Plan the Perfect Seychelles Family Island Escape

Anse Lazio beautiful beach Seychelles

Fancy taking a family vacation in an island paradise this year?

With news that Seychelles is freely opening its borders to most countries once more, we thought we’d take a quick look at what one of our nearest island neighbours in the Indian Ocean has to offer – far more than just fancy honeymoons!

Sitting off the east coast of Africa, Seychelles is a bit of a hidden gem for families. Not just palm trees and stunning white beaches but a huge range of nature experiences to enjoy too. Home to the incredible Aldabra Giant Land Tortoise and some of the world’s most unique species of flora and fauna, it’s a snorkelling and diving paradise.

Let’s take an explore, not just the 2021 re-opening of the island but where to stay and what there is for families to see and do in Seychelles.

Aldabra Giant Land Tortoise found on Curiuese Island

Getting There: Airlines Flying to Seychelles

For those looking to fly to Seychelles, the national carrier Air Seychelles is a natural first choice. Flight routes are currently restricted due to the ongoing COVID-19 situation, and Dubai is the best connection with Europe at present.

Dubai – Seychelles

From DXB you can fly with Air Seychelles, Emirates, or with the returned Qatar route (with quick stop and change of plane in DOH) you can also bag a reasonably priced flight.

The journey time from Dubai to Seychelles is 4.5 hours.

Direct flights with Etihad have also resumed, however, at the time of writing, Seychelles is still not a green list country, meaning a 10-day self-quarantine on return would be required.

Check out pricing for your desired route to Seychelles here:

Where should families stay in Seychelles

This is a very budget-dependent question as Seychelles covers quite a range, but being one of Africa’s richest countries, the focus is on the luxury travel market. We’ll look at a few family resort options in more detail below, or you can get a good feeling of what is available here, including Airbnb:

Family resorts in the Seychelles

The largest island of Seychelles is Mahé where international flights will land. For simplicity, a lot of families prefer Mahé so you do not need an additional island transfer after a long flight.

Transfers to Praslin Island take about 1 hour by catamarin from the capital Victoria.

Four Seasons Resort Seychelles

Situated on Mahé island, this beautiful resort constantly comes up when we hear of dream holiday destinations. It does come with a price tag to match, but the experience is unsurpassable if you seek that luxurious once-in-a-lifetime family break.

Seychelles Four Seasons

Set on the stunningly picturesque bay of Petite Anse in southwest Mahé, you’ll be hard-pressed to find purer white sand and safe swimming year-round from the natural reef. This is in addition to the large family-sized pool offering mini sun loungers and even mini robes for kids!

The huge bonus for families staying here is the complimentary children’s programme – Kids For All Seasons. Your little ones can enjoy guided snorkelling, sailing, kayaking and giant tortoise feeding all within the resort.

Constance Ephelia

Sitting 40 minutes north-west of the airport by road, Constance Ephelia offers the ultimate family luxury vacation. It features a kid’s club, five restaurants, a spa, and multiple pools.

The resort has a long private beach facing calm, shallow waters perfect for your little ones (though low tide makes swimming difficult!) The other huge plus of staying here is the ziplining course through the lush forest, a total must if you have adventurous kids like ours!

STORY Seychelles

A relative newcomer for families to consider is STORY Seychelles. Located on spectacular Beau Vallon beach, just 4km north-west of Victoria, this contemporary eco-resort offers family villas with a private pool as well as suites, stunning waterfront and lush lagoon views, with the backdrop of Morne Seychellois National Park.

inside of a villa at STORY Seychelles

Within this lush paradise, there are seven dining outlets, two pools, and a 3km beachfront. Mum and dad can relax with holistic treatments at Sesel Spa while the kids are taken care of at the kids’ club—or enjoy the hiking, snorkelling, and surfing activities on offer.

Things to do in Seychelles with kids

Most family visitors to Seychelles are no doubt dreaming of a relaxing holiday at the beach, but if that’s not exactly your idea of family fun all day every day, or you’re not staying at one of the fancier high-end resorts with all the inclusions, then there’s still plenty more to see and explore in Seychelles.

The Seychelles archipelago has over 100 islands, so island hopping is undoubtedly a favourite. In addition to seeing both Mahé  and Praslin, why not look into:

  • Go cycling on La Digue, accessible by boat from Mahé or Praslin, it only takes an hour to cycle one side to the other. You can also go snorkelling here, and even spot Hawksbill sea turtles (note some spots are not appropriate for beginners, so do our research before grabbing the snorkelling set!)
  • Curieuse is another popular choice as this is where you can meet the Aldabra Giant Land Tortoise. These gentle giant creatures can grow to over 600lb and 200 years of age!
  • A boat excursion can cover several islands in one day, such as the Cousin Islands, Felicité, Coco, Sister, or St. Pierre.
Bike riding on La Digue. Image credit bennymarty via CanvaPro

The tiny country is also home to two UNESCO sites! The first can easily be visited on a trip to Praslin Island, Vallee du Mai (Mai Valley Nature Reserve), This natural palm forest is home to the world’s largest population of endemic coco-de-mer, a flagship species of global significance as the bearer of the largest seed in the plant kingdom, and thought to perhaps be the original garden of Eden. 

The second will require a boat trip to Aldabra Atoll. The protected reef is the largest coral atoll in the world. Uninhabited, it is the sanctuary to a huge number of marine species. Permission must be granted in advance from SIF. Only a limited number of tour operators then have permission to take you on a live-aboard. The permit cost is $225USD/day.

Even if your resort has it’s own beach, there are still plenty more stunning beaches you could visit on a day trip – 65 beaches alone just on Mahé! Amongst the most famous and beautiful to try and visit is Anse Lazio (Praslin), which regularly tops lists as one of the best beaches in the world.

Shop the markets in Victoria – the capital is quite small in relative terms but you can easily spend half a day pottering about and pick up your souvenirs from the Sir Selwyn Selwyn Clarke Market in the capital.

Best time to visit the Seychelles

So now you’ve maybe got Seychelles on your radar as one of the safer countries ready and open for business again in 2021. Is there a good time to visit?

The best months to visit Seychelles are April – May and October – November.

The busiest months coinciding with holiday traffic are December – January and July – August.

The temperature year-round is fairly consistent around 28°C to 32°C (82°F to 90°F). Sitting just south of the equator, the coldest time of year is July – air and water temperatures dip to 26°C (79°F).

It can certainly work as a year-round sunshine destination, but November to March can bring hot and humid northwesterly winds and rains, while cooler south-west winds are experienced from May through to October, though it stays dry. During these “off-seasons,” you need to consider the direction of the beach and winds to make the most of your trip.

Seychelles makes the ideal half-term break for May or October. If you’re lucky enough to travel at these times, it makes for the perfect one-week tropical break in the sun.

See more ideal short breaks from Dubai & the UAE here

More to Know Visiting the Seychelles with Kids

  • The local currency is the rupee (SR or SRe), which you’ll get from ATMs. Some tourist establishments may want payment directly in Euro or USD.
  • Time zone is GMT+4 – perfect for our Middle East travellers and not too big an adjustment for Europeans.
  • Power sockets are Type G – that’s the British 3-pin rectangular and standard 240V.
  • Visitors from most countries do not need a visa, you can enter visa-free for stays up to 30 days. Check current rules/countries here.
  • Drink only bottled water or bring your own filtered water bottle.
  • The official languages are Seychellois Creole, English & French. English is spoken everywhere in tourism establishments.
  • Be safe in the water – consider sunburn and strong currents, whilst many beaches offer safe and shallow protected bays, heed local warnings on water conditions before jumping in.
  • There is a public bus service on Mahé and Praslin, though with kids you may prefer the convenience of hiring your own car for a day if you want to do a little independent exploring or joining an organized tour.
  • Looking at residing in Seychelles? Pop over to our interview with Chantelle from Seychelles Mama, a great read about living the full-time island life.

Need a packing list? Jump on over to our complete family packing list for all your travel needsjust sign up to be a part of the Globetrotter community and grab it straight away

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beautiful township in Seychelles

Disclosures: Information correct at the time of writing in early March 2021. This post has been in no way sponsored by Tourism Seychelles or any mentioned resorts; however, they have assisted with reopening facts for editorial purposes. This page also contains affiliate links to some of our prefered partner suppliers that may earn us a small commission should a booking or purchase be made. Our full privacy policy and website terms of use can be found here.

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