Well, it’s tough time ahead of us with the whole world in chaos. I just couldn’t start this blog by plunging into the details of my recent travel, like I usually do. These tough times have made me realise and feel grateful for things that I have been taking granted since past 25 years of my life – The privilege of leading a normal life !!
A moment of silence, for all the lives that were lost and for all those who lost their loved ones in this pandemic!
Moving on to the details of my recent trip to Seychelles, inexplicable beauty would be an understatement to describe it.
As the turquoise blue water on the beach touched my feet while the sun just began to set and filled the sky with gorgeous shades of orange, my mind just calmed down. That moment of peacefulness that nature is capable of creating, is priceless. These small group of islands in Seychelles would be a perfect destination if you want to get away from the hustle and relax in a less crowded place!
Best Time to Visit : November to March
Temperature : It usually varies between 25-30˚C. At times, it might get rainy during the evenings and is sultry too. So, do carry monsoon wear!
We visited three islands in a week – Mahé, Praslin and La Digue!
Mahé is the main island while the rest of them are small islands around it.
Our One Week Travel Itinerary :
Day 1 – Land in Mahé and catch a ferry to La Digue from the Port
Day 2 – Explore the beaches in La Digue
Day 3 – Go to a hike in the morning and head to Praslin by catching the last ferry
Day 4 – Explore beaches or go for diving
Day 5 – Go around the island and explore the sunset points
Day 6 – Head to Mahé by taking the first ferry and drive along the west and south coast roads
Day 7 – Explore Eden island and Victoria Market ; Head to airport in the evening
This little island has its own charm with people moving around in cycles since the only mode of transport in La Digue is a bicycle.
Welcome to the good old days with no noise or air pollution and some wonderful beaches to sit back and relax!
It takes around 1.5 hours by ferry to reach La Digue from Mahé.
Accommodation : There are airbnb and hotel options which range from budget-friendly to extremely luxurious. We have stayed at this airbnb which was right on the beach and close to the main market. It was at a good location but the service was below average with a lack of minimum necessities and absolutely, no cleanliness. So, don’t choose that!
Prefer to stay closer to La Passe (the main port area).
Duration of stay : 2 nights
Places To Visit :
Visit Anse Source D’Argent – It is a private beach which is located within L’Union Estate Farm. It is totally isolated and a perfect spot to relax and watch the sun set against that beautiful backdrop.
They charge around 110 SCR for each person(it’s a day pass – you can go out and come back again) and it is totally worth it as there are two beaches- Anse Source D’Argent, Anse Marron along with an artificial habitat created for humungous turtles!
Cycle along the coast from La Passe towards Anse Banane via Anse Serene– This route along which you ride your bicycle is amazing! You get to ride along the coast with spectacular views of the island. It is a rough terrain of ~6 km (one way), with steep ups and downs. Plan in such a way that you return before sunset as the path is not so well lit in the night.
Head to Nid D’Aigles – This is a spot on the top of the hill which gives a magnificent view of the entire island and the surrounding islands too! One has to hike for around 2 hrs to reach there. The trail is too steep (be sure you are prepared for that). Starting point would be Belle Vue Restaurant which serves delicious cocktails and food. Sunset is the best time to reach there.
If you don’t want to hike, atleast visit the restaurant for the food and view.
Visit Grand Anse – Those who love sunrises, this is where you need to head to. Extremely clean, isolated and a perfect beach for surfing. The road leading to Grand Anse has a steep terrain, be prepared for it.
Things To Do :
Rent a bicycle – They charged around 150 SCR per cycle right outside ‘Emerald Villa’. However, if you rent it anywhere near La Passe, they would charge around 200 SCR. If you want to save some money, head to Emerald Villa.
Prefer Take-aways – Good restaurants are slightly expensive with each meal costing around 1000 SCR. So, better prefer take-aways which are budget-friendly. Mi Mum’s take-away is a good option
Go to Old Pier Cafe – It is inside L’Union Estate Farm and serves the best sea food and cocktails
Explore the souvenir shops near La Passe (Main Market)
Praslin, which takes an hour by ferry from Mahé is much more beautiful and is comparatively a huge island than La Digue.
Accommodation : The airbnb options in Praslin are slightly expensive. One can either stay near Grand Anse or Cote D’Or Beach. I would say, prefer Cote D’Or Beach area over the other. We stayed near Grand Anse at this hotel. Hotel hospitality is great but it is too cramped.
Duration of stay : 3 nights
Places To Visit :
Visit Anse Georgette Beach for Sunset – Even though this beach is a public beach, the entry is through Constance Lemuria Resort. Unless you have a reservation with the resort for a visit to this beach, it is difficult to get in (Entry is free). Book in advance as the slots get filled if the demand is high!
This beach is renowned to sport one of best sunsets in the world!
If you are not able to make it to Anse Georgette, then visit Anse Lazio which is along the same coast line.
Head to Zimbabwe Point for Sunset – It is not popular among tourists but is well known to the locals. Hands down, it was the best sunset that I witnessed!
Visit Cote D’Or Beach – This beach has a lively atmosphere and is close to some of the best restaurants and eatery joints. The vibe at this beach is great to relax in the evenings.
Visit Grand Anse for Sunrise
Things To Note :
Go for Scuba Diving – Praslin is the best among the three islands to go for a scuba dive as the waves are not too harsh. We went to dive around St.Pierr’s Island with White Tip Divers . The experience was good for beginners, including the instructions!
Rent A Car – It is highly recommended that you rent a car which costs you around ~40 Euros per day. You can just ask your hotel manager to arrange for one and bargain accordingly. Most of them usually quote the same price.
In case you don’t have a car, each taxi ride would cost you around ~400 SCR. That would be expensive. It is also not advisable to rent a scooty or bike as the terrain doesn’t support it.
Café Des Arts and La Coulue restaurants are good places to have fish cooked in Creole style (Local delicacy) and delicious cocktails. Head to The Nest restaurant for a luxury experience (One needs to make a reservation before heading there – atleast 2 days prior)
Praslin is the only place in the world which produces Coco De Mer, the biggest nut in the world. There are plantations all along the road or you can head to Fond Ferdinand natural reserve park which has Coco De Mer nuts in display open for visitors to see or you can go to Vallee De Mai reserve.
Both of the reserves have good hiking trails too, but I would say, prefer Fond Ferdinand which has an entry fee of 125 SCR compared to Vallee De Mai which charges almost 700 SCR per person. Also, do note the timings of these places. They close early during Sundays.
In case you are not interested in hiking or walking through plantations but want to see the Nut, there is a shop near the ticket counter of Fond Ferdinand where you can see instead of taking a ticket and going inside.
Mahé is the main island which has one of the best coast lines!
Accommodation : We decided to stay at a luxurious resort in Mahé as it has more such options than the other two islands. We stayed at Banyan Tree for a couple of days. Even though, it is located further south and pretty far from the main city, it had the best hospitality and views of Anse Intendance. You can look for airbnb’s or hotels which are budget friendly!
Duration of stay : 2 nights
Things to Do :
Visit Anse Intendance and Beau Vallon beach for sunset
Drive along west coast road during sunset – I promise you, it will be the best ride!
The La Misere view point on the way to west coast road from main market gives good panoramic view of all the sister islands
Explore Eden Island which is a man-made island close to Mahé. The port area next to the Eden Island mall is good for a dinner or lunch as it has a good view.
Even though many suggest to visit Victoria Market, I didn’t find it exciting enough! It’s a cramped market for fruits and vegetables.
Travel Tips :
Currency – Carry Euros or USD and later exchange for SCR, either at airport or at exchange places near Victoria Market. Don’t convert a lot of currency into SCR as most of the places accept Euros or USD. Prefer to convert currency at Mahé rather than any other smaller island.
Book your ferry rides – Make a prior online reservation to take a ferry from Mahé to La Digue or Praslin as it is not easy to get a reservation on spot(~60$ per person). It costs you around ~500 SCR by taxi from airport to port.
In case of return ferry rides from Praslin to La Digue or vice-versa, you can go to the port at-least 30 min before the schedule and book the seat on spot.
However, in case of ferry ride from any island to Mahé, book atleast a day prior. You can directly go to the port and book it, if the online bookings are closed
Prefer local sim card : “Cable & Wireless” – You can get one with ~6 GB internet for 7 days. It costs around 500 SCR and you can get one at the airport. You can recharge again at grocery stores, if you need to.
Car Rentals – In case you are renting a car in Mahé or Praslin, ensure that you ask them to keep the pick up and drop at the port itself. This saves the money that you need to pay for the taxi to reach hotel which is around 300-600 SCR depending on the distance.
In case of La Digue, there are buggies which can take you from port to hotel and vice-versa, they charge you around ~150-200 SCR for ~1-2 km. If you can’t cycle, then take the contact of any buggy driver and be in touch with him for your visits inside the island.
Food – It’s mostly Creole cuisine which is an amazing option for sea-food lovers. However, a good meal for two people would easily cost you around 1000 SCR at a decent restaurant. You can prefer take-aways in case you are looking for budget-friendly options.
Feel free to ping me on my Instagram or email me for any more travel tips or doubts 😀
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Photos by Satwik Kodangal Varala
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