The Seychelles - Little gems in the Indian Ocean

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Forget the five-star hotels and don’t worry about pirates, who are further north. Instead, make the most of this extraordinary sailing area comprising 115 islands - only one of which, Eden Island (Victoria, Mahé), is man-made. The Seychelles archipelago, unlike so many others, is not just of coral origin. 40 islands form a small continent underpinned by a granite bedrock. Hence these incredible tangles of light-colored rock, carved out by erosion.

Your charter base: Mahé or Praslin

Our Moorings/Sunsail base is located in Victoria’s brand-new marina on Eden Island. It’s quite a distance from the center of the capital, but closer to the international airport (20-minute shuttle). Everything that you might need to stock up is just a short taxi ride away, and there are plenty of restaurants and small shops in the marina. You can also buy a few fishing lines. If you’re there on a Saturday, don’t miss the Victoria market for its atmosphere and, above all, its local produce (fish, vegetables and spices), which is much cheaper than in the shops.

The first thing that strikes the newcomer as they take possession of their multihull, especially if they come from a region gripped by the winter cold, is that here, just below the Equator, it’s very hot in the sun - especially as the humidity level is very high. With a north-westerly flow - see weather sidebar - the pontoons are somewhat ventilated. On the other hand, with a south- easterly monsoon (or if there is no wind), equatorial acclimatization is somewhat “imposed”, especially if you arrive in jeans with all your bags. In these conditions, it’s hard to turn off the air conditioning when you get on board... The second surprise is that there are a number of charter companies, but the fleets are small. It’s a far cry from the BVI. Dream Yacht Worldwide, a long-standing player in the area, has offices here, but most of the yachts are moored in Praslin, to the south of Baie Saint Anne. There is no other infrastructure for yachting, and maintenance facilities are very limited, which explains the lack of development of yacht charter here.
The skipper’s briefing is relatively simple: if you’re only staying for a week with a charter, you’ll concentrate on Mahé, the main island, and then head off towards Praslin, 25 miles to the north-east, and then La Digue and Curieuse. You are in a paradise of the most beautiful anchorages imaginable, which we will show you. Immediate options include the anchorages of Felicite, Mariane and Grande Sœur to the east. Another small island to the west awaits you too: Cousin. Cousine, however, is off-limits. Anchoring and/or disembarkation ashore are sometimes subject to a charge. For some islands, such as Curieuse, it is possible and even recommended to book and pay online, so it’s a good idea to have an internet connection on board. Old-school purists notwithstanding, you can also use the internet to keep track of the weather and any other events that might affect your ...

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