I’m not one of those people that likes to look at the sea for hours on end. Don’t get me wrong, I like beach destinations, just not destinations where there’s nothing to do but look at the beach. Despite that, it was fairly easy for me to spend a week in the Seychelles. I was with my sister and we had a blast.
Did you know? La Digue, Seychelles is home to what is considered the most beautiful and the most photographed beach in the world. Anse Source D’argent!
Seychelles is primarily a honeymoon destination, so most people travel with their spouses or their significant others. If you’re travelling solo though, worry not, there’s plenty to do for you too. There’s only one category of people who I recommend should not go to Seychelles, those who can’t swim. The reason I say this is you’re going to have to come back once you can. No trip to Seychelles is complete without diving into the ocean. Anyone who tells you otherwise is kidding themselves.
Flights: If you’re travelling from Mumbai, take the Air Seychelles direct flight to Mahe. It’s a four and a half hour flight. Whatever you do, please ensure you don’t land in Mahe on a Sunday. Nothing, and I mean absolutely nothing, will be open on a Sunday.
Brochures: The tourist website for Seychelles will provide you all the information you need. The Seychelles are a cluster of 115 islands. Some of them are so small that they are not even inhabited. While the tourism website will provide you information in respect of all of the Islands, I highly recommend you at least shortlist the ones you want to visit in advance. Every island has its flora and fauna. The major islands are Mahe, Pralin and La Digue. Seychelles tourism also has its own app on which you can save your travel list.
Visa: Seychelles is one of few places in the world that doesn’t require a visa from any traveler coming from any part of the world. Given that the flying time is short and that a visa is not required, you can have a good holiday in the Seychelles over an extended long weekend from India.
Best time to visit: Seychelles enjoys tropical climate all year round. You can literally pack your bags and go whenever you want and you’re sure to have sunny and warm days ahead.
What to pack: Pack what you would to get to any beach destination. Hats, sunglasses, sunscreen, your hottest swimwear, colorful cover ups, and if you intend to go on guided tours to look at birds, then some sturdy walking shoes. I did note that Seychelles doesn’t have the best medical facilities. So please carry your medical pack.
If you are passionate about snorkeling and diving, carry your gear, you are in for a treat. Every beach in the Seychelles is beautiful. You are going to be spoilt for choice!
If you’re into photography, don’t forget your cameras. If you don’t already have one, bring a go pro with an outer casing, you’re going to want to click pictures of the phenomenal creatures in the ocean.
This may sound weird, but please carry around a torch light. At some of the islands, street lights are extremely dingy and you can barely see. I remember riding around a bicycle on La Digue with my phone light.
Currency: The currency in the Seychelles is SCR or Seychellois rupee. Service providers however, accept payment in Euros.
Getting around: Cars can be hired only on Mahe and Pralin islands. 40 Euros for a day is the standard charge. You don’t need to pre-book your car hire. You can figure this out once you get there. Plenty of locals give out their cars for this amount. A valid international driving license in English is good enough for your to drive in Seychelles. They Seychelles follow the right hand drive system i.e. vehicles are driven on the left hand side of the road. Google maps will give you a general sense of direction, however, I found that it wasn’t as accurate in terms of reaching a final destination. Once you reach the general location, to reach your specific location, you’re going to have to ask for directions. Do it the old fashioned way.
On the island of La Digue, cars are not allowed. This is actually quite fun. As soon as you get there, hire yourself a bicycle and cycle around the island.
To get yourself between islands, you can take either the ferry or a flight. Larger islands are connected by air and smaller islands are connected by sea. You do not need to book your tickets in advance. Tickets are readily available owing to good frequency. Details are available at https://www.seychelles.travel/en/explore/island-hopping. Larger islands have a greater frequency whereas small islands have a lower frequency. Before booking your ferry tickets, please take a look at the timings. For e.g. To go from La Digue to Mahe, you will need to first take a ferry to Pralin and another ferry to Mahe. Ensure you get your timing right.
Where to stay: Staying at a hotel in the Seychelles is a costly affair. Find a good bed and breakfast or a good AirBnb. Please ensure that the service provider is licensed with Seychelles tourism. Seychelles does not allow unlicensed individuals to operate AirBnBs. Immigration at the airport will ask you about this. Unlike most other places you will visit, all AirBnBs in Seychelles do not have free wifi. In fact, most do not have wifi or limited wifi. Please buy yourself a sim card with a data pack if you’re going to be surfing a lot.
What to eat: Seychellois cuisine is some of the best and tastiest food I have had while travelling. Creole cuisine is awesome. I would recommend that you avoid all restaurants and eat the food cooked by locals. In Mahe, I would simply step out to the beach and buy food from the numerous food seller stalls on the beach. They’d have awesome fish, grilled chicken and local cuisine. It was cheap and it was oh so yum. If you’re staying at a BnB, ask the local help if they will cook you the food at an additional cost. Most were happy to oblige and we really enjoyed the local food.
Download a more detailed itinerary below.