Snorkeling in the Seychelles
Snorkeling in the Seychelles
Seychelles' snorkeling provides for a great opportunity to become familiar with their resident marine life. This beautiful French archipelago off of the east coast of Africa isn't only easy on the eyes on the surface. Underwater it houses an amazing array of creatures, and with half of its territory under the protection of marine reserves it is an incredibly well preserved home at that. With a collection of over 115 islands and islets, Seychelles has enough changes of pace to keep you busy indefinitely. Their beaches alone are enough to bring many travellers in with the much sought after white, soft sand and crystal clear water of the Indian Ocean. The islands of La Digue, Felicite, Mahe, and Praslin are rightfully at the top of any visitor's wishlist. The snorkeling in Seychelles will vary depending on which islands you visit. However, when it comes to Seychelles there is simply no going wrong in the islands you choose, it's all a matter of preference.
Marine Life in Seychelles
Seychelles is neither short on islands or on marine life. Thanks to the beloved clear, shallow waters corals can thrive in these waters providing homes for a wide variety of fish, turtles, and invertebrates. Depending on the time of year you visit, you may be fortunate enough to dive with the migratory whale sharks. Additionally, some of the nation's waters one of the best places on earth to see hawksbill sea turtles.The marine life you can see in Seychelles is divided into two categories: that of the Inner Islands and that of the Outer Islands.
The Inner Islands sea life resides on an underwater mountainous range. Fish lovers will rejoice on the Inner Islands to see all of their reef favorites: butterfly fish, angel fish, soldier fish, sweepers and squirrel fish. Larger yet still common fish include the endearing napoleon wrasse, giant grouper, reef sharks, and stingrays. Lobsters and the famed nudibranch, the Spanish dancer, are some of the many invertebrates you can also see here. On the Inner Islands, your chances of seeing a Hawksbill turtle are very high since they have nesting grounds here at certain times of the year.
The Outer Islands are much more secluded than the Inner Islands. The marine life is much more varied than that seen on the seamless Inner Islands. Green turtles have year round nesting grounds in the Outer Islands and can be seen travelling to and from. Mantas are occasionally seen in the Outer Islands as well as a wider variety of sharks, including grey reef sharks, nurse sharks, silvertip sharks, and the hammerhead if you're lucky!
Best Snorkel Spots in Seychelles
The best spots to snorkel can be found anywhere in one of the numerous marine parks. These marine parks ensure that the reefs and immense biodiversity are preserved. When visiting Mahe, anywhere within the Sainte Anne National Marine Park is bound to please any and all snorkelers. Other good locations for snorkeling on Mahe include Anse Royale and Port Launay Marine Park as well as Bel Ombre, Anse Diri, and Anse Major. On Praslin, the best snorkeling can be found on Coco Island. Other notable spots for snorkeling on Praslin include Baie Ternay Marine Reserve and St. Pierre within Curieuse Marine Park.
Best Time to Snorkel in Seychelles
While snorkeling in Seychelles is amazing year round. There is no distinctly wet season though December and January tend to feature a bit more rainfall than the rest of the year. The air temperature is always somewhere between 24 to 32 degrees Celsius. The water temperature will drop to 27 degrees Celsius at the absolute lowest and 32 degrees Celsius at the highest. If you want to visit when the beaches are pristine, then it is best to avoid visiting from May to September as this is when seaweed washes up on shore, though it is harmless. If you're hoping to snorkel with whale sharks, then you should visit during August or between the months of October to January. If you're hoping to see Hawksbills during nesting season, than plan to visit between August to February.
How Do I Get to Seychelles?
Travelling to the Seychelles International Airport is the best way to get to the island. Once there, you can rely on island hopping or, if you wish to maximize your trip and see the most of the archipelago, then liveaboards are a great option. Liveaboards depart and return from Praslin Islands.