Capital | Victoria
Population | 80,469
Area | 455 SQ KM
Official Language | English, French, Creole
Currency | Rupee (SCR)
Time Zone | UTC +4
Best Time to Visit | March to May and September to November
Connecting with the Culture | Lazing on some of the most beautiful beaches on the planet. Exploring the secluded islands for sensational snorkeling, diving and marine life. Meandering through the wild and wonderful vegetation of Praslin’s Valleé de Mai. Relaxing on La Digue—renowned for its laid-back ambience, idyllic beaches and friendly folk. Visiting Aldabra, one of the world’s largest coral atolls and the original habitat of the giant land tortoise. Hunting for hidden pirate treasure on the eerie and mystical large granite island of Sillhouette.
Read | Aldabra Alone by Tony Beamish, which looks at life among the giant tortoises during an expedition to the Aldabra group.
Listen | to Creole pop and folk musician Patrick Victor.
Watch | Jacques Cousteau’s documentary The Silent World, much of which was shot on Assumption Island.
Eat | carri coco (a mild meat or fish curry with coconut cream) and nougat (a sweet, sticky coconut pudding) for dessert.
Drink | the local lager, Seybrew, or try a fresh fruit juice.
In a Word | Bonzour. Comman sava? (‘Good morning. How are you?’ in local language)
Characteristics | Palm-fringed beaches; land tortoises; coral atolls; upmarket resorts; diving enthusiast.
Surprises | Giant tortoises are endemic to only two regions in the world: Seychelles and the Galápagos Islands; the famously erotic nut of the coco de mer palm grows only on the female tree and can weigh up to 20kg.
NEWS ABOUT THE SEYCHELLES:
Cruise ship fire breaks out off Seychelles islands
(UPDATE, 2.28.12) - Passengers of the Costa Allegra, stranded in the Indian Ocean on Monday after a fire swept through the engine room & left the cruise ship without power, will be stuck on board for another few days. The ship is being towed to the main island in the Seychelles but isn't expected to arrive until Thursday morning local time. Costa Cruises said in a statement Tuesday that none of the 636 passengers, including 8 Americans, & 413 crew members aboard the ship had been injured in the fire or its aftermath. This is the 2nd disaster for Costa Cruises in the last 6 weeks. The Allegra's sister ship, the Costa Concordia, ran aground near the Italian island of Giglio on Jan. 13, leaving 25 people dead & 7 missing. (Read More at the LATIMES)