It wouldn’t be a tropical island getaway without a few days kicking back on a secluded white sandy beach, soaking up the sun, sipping coconuts or cocktails under the shade of a palm tree or taking a dip in tranquil aqua blue seas.
Seychelles boasts some of the best beaches in the world, each uniquely different from the next and all offering ideal spots for either swimming, snorkelling, diving, water sports, boating and/or fishing – the choice is yours.
Regardless of which way the trade winds are blowing when you visit, you will always be able to find a tranquil swimming spot to relax and while away the day or a secluded spot to hit the waves.
Here are our top 10 picks for must-see beaches in Mahe, Praslin and La Digue…
1. ANSE ROYALE – Fringed by a majestic reef and granitic boulders, the bay of Anse Royale offers sheltered waters ideal for swimming, snorkelling, boating, fishing, kayaking and paddle boarding. Enjoyable all year round but particularly during the North-West trade winds when the aqua-blue waters are translucent, balmy and tranquil.
2. ANSE INTENDANCE – An ideal spot for sunbathing all year round, Anse Intendance offers half a mile of powder white sand. There is no reef so the waves are much larger than most other beaches, making it the perfect surfing spot, but please beware there can be violent currents here. During the south-east trade winds the waves can reach fearsome heights, however in the north-west trade wind season the sea is calmer and ideal for swimming.
3. BEAU VALLON BEACH – Mahé’s most popular beach, this sweeping bay of white sand and clear waters on the north-western coast of Mahé offers a very safe swimming area. With a large selection of restaurants, weekly markets, water sport and dive centres stretched out along its sand, this is the beach for those wishing to do something a little more than just soaking up the sun. During the south-eastern trade winds, the sea is extremely calm and the beach is at its absolute best.
4. ANSE MAJOR – Anse Major is located approximately 3km west of Bel Ombre, on the northern coast of Mahé. To get there you can choose the 1 hour coastal hike through Morne Seychellois National Park (read all about the hike in our post “Hiking: Anse Major Trail“) or if you don’t want to walk, you can book a taxi boat from Bel Ombre, which will drop you off on the beach (we recommend the taxi boat “Happiness”).
5. ANSE LAZIO – Often listed amongst the world’s top ten beaches, Anse Lazio is a true tropical paradise hidden away at the end of a long windy road and boasting soft white sand, calm aqua blue water and beautiful granite rocks – well worth the journey. Ideal for swimming, snorkelling and sunbathing, Anse Lazio also features two restaurants perfectly placed for lunch and refreshments.
6. ANSE VOLBERT (CÔTE D’OR) – Praslin’s main beach, Anse Volbert / Côte d’Or is a dazzlingly white stretch of beach with crystal clear blue seas – perfect for swimming and water sports. Out in the bay you will see two small islands, Chauve Souris island and St Pierre islet, both excellent spots for snorkelling.
7. ANSE GORGETTE – This is a stunning stretch of white sandy beach, however access is only via the sea by boat, or with special permission from Constance Lémuria Resort which surrounds it. Why not make a day of it, play a round of golf at Lemuria’s championship 18-hole (par 70) 18-hole golf course and then head down to the beach to cool off in the aqua blue waters.
8. ANSE SOURCE D’ARGENT – This beach needs no introduction. Already covered on one of our blogs (click here), Anse Source D’Argent is reputed to be the most photographed beach in the world, boasting soft white sand, clear turquoise water and huge granite boulders sculptured by the hands of time. Sheltered by the reef, the sea is very calm and shallow making it safe for children. Access to the beach via L’Union Estate requires an entrance fee of SCR100 for non-residents.
9. GRAND ANSE – Well worth the lengthy, and at times strenuous, cycle across the island, Grand Anse is a stunning stretch of pure white sand fringed by majestic granite boulders and the most crystal-clear turquoise waters you have ever seen. Whilst the waters are inviting, be warned that this beach can have a very strong under-tow so please pay attention to the signs and only swim when it is safe to do so and if your ability allows. There is also a lovely beach bar perfect to relax and enjoy the picturesque views.
10. ANSE COCOS – This pretty bay on the eastern coast of La Digue is only accessible by foot, either by taking a path from Grand Anse or in the other direction from Anse Fourmis. Because of its more sheltered aspect, this beach, unlike its neighbouring bays of Grand and Petit Anse, is safe for swimmers, but there are still some strong currents, so care does need to be taken.