Dreaming of Emerald waters, soft sands and mystical forests of Seychelles? Planning to visit the lovely islands soon? Here are top 8 things that you should know before you travel to Seychelles.
1. Currency and Exchange Rates
This is Travel to Foreign Land 101. The official currency is Seychellean Rupee, but they accept Euros across the country. However, if you owe them change, you’ll receive the same in Seychellean Rupees. That’s where you need to be aware of the exchange rates. 1EUR ~ 15 SCR, however, some places give a conversion rate of 14 SCR too. So, make sure you inquire before making a purchase.
2. Choosing the time of visit
Seychelles has a tropical climate, but they have 2 monsoon seasons. The North West Monsoon that stretches from November to March and the South East Monsoon which is from June to September. That leaves April-May & October-November as the best months to visit the islands with less possibility of showers ruining your holiday.
3. Going for sightseeing? Hire a Self-Driven Rental Car
It is the most convenient and most cost-efficient way of travelling. A hatchback will cost you around 40-45 EUR per day as opposed to a taxi which costs 100-150 EUR per day. The cars are auto transmission and it is very easy to navigate on roads as they drive on the left, just like India.
4. Restaurants there are expensive
Tourism being the primary economy, the restaurants and eat out joints are very expensive and will easily cost you somewhere around SCR 500 to 1000 per meal for 2 people. If you do some research, you’ll find some great take away places, that serve lovely food at a half or one-fourth cost.
5. Inter island Ferry & Flight have almost similar rates
For inter-island transfer between Mahe and Praslin, you can opt for either flight or ferry. However, both modes have almost similar rates, ~100 EUR per person. So, if you want to save time, go for the flight.
If you opt for ferry, be ready to experience some rough seas. Also, the queue start forming up 1.5 hours prior to the departure and seats are on 1st come, 1st serve basis.
6. Restaurants do not serve you drinking water
You will not find drinking water being served at your table in restaurants, not even on the breakfast table of your own hotel. Carry a keg of mineral water from the supermarket, this will cost you around SCR 40 for 5-liter jar. It is enough for 2 people for 4-5 days. The more quantity you purchase, cheaper will be the rate.
7. There is no night life
The shops and the markets are shut close by 5 PM and the restaurants are open till 10 PM. If you are looking for a night life experience, you are looking at the wrong place.
8. Seychellean are leisure loving people
We have experienced that island nationals are leisure loving people. Sundays are entirely off. You would not find any market, shop or transport service functional on Sundays. Make sure you do avoid making any plans on Sunday.
9. Cellphone networks are not very good and data card is expensive
Cellphone connectivity is good in Mahe and Praslin, however the network reception is not very good if you are travelling to adjoining islands or hiking up the trails. Apart from the local calling card, Airtel provides calling and data services. Our suggestion is to avoid purchasing the same since the tariffs and data costs are very high, around SCR 500 for 7 days of data and calling. Most hotels, restaurants and coffee shops will have Wi-Fi, you can always avail that.
Seychelles is a lovely place, and if you get the above things covered, you are sure to have a ball of a time in the island nation. Warm months are coming near, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags and enjoy the sun and surf in Seychelles.