The Seychelles are 115 islands, surrounded by the Indian Ocean. Separated from Africa 90 million years ago, and isolated against predators, its species have taken fascinating evolutionary paths. The Seychelles is a biodiversity hotspot, especially if you look beneath the waves. More than 1,000 species of fish have been recorded, and once damaged corals show significant signs of recovery. Look out for marine turtle, seabirds, and 26 species of crab!
The Seychelles has all manner of curious creatures on land - not least the Aldabra giant tortoise - but the wildlife beneath the waves is just as spectacular, if not more so. If you plan to dive or snorkel, you will be able to appreciate the full panorama of sea creatures, but even from the deck of a sailing boat or walking along the beach there are plenty of opportunities to view the Seychelles’ rich marine life. Getting wet is therefore strictly optional but you have to agree… the Indian Ocean does look VERY enticing.
The highest concentration and variety of marine life is probably in the Sainte Anne Marine National Park, just offshore from the Seychelles’ capital, Victoria, and so very easily accessible. This marine park encompasses eight small islands and the waters in between them, and its coral gardens are absolutely magnificent. It also has one of the largest seagrass meadows in the Seychelles. Here, the turquoise waters are crystal clear, so you can see right down to the depths. Look out for reef shark and colourful tropical fish (including clownfish), sea turtle and octopus, starfish, crab, and sea urchin. These islands are renowned for having some of the very best diving in the world.
There is an equally wide choice of opportunities for snorkelling. For this, we recommend taking a boat out from your resort to an uninhabited island, and then snorkelling in perfect peace, far away from anyone else, in the shallow waters around the coast. Denis Private Island is particularly convenient because it has a great house reef: you don’t have to go far at all! If you stay on Denis Private Island during the turtle nesting season (May-September for green turtle; October-February for hawksbill turtle), you can join the rangers to tally the number of eggs laid on the beach overnight, enhancing your marine life experience and contributing positively to conservation work.