience! Your family and friends will love the result too!
Beach hopping Tour on Mahe- Seychelles is mostly know for breathtaking natural beauty and amazing white sand beaches. If you feel you want a relaxing day in the Sun we got it covered with the beach hopping tour.We have carefully chosen a few beaches for you, so that you can enjoy the water of the Indian ocean. Be adventurous and snorkel around to discover colorful and lively marine-life on the coasts of Mahe, or simply splash around or even get than tan that you have always dreamed of.sun tan lotion & towel ready get ready for a great day ahead.
Learn the Traditional Seychelles Art of Sun Printing with Local Textile Designer- Experience the beautiful nature of La Batie, discover the simplicity of our Roots way of life, and enjoy our extraordinary panoramic view of the Indian Ocean! You’ll be able to take home your own hand printed textile. We offer our printing classes in a fun, friendly social atmosphere in a peaceful Kreol environment.
02 Islands Melody- First to conquer is the island of Praslin, where upon arrival, you will be transported to the enigmatic Vallée de Mai. This prehistoric forest is home to the extraordinary Coco de Mer, which has a rather mysterious shape. Vallée de Mai has once been declared the site of the biblical Garden of Eden where the Coco de Mer was said to be the forbidden fruit.
We then stop for lunch at Le Domaine De La Reserve hotel. Located at the Curieuse National Marine Park, this charming property provides a rare over-water dining experience. We then head off to the jetty to take a short ferry ride to La Digue island. The tour will start with a visit of L’Union Estate, slowly unveiling the surprises of deep-rooted farm life by the discoveries of copra mill. As you go further, you will find the world famous beach of Anse Source D’ Argent which is said to be the most photographed beach.
Cat Cocos: Mahe to Praslin Island Fast Ferry- Pre-Book your Cat Cocos ferry transfers between the islands of Mahe and Praslin in the Seychelles. Refer to the Cat Cocos Ferry Schedule for ferry timings. IMPORTANT NOTE : One can EITHER buy a One-Way or Return but Ferry Ticket Cost is per Person per One-Way Trip. All names ie First Names and Surnames must be mentioned upon making bookings in order to book Cat Cocos ferry. For children date of birth must also be mentioned (compulsory).
Relaxed hike to Anse Major- We have certainly walked this tour to Anse Major over 1000 times in the last 10 years and we are still fascinated by this beautiful hike to this day. In the field of outdoor activities on Mahé, this hike, which can also be described as a walk, is a highlight in the Seychelles. The guided tour to Anse Major is easy to do and can be done even in bad weather. You have a great view of various bays and the northwest of Mahé. The green nature in the jungle to be crossed is harmless. Children from 5 years will be just as enthusiastic, because there is a lot to see & discover. If necessary, we will even see a real flying fox up close and feed it. Anse Major cannot be reached by car, you have to make a little effort, but you will be exceptionally rewarded. Furthermore, our company is accredited and insured, certified by the tourism authority and licensed by the government.
Explore Copolia Trail- The tour entails walking up the Copolia trail where upon arrival you will discover panoramic views of Victoria, the capital of Seychelles, the St Anne marine park and the International Airport. Discover the various endemic and indigenous plants of Seychelles on the way up. You might also have the chance to see endemic and indigenous birds of Seychelles such as the Seychelles Bulbul and White Tailed Tropic bird.
Discovery Tour of Mahe Island- The tour begins at 9:30am for 8 hours with a transfer from the hotel for a stop in the colonial centre of "the world's smallest capital", Victoria. Highlights to visit are the court buildings, post office, Clock-tower [twin of the one outside London's Victoria Station], 'Codevar' building where local crafts, including the renowned Kreol Or. Visit of the focal point of the town, is its colorful market where stalls of fresh fish, tropical fruits & vegetables, herbs & spices, are displayed in an abundance of fragrances. After leaving Victoria Market you are driven across the Sans Soucis mountain pass, with a photo stop at the historical Mission Lodge where you will get a wonderful panoramic view of the South of Mahe at a comfortable altitude. During your tour of South Mahe there will be a stop for lunch (at your own cost) at a Creole Restaurant where you can enjoy some local dishes.
La Digue Boat/Bike- You will be cruising the crystalline waters on board the island’s community ferries to La Digue, where you will experience some of the most memorable and authentic island living moments. La Digue is yours to explore guide-free and at your own pace for the entirety of the day. Hop onto your bike to begin your adventure, and allow yourself to be open to all the surprises that you may find right around the corner, such as an unbothered land tortoise causing some mid-morning “traffic”… if you’re “lucky”, that is! You can choose to visit many of the island’s attractions, such as L’Union Estate, home to the cemetery of the original settlers of the island. Attractions include a traditional copra mill, giant land tortoises, an old plantation house and the picturesque Anse Source D’Argent; famous for its huge granite boulders and clear turquoise water.
Beaches, sand castles, swimming & snorkeling- Would you like to see something of Mahé, but not boring sights, no strenuous hikes, but just lying lazily on the beach, swimming in the most beautiful bays of Mahé? Or just enjoy a coconut on the beach with or without rum? We will visit all possible beaches in a relaxed manner, approx. 5-6 hours, and you then decide whether it is a short visit, you just want to take a few photos, or whether you want to enjoy the beach for an hour here and there. We also have face masks and fins for snorkeling (optional). Restaurant visits to the beach are available possible and can also be included. Water sports with paragliding or jet skiing are optionally available on Beau Vallon Beach through various providers.
Reef Safari, Snorkeling, Fish Feeding- The St Anne Marine National Park is a must do adventure. Discover the pristine beauties of our oceans wildlife. Varieties of fish species and coral. Have a taste of our local cuisine on Moyenne Island
Night tour to the trendy bars and clubs Mahé- We are party people and clubbers. Mahé at Night is something completely different from the usual island tours or trails, hikes and city tours. Don't miss this night tour and especially the cocktails, be a part of the party.