Mahé is the largest island of Seychelles and the place where most tourists arrive. While some choose to spend their holiday on other Seychellen islands and visit Mahé only on a day trip, I dare to say that Mahé deserves much more attention. It is a gorgeous island that has so much to offer: beautiful sandy beaches, lovely coastal roads and trekking routes, great takeaways and friendly people.
My recommendation would be to spend at least five nights on Mahé, rent a car and discover everything that this island has to offer and indulge into the local cuisine served by many takeaways on the route. I hope this guide to Mahé Island in Seychelles will help you organize your holiday better!
We stayed at Fler Payanke Apartment, near Anse Royale, and from there we explored the whole island, choosing a different route every day. This place is a hidden gem, surrounded by nature. Beautiful, big, open space apartment with everything you wish for: a fully equipped kitchen, a big walk-in shower and a great terrace! We especially loved the evenings spent on the patio and the silence.
THE EAST COAST
TAKAMAKA RUM DISTILLERY. A great place where you can book a small tour to learn more about rum making and also do some tasting. Although this place has a restaurant, I would recommend trying the Simply Delicious Takeaway, 400metres away. Try the local tuna dish, and you won’t be disappointed.
LE JARDIN DU ROY. A walk through this lovely garden with different kinds of trees like cinnamon or pineapple and a lot of spices and fruits it’s a great alternative to spend some time away from the beach and the sun.
Mahé has around 70 sandy beaches, not all of them easy to access, like Anse Soleil, Anse Capucins or Anse Petite.
ANSE AUX PINS, a long bay on Mahé’s east coast with calm and shallow water. Ideal for families and snorkelling.
ANSE AUX COURBES, a tranquil beach with shallow water, not crowded at all.
ANSE ROYALE, beautiful sandy beach, great for families. The water here is excellent for snorkelling! Thanks to its proximity to some accommodations, the beach can get very crowded. OLE RESTAURANT & TAKEAWAY, just above the beach, offers delicious and fresh local food. Try the smoked fish salad or the grilled fish from the takeaway corner, and you will love it. So so delicious.
ANSE BALEINE, a beautiful hidden beach with coconut trees and shadow but with rocks in the water. You might have to walk a little bit along the road to reach the beach.
ANSE BOUGAINVILLE is a small and tranquil beach, difficult to spot from the road. As a tip, the bus stop is near the beach. Great for families and snorkelling.
ANSE FORBANS. The access is done through an alley near the Hotel Hilton. Not crowdy at all, but with rocks in the water, you can shelter under the trees during the mid-day heat.
ANSE MARIE-LOUISE is an extension of Anse Forbans, so the two beaches share the same features.
THE SOUTH COAST
ANSE CAPUCINS, a wild and spotless beach at the end of a 45-minute hike from Anse Marie-Louise, through a lush forest. Once you reach a house, take the small pathway down to Anse Capucins. This hike is not suited for everyone, so I suggest planning well.
PETITE POLICE is not a great beach for swimming due to rocks: on the shore and in the water. Also, the wind is quite strong here. It is more a beach for landscape. After snapping some pictures, head to Police Bay, and you will understand why.
POLICE BAY, a gorgeous, long, white sand beach that resembles a lot to Grand and Petite Anse form La Diqué. The water can be rough sometimes, so be vigilant. Just park your car at the end of the road, near the old police building and follow the path until you reach the beach. Not very popular along with tourists, it is for sure one of our favourite spots in Mahe. Most of the time we had the beach for ourselves.
ANSE PETIT BOILEAU is the nearby beach of Police Bay in the very south of Mahe, challenging to access but impressive, calm and peaceful. We had the beach for ourselves all day long, and we can say it is our favourite beach in Seychelles. You can reach the beach eighter from Petite Police beach, eighter from Anse Capucins, but the trail is rough, unmarked and goes through a lush forest. If you want to find out how to get to this beach, read more here.
THE WEST COAST
ANSE INTENDANCE, one kilometre long, gorgeous, wild beach. The water is free from corals and rocks. Ideal for swimming and families so you will find many people here.
ANSE TAKAMAKA, another beautiful beach with coconut trees and shadow, ideal for swimming and families.
ANSE GAULETTES, one-kilometre long beach, with shallow and clear water, ideal for families.
BAIE LAZARE, a long bay, easily accessible, an excellent beach for swimming, snorkelling and families, with lots of palm trees for shade.
PETITE ANSE. Park your car outside the Four Seasons Hotel Gate, sign in with security and walk 15 minutes down to the beach. The area is beautiful, surrounded by the Four Seasons, the water is clear and ideal for families. You can take a shower before leaving, right on the beach. Remember, the way back up is steep, but the beach is well worth the effort.
ANSE SOLEIL, very popular among tourists, is a beautiful, calm beach, suitable for swimming and snorkelling.
ANSE À LA MOUCHE, suitable for swimming and snorkelling, a great place for families. You can find some sand strip where you can relax under coconut trees.
ANSE LOUIS, a tranquil bay near Maia Resort, suitable for families.
ANSE BOILEAU, 200m away from Anse Louis, suitable for swimming and snorkelling. You will see plenty of boats and local fishermen fishing here. You can buy the catch of the day from them and cook it at your accommodation.
GRAND ANSE, a long and beautiful beach. The water is free form corals, rocks and seaweed but can get rough. Just grab a spot of shade and relax.
PORT LAUNAY. Quiet bay next to the Constance Ephelia Resort with beautiful water, excellent for swimming.
BEAU VALLON is the most popular beach in Mahé, several kilometres long, offering a lot of options when it comes to accommodation, restaurants and watersports. The water is crystal clear, free from rocks and seaweed. You can always find shelter under the trees. Unfortunately, you will see vendors or hawkers on this beach. Be vigilant and never leave your valuable belongings unattended.
ANSE NORD D’EST is a wild and beautiful beach, great for taking photos but not suitable for swimming.
TOP SOLEIL BEACH is a sunny, lovely bay with gorgeous golden sand and turquoise-blue water. Just try the smoked fish from the bar nearby. Delicious!
VICTORIA, the CAPITAL of SEYCHELLES
VICTORIA, Africa’s smallest capital city, only 5 kilometres from Beau Vallon, is a great place to spend half a day:
- Start with VICTORIA CLOCKTOWER, a mini replica of Big Ben, brought in 1903 when Seychelles became a British colony.
- NATIONAL HISTORY MUSEUM, a restored old building with new interactive displays, is just nearby. You’ll get a glimpse on Seychelles history, learn about pirates, Aldabra tortoises or creole culture.
- After that, make a quick stop at ST PAUL’S CATHEDRAL, a prominent mark of Seychelles
- Buy fresh fruits and vegetables, fish, tea and spices from SIR SELWYN CLARK MARKET, open daily Monday through Saturday. Wander the streets and embrace the place and the people.
- VICTORIA BOTANICAL GARDENS, found two bus stops from the main bus terminal in Victoria, is worth a visit. You can see the endemic island species, including the famous coco de Mer and the Aldabra giant tortoises.
MORNE SEYCHELLOIS NATIONAL PARK
Leaving the capital, head out of Victoria and follow the SANS SOUCI ROAD. There are a few places to stop along the way:
LES TROIS FRÈRES TRAIL, quickly reached from Victoria, offers a fantastic view of Victoria and the east coast of Mahé. The hike takes about 5 hours.
COPOLIA TRAIL is a must-do, especially for nature lovers. It’s a moderately challenging trek that goes thru a dense, lush forest and takes about 1.5 hours roundtrip. The view from the summit is simply stunning.
MORNE SEYCHELLOIS TRAIL, for experienced hikers, takes you to the highest point on Mahe at 905 metres. The hike takes 5 hours.
TEA PLANTATION where you can take a free tour of the factory and enjoy some lovely views over the bay.
MORNE BLANC TRAIL is another must-do along the road. Leave the car at the tea plantation, walk down the road, and you will see the sign. The hike takes about 1.5 hours roundtrip.
If you want to know more about transportation, renting a car, accommodation, shopping or where to eat in Seychelles, you can read everything on this comprehensive article: Things to know before travelling to Seychelles.
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