The Seychelles, beautiful and unspoiled, are featured in a plethora of tropical island fantasies. The archipelago’s 115 coral and granite islands, which are the tops of a massive underwater plateau, offer beautiful boulder-strewn beaches, virgin jungles, thriving coral reefs, and UNESCO-listed nature reserves, to name a few.
The Seychelles are located near the equator, east of Kenya. Almost half of the country’s land is covered, and many of the islands and atolls are part of marine sanctuaries. Hiking the mountain trails, basking on the beautiful beaches, rock climbing, photographing the unique flora and fauna, and dining on delectable Créole cuisine are all common activities in the Seychelles.
The clear, azure water is ideal for water sports. The Seychelles offer world-class diving, snorkeling, surfing, and sailing, as well as some of the world’s richest fishing grounds and location for best resorts in Seychelles.
The Seychelles’ larger granitic inner islands (primarily Mahé, Praslin, and La Digue) are the most built for tourism, with numerous luxury five-star and Seychelles resorts for honeymoon.
The small capital of Mahé, Victoria, as well as the international airport, cruise ship terminal, and the magnificent Morne Seychellois National Park, and Fishermans Cove Resort one of the best beach resorts in Mahe, Seychelles are all located on the island.
On Praslin Island, the UNESCO-listed Vallée de Mai can be visited, while La Digue is home to some of the Seychelles’ most beautiful beaches. Uninhabited low-lying sand cays and small coralline islands and atolls make up the outer islands. Anglers can find unique fishing lodges on Alphonse Island and Farquhar Atoll, where the fishing is excellent.
Learn more about the best places to visit in the Seychelles with our list of the top attractions in the Seychelles, no matter what you want to do on these beautiful islands.
Anse Lazio, Praslin
Anse Lazio (Chevalier Bay) is one of the most beautiful beaches in the Seychelles, located on the north shore of Praslin Island. To get to the beach, you must walk up a hill, but it is well worth the effort.
This long stretch of soft blond sand, surrounded by rounded granite boulders, merges with crystal-clear waters in dreamy shades of blue. Takamaka trees and coconut palms line the beach, offering shade for sunbathing, and hungry beachgoers will refuel at restaurants on both ends.
Early morning or late afternoon are the best times to visit Anse Lazio when most tour buses have already departed.
Anse Intendance, Mahé
Because of the island’s frequent big swells and wild waves, this tiny and secluded crescent of sand on the island’s south coast is a favorite surfing spot.
When the trade winds blow from the southeast, swimming can be a little rough due to the lack of a protective reef, but sunbathers, beachcombers, and photographers can enjoy this picturesque, palm-framed strand at any time of year. Turtles lay their eggs on the powdery sands of this beach.
Baie Lazare, Mahé
Baie Lazare, a charming village on Mahé, was named after the 18th-century French explorer Lazare Picault, who landed here when the French government dispatched him to discover the islands.
The neo-Gothic Baie Lazare Church, dedicated to St. Francis of Assisi and offering a panoramic view of the region, is one of the area’s key tourist attractions.
With their breathtaking azure water and sparkling white sand, the beaches of Anse Soleil and Petite Anse are among the best in the Seychelles.
La Digue Island
La Digue, the archipelago’s fourth largest island, is a refuge for nature lovers. Bicycles and oxcarts are common modes of transportation, making it a perfect place to visit for anyone looking for a glimpse of typical island life.
Beach connoisseurs will find one of the planet’s most picturesque stretches of sand and sea here: Anse Source D’Argent, which is surrounded by stunning white-sand beaches and granite rock outcrops. You must pay to use the beach at the nearby L’Union Estate, which includes a tour of the old copra factory and vanilla plantation as part of your entry.
The Veuve Nature Reserve, which is home to the endangered black paradise flycatcher, also known as “the widow” due to its flowing black tail feathers, is another tourist attraction.
Hikers can enjoy the La Pass to Grand Anse Trail, which winds past French colonial houses through woodlands and marsh areas to the beautiful Grand Anse beach.
Day Trip to Curieuse Island
Curieuse Island, formerly known as Île Rouge because of its russet-toned earth, now houses a breeding program for giant tortoises, which wander freely across the sandy coves.
The majority of the island is covered in takamaka and casuarina trees, which provide shade for the white-sand beaches, but Curieuse is also noted for another botanical distinction: the coco de mer palm grows naturally only on Curieuse and Praslin.
The island was once home to a leper colony, and the remains of the leprosarium, as well as the doctor’s residence, a protected national monument, can be found on the south shore.
From Praslin Island, boat tours to Curieuse Island are available.
Morne Seychellois National Park
Morne Seychellois National Park is a paradise for hikers and nature enthusiasts. This is the Seychelles’ largest national park, comprising more than 20% of the island of Mahé.
The mountain chain called for its highest point, Morne Seychellois, which reaches a height of 905 meters and overlooks Victoria’s city, is found inside its beautiful borders. The Seychelles scops-owl, bulbul, and sunbird are among the many famous bird species, while the rich vegetation includes indigenous palms, pandanus, pitcher plants, and ferns, among others.
Here you’ll find some of the island’s great walks. Hiking routes lead from the settlement of Danzil into the park, passing through tea plantations and providing beautiful views of Mahé’s southwest coast from the mountain slopes. The modest Morne Blanc trek is one of the most popular, and its peak provides superb views.
Hikers can reach the Baie Ternay and Port Launay Marine Parks by walking west through the park. The hamlet of Bel Ombre and the solitary beach of Anse Major are located to the northwest.
Ste Anne Marine National Park
Ste Anne National Marine Park, which spans six islands a 15- to 20-minute boat trip off the coast of Mahé in Victoria, was established in 1973 as the first national park in the Indian Ocean.
Snorkeling, scuba diving, and glass-bottom boat tours highlight the park’s coral reefs’ amazing diversity of marine life, and day trips from Mahé can take you to most of the reserve’s islands. On a couple of the islands, you can also spend the night.
Hawksbill turtles use Sainte Anne Island as a breeding ground. Despite its mangroves and crocodiles, the island hosted the first French settlement in the Seychelles in 1770.
You may take a nature walk on Round Island, a former leper colony, and stay overnight at the JA Enchanted Island Resort.
Île Cachée is a protected nature reserve and a key nesting ground for noddies. Swim, snorkel, or dive around the spectacular reefs of Cerf Island, or relax on the quiet beaches. You can also stay at the Cerf Island Resort or L’Habitation Hotel in this area.
Nature walks, restored settlers’ dwellings, pirate tombs, a modest thatched church, and huge tortoises can all be found on privately owned Moyenne Island.
Beau Vallon Beach
On Mahé’s northwest coast, Beau Vallon’s seductive arc of dazzling sand is an attraction for both tourists and locals. Mountainous Silhouette Island shimmers on the horizon, creating a magnificent vista when looking out to sea.
This is a terrific pick if you’re searching for some lively beach action. Locals go here on weekends for beach barbecues, which are surrounded by hotels and restaurants. Jet Skis, water skiing, banana boats, and paddleboarding are just a few of the water sports available here.
The beach is patrolled by lifeguards, and the sea is normally calm, especially during the southeast trade winds, making it an ideal destination for families with little children.
Vallée de Mai National Park, Praslin
Do you need a break from the sun, the sand, and the sea? Visit Vallée de Mai National Park, which is pleasant and shaded. For nature enthusiasts, this is one of the best spots to visit in the Seychelles.
On the island of Praslin, this beautiful palm-studded park is a UNESCO World Heritage Site that preserves a prehistoric forest with at least 4,000 individuals of the rare enormous coco de mer fruit palm, which is peculiar to the Seychelles.
Stop by the visitor center before heading out on the trails to learn more about the park’s environment and witness some of the world’s largest coco de mer seeds. Vanilla orchids, palmiste, latanier, spread traveler’s palm, and Chinese fans are among the other plants that thrive in the park.
The well-marked nature pathways make it simple to explore this reserve. There are three various hiking paths to select from, each taking one to three hours to complete. Huge stones sit along the forest floor, while towering trees form an overhead canopy, keeping the routes sheltered for the most of the journey.
The valley is home to a variety of lizards and uncommon birds, including the Seychelles bulbul, the fruit pigeon, and the black parrot, the Seychelles’ national bird.
It is strongly advised that you hire a guide to learn more about the plants and animals. It’s also worth noting that there’s a cost to access the park.
Day Trip to Cousin Island
The endangered Seychelles warbler is important for the preservation of this magnificent island. Cousin Island Special Reserve was established in 1968 to safeguard this and other indigenous bird species. It is also the most important breeding place for the critically endangered hawksbill turtle in the western Indian Ocean.
Cousin Island is also the first carbon-neutral wildlife reserve on the planet.
The island is just two kilometers from Praslin Island, and local tour firms may arrange day visits. When you get on the island, one of the reserve’s wardens will lead you on a 75-minute tour of the island, explaining its unique environment.
Keep a watch out for the Seychelles magpie robin, Seychelles brush warbler, Seychelles turtledove, and wedge-tailed shearwater, which are all resident species. Lesser noddies, fairy terns, and tropicbirds all have breeding areas within the area.
Day trip to Aride Island Nature Reserve
Aride Island Nature Reserve, the northernmost of the Granitic Seychelles, is home to 18 different seabird species, including frigate birds, red-tailed tropicbirds, and the world’s largest colonies of lesser noddy and roseate terns.
The highest density of lizards everywhere on Earth, as well as several rare floral species, await nature lovers. The Wright’s gardenia, also known as the bois citron, is only found on this island.
The majority of hotels on Praslin Island can arrange day trips to Aride, however keep in mind that the island is frequently closed to guests from May to September owing to severe surf. Helicopter visits are also possible.
Mountainous Silhouette Island, located 30 kilometers off Mahé’s west coast in a marine park, is known for its vast biodiversity. Apart from Mahé, it’s the only other Seychelles island having a mist forest, which envelops the 731-meter summit of Mont Dauban.
Silhouette Island, the third biggest of the granitic islands, features steep topography that has helped to retain its natural beauty. Birds, geckos, chameleons, turtles, and skinks are among the more than 2,000 species protected by the park.
There are plenty of things to do in this place. You may go cave exploring, swim and snorkel on beautiful beaches, and witness a variety of flora and animals, including carnivorous pitcher plants, coco de mer palms, millipedes, slugs, and snails.
To get to the island, take a 45-minute ferry from Mahe’s Bel Ombre dock to the Hilton Seychelles Labriz Resort & Spa, the island’s lone hotel. Even better, reserve a room and stay here. Alternatively, a private boat trip or a spectacular 15-minute helicopter flight are available.
The Seychelles’ little capital, Port Victoria, on the island of Mahé, is the country’s only harbor, named after the British queen after her coronation.
It’s simple to see all of the major sights in a one day. The Seychelles National Botanical Gardens is a popular tourist destination. The gardens, which were founded about a century ago, include 15 acres of native and exotic plants, as well as flying foxes, gigantic tortoises, and an orchid garden.
Modern concrete and glass buildings have sprung up throughout the city in recent years, with the few remaining colonial structures clustered around Freedom Square. The clock tower is the most visible historical structure. It was built in 1903 and is based on Little Ben, a miniature counterpart of Big Ben in London.
St. Paul’s Cathedral, which overlooks the square, was built on the site of the Seychelles’ first church, which was devastated by a severe cyclone in 1862.
Locals sell seafood, fresh fruits, and vegetables at Sir Selwyn Clarke Market, and several craft stores sell items ranging from ship models to pearl jewelry.
Anse Volbert (also known as Côte d’Or) is one of Praslin’s most popular beaches, located on the island’s northeast coast. The sun-bleached dunes are lapped by warm, shallow water, while coral reefs beckon close offshore. Swimming with tiny children is also safe in the calm seas.
Anse Volbert is one of the island’s most popular resort districts, with many hotels and restaurants on the coastlines, including the Hotel Cote D’Or, which features thatched bungalows nestled among the tropical flora.
Bird Island, formerly known as Îles aux Vaches due to the presence of dugongs (sea cows) in the vicinity, is home to a colony of migratory sooty terns that grows to 1,500,000 birds during the nesting season from May to October. Birders and photographers can watch the nests from elevated observation platforms.
Fairy and noddy terns, cardinals, ground doves, mynas, crested terns, and plovers are among the island’s other residents. There are also giant land tortoises in the area, and the neighboring Seychelles Bank is known for its big-game fishing.
The Bird Island Lodge, a no-frills eco-lodge, is the only place to stay on the island. A 30-minute flight from Mahé will get you to the island.
Aldabra is the world’s biggest elevated coral atoll and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Through four channels, the center lagoon fills and empties twice a day, revealing mushroom-shaped pinnacles known as champignons.
The shallows are frequented by tiger sharks and manta rays, and the atoll is home to hundreds of birds, including the white-throated rail (the only flightless bird in the Indian Ocean). Lesser and greater frigates, red-footed boobies, dimorphic egrets (only found here and in Madagascar), Aldabra sacred ibis, greater flamingos, and the Malagasy kestrel are among the birds on display.
Aldabra is home to 200,000 giant tortoises, which is five times the number found on the Galapagos Islands.
Visiting this secluded island is difficult; you can only get to the atoll by chartering a private boat, and you must first receive authorization from the Seychelles Islands Foundation.