Is Seychelles worth visiting? Well, Seychelles is a group of islands (115 to be exact) located in the Indian Ocean. It has powdery white sand, turquoise lagoons, and lush tropical jungle… so we definitely think it’s worth checking out!
If you still need convincing, then let us fill your head with the imagery of mouth-watering creole cuisine, breath-taking sunsets, and even a world-renowned golf course (if that’s your jam). Seychelles is definitely a place to relax, but it has its fair share of adventurous activities too.
From surfing to scuba diving to hiking, Seychelles is also a great destination for people who like to be active on their vacation (in between sipping cocktails by the pool, of course). We’ve put together our top 7 reasons why Seychelles is worth visiting. Here they are:
It has world-class beaches
Now, when we say world-class we mean world-class. Picture the whitest sand you could possibly imagine, and BINGO, that’s the Seychelles. With so many islands you’ll be spoiled for choice and can have your pick between popular and easy-to-reach beaches, or more secluded spots.
Arguably the most famous Seychelles beach is Anse Source d’Argent. This beach is pretty iconic and has starred in movies like Castaway and Crusoe. It’s on La Digue island so most people can either take a short boat ride or an overland journey to reach it. This beach can get pretty crowded (are we surprised??? Tom Hanks himself has graced its shores) so head over early to avoid the masses.
For somewhere more secluded, Anse Major on Mahe island is pretty spectacular. The beach is only accessible on foot or by boat. You can either take a water taxi right onto the shore or take the adventurous route and hike for 30-60 minutes in the jungle. The beach has everything you want from a hidden oasis. Palm trees, a lush jungle backdrop, and dramatic granite cliff views.
For families, Anse Severe on La Digue is a great choice. The beach is relatively quiet, and there is shade from the strong mid-afternoon sun, PLUS there’s a snack bar for when the kids (or you) get hangry. The water is shallow and good for paddling and swimming. Best of all, if you stick around until the sun goes down, there’s a spectacular view of the sun setting over neighboring Praslin Island!
There’s incredible diving
Seychelles is well worth visiting for diving alone. It has such a range of dive sites that it could give countries like Australia and Indonesia a run for their money! Whether you’re looking for rich coral gardens or spectacular reef dives, Seychelles has it all.
Mahe, La Digue, and Praslin are the main islands where people go diving. But, if you have time and money, heading to The Outer Islands in the south of Seychelles would be a real treat. These islands are mostly uninhabited, so you’ll get to explore pristine reefs that are untouched by people.
Back where all the action is at, Dredger Wreck on Mahe is a top place for… wreck diving! The wreck is only 25 meters deep and is covered with many different coral species. The site attracts fish of all kinds like shoals of yellow snapper, moray eels, and scorpionfish.
Another incredible dive site near Mahe is Shark Bank. It’s eight kilometers northwest of the island. This is the place to go if you wanna see white tip reef sharks and gray stingrays! Aside from that, this site also has colorful tropical fish like bumphead parrotfish, turtles, and during the season, whale sharks.
April, October, and November are hands down the best time to dive in Seychelles. The waters are calm, the visibility is good, and there are plenty of sharks and manta rays around. On the flip side, May to September has poorer visibility, because of large amounts of plankton, BUT, the plankton attracts whale sharks to the country’s waters!
The hikes are amazing
For those who prefer drier conditions, let’s talk inland. Do you love hiking and spectacular views? If the answer is yes then Seychelles is 10/10 worth visiting. The interior of Seychelles (especially on the bigger islands) is filled with mountainous jungle. A large majority of the country is protected, so you can expect to be making your way through an untouched tropical paradise.
There is something to suit everyone, from beginners to seasoned hikers. Some of our favorite moderate treks are the Anse Major trail (which we mentioned earlier), and the trails at Vallee de Mai. Vallee de Mai is a UNESCO World Heritage Site with three clearly marked trails. They all converge on the same stunning viewpoint, but one of the reasons these trails are so great is that they are mostly in the shade.
If you consider yourself relatively fit, then you need to check Morne Seychellois off your list! It’s the highest point on the island of Mahe standing 900 meters above sea level. This hike is definitely a challenge and will take around five hours. Its trails aren’t that well-maintained so expect to be cutting your way through the jungle. The views are worth the extra trouble though!
Delicious Creole cuisine
Just like the Maldives and Mauritius, cuisine in Seychelles is a mouth-watering blend of different cultures. The influence of Indian, Chinese, European, and African traders can be tasted in the local Creole dishes. If you add that to the bounty of seafood that is readily available, you get some seriously good food.
One of the most famous dishes from Seychelles is Octopus Curry. If you want to sample what Seychelle cuisine is all about, then this is it! It is made from a blend of coconut milk, saffron, cinnamon, masala, ginger, and the star of the show, octopus. It is traditionally served with white rice, but if you’re feeling a little extra you can have it with saffron rice (oh la la).
While we’re talking about curry, Caris Masala is a must-try for anyone who can handle the heat. It is a vegetable curry made with saffron, fenugreek, cloves, cumin, and coriander. Another kinda spicy dish to try would be Santini salad. The traditional version has raw papaya, golden apples, chilis, onions, and a blend of spices. There is also a non-vegetarian version that includes minced fish or shark meat.
For snacking, breadfruit chips are the one. This light, savory snack is great for munching on the beach or bringing on hikes. You’ll find them all over the country as they are a favorite with the locals.
For the wildlife
Seychelles is a paradise not only for holiday-makers but for wildlife too! Its remote location means it has many endemic species (found nowhere else), plus around 50% of the country’s landmass is protected.
Some of the nation’s most well-known plants and animals are the coco de mer with its suggestively-shaped nuts (Google it and you’ll see what we mean…), and the Aldabra giant tortoise. A good place to see both of these is at the National Botanical Gardens on Mahe.
Another cute little creature to be on the lookout for is one of the world’s smallest frogs – if you can spot it! The hike to Morne Seychellois is a great place to see them, so keep your eyes peeled for an 11mm long greenish-brown frog hiding in the trees.
Seychelles is also worth visiting for some spectacular birdwatching. Some rare, endemic species are the Seychelles black parrot, the Seychelles magpie robin, and the Seychelles warbler. Cousin Island is a top choice for both birdwatching and seeing Aldabra giant tortoises in the wild. But, if you’re super serious about your birdwatching, then heading to Bird Island (yes, it’s really called that) will make your entire trip! The island is teeming with birds, however, there’s only one plane a day, so pack an overnight bag!
The luxury hotels
While Seychelles is an adventure-lovers dream, it also has a romantic and luxurious feel to it. In the past, it has been considered as more of a honeymoon destination or a place for romantic travel. This is slowly changing, but, lucky for us, the jaw-dropping hotels and spas still reign supreme.
There are 29 five-star hotels in the country including some well-known luxury hotel chains like the Hilton, the Four Seasons, and the Savoy. You can even rent out a beachfront cottage or villa on a private island. These hotels are exactly what you’d expect from a high-end hotel/resort. Many are right on the beach, have beautiful swimming pools, and rooms that look like they belong in magazines.
If you’re on a tight budget but you still want a luxurious experience, then Seychelles has a good selection of day spas, so you can spend the day getting pampered before heading home to your more affordable accommodation.
To join the festivities
Seychelles has incredible events and festivities all year round that are worth visiting. Whether you’re into bright colorful carnivals, scuba diving, even classical music, there’ll be something to interest you.
One of the festivals you simply cannot miss if you find yourself in Seychelles in February is the International Carnival of Victoria. It’s a dazzling three-day event with floats, parades, and colorful outfits. It’s a celebration of the country’s blend of cultures with lots of dancing and great food.
By far the most popular festival is Festival Kreol which takes place in October. Like the Victoria Carnival, it is a celebration of the country’s rich culture and history. The six-day event is all about the Creole culture from art, music, food, and dance!
Some other stand-out festivities are the Beau Vallon Regatta, the Seychelles Ocean Festival, and the Seychelles Art Festival. The Regatta is centered around the water with plenty of thrilling boat races, water sports, and a swimming competition. The ocean festival is focused on protecting the island nation’s waters (30% of the country’s waters are protected), with underwater photography competitions, events, and dinners. The arts festival is another colorful event with chefs cooking fabulous creole dishes, folklore storytelling, and lots of dancing!