As we have spent over a month in total in Seychelles over our two trips there, this article describes the practical information needed for any first time visitor coming to Seychelles!
Seychelles holds a special place in my heart, as we got married here in 2014. For our 8th wedding anniversary, we decided to come back and revisit some of the places we have such wonderful memories from, as well as explore new locations! Our itinerary for this visit was coming back to Silhouette island, La Digue, finally exploring Mahe, and a few new islands such as Felicite, Coco, Grande Soeur and Petite Soeur. This time around we didn’t visit Praslin, as we explored it quite a bit last time! Information about Praslin is featured in our previous story.
Other articles about the Seychelles:
Airline tickets: getting to Seychelles
We used airline miles to get to Seychelles, flying Ethiopian airlines. Unfortunately, while the airline was really good, with large luggage allowance, tasty meals and new airplanes the experience transiting through Addis Ababa was not great and because of that I will likely not be choosing this airline again. Perhaps a safer bet is to use Emirates that flies to Seychelles from Dubai.
Hotels in Seychelles
Mahe: we stayed for three nights at a five star Savoy Seychelles Resort & Spa, half board. The hotel was really beautiful, lavish meals, a nice swimming pool, spectacular rooms with the view of the ocean and really next to the Beau Vallon beach. The half board included drinks in the morning and 1 bottle of water for dinner, any other drinks were extra. This hotel for our stay was courtesy of VisitSeychelles.
Additional hotel on Mahe: another two nights we stayed at E&E Self Catering, closer to the diving center. This was a self-catering apartment. While the room had everything we needed, and there was a balcony and a laundry room, this was the first time we saw the little red ants that would appear anywhere where food was. And while ants are common everywhere, even in 5 star hotels, the cockroaches emerging from the shower drain was a bit much for us.
Additional hotel on Mahe: the last night on the way back we stayed at the Blue Hill,breakfast included. The location is absolutely picturesque! For a longer stay here you would need a car to be able to move around.
Silhouette: we stayed at the only hotel on the island, Hilton Seychelles Labriz Resort & Spa, for two nights. I had some points saved up in the Hilton hotel chain and used those, plus purchased a large number of points with a discount, this way saving about 260 euros versus the available price on the hotel site or with travel agents. I also did a status match from my IHG Diamond to Hilton Gold; thus we could eat breakfast at the special gold member area (breakfast is included in any rate here at the time of writing), and had an upgrade to the seaside villa. We were also greeted by a nice cake for our wedding anniversary!
La Digue: we stayed at the CocoLux apartments, which also was a self-catering property. The place was really clean, with everything that one needs for a comfortable stay. The only downside was roosters from the property next door that would start singing at 5:30 am every morning every three (!) seconds, which was disruptive to sleeping.
Moving around Seychelles: ferries
To move between the islands, we used the Cat Cocos ferries. At the time of our visit, ticket from Mahe to La Digue (via Praslin) cost us 225 euros, and I reserved about 3 weeks ahead. Don’t leave the reservation for the last minute, as ferries were full when we were there.
To get to Silhouette, we used the Hilton ferry which costs 145 eur per person return. There are only two ferries a day, which you need to consider, when making a booking. You can also book a private helicopter transfer, which might be a better option for larger families, as you pay for all the seats anyway.
Moving around Seychelles: taxis, buses and rental cars
Taxis are truly an issue in Seychelles, as we had several instances of taxi drivers trying to cheat us that resulted in some yelling, despite us having booked private transfers via hotels! Before booking with your hotel, inquire whom to pay, the hotel or the driver, and best choose the option to pay the hotel. I would not recommend taking any taxis at the airport, as confirmed to me by several locals. Unfortunately, there are no ridesharing or other transportation apps. For airport, one of the better options could be booking a private transfer via GetYourGuide.
Buses on Mahe are inexpensive, about 0.80 eur per person, but large suitcases are not allowed. Most routes are only operating until about 7pm.
We didn’t rent a car, but many tourists do, you can look for cars at Rentalcars.com. Pay attention to the type of insurance offered, only large international companies offer full coverage (like falling coconuts damaging glass, at self-fault issues due to the narrow roads etc). Driving is on the left here! We were extremely lucky that we had a driver, courtesy of Visit Seychelles, Jack, who drove us around the island. When inquiring about prices for various transfer options, what he offered was really fair, so feel free to book him: Jack +248 2 781 629 (uses Whatsapp in the evenings, knows English).
Overall, moving around can be quite pricey, and needs to be planned well ahead or can make a dent in your travel budget.
Eating in Seychelles
We had a wonderful lunch on Mahe at the restaurant Marie Antoinette, courtesy of VisitSeychelles, sampling local foods and a variety of dishes! Two of our apartments had kitchen, so we cooked a lot ourselves. The prices in the stores aren’t cheap, as most of the goods need to be imported. Prices are definitely better on Mahe, so makes sense to stock up on non-perishables. Examples of prices: small package of salami sausage 7 euro, 6 eggs 1.60 euro, a package of pasta a bit over 2 eur. We had brought some food with us from home – dry mashed potato, instant noodles, tea. We ate out only a few times, for example, once at out previously bellowed Gala Takeaway on La Digue. Unfortunately, we had to wait for an hour (!) to get a burger with fries (cost 12.50 eur) and a mango juice (5 euro). Before going to Silhouette, we stocked up on snacks – nuts, potato chips, as those cost even 10x more at the minibar! The hotel food was expensive too, we only had breakfast included and for dinner a medium size pizza cost 30 euro.
Internet in Seychelles
Most of the hotels had internet, but it was very slow. At the E&E we bought a special fast internet package, which looked to be more advantageous than our e-sim, but unfortunately, what we had prepaid, was used by someone else by the next morning, which wasn’t surprising, juding by the basic passwords tied to room number visible in every room. Outside of hotels we used Airalo mobile internet with eSim, 7 days, 1GB $9.50. If you use code ALINA7758 you will get $3 discount for your first purchase! Worked really well and was truly hassle free.
Money exchange and use of credit cards in Seychelles
If I compare our experience to 2014, definitely many more places now take credit cards, for example stores! But you will need cash for entrance fees. We took money at the ATM. What has not changed since 2014, most ATMs don’t take MasterCard, so my Revolut Visa came in handy. Stores accepted either.
Entrance fees and additional excursions in Seychelles
Most places had an entrance fee of about 100-150 rupees (7-11 eur) per person. While it isn’t too much, the fee is also the same for places that might have something to see for 15 minutes, as well as massive, beautiful and well knowns places you could spend the whole day at. Read reviews before deciding if it is worth to pay!
For hike to Copolia trail, we had guide Ryan from White Sands Seychelles, and our day trip to Felicite, Grande Soeur and Coco was with Geoli Charters (book via Whatsapp +248 2 512 411). Both were courtesy of VisitSeychelles. Our all-inclusive island day trip costs about 8500 SCR, but they also offer other tour packages from Praslin for about 5500 SCR. It is an especially good deal for families, as you pay for the entire boat. However, the entrance and lunch fees will be slightly higher in total, as those are per person.
You can also book other trips via GetYourGuide.
The climate and other useful tips
You can visit Seychelles any time of the year, it is always between 26 and 32C here. It might rain, but never for long. There is no better month than other for visiting!
There are no dangerous animals or insects in Seychelles, there is no malaria and no other tropical disease, so Seychelles is very safe destination for families with small children, only the regular vaccinations are recommended, same as in any Western Country, plus covid vaccine. Do pack a good insect repellant and sun cream!
Visas and online authorization
Most countries don’t need a visa to enter Seychelles, but everyone requires an online authorization form that needs to be filled in advance! The faster processing time you choose, the more it will cost. You will likely not be allowed to board the plane, if you haven’t done the form! The form can be found here.
Other articles about the Seychelles:
Our visit wouldn’t have been possible without the support from Visit Seychelles! Opinions are our own.