Seychelles is known and loved for long dreamy days on beautiful beaches, colorful corals, and palm trees swaying in the breeze. It’s one of the world’s most loved honeymoon destinations and is considered one of the most luxurious resort getaway tourist destinations. Many believe Seychelles are perfectly safe, but is that a wise assumption?
Behind the veneer of tropical paradise, this chain of islands off the coast of East Africa hides a sketchy truth. These more remote islands have a dark history of piracy and crime that is still present in some corners of the Indian Ocean today. Therefore, it’s crucial to be vigilant and aware at all times when visiting Seychelles.
So, is Seychelles safe? We’re going to unpack this question, giving detailed and general safety tips for those wishing to visit Seychelles in the Gulf of Aden and Indian Ocean. From nighttime safety to women traveling solo, this guide is here to help you plan and prepare for a trip of a lifetime!
Is Seychelles safe? A quick look
The sandy shores of Seychelles draw in a whole range of travelers; from hordes of honeymooners and the rich and famous to families experiencing something different. Generally, most vacations to Seychelles are safe and trouble-free.
Luxurious yachts and resorts employ dedicated security teams and do their utmost best to keep their guests safe. Even when you travel Seychelles on a shoestring budget (yes, it is possible), the majority of locals are pleased to see tourism in an honest way and are nothing but welcoming.
However, there have been cases of petty crime and robberies from opportunists, targeting the more affluent expatriates and tourists. Violent crime is a rarity while dangerous weather conditions are a serious threat to bear in mind. So you can’t say there is no trouble in paradise here! As long as you don’t create the opportunity for petty crime to occur while traveling Seychelles, then there is no reason why you would encounter any trouble.
Is Seychelles safe to visit now?
Tourism has been on the rise in Seychelles over the last three decades. So despite it being a chain of remote islands, the destination is truly tolerant of tourism and welcomes inbound flights and yachts to the shores. Being a popular tourist paradise destination does help display the overall safety of Seychelles.
Unfortunately, crime levels have been increasing over the past 3 years. This could be due to economic and financial difficulties as the country’s tourism industry recovered from the global pandemic.
Petty crime is avoidable with smart travel tips (more on this later). Piracy is typically out to sea and can be extremely scary; it’s worth knowing about if you plan on heading out on any boats. Nature poses the biggest threat with plenty of considerations to make, including:
- mosquito borne diseases;
- unpredictable currents;
- sun exposure;
- and, monsoons.
|Level of crime||35.29||Low|
|Crime increasing in the past 3 years||75.00||High|
|Worries about home broken and things stolen||52.94||Moderate|
|Worries about being mugged or robbed||36.76||Low|
|Worries car stolen||23.53||Low|
|Worries about things from cars getting stolen||41.18||Moderate|
|Worries of being attacked||32.35||Low|
|Worries being insulted||27.94||Low|
|Worries about being subject to a physical attack because of your skin color, ethnic origin, gender, or religion||22.06||Low|
|Problem of people using or dealing drugs||54.41||Moderate|
|Problem of property crimes such as vandalism and theft||47.06||Moderate|
|Problem of violent crimes such as assault and armed robbery||32.35||Low|
|Problem of corruption and bribery||57.35||Moderate|
There is nothing to suggest traveling Seychelles now is any more dangerous than normal. Travel with general common sense as you would at home or abroad. Keep up to date with up-to-date travel advice from the US State Department before and throughout your visit.
Is Seychelles safe at night?
Nighttime in Seychelles is fairly safe, as long as you exercise a suitable amount of common sense and stay within the resort. As a popular honeymoon destination, Seychelles doesn’t have a particularly thriving nightlife as most visitors retire to their accommodations after dining out. However, the second-largest island, Praslin, has a selection of bars around for you to let your hair down (albeit much tamer than other European destinations). Of course, you need to be cautious of your bags and drinks, just as you would anywhere in the world.
It is recommended to avoid Mahe at night if possible. The areas of Beau Vallon and the backstreets of Victoria have a higher chance of crime. That being said, be careful after dark pretty much everywhere you are in Seychelles.
Is Seychelles safe for solo female travelers?
Seychelles is not just reserved for honeymooners. It is also a fantastic place for solo female travelers and backpackers to enjoy the beautiful beaches and diving opportunities. You don’t need a partner by your side to make these islands safer. With the low crime rates, women can walk alone on the streets during the day without being harassed or bothered. Nevertheless, women should exercise the normal caution required when traveling solo and try to avoid walking alone at night.
Bus and ferry transfers are all perfectly safe for solo gals heading to their hotel or going on an island-hopping adventure. Heading out to a non-resort bar at night is something you can do, just be more aware after dark and avoid unmarked taxis just in case.
Seychelles is predominantly Roman Catholic. Wearing a bikini and swimwear around your resort and on the beach is fine. Just be more conservative when walking outside the resorts, through more remote and local areas. Try to cover up with a sarong or shirt to avoid causing any offense.
Is public transport safe in Seychelles?
Most vacations to Seychelles will include a private driver from the resort. However, if you are going for a tighter budget trip to Seychelles, you could hop on some of the public transportation for a true taste of local life. Public transport is extremely limited though, so don’t plan your whole trip relying on it.
Buses are often busy, so don’t expect to get a seat. However, this will give you an insight into Seychellian life as well as being super cheap! Be sure to keep your bags in front of you to reduce the risk of pickpocketers taking an opportunity of a tourist. You can catch buses in the more popular areas of Seychelles, including:
- Mahe – relatively extensive service.
- Victoria – main bus station.
- Praslin – running from Anse Boudan to Mont Plaisir via other destinations including the airport.
Being a chain of islands, there are many ferries connecting the islands. There are several boat services between Mahé, Praslin, and La Digue. La Digue is a beautiful island to enjoy cycling around as well. Be warned though, the ferries can get busy with other tourists so it’s recommended to book tickets in advance. Be sure to listen to any safety briefings before the boat sets sail and you know where your life jacket is.
Is tap water safe to drink in Seychelles?
You may be surprised to find out that the tap water in Seychelles is up to the World Health Organization’s set standards. However, many people still choose to drink bottled water as the tap water is heavily chlorinated, especially in more rural areas. It’s advised to avoid tap water after storms as water sources can get contaminated with dirt and bacteria.
Drinking bottled water can be problematic if you can only get plastic bottles. To avoid using these single-use plastics and do your bit for the environment, take a refillable bottle and ask your hotel to fill it up from their mineral water gallons.
Make note that during the height of the summer months, water consumption is often limited and turned off during the day. This is to preserve water supplies across the islands outside of the monsoon season.
Top 7 safety tips for traveling in Seychelles
Want some top safety tips for when you’re traveling to Seychelles? Here are seven useful hints to make your trip safe and comfortable at this paradise destination.
- Wear appropriate clothing – casual wear is generally acceptable everywhere and swimwear is fine on the beach or by the pool. But revealing clothes should be avoided in restaurants and in shops as it may cause offense. Topless sunbathing is uncommon and some beaches don’t tolerate it, while nudism is not acceptable in any circumstances.
- Always ask for permission to take photos of people – a strict social custom. Photography is also not allowed in airports but landmarks of historic and scenic interest can be photographed.
- Pack cash but don’t carry it all with you at one time – many tourism-dedicated places (ie. hotels, car rental, attractions) can only accept foreign currency in cash or VISA/MasterCard by law. USD or Euros are handy to have, but store this carefully in your hotel and make use of the room safe.
- Keep valuables close or locked away – pickpocketing is the most common petty crime in Seychelles, though still a low-level crime. Don’t leave valuable items or money in the open of your hotel room as housekeeping may take the opportunity.
- Don’t accept drugs being sold – drug-taking and smuggling are serious offenses in Seychelles and can lead to imprisonment.
- Avoid walking alone at night and don’t be tempted to swim at night – regardless of being a male or female traveler, you need to be careful after dark in case of robberies or muggings. Swimming in the dark is seriously advised against.
- Travel insurance is a must – make sure your policy covers you for any extra activities you might do, like diving or surfing.