I'd never been to the Seychelles and had only heard good things. Given that a large part of my business is organising and planning unique honeymoons, I decided it was time to find out for myself if this paradise island lived up to its reputation.
The Seychelles are the world’s oldest oceanic islands of granite rock. It is the granite that gives the Seychelles their unique beaches. To say I was blown away by the beauty of these beaches is a complete understatement. They are breath-taking and each one is unique with white powdery sand and a sea that is just the most amazing turquoise colour. You really feel as though you have fallen into a picture postcard.
The Granite boulders set the scene and frame each beach which in turn allows each beach and island to be unique. I did try many times to capture the beauty of the beaches and the sea in a photo but I am not sure that the true beauty and untouched feel of the Seychelles is really captured in any of them, they really do need to be seen to be believed.
We visited four islands: Denis Island, Mahe, Praslin and La Digue which is my favourite.
Mahe island has the smallest capital city in the world, Victoria. It has both long white sandy beaches in the Beau Vallon area and bolder lined beaches in the North. We stayed at the Savoy, a 5 star resort opposite the beach with a fabulous pool - which happens to be the largest swimming pool in the Seychelles. The beach here is long and crescent shaped and the fishermen still land their catch here from huge nets dragged in from the sea by hand. Then the chefs arrive from then nearby hotels to buy this fresh catch. It was a great sight to see. We also stayed at the Carana hotel, a boutique hotel on the north of the island, right on the beach. The Carana offers individual villas all facing the sea. A modern luxurious feel and amazing seas views greet you from your balcony and also from its two restaurants. I will be back here for sure.
Praslin was next, which we reached by a small aircraft. Air Seychelles have a fantastic network of flights between the island which makes the island hopping very easy and accessible. The 13 seater aircraft takes just 15 mins to get to Praslin and flies you over the islands of the Seychelles on your way. It was another adventure I loved. Unfortunately, we only had a short time in Praslin and we didn’t get to see as much as we hoped but we were very excited about our next stop - the island of La Digue.
La Digue for me was the Jewel in the crown. The island is only reachable by ferry from Praslin. It’s a short journey of just 15 mins. On arrival, the first thing that catches your attention is everyone is on a pedal bike. There are only 15 cars in total allowed on this island. It is a laid back island which is very flat and so a bike is the perfect way to explore the island. The Bounty add was filmed here back in the day on what is now the most photographed beach in the world ‘Anse Source D’argent.’
It is the most beautiful place and yes, I did take about a thousand photos trying to capture it. The sea, the sand, and the rock formations that speckle the beach. I wanted to stay here and if I was to visit again I would most definitely stay on this island. The cycle to the beach takes approximately 20 mins. It’s very easy going and along the way you can stop to see the 50 giant land tortoises.
The Domain le Orangeraie is another favourite place to stay. The 4 and 5-star standard of accommodation in the Seychelles is just fabulous with high-end quality, good service, great food and modern and warm rooms. The Domain is truly a 5 star resort and is worth spending 3-4 nights.
I would highly recommend a trip to the Seychelles! It is not as expensive as everyone thinks. I would also recommend staying on a half-board basis where breakfast and dinner is included as local restaurants are non-existent. A glass of wine is approx. €7.50 and a beer €5.50, very similar to Irish prices.
It was a trip of a lifetime for sure and one I won’t forget for a very long time!
A fabulous combination would be a 3-night stay in the Kruger national park on safari in South Africa and then fly on to the Seychelles for some rest and relaxation and easy adventure and perhaps some shopping on the way home in Dubai. Just one of the many combinations I can think of.