The Best Seychelles Islands
Positioned at 4 degrees south of the equator, the Seychelles archipelago’s inner islands are a promise of an endless summer, where sunny days are complemented by cooling ocean breezes. As adventurous as they are pace-slowing, the Seychelles is home to lumbering giant tortoises and slow growing coco de mer alongside moutya dancing and marlin chasing.
Each of the archipelago’s islands has a different charm and reasons for visiting, whether your preference is above the water or below the water, on the beach or in the forests. Island hop on a chartered yacht, sailboat, water taxi or even helicopter.
Must-Visit Islands During Your Stay
Praslin – famous for the UNESCO World Heritage Site Vallée de Mai Nature Reserve. Beautiful beaches, a friendly population of 8,000 and the famous coco de mer. Top beaches include the stunning Anse Lazio and Anse Georgette and great snorkeling spots include the little but very picturesque St Pierre Island.
La Digue – just under 3,000 Diguois people live on the Seychelles’ fourth largest island. The island is small enough to explore, but big enough for a day trip. Plenty of great snorkeling spots surround the island as well as beautiful beaches such as the unmissable Anse Source D’Argent. Instead of cars, locals get around on bicycles and ox-carts which makes this island characterful and charming.
Silhouette – discover nearly all the 75 plants endemic to the granitic islands of the Seychelles on the third largest island. Just 200 people live on the island with its five mountain peaks (the tallest is 750m), as well as a number of critically endangered bats, plants and birds.
Moyenne – day visitors are welcome to explore this very unique tiny island. Purchased by Brendon Grimshaw from Yorkshire, England in 1962, for just £8,000. Along with a Seychellois man named Rene Lafortune they spent four decades planting 16,000 trees, looking after 120 giant tortoises and helping reintroduce 2,000 birds. His desire for the island to be recognized as a national park was achieved and it is now said to be the home of more species per square metre than any other place in the world.
Aride – head 50km north-east of Mahé to explore the 1.6km long island of Aride. This designated Special Nature Reserve is a haven for breeding sea birds in the Indian Ocean. Sooty Terns and Tropical Shearwaters are just some of the breeding populations that number over a million a year. Fly in by helicopter and take a private ranger tour of the island.
Cerf – a small granitic island surrounded by a coral reef. No roads and little in the way of infrastructure, Cerf is especially popular for its marine life. Sea turtles to sea urchins and more than 150 other species can be spotted in the reefs around the island.
Cousin – 40km from Mahé is the small Cousin Island. Rising no higher than 69 metres this low-lying island is a protected nature reserve. A beautiful interior of woodland is surrounded almost entirely by soft sandy beach. Home to many nesting sea birds and a nesting site for turtles, it’s worth exploring on a day visit.
Curieuse – red soil, white sandy beaches and mangrove swamp give the island a unique colour palette. What was once a leper colony is now a day visitor must-visit with snorkeling opportunities to see impressive humphead parrotfish and to get to know some of the 300 Aldabra giant tortoises on land.
Cocos Islands – these little islets are not far from La Digue and are a snorkeling and divers dream. Diving here is like swimming in an aquarium, with great visibility and amazing variety. The islands are very small and there isn’t much on them, but the water around is where the real attraction lies.