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Seychelles family holidays

Mahé beachMahé beach© Seychelles Tourist Office - UK and Ireland
Island tortoiseIsland tortoise© Seychelles Tourist Office - UK and Ireland
View from the airView from the air© Seychelles Tourist Office - UK and Ireland
Pool viewPool view© Seychelles Tourist Office - UK and Ireland
Mahé beachMahé beach© Seychelles Tourist Office - UK and Ireland
Beach sceneBeach scene© Seychelles Tourist Office - UK and Ireland
Capital City Victoria
Flying Time 8.25hrs
Carbon Footprint 9.27 CO2
Timezone GMT +4
Currency Seychellois Rupee

Today

Overview

An archipelago of 115 granite and coral islands that span miles of azure Indian Ocean, the Seychelles is one of those rare places that surpass even the cliché-laden glossy brochures; the sand really is that white, the sea that clear, the sky that blue. Expect turquoise seas, rugged peaks, lush vegetation, incredible wildlife and mile upon mile of beautiful beaches, with luxury resorts that are small pieces of paradise built not just for honeymooners but increasingly for those here for family holidays too. Swim, paddle, kayak, snorkel and explore the interior, then book the little ones in a kids’ club if you fancy some time to yourself. Everything moves at a slower pace here, so why shouldn’t you?  

Things to do with kids in Seychelles

Pick your sandy spot depending on whether you want an isolated Crusoe moment or something with a bit more going on – they don’t do bad beaches in the Seychelles. Lots are perfect for children, with gently sloping sands down to shallow waters – Anse Source on Praslin is fabulous. Some have great facilities including refreshments close to hand – try Beau Vallon, also on Praslin. Spy on the turtles as they go about their egg-laying business at Anse Forbans on Mahé, but be warned that turtle-espying requires the utmost patience and smaller kids may squirm and squeal too much. Or try Anse La Mouche, Port Launay or Anse Royale beaches.

Get out and about on the water, snorkelling, diving and kayaking or in a glass-bottomed boat. 

Go island-hopping. Cousin Island is a popular stopping place with simply thousands of birds shrieking and squawking. Once you’ve all mastered the difference between a tern and a noddy, head to Curieuse Island for a glimpse of the giant tortoises, part of a conservation program. Have a picnic on the beach and a snorkel before heading back. There are no jetties so be prepared for everyone to have a wet landing. 

Horse-ride on Mahé, where the stables have horses to suit all ages and level of ability. There are also plenty of walks to choose from around the islands, all marked according to ease. 

Head for the famous Jardin du Roi in Anse Royale on Mahé, to wander around the tropical garden, smell Seychelles’ spices or enjoy a creole meal in the lovely restaurant, with a fantastic view of Anse Royale Bay.

Venture to Port Launay Marine National Park, famous for its whale-shark sightings. 

Check out the urban delights of Victoria with its Natural History Museum, Botanical Gardens, Selwyn Clarke Market with its local produce and even its own Big Ben, close to the post office. 

Eat

The earliest settlement here was French, and the cuisine is French with an Oriental twist – think croissants for breakfast, grilled fish with ginger and garlic, exotic curries with coconut milk and local fruit, and barbecues on the beach.  

When to go to Seychelles

Generally speaking, temperatures in the Seychelles vary little, with an annual daily average of 32°C and water temperature a delicious 28–30°C. The best time to go to the Seychelles with kids is April and October. Dec–March is the wettest time.

How to get to Seychelles

Flights to the Seychelles from the UK take about 9hrs+, depending on your city of departure and variations on indirect flights, but you won't suffer jet-lag since the islands are only GMT+4.

The Seychelles has airports on Mahé Island (Mahé International), Bird Island, Denis Island, Desroches Island, Fregate Island and Praslin Island.

Cost

You're unlikely to find a mid-range room in the Seychelles for less than £70–100 a night. Seven nights in a 3-star resort hotel costs £1,100–1,500pp; more luxurious 4- and 5-stars start at about £1,700. Flights start at about £400-500. All-inclusive package trips can be the most economical option when it comes to family holidays. 

By Rachelle Keyes

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