Seychelles- Experiencing luxury on a budget

Tripoto
7th Apr 2018
Photo of Seychelles- Experiencing luxury on a budget by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of Seychelles- Experiencing luxury on a budget 1/1 by Neha Bhise Sadalge

If you have followed my last few blogs then you would know that fancy beaches or luxury resorts are definitely not my ideal holiday destinations.Overpriced packages going upwards of 2-3 lakhs per person just to chill and relax are quite off putting to me.Me and my hubby both love places which give us an opportunity to backpack , have an adventure or offer something local & unique.

However having delivered a baby a year back and in the midst of our crazy hectic schedules , we decided to explore a fun yet relaxing destination this time. Topping the list from our bucket list was Seychelles- a short trip away from Mumbai.

Located in East Africa , Seychelles consists of 115 islands across the Indian Ocean. Most of these islands are declared as natural reserves and only 4 of them are visited by tourists.It has the smallest population of any sovereign African country with only 95000 inhabitants.If you check most of the info available online , it states that Seychelles is a luxury destination and although it is possible to do it on a budget by staying in local Airbnbs , it is still quite pocket heavy.Most exotic island destinations like Maldives will cost you around 1.5-2 lakhs per person depending on the property etc. However exploring seemingly expensive destinations in a cost effective way is something that challenges and excites me and hence i decided to go ahead with the bookings.

Sharing a brief snapshot of the country to help you plan your ideal vacation.

Places to visit:

Mahe :

The largest and most populated island of Seychelles - Mahe consists of 90% of the country's population along with its capital city of Victoria and its International Airport. It has however managed to still retain its natural beauty aided by the government's efforts to supplement it with lots of new property projects like luxury resorts all over the island. With more than 60 beaches , it does have quite a large share of beaches, however they are not as popular as the ones in Praslin or La Digue. A day visit from Mahe to Victoria is easily doable to explore their botanical garden , sights and markets. Victoria also gives you plenty of food options from local markets to fancy restaurants popular for their Creole and international cuisine.It is the perfect place to stay in a luxury accommodation as it houses some of the best resorts available in the country.

Praslin:

With postcard views of stunning beaches everywhere , Praslin is the 2nd largest island of the country and is only 12 kms long and 4 kms wide.It houses some of the best beaches like Anse Lazio and Anse Georgette which feature regularly in the Top 10 beaches worldwide. It is a great place to explore in a day trip from Mahe via a 45 min ferry or to make it a base and explore nearby islands such as La-Digue.Home to the famous Coco De Mer and giant turtles , it is plush with natural beauty and a must visit on your trip to the country.

La-Digue:

The third largest inhabited island in Seychelles and fourth in terms of size , it is the prettiest and my most favourite island from my visit to this country. It is only 5 kms long and 3 kms wide which is why there are no private vehicles allowed on the island. It is best covered by walking all across the island or renting a bicycle or hiring a small truck . Only a 15 min ferry ride away from Praslin it is a dream destination with its huge boulders and endless beaches. Beaches on this island are wilder and more secluded than the other 2 neighbouring islands.Not surprisingly awarded to be some of the best beaches worldwide , this is a dream destination not to be missed.

Flight options:

Direct flights are available from most major cities in India. It is a 4.5 hour flight from Mumbai and has the cheapest flight options available starting Rs. 29000 Return.

Accommodation :

Featuring some of the best resorts seen across the globe , these resorts provide all world class amenities. It is best to book them through a local agent as they get good discounts if booked early. For our stay, i got a discount deal with a huge offer and freebies like transfers/sighteseeing etc in my deal which were not being offered on other online booking portals.

Like any destination , this can be done at a much cheaper cost by backpacking your way through islands and staying in local accomodations etc , however for me this was meant to be a luxury vacation and i wanted to experience some of the best resorts around the world. You can try searching for popular Airbnbs and staying there to cut down your costs further , however i would highly recommend staying in a resort as there isn't much to do other than to experience the private beaches and luxury on the island.

Things to do :

From fishing and exotic spas to sea activities like scuba diving , snorkelling and kayaking there are plenty of options on this island. However quite frankly they all do come at quite a cost like most islands. My tip would be to cover the must dos like scuba diving and snorkelling and finding free or cheaper options such as yoga on the hill , fishing , trekking etc on your stay to relax and chill.

Getting Around :

The best way to get around the island is through hiring a self drive car. This will cost you as much as a one way taxi fare would.A 24 hour basic self drive like an i10 Automatic will cost you 800 SCR for 24 hours while a single taxi trip costs about 800-900 SCR. The other option would be to get around in public buses which cost very minimal depending on your destination , however if you are staying in a luxury resort , coming out till the main road which will be quite a distance away to get a public transport is not a feasible option. You can hire these self drive cars from your resort or from the airport itself.

Visa :

All foreigners are offered a visa on arrival while visiting Seychelles. This is granted without any charge and is valid for three months on basis of basic documentation like Return tickets and Accommodation details etc.

Food/Drinks :

Creole Cuisine is a mix of Indian , French and local flavours. Filled with local spices quite similar to the Indian pallette , it came as a surprise for me to discover Chicken Curry and Daal Rice as a part of their local cuisine. It would be best to ask your server suggestions on catch of the day and try out different seafood everyday even if you have never tried it before.

A must try while on the island is breadfruit sticks and their cocktails. Takamaka rum is one of the most popular brands and is available for a factory visit for those who are interested. For beer lovers , Seybrew is a must try.

Food is a little expensive in the resorts and a meal will cost you around 800-1000 SCR(approx 4800 INR) including alcohol for 2.

Shopping :

I wouldn't suggest shopping for anything much on the island as it doesn't offer anything unique. It would be best to shop for fridge magnets and souvenirs on the way back at the airport as they are surprisingly cheaper than most outside local shops.

Per Person Total Travel Cost for 5 days- INR 98500 : Return Flight(29000) + Accomodation/Sightseeing/Transfers/Transport(50000) + Food(19000)

Tip : We had taken the seaview room which costs about 20k more than the hillview room. If you are on a budget you might want to cut down on this cost as well.

Over the last few years a lot of the destinations have become my personal favourites for various reasons , however Seychelles will definitely hold a special place in my heart with the realisation that if heaven was a place on earth , it would definitely be somewhere close to where i have been. Happy travelling :)

Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
Photo of La Digue, Seychelles by Neha Bhise Sadalge
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