Mahé is the largest island in Seychelles and a tropical paradise known for its stunning beaches, clear waters and diverse ecosystems, which include lush forests, coral reefs, and mangroves.
The island is also home to Victoria, the capital city of Seychelles, which happens to be the smallest capital city in the world. Victoria is a charming mix of Creole culture, colonial architecture, and modern amenities and it is easily walkable. We spent a few hours exploring its attractions on Christmas Eve and it had a lovely festive vibe.
The National Museum of History is a great place to learn about the history and culture of Seychelles. The museum has a wide range of exhibits, including traditional Seychellois clothing and artifacts from the island's colonial times. We spent an hour walking around the museum and learning about its colourful past.
Named after a former governor, this historic market was originally built in 1840 as a fish market. These days, it also sells fresh fruits, vegetables, spices and more. The bustling market is surrounded by many other shops and it will give you a fascinating glimpse into the daily life of the Seychellois. We went there on a Saturday morning when it was at its busiest.
The Seychelles Botanical Gardens is one of the best attractions in Seychelles. It has over 280 species of plants and trees - some of which are endemic to Seychelles - including the famous Coco de Mer palm. You can also find some rare birds and fruit bats there. Other features include a water lily garden, a Chinese garden, a small waterfall and a giant Aldabra tortoise enclosure.
Also known as Little Ben, The Clock Tower is one of the most iconic landmarks in Victoria. A replica of London's Vauxhall Bridge Road clock tower, it was installed in 1903 to honour Queen Victoria’s memory. Originally black, it was repainted silver in 1935 to mark King George V's Jubilee.
The Bicentennial Monument was erected in 1978 to commemorate the 200th anniversary of the city of Victoria. Also known as the three–wings monument, it represents the people of Seychelles who originate from three different continents: Africa, Asia and Europe, as well as the birds who first discovered the island.
Unveiled in 1987, the Unity Monument features four large white fish - each one symbolizing a pillar of the Seychelles' economy: Tourism, Agriculture, Fisheries and Small Businesses.
The Seychelles' Peace Park is a small park with statues of peace icons like Nelson Mandela and Mahatma Gandhi.
Mahe has more than 65 beaches along the Indian Ocean, each one unique in its own way. The crystal-clear waters are teeming with vibrant marine life, and the temperatures are perfect for taking a refreshing dip.
Some of the best beaches in Mahe are Beau Vallon beach, Anse Intendance, and Anse Royale.
Beau Vallon beach is popular with both locals and tourists for swimming, relaxing and water sports. It is also one of the best places on Mahe to see the sun set. There are daily food stalls and a weekly market where you can indulge in street food.
If you're looking for a more relaxed experience, head to Anse Intendance which is situated on a wild, secluded part of the coastline. White sands, turquoise waters and granite formations against a mountain backdrop make this one of the most picturesque beaches in Mahé .
Anse Royale beach, near the town of Anse Royale, is another popular beach with clear waters and white sands. The water here is usually calm and ideal for snorkelling, swimming and wind-surfing.
The crystal-clear waters around Mahe are home to a diverse array of marine life, including colourful fish, sea turtles and corals, making them ideal for snorkelling and diving. Port Launay Marine National Park is one of the best places to snorkel in Mahe. Alternatively, you can book a tour which will take you to other great spots.
Hiking is one of the main activities in Mahe with trails suitable for all levels of fitness, ranging from easy walks to more challenging hikes. The Morne Seychellois National Park has some great hiking trails through mountain rainforests, with panoramic vistas of the island, including the one that leads to the peak of Morne Seychellois, the highest point in Seychelles. Along the way, hikers will be able to see a wide range of flora and fauna.
For an even more adventurous hike, check out the Copolia Trail, a short but challenging hike with rewarding views.
The Sauzier waterfall in Port Glaud is a beautiful waterfall located in a rainforest. It cascades down a rocky cliff into a deep natural pool below.
Mission Lodge is a UNESCO World Heritage listed cultural site located in the historic Venns Town. Here, you will find the ruins of a school for slave children, which was built in the 19th century by the London Missionary Society, after slavery was abolished. In 1972, Queen Elizabeth II had tea here. Don’t miss the scenic views from the lookout point.
Eden Island is a modern island built on reclaimed land near the Mahe airport and L'Escale Resort Marina & Spa, where we stayed. It is home to the only shopping mall in Seychelles (which also has a South African Spar supermarket) as well as hotels, private residences and beaches, surrounding the marina where yachts are moored.
Seychelles is home to some of the world's most incredible marine life and scenery and the St Anne Marine Park Excursion is a great way to experience it. We went on a full-day excursion with Teddy’s Glass-Bottomed boat which took us on a guided tour of the spectacular park through the turquoise waters, which included activities like snorkelling, swimming, lazing on the beach and a visit to Moyenne Island, the smallest national park in the world. We toured the island, which has a very interesting history , saw the small museum and many free-roaming giant Aldabra tortoises, and had lunch there.
The Seychelles archipelago consists of 115 islands, each with their own special character. After you’ve explored Mahe, spend some time in Praslin and La Digue, the other main islands in Seychelles. You can travel to Praslin by ferry or flight. However, you should experience the flight at least once for panoramic views of the ocean and islands.
Then go on day trips to nearby islands like Curieuse, Cousin and St Pierre on a boat or catamaran or go on a prolonged sailing trip around the archipelago where you will have the opportunity to visit many of the islands.
This is one of the most popular ways to get around Mahé island. You can rent a car for around 45 euros a day. Do book in advance. We didn’t and had a problem getting a car in December. Take note though, that the roads can be very steep, narrow and winding in places.
The buses are safe and have fixed routes. We travelled on them with the locals and didn’t have any problems.
Taxis are notoriously expensive in Seychelles so try to avoid them if you can.
We stayed in three different places in Mahé .
A fabulous boutique resort conveniently located close to the airport and Eden Island and overlooking the marina. It opened in 2021 and has already won the award for the Best Boutique Resort in Seychelles in the International Travel Awards!
The largest hotel in Seychelles, it is located between two pretty beaches and overlooks a marine national park. It boasts the biggest spa in the Indian Ocean and is also the only place in Seychelles where you can go zip-lining.
We spent a few nights at an apartment in Beau Vallon. It was close to supermarkets and bus stops, and we could walk to the beach too.
See more accomodation in Mahe here.