Seychelles trip, part 1

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Mar 13th, 2001, 05:32 AM
  #1
Paige
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Seychelles trip, part 1

One more try!
Hello!
Just thought I'd post a report on our trip incase anyone is looking for info on the Seychelles.

We were there Feb 25 - March 11. It was hot and mostly sunny the whole time. A few days were really cloudy, but that helped keep the temperature down a bit. It only rained for about 15 minutes one day while we were there. The Seychelles are just below the equator so the sun is ferociously bright. Take a lot of sunscreen!!

We spent the 1st 4 nights at Le Petit Village on Mahe, on the beach west of Beau Vallon. It's a great little self catering hotel right on the beach. Each of the 8 rooms has a balcony or patio facing the ocean, a/c, satellite TV and a little kitchen. It's a really nice place. No meals so you have to either cook or go out. There aren't any big grocery stores so cooking for yourself could be a hassle. We took some supplies and ate out some. You can do without a car but it's much easier to have one. We hadn't planned to rent one but then did for 2 days (375SCR per day for a closed car with a/c). We used Echo Rentals and thought they were professional and friendly. At the time, we couldn't walk along the beach to Beau Vallon because the boulders in between were too slippery. It's about a 30 minute walk along a road with no sidewalks or shoulders but everyone does it. During the day, it's a very HOT and humid 30 minute walk on the asphalt and not especially scenic. At night there are stretches that aren't lit very well.

One day we went on a snorkeling trip with Teddy's Glass Bottom Boat to Baie Ternay. Teddy picked us up at the hotel and took us to the Coral Strand Hotel where his boat leaves from. That was fun! 200 SCR per person for a half day trip. On the way back we stopped at a little, remote beach and the boat drivers cracked coconuts for us while we hung out on the beach for a while. Another day we drove into Victoria and looked around and checked out the Botanical Gardens. The last day we walked from our hotel to Anse Major, a remote beach that can't be reached by road. The hike took an hour or so and went along the coast along a pretty good trail. If you do this, take a lot of water! The beach is really pretty.

The taxi from the airport to our hotel cost 125 SCR and was 150 on the way back. By the time we got out of the airport, there weren't any taxis around. There were some buses around for people who had arranged for transfers, and one of them was willing to take us. A taxi showed up and we took that instead. Just to let you know there's not necessarily a huge line of taxis waiting.

 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 05:48 AM
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Paige
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part 2
From Mahe we went to La Digue for 4 nights. We flew to Praslin on a little 20 seater, took a taxi across the island to the pier (80 SCR, I think) then waited around for the ferry. The ferry cost 80 SCR for 2 people and 2 bags and took 30 minutes over rough water. Our hotel, L'Ocean, sent a truck to pick us up at the pier. It's one of a handful of cars on the island. L'Ocean is an ok hotel. It's on the north point of the island, across a dirt road from the rocky beach. It's a 5 minute walk north to the beautiful little beach, Anse Patates. There are only 8 rooms, 6 of which look over the roof of the restaurant at the ocean. The other 2 are a level up and probably have a much better view. The room was nice enough but most of the staff seemed pretty disinterested. The older gentleman that seemed to be the manager was really nice, hospitable and welcoming. A couple of the other staff members were really friendly but most of the rest weren't. I'd say that's it's biggest downfall. The food in the restaurant was pretty good. It might have been better to stay closer to 'town.' There aren't any street lights out by L'Ocean (and you can't rent a car) so getting around after dark is a problem.

We rented bikes every morning from a guy at the hotel and rode all over the island. The beaches around Anse Source d'Argent are the most beautiful I've seen. Ahhh.... We also took a snorkeling trip out to Cocos Island with a guy named Daniel. Nice guy. You can arrange that at the tourist office right by the pier for 200 SCR per person for half a day. Cocos is a great place to snorkel!! We saw sharks, rays, turtles and all kinds of fish. That was one of the highlights of our trip. We really liked La Digue! It was wonderfully relaxing and quiet. We had to make a trip to the local hospital because my husband had problems with his ear. The dr was really friendly and professional. We were charged 100 SCR for the visit, ear drops and some other medicine.
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 06:02 AM
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Paige
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part 3
From La Digue we went to Praslin for 4 nights. We stayed at the Acajou Hotel on the Cote d'Or. It's excellent! By far our favorite (and most expensive) hotel of the trip. Breakfast and dinner are included and the food is great! The staff were all friendly and professional, the rooms are really nice, there's a pool and it's right on the beach. We had room 15, which we decided was the best room. It's on the 1st floor (2nd American) closest to the beach. Any of the rooms would be fine, but this one and the end one of the other building (as well as the ones on the floor below them) have the biggest balconies with the most privacy and best views.

We rented a car for 2 days. Silly me thought we could walk or ride bikes everywhere. Not! We drove all over the island and found that our favorite beach was Anse Lazio. It's great! The water is clear, gentle waves, no plants or rocks in the water and it gradually gets deeper so it's great for swimming and snorkeling (especially around the rocks). The 2nd day we were there, a small shark spent all afternoon swimming up and down the beach. We learned to ignore it and found that it was more scared of us than us of him (hard to believe!). The road out there is VERY hilly. Wouldn't be a lot of fun to ride a bike.

Also visited the Vallee de Mai. That's interesting. The Coco de Mer trees are HUGE!!

The Cote d'Or gets really shallow at low tide. At high tide a lot of sea grass washed up on the beach and the water wasn't so pretty.
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 06:07 AM
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Paige
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part 4
After Praslin we flew back to Mahe and spent the last 2 nights at the Allamanda Hotel on the east-southeast coast. It's an ok hotel. It's right on the beach, Anse Forbans. The water has lots of rocks and seagrass so isn't so great for swimming. It has 10 rooms, some have balconies and others just have big windows. Some of the rooms are on the side of the hotel so they don't have good ocean views. Breakfast was pretty good and the staff was friendly. The rooms were nice enough. There's a sign at the door saying there's a dress code after 18:00; no shorts, sandals, torn jeans, etc. We thought that was a little stupid. It's not a 5 star hotel or anything and it's too hot to say no shorts. We didn't eat there so I can't say how their dinners are.

You really need a car if you're staying there. We hadn't planned to because I thought we could walk everywhere (we walk a lot). It's just too hot and humid to walk a couple of miles to a beach, up and down hills on narrow, zig zag roads with no shoulders, carrying all of your stuff for the day. We ended up renting a car for the 3 days we were there. We used Echo again and got the same car, this time for 300 SCR per day. They met us at the airport with the car and we dropped it off there when we left.

We drove to Anse Royale, down by Fairyland, which is a pretty good place to snorkel. We were there at low tide and some places were too shallow. There are rocks and places with sea grass in the water, but you can swim around or over them. It's not the best place to snorkel but is pretty good. Down the road a bit is an openair restaurant called Kaz Kreole that has good pizza, right on the beach. We also drove to Baie Lazare, Anse Takamaka, Anse Intendence and Anse Soleil. The 1st 3 are supposed to have strong waves and currents at some times of the year but they were really calm while we were there. Anse Soleil is by far the prettiest beach that we saw on the south end of the island. There's a little cafe next to it with pretty good food and excellent views of the bay. There's also a hotel there. It's a bit remote but I think it would be nice to stay by this pretty beach.

Looked for the Splash Cafe that was owned by Tom Hanks' sister but it has closed. Ate lunch at La Sirene. It's a very casual, openair place with decent food.
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 06:32 AM
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Paige
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part 5
Some miscellaneous comments...
If you rent a car, call around. We called a few places and were quoted very different rates. Local calls from our hotels were cheap and phone books were in the rooms. I had read that minimokes were the car to rent. They're small dune buggy looking vehicles. They don't look that comfortable, you can't lock anything up and they're completely open. You can probably get a real car for the same price.

We saw ATMs on each island. You get a better rate for exchanging travelers' checks than cash. It's against the law to change money with Joe on the street even though he'll offer a better rate. Hotels will change money for you at the bank rate and none charged commission.

If you rent a car and buy gas, check the pump to make sure you're getting what you paid for. The first 2 times we bought gas, the gas gauge hardly budged. We just figured gas was horribly expensive. The 3rd time we bought 100 SCR of gas, we went from empty to half a tank! Each gas station had an attendant that pumped the gas and took the money while we were in the car.

I was told by a local that she boils the water before drinking it. We just bought bottled water.

Maybe other times of the year it's cooler, but it was quite hot and humid while we were there. We had no need of long sleeves, jackets or anything like that. We were hot and sweaty all day. We washed out our t-shirts and shorts in the sink every night. Hotels will do laundry for you at hotel prices. Take a t-shirt to wear snorkeling so your back doesn't fry. Take a hat to keep your scalp from getting sun burned.

Take lots of sunscreen, film and batteries. You may find what you need there but it will cost at least double. We had to buy several camera batteries before we found 2 that were still good. Anything else that you have to have, take plenty with you.

Each hotel we stayed at provided beach towels.

Any questions, just e-mail me!

 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 10:03 AM
  #6
xxx
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Been there. And I rather go back to St. John. Much cheaper, easier to get to and we too had a hard time with humidity. Also we stayed at L'Ocean and I agree with you about the staff not being iterested in their guests. We are glad we went there but if we knew what Seychelle is about we could just simply rather go to St. John.
 
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Mar 13th, 2001, 05:43 PM
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Nospam
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So Paige you spent two weeks here and now you consider yourself an expert? Because you claim you know everything here are two for you. How wide is Praslin? What time the sun rises in June? There are too many things in your report about Seychelles that are not true. Or maybe this is how turists from America see Seychelles. Maybe some of us treat European differently because of people from your country who come here and tell us how we should act, speak, and think. I am sorry about being upset but you don't know anything about our country.
 
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Mar 14th, 2001, 12:57 AM
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Paige
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Hey Nospam, I didn't claim to be an expert on the Seychelles, or to know everything, nor did we go there and tell anyone how to act, speak, and think. We were tourists there for 2 weeks, that's it. When I was researching for our trip I had a hard time finding info, so my post was simply meant to help others in the same position.
What exactly is your problem with my post?
You say 'There are too many things in your report about Seychelles that are not true.' Like what? Considering I gave my opinion based on my experiences, I'd like to know what you're so upset about.
Finally, we loved the Seychelles. Maybe you misinterpreted my report or can't accept any negative comments.
 
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Mar 14th, 2001, 04:40 AM
  #9
Susan
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I thought your trip report was great, Paige! I'd love to go to the Seychelles someday.
 
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Mar 14th, 2001, 10:22 AM
  #10
KAREN
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DEAR PAIGE,

JUST WANTED TO SAY THANKS FOR TAKING THE TIME TO LET US KNOW ALL THE INFORMAION AND YOUR EXPERIENCE AT THE SEYCHELLES - I DO HAVE FOUND IT DIFFICULT TO GET ALOT OF INFO ON THEM AND FOUND YOUR REPORT TO BE VERY HELPFUL - THAT IS WHAT IS WONDERFUL ABOUT THIS FORUM IS PEOPLE LIKE YOU WHO TAKE THE TIME TO HELP OUT OTHER TRAVELERS. I TOO WHAT LIKE TO KNOW WHAT IS NOSPAM PROBLEM - EXCEPT FOR BEING A RUDE PERSON!!
 
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Mar 19th, 2001, 05:27 AM
  #11
MarySue
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Great report, Paige! Thanks for sharing it. I hope to get there someday.
 
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Mar 24th, 2001, 05:44 AM
  #12
Dave
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Paige - Thanks for the great report.
 
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