Seychelles scuba diving
The Seychelles holds 155 islands of diving bliss. Lying near the equator, the weather is consistently calm with visiting whale sharks, manta rays, dolphins and hammerheads. Mahe dive sites offer a backdrop of spectacular wrecks with a variety of hard and soft corals surrounded by these majestic beasts.
Scuba diving in the Seychelles conjures up images of crystal clear waters, stunning topography, shallow reefs, wrecks and steep drop-offs, providing habitats for an array of beautiful marine life. Seychelles scuba diving promises a variety of dive sites and warm tropical waters, the archipelago is located close to the equator, which means that for keen divers it is possible to complete 2-4 dives each day.
Diving the Seychelles archipelago located of the mainland of Africa, comprising of 155 islands, is a unique experience. The vibrant culture and art scene, landscapes, topped with worldclass diving makes it the perfect destination to explore. The inner islands are mountainous with cloud forest, whilst the underwater world hosts a unique topography of granite boulders covered in coral and marine life. The diversity of dive sites suits all divers from novice to experienced and Mahe Island is world-renowned for its Whale Sharks and amazing wreck dive sites around Beau Vallon in the North.
Seychelles scuba diving and the marine ecosystem should continue to thrive as The Nature Conservancy and Leonardo Di Caprio Foundation have just joined forces and successfully created the second largest Marine Protected Area in the West Indian Ocean protecting over 400,000 square kilometres of ocean.
Marine Life In Seychelles
The granite reefs are home to a variety of corals and an abundance of marine life. Ranging from the exciting array of tiny Nudibranchs, to the exotic looking Bat fishes, Butterfly fishes, Hawksbill and Green Sea Turtles, beautiful Spotted Eagle Rays, Reef Manta rays, Giant Sting rays, pelagic fishes, shoals of Yellow Snapper, large schools of game fish such as Tuna, alongside shark species such as Nurse sharks, Oceanic White Tip Sharks, the occasional Hammerhead shark, Dolphins and many more.
One of the main attractions of scuba diving in the Seychelles is the possibility of diving with the worlds largest fish, the Whale Shark. In season they can be found off of the Southern side of the largest island, Mahe. The slightly cooler water temperature of 25 degrees brings in nutrient rich plankton which the Whale Sharks feed on, a once in a lifetime phenomena to witness and dive amongst.
Best Dive Sites in Seychelles
Mahe dive sites are world-renowned. Some of the best dive sites in the Seychelles for wreck diving are The Twin Barges 12-24meters fantastic for night diving and The Dredger 18-26meters. Shark Bank and Stalk Patch, granite pinnacle, are popular dive spots with impressive shoals of pelagic fish, rays, and shark species. The Baie Ternay Marine park, offers shallow dives viewing the beautiful hard and soft coral gardens whereas for the adventurous diver, drop-offs can be found on the continental shelf edge, 20 miles off Mahe.
The islands of Praslin, Curieuse, La Digue and Sister Islands, offer unique dive sites yet are all in close proximity to each other. Scuba diving in Praslin offers around 17 dive sites between 18-20meters, the shallow depth makes it perfect for beginners and dive courses are available. The granite reefs are teaming with life, often covered in impressive shoals of Yellow snappers.
Curieuse a few km of the coast of Praslin is a beautiful marine protected national park, hosting an abundance of marine life. The island is home to giant tortoises and some of the best dive sites in Curieuse are Coral Garden or Pointe Rouge. Dive site Point Rouge is located at the southernmost tip of the reserve will give you the opportunity to see Humphead Parrotfish and White Tip sharks.
Sister islands consist of two small private islands, La Grande Soeur and Le Petit Soeur located 6km of La Digue, they are only accessible by boat. Best season to visit Sister Island is March-May due to calmer weather. They offer a wealth of dive spots and spectacular ocean panoramas, due to inaccessibility the dive sites are un-crowded, which makes for a relaxing trip away from civilisation.
Learn to dive in La Digue, which is the most scenic of the inner islands with a laid back pace of life and super stunning beaches. Marianne Island off La Digue is known for its Grey Reef shark aggregations. The price for diving in Seychelles can vary depending on the dive operator.
Best Time To Dive in Seychelles
The Seychelles are blessed with a beautiful climate, year round sunshine, warmth and tropical waters. The best seasons to visit for warm, calm waters with 30-40 meters visibility is generally between March-May and October-November, as calmer waters make it easier for dive boats to access the remote dive sites.
If it is marine megafauna you are wishing to scuba dive with, then the best season to visit is Whaleshark season in the Seychelles which is between August and November, with sightings peaking in October.
Experience Level for diving Seychelles
The Seychelles is a haven for divers, home to world's largest raised Coral Atoll and a UNESCO World heritage site, offering scuba diving suitable for all levels. There are a variety of shallow reefs which are perfect for novice divers such as The Vista Bay Rocks. However, if it is the wrecks and drop-offs you want to explore it is advisable to complete your PADI advanced diver so you are qualified, some of the wrecks are below 30meters such as the Ennerdale. Dive courses are available making the Seychelles the perfect place to improve your diving.
Whale sharks feed in the top ocean layer, therefore both novice and experienced divers can enjoy the experience of scuba diving with these beautiful fish.
How Do I Get To Seychelles
Numerous airlines fly to the Seychelles, including Air Seychelles, Emirates airways, Kenya airways, flights leave from international airports across the globe landing at the international airport located on Mahe Island. Seychelles liveaboards to take you diving are available from Mahe Port. Other liveaboards depart from Praslin, reaching Praslin is easy as there are more than 20 daily flights between Mahe and Praslin islands, these islands are also connected by catamaran, which takes about 45 minutes. Make sure to book in advance, from these liveaboard departure points the Seychelles underwater world is yours to explore.