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Discovering Seychelles

Beach of Seychelles

The picture perfect Seychelles is a haven for holiday seekers. Imagine laying on a warm white powder sand and feeling the cool breeze caressing you. Huge granite rocks of different sizes and shapes on your right and a coconut tree bending over the seashore on your left while the gentle lapping of the waves gradually carries you to a more and more relaxed state. This fantastic sensation is what you can expect, all while discovering THE SEYCHELLES.

This fabulous archipelago is not just about beaches but also about unspoiled nature, marine treasures, endemic animals and plants, postcard scenery, unique culture and a distinctive cuisine.

Cocktail in the Indian Ocean

Seychelles is an archipelago of 115 islands scattered over the Indian Ocean. Among these 115 islands, 41 forms parts of the Inner Islands and 74 of the Outer Islands. The Seychelles is about 1,600 km east of Kenya and covers an area of 459 km². Teeming with pristine white beaches, giant granite boulders, and a blue azure lagoon makes the archipelago a legendary beauty.

The Seychelles comprises of 3 main islands, notably: Mahé, La Digue and Praslin Island.

History

Before the 17th century, the Seychelles remains inhabited and was mostly used by pirates to hide their treasures. In the 18th century the governor of Mauritius, Mahe de la Bourbonnais sent Lazare Picault to explore and chart the islands northeast of Madagascar.

The French were the first to colonize the Seychelles but in the early 19th century the Britain took control of the Seychelles.

On June 29, 1976 the Seychelles became an independent republic within the Commonwealth with Sir James Mancham as its President and Albert René as Prime Minister.

Culture & Religion

Seychelles has developed a unique culture by the blending of different races and nationalities of people residing in the archipelago.

The official languages are the Seychellois Creole, French and English.

Roman Catholic is the dominant religion, however other religions such as Islam, Hinduism and Chinese are also practice in the island.

Seychellois are known for their hospitality and friendliness.

All while discovering Seychelles you will notice that Mahé, Praslin and La Digue Island are real bijou of the Indian Ocean.

Mahé Island

Mahé is the most developed and largest island of Seychelles. Home to the capital city Victoria, Mahé has a population of around 80,000 citizens, consisting of more than 90% of Seychelles population. With 60 stunning beaches, waterfalls, jungle, mountain walks and striking viewpoints, Mahé has evolved into a main tourist destination. Mahé is famous for its vibrant atmosphere, Creole architecture and market.

Praslin Island

Praslin is a delight for beach lovers, a piece of paradise on earth. Commonly listed among the best beaches in the world, Praslin beaches and lush tropical forest will leave you speechless. Being the second largest island of the Seychelles, Praslin has a population of merely 6,500 citizens. The island has also an 18 hole championship golf course. Get ready to discover the endemic Coco De Mer and other rare species. Praslin is considered to be a ‘MUST visit destination’.

La Digue Island

La Digue famous beaches never fail to impress, the perfect laid-back location. It is the smallest of the 3 main islands and has a population of only 2,000 persons. La Digue iconic beaches and landscape will take your breath away. There are a handful of taxis and local bus services, however, the best way to discover la Digue is by bicycle.

Beaches & National Park

Seychelles and its beaches are of unmatched beauty, here is a list of those amazing beaches:

Anse Source d’Argent

Iconic Anse Source d'Argent

Perhaps the most beautiful beach you will set eyes upon. Anse Source d’Argent is the star of the Seychelles, with its naturally sculptured granite boulders and crystal clear turquoise waters, Anse Source d’argent is spectacular. Situated on La Digue Island, the famous beach is probably the most photographed and has appeared in many films.

 Anze Lazio

Anse Lazio, Seychelles

 Situated in the northwest of Praslin Island, Anse Lazio is adorned by white powder-fine sand, lapis lazuli waters backed by scenic granite boulders. Anse Lazio deserves its reputation, a real gem of the Indian Ocean. Recently voted the 6th best beach in the world by TripAdvisors.

 Anse Georgette

Anse Georgette, Seychelles

Again, one of the riches of Seychelles, Anse Georgette situated on Praslin is an outstanding beach. Powder soft sand, incredible palm trees and blue turquoise water make the beach an unforgettable souvenir of Seychelles. Considered the second best beach in Praslin Island after Anse Lazio, Anse Georgette is a truly jaw-dropping beach.

 Anse Intendance

Anse Intendance, Seychelles

 Anse Intendance in Southern Mahé is the perfect location to lay your surfing materials. With high waves, Anse Intendance presents the ideal conditions for surfing. An amazing beach with imposing granite formation and beautiful scenery. Rank among the best beaches in the Indian Ocean, Anse Intendance is a true postcard image.

 National Park

Vallée de Mai National Park

Vallee de Mai Seychelles

An untouched vestige of natural palm forest preserved since years. Designated as a World Heritage Site by the UNESCO, Vallée de Mai is highly recommended. Almost conserved to its original state, the national park has no match. Resting on the granitic island of Praslin, Vallée de Mai covers an area of 19.5 ha and is a sanctuary largely unchanged since prehistoric times.

Vallée de Mai is home to the famous Coco de mer only found in Praslin and Curieuse Island and to five endemic palm trees. Unique for its wildlife, the National Park has rare species of bird such as the black parrot.

 Interesting facts about the Seychelles

  1. The gorgeous Seychelles was at a time a pirate hideout. Rumors are that the infamous pirate Olivier Levasseur hid a treasure of great value in the Seychelles Island.
  2. The heaviest land tortoise, Esmeralda, resides on the Bird Island.
  3. The endemic Coco de mer produces the heaviest and largest seed in the world.
  4. Victoria, the capital of Seychelles is the smallest capital in the world and can be explored in a day on foot.
  5. Rarest bird species can be spotted in Seychelles.
  6. Prince William and his wife spent their honeymoon in the Seychelles.
  7. The republic was uninhabited until the 18th century

The Seychelles: Fly to the beaches!

the seychelles

The archipelago of 115 islands forming the Seychelles is famous for its beautiful beaches, which are the main attraction for visitors. Almost the entire island is surrounded by spectacular white sand. The SNA has considered the top beaches in the Seychelles.

The Top Beaches

There are these fabulous rocks from another age, that give each a Jurassic coastline pan majesty, that give depth to the cards, and change the romance adventure film. This goes beyond the beauty that awaits the tropics, light sand, clear water, palm trees accomplices everything takes an epic dimension, and the people imagination these beaches pirates, cursed ship, hopeless romantic. Some beaches are coves with tunes from around the world, gold enclaves in the forests, where there are fears almost to surprise some unspeakable secret. Anse Takamaka, Mahe, or Anse Georgette, Praslin, have this wild look of hidden gem, with their form half-moon bristling with rocks, their treasure map draws. Everywhere the water comes in precious stones, one hesitates to resort to kitsch, but how to say otherwise? it combines the transparency of the diamond to the smoothness of the turquoise. Others are huge, wide open bays inordinate whose brilliance dazzled out of sight. Lazare bay, Beauvallon beach in Mahe and Anse Lazio on Praslin, are large gentle beaches, where some palm trees just grow horizontally to better work towards the pearl of funds. On Praslin, the beach coast Golden is huge and flat out of sight, without depth, so much so that we imagine to walk on water to the rocky islets that low tide strips. The sand is almost white ice, and the zenith, the light is blinding literally – it’s the kind of beach where reflected causes snow blindness. You get the impression of having been transported to another piece of paradise, as if you jumped from sphere to sphere, to increasingly clear nirvanas.

1. Anse Source d’Argent

This is one of the best beaches in the world. Located on the island of La Digue – the third most populated island of the archipelago, its white sand beaches, azure blue sea, surrounded by massive granite boulders make this beach a place of unique souvenir for Seychelle’s tourists. The beach dotted with massive boulders and smooth, came out first in a survey by the British newspaper “The Guardian”. TripAdvisor website, which collects user reviews, classified the beach in the Top 12 of the most beautiful beaches of crystalline water. The beach is also featured among the best beaches in the Traveller’s Choice 2014. The beautiful National Geographic book elected Anse Source d’Argent best beach in the world. The beach was also voted 4th best beach in the world by CNN on 100 staff. She is the fifth best beach ranked 12 in the world by US News & World Report.

2. Anse Lazio

Located in the northwest of Praslin – the second most inhabited island of the Seychelles, it is regarded by many as the best beach in the island nation. This is probably the one that is the most photographed. Long and wide, with its satin sand and enchanting blue sea, the beach is surrounded by large granite blocks and gives the feeling of being isolated in a small corner of paradise. In 2015, users of Tripadvisor elected Anse Lazio as the 6th most beautiful beach in the world.

3. Anse Georgette

Located on the west side of Praslin, this beach – compared to Anse Lazio – is nice and quiet. Accessible only by boat, the beach has preserved its isolation, making it an ideal place for couples. US News & World Report indicates that the beach “one of the 10 best beaches in the world. ”

4. Petite Anse

The producer and British actor Jamie Theakston, described the beach “spectacular -with one hand steep volcanic cliffs and across a growing perfect azure blue sea that sliding on the sand barely caressing your feet. “It is on the east side of the island of La Digue and listed idyllic beaches in the Seychelles in the Lonely Planet guide. This is the place for you if you wish to play castaway on a deserted beach.

5. Anse Intendance

Ranked as one of the most unspoilt beaches of the main island of Mahe, it lies on the south coast of the island and stretches over nearly 3 km. With no reef, the big powerful waves make it an ideal place for surfers. However, this is not the best site for those who just want to swim. US News & World Report has ranked 5th activity things to do in Seychelles

6. Anse Major

The beach borders the Seychelles Morne nature reserve northwest of the main island of Mahé. It is accessible by boat or by hiking trails. The online version of the Daily Mail in the UK was ranked No. 1 of the 6 best outputs to the Seychelles. As for Tripadvisor, the site was ranked No. 5 in outdoor activities on Mahe. According to a user of Tripadvisor “Hiking to get there is long and exhausting, but it’s really beautiful because it offers magnificent views of the coastline. Once you’ve made it, Seychelles reward you by allowing you to admire one of the most enchanting places on earth! “

Seychelles: A Hidden Gem!

A family on holiday in the Seychelles.

This small piece of paradise is one of Africa’s hidden gems. With its white powdery beaches and contrasting crystal clear waters, you will surely enjoy one of the best of holidays there. The resorts and villas in the Seychelles feature the best in sumptuous holidays – impeccable service and dream-like locations.

The Seychelles will have you speechless from the minute you step out of the plane… The beaches are so stunning that you have to see them with your own eyes to believe it. The dramatic rock formations and incredible sunsets will have you relentlessly snapping away with your camera. One obvious thing is: Mother Nature was kind to this island. Seychelles will definitely drag you away into another world.

Where are The Seychelles?

Seychelles on a map

Seychelles on a map

Seychelles Island is located to the northeast of Madagascar, and about 1640km east of Kenya. It is an archipelago nation of islands located in the Indian Ocean consisting of about 115 islands. The Seychelles has the smallest population of any African state and the principal islands are Mahé (55 sq mi; 142 sq km), Praslin (15 sq mi; 38 sq km), and La Digue (4 sq mi; 10 sq km). The Aldabra, Farquhar, and Desroches groups are included in the territory of the republic.

Life in the Seychelles islands differs by grandiose seascapes, incomparable beauty and temperate weather. These are few of the factors that make this nation such a preferred paradise for holiday seekers. Adding to the perfect, dazzling, white sands and welcoming, lapis-lazuli, waters, this spectacular country is also home to a vibrant diversity of cultures.

Top Attractions Of The Seychelles

Sailing

Sailing in Seychelles

Sailing in Seychelles

With its azure oceans, Seychelles’ lagoons are world famous and provide innumerable opportunities for memorable sailing around its isles. The archipelago consists of a myriad of channels and safe quays at different spots, which means that opting for hiring a yacht will prove enjoyable. It is a perfect place for leisure cruises or boat tours.

Diving

Snorkeling In Seyche;lles

Snorkeling In Seyche;lles

With its incredible variety of marine life beneath the soft ocean surface, diving becomes a whole new and memorable experience. The warm safe waters houses a vibrant array of fish, turtles and coral, providing snorkelers and scuba divers with unparalleled opportunities to contemplate endemic species.

Fishing

Seychelles hosts a number of well-attended annual fishing tournaments. Big-game and fly-fishermen opt for these waters as there is an affluence of marine life rich in prize catches without forgetting the beautiful and tranquil environment adding up to any angling adventure.

Hiking

Hiking in the Seychelles

Hiking in the Seychelles

With its beautiful, peaceable and dream-like landscapes, hiking is a pure bliss in the Seychelles. The basaltic structure of the environment, with its lush dense forests makes it the perfect place for those nature lovers seeking adventure.

Island hopping

Seychelles is a melting pot of cultures and each one of its hundredth of landmasses has their own magical and unique allure. Be it architecture that fascinates you or be it nature, you’ll find a wealth of inspiring discoveries by visiting the different islands of the archipelago.

Sunbathing and Swimming

Swimming in Seychelles

Swimming in Seychelles

Having a walk along the many truly superb coastlines of these islands, relax on their soft sands or swim in those enthralling lagoons is one of the best experiences you will have in your life. Any Seychelles experience is incomplete without having a trip around those distinctive rocky shores and immaculate white beaches.

The Hidden Treasures Of The Seychelles

Restaurants you should not miss in the Seychelles

Restaurant La Perle Noir

If you’re looking for a romantic restaurant with great food on Mahé, this is the place to visit. Situated in the Beau Vallon area, you will enjoy your meal outside the restaurant after the reservation. Who wouldn’t want to sit outside in a tropical paradise? Its fresh catches are highly recommended- you will definitely enjoy an exquisite feast there.

Café des Arts

This place, situated on Praslin, has it all – a gorgeous setting, yummy food at a decent price and friendly service- quite a unique spot. Seafood is, of course, their forte! You should not miss having dinner or lunch there, you will certainly be conquered.

Kaz Zanana

Found in Victoria, Kaz Zanana proposes delicious Creole seafood served in a former Seychellois house that’s been skillfully restored and ornamented with local artisans’ wares. Its location being a little off the beaten path makes it a perfect place if you are looking for tranquility.

Must Visits in the Seychelles

The atoll of Aldabra

Atoll Of Aldabra

Atoll Of Aldabra

The Aldabra atoll, situated in the most isolated part of the Seychelles is Made up of 4 main islands. It is there that you’ll find the largest raised coral atoll in the world – now a UNESCO World Heritage Site. With its untouched coral reef and over 100,000 giant land tortoises, it’s a must-visit for those interested in ecology. You will also have the opportunity to come across frigate birds, giant crabs and the white throated rail, the only flightless bird left in the Indian Ocean.

 

Sainte Anne Marine National Park

Snorkeling at Sainte Anne Marine National Park

Snorkeling at Sainte Anne Marine National Park

Easily accessible and a boat-ride away from Victoria Harbour, this marine park is made up of 6 islands. The marine park offers superb snorkelling conditions in clear waters where you’ll see  as many as 900 species of fish found in the Seychelles. Hawskbill Turtles are another big draw for visitors to these islands.

 

Vallée de Mai on Praslin Island

Vallee De Mai
Vallee De Mai

Lying in the heart of Praslin Island, Vallée de Mai is a national park, UNESCO World Heritage Site and houses the highly revered Coco de Mer seed. Vallée de Mai is the sole place in the world where you’ll come across Coco de Mer. You will be able to wander through the national park, beneath giant palm trees and do keep your eyes open for the rare Seychelles Black Parrot.

Most Idyllic Beaches in the Seychelles

Curieuse beach

Curieuse beach

Across the Seychelles, you’ll find stunning beaches complete with huge granite boulders, soft white sand and breathtaking views across the calm turquoise waters.

Some of the most praised beaches are:

1. Anse Source d’Argent (La Digue)with its dazzling powdery-sand beach framed by naturally sculpted granite boulders lapped by luxuriously warm waters.

2. Petite Anse (La Digue) which is the perfect place to to play castaway on a deserted beach.

3. Anse Georgette (Praslin) is the place for those sunseekers. You will definitely love this spot.

4. Anse Lazio (Praslin), one of the most idyllic beach in the Seychelles, with its long stretch of silvery sand framed by granite boulders and shaded by coconut palms and takamaka.

 

Top Diving spots in the Seychelles

Diving in Seychelles
Diving in Seychelles

 

1. Trois Bank
The maximum depth at this site is 23 meters. With nice granite rocks formation, coral formation raised nearly to 4 meters to the surface and a fantastic visibility; you will enjoy a great diving experience.There are grey reef sharks most of the time and groups of octopus, eagle rays, school of barracuda, bat fish, reef fishes and morays.

2. National Marine Park, Cap Ternay
A calm bay with beautiful coral reef  with a lively marine life, starting from its shallow reef (about 1 metre) to a maximum of 24 meters. Beautiful reef fishes, morays, lion fish, turtles, humphead parrot fish, trumpet fish, clown fish, and many other species can be observed there. And during the period of August to September, you can easily get a glance of the giant whale sharks and sometimes also the dolphins.

3. Dredger Wreck
This site is better suited to divers with experience of open water diving. The ship was sunk on purpose for divers and lies at 27 meters depth near to a nice reef. The dredger wreck has created a nice hiding place for cat fish, morays, lobster, stone fish, lion fish, and scorpion fish. Sometimes giant puffer fish and school of bat fish can be spotted along with sting rays in the sand.