This archipelago of 115 islands is in the middle of the Indian Ocean, about 10 hours from Europe by plane. Made up of granitic and coralline islands, it is the ideal destination for a range of holidays.
Its fine sandy beaches are dotted with charming and friendly guesthouses, hotels nestled among the coconut trees and flawless, luxurious villas made of natural materials.
A natural environment
A holiday in the Seychelles guarantees a breathtaking natural environment, perfect for hiking, water sports.
You can enjoy a wide range of activities, from golfing to big-game fishing, snorkelling and scuba diving. With its islands covering 455 km² and its seas covering more than 1 million km², the archipelago is multi-faceted and can be explored on foot, in an autogyro or by boat.
It has a small but welcoming population of 88,000 people. In Mahé, the largest island, French is one of the official languages, along with English and Seychellois Creole.
The Seychelles has been an independent state since 1976. Located on the equator, the Seychelles is closer to Madagascar than to the African or Indian continents. The Seychelles is divided into two large groups : the inner islands and the outer islands.
The more remote outer islands include the Amirantes Islands, the Farquhar group and the Aldabra group. The trio of Mahé, Praslin and La Digue are three of the most popular inner islands for a first trip to the Seychelles. These granitic islands have incredible beaches including Anse Intendance in Mahé, Anse Lazio in Praslin and Anse Source d’Argent in La Digue. Covered in tropical vegetation, their mountain landscapes are perfect for hiking and are filled with terns, vasa parrots and turtles. The Seychelles is home to several national parks and nature reserves.
The island of Mahé is home to the highest point in the islands which is protected by the Morne Seychellois National Park.
The capital Victoria is at the heart of the Seychelles. It’s a reminder of when Mahé was called l’île de l’abondance or the “Island of Abundance”. Sailors came to dock to stock up on supplies of water, wood and tropical fruit. Pirates have also haunted the islands. They’re said to have hidden their loot there, mainly in the Bel Ombre area under the banyan trees.
The second largest island in size, is 45 minutes far from Mahé by boat and 15 minutes by plane.
The Vallée de Mai National Park in Praslin is recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage site. This unique site has a forest of sea coconut trees with their double coconuts, known locally as “cocobutts”. The leaves of these coconut trees shelter several rare plants and many birds.
The Veuve Noir Nature Reserve is home to lush tropical vegetation and an endemic bird species called the “black widow” (or veuve noire). You can get there by bike or oxcart, because there are no cars in La Digue. However, cars are allowed in Mahé and Praslin, the two biggest islands. It’s easy to travel by plane or by boat from one island to another. Several islands are in the immediate vicinity of Mahé and Praslin. Sainte Anne and Cerf Island are next to Mahé.
White sand and marine life is the moto of La Digue.
Cousin island, Cousine, Curieuse and more
Nature reigns supreme on these small islands ; their marine parks give access to a spectacularly beautiful aquatic world. Silhouette, Bird Island, Frégate and Denis Island also make up the Inner Islands, near Mahé.
These islands feel like paradise : they’re home to very few hotels, magnificent beaches and Eden-like nature. The Seychelles’ giant tortoises live on these unspoiled islands. Make the most of your holiday to the Seychelles by sampling the local cuisine.
Fish is omnipresent in Seychellois cooking. Freshly caught, it’s served grilled with rice and aubergine or pumpkin purée. Pepper sauce, an everyday staple in the Seychelles, packs a real punch ! Other delicious and unusual dishes include cari de zourite (octopus) and roussette (bat). For dessert, treat yourself to a variety of tropical fruit.
At dusk, the catchy music of the Seychelles can be heard in the hotels: an invitation to dance the night away in these extraordinarily welcoming islands. Does a holiday in the Seychelles appeal ?