Seychelles: Just visiting! Guest post Sophie from Ida and Ernest

As I am currently on Mahe getting ready for the arrival of our little boy bump I am handing over to Sophie to share a little about her two, very different trips to the Seychelles!

Sophie is a mum of two and an expat based in Singapore, she can be found writing at Idaandernest.com. Check out Ida & Ernest for destination guides from local parents, free travel themed printables and lots of tips, tricks and inspiration for travelling as a family.

Over to you Sophie!!

I’ve always felt the tourist tagline for The Seychelles Islands should be ‘There’s something about the Seychelles!’.

I used to work for a Gulf based airline so we were frequently flying in and out of Male, the capital. Even though the flight departed at an ungodly 3am it was a brilliant flight to work. En route you had an airplane full of happy holiday-makers on a trip of a lifetime. Honeymoons, birthdays, anniversaries – all celebrated on these beautiful, tropical islands. There was more champagne consumed per passenger per hour in the air than any of the other destinations I worked. And the return flights were full of tanned and relaxed passengers who had all had an amazing trip and really didn’t want to go home!

As crew, we got to fly in, do a quick turn around, reload and then jet off again. We saw paradise from above and it was always bittersweet.
Paradise from above.  Seychelles

And so one year, I bit the bullet and booked a flight to Mahe for my mum and I… and then spent an awful lot of time googling ‘Seychelles on a budget’! Wow, even with an airline discount those big resort hotels sure know how to charge. So we ended up going ‘boutique’. It’s not kid friendly, it doesn’t have a pool, there are no gyms, buffets or organized activities …. But if you want to SEE some of the Seychelles and want a friendly, beautiful and relatively reasonable place to stay, then I couldn’t recommend the Lazare Picault Hotel enough.

It’s situated on the ‘so gorgeous someone must have photo-shopped it’ Baie Lazare and the views are breathtaking! There is a bus stop right by the hotel and we made the most of exploring the island by the slight roller-coaster ride of the Seychellian public transport system. The island was everything I had hoped from the stories I had heard from the many passengers I had served. Mum went snorkeling for the first time and says I have now spoilt it for her forever as she will never see anything better than the marine life at the Sainte Anne Marine National Park. We scared ourselves silly over the fruit bats in the National Botanic Gardens and spent far too much on coco de mer themed souvenirs in Victoria.
Just visiting! guest post by Sophie from ida and Ernest
It didn’t take much convincing to persuade my husband we should do a trip with our daughter a while later. And so with a lot more luggage, using a hire car instead of buses and staying in a big resort with all of the aforementioned amenities we had the most wonderful week that was totally different to my ‘girls trip’. Equally fun but with a few more pauses for naps! I have written more about our family trip to the Seychelles if you want to check it out!

I couldn’t recommend the Seychelles highly enough as a holiday for all ages. I can only wonder what it’s like to live in paradise permanently? Chantelle?!

In case you were curious the current official tourist slogan for the Seychelles is, ‘The Seychelles Islands, another world!’. And what an amazing one.

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A huge thanks to Sophie for guest posting on my blog! I love that you’ve had two such different experiences here, and that you had such a great time here with your family! Although the Seychelles is definitely famous for being a honeymoon destination I truly think it makes a fantastic destination for traveling with kids!! I’ve written a few tips about traveling to the Seychelles with babies and toddlers if you want to check that out!

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A perfect afternoon!

With Mark having finished work and being on major countdown to going to Mahe and then the arrival of the baby, we wanted to make sure we got in lots of wonderful family time before everything got crazy!

We’ve had lots of time at the beach, swimming in the  ocean, playing in the garden and generally just spending time together.  It has really been lovely!

My favorite afternoon so far though has been when we went for lunch at a gorgeous hotel and then had some pool time!  As cheesy at it is it really was a perfect afternoon!

Having access to lovely hotels is definitely a HUGE perk of expat life in Seychelles.  We have pools we go to often and get a drink and go for a swim but sometimes it’s nice to go for lunch and make a whole afternoon of it!

We got Arthur dressed up in a cute little shirt and off we went!

A perfect afternoon expat life Praslin Seychelles
We had lunch at the pool bar and it was delicious!

A perfect afternoon lunch at a hotel pool Praslin Seychelles

I’m not really one for taking pictures so there aren’t any, you’ll just have to take my word on that one!  Arthur did lots of exploring while we ordered and waited for our food to arrive.  Mark kept him company while I sat back and relaxed!

After lunch we found a spot by the pool and hung out there!  This pool is built around rocks in three layers, it’s gorgeous.
A perfect afternoon expat life Praslin Seychelles
Last time we went Arthur was really interested in the waterfall area and we spent lots of time looking at it.
This time around, looking wasn’t enough and he had to get involved!!
I think that the rocks there are actually artificial they are not smooth at all.  I guess this is to keep people from wanting to sit or stand on it as they are quite prickly (ooops Arthur ignored that!), or to make sure they aren’t slippery if you do…let’s go with that!
A Perfect afternoon.  Expat life Praslin Seychelles
A perfect afternoon!  Expat life Praslin Seychelles
A perfect afternoon Praslin Seychelles

We even got five minutes to sit down, mmm maybe not quite 5 minutes but it was nice while it lasted!!
A perfect afternoon!  Praslin Seychelles

This was one of those afternoons where everything just seemed amazing! Arthur was in a great mood, he was so well behaved! We had a yummy lunch, spent some lovely time together, it felt like we were on holiday!
So nice to have a little bit of calm before the storm, all be it that the storm will come in the form of a teeny tiny baby boy!!

Mummy and Monkeys
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Sandcastles {The Ordinary Moments 15} #3

This weekend, as we often do, we took a trip to the beach. Just a couple of hours sat under a tree in the shade. Enjoying watching people go by and the waves crashing.

It wasn’t a day that Arthur could swim really, so instead we played in the sand.

We built sandcastles.
Well I say we built sandcastles. What I mean is Mark built sandcastles, Arthur took unbelievable delight in smashing them down and demanding more, and I sat there laughing at them both!!

Sandcastles Anse Lazio

Sandcastles Anse Lazio

Sandcastles Anse Lazio

Sandcastles Anse Lazio

This was the first time Arthur has shown such an interest in sandcastles (well, at least the destruction of them!). He’s smashed a couple before but this time he was literally squealing with delight about it! I think he would have had Mark build sandcastles for the rest of the day if he could!!

To me, playing in the sand and building sandcastles is one of the best childhood memories for a kid! Such simple, yet endless fun!!

The beach we were at is called Anse Lazio, it’s actually the furthest beach for us to drive to on our island (takes about 30 mins) but I love the fact that you can sit under the shade there at any time of day. It makes it perfect for Arthur to run around without the worry of him burning!

This is how our ‘Seychelles time’ looks with an 18 month old! I know it’s super cheesy, but, it was one of those ‘ordinary’ moments that was exactly how I dreamed our life would be as expat parents!
 

 

 

 

Linking up with Katie for the Ordinary Moments
The OrdinaryMoments

 

 

 

 

 

 

Joining Jamie for Magic Moments

 

 

 

 

 

Country Kids by Fiona at Coombe Mill
Country Kids from Coombe Mill Family Farm Holidays Cornwall

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Diving (Seychelles Time)

Living somewhere where you can go diving regularly is amazing we are really lucky to have that, now Arthur is a little older it’s something I’ll be able to take advantage of again!

When you go diving here you consistently get to see really pretty reef fish, sharks, turtles, and rays!


Diving Seychelles reef shark

This year for my birthday my present from Mark was my PADI advanced open water dive course.  I had it as an early present as my Mum wanted to do hers too so we got to do lots of diving together!  It was my first time getting to dive with Mum and Dad, it’s so cool that I got to do that with them!

The course was made up of 5 dives:

  • Night dive
  • Deep dive
  • Nitrox dive
  • Underwater Navigator
  • Fish Identification

 

The Night dive was pretty intense.  I had never really considered doing this before, it is something that is totally outside my comfort zone.  I get a little nervous just walking around in the dark let alone being in the water at night!  It was a really eerie experience, this sounds cheesy but it really felt alien!  The visibility was good but you could only properly see what your torch was shining on.  It was just myself, my Mum & Dad and our instructor out there.  I don’t mind admitting that I was pretty terrified the whole way around, I found it hard to relax into it!  I was so proud of myself though and on reflection I think its something I will make myself do again as it was amazing (once I take the fear thing out of it!).  The best part was at the end we turned our torches off and you could see the bioluminescence from the plankton (when you move around it all lights up like fireflies its really pretty!)

For the Deep dive we had to go to 30m (prior to taking this course the maximum we were allowed to go was 18m so quite a big difference).  From around 30m you start to feel the effects of Nitrogen Narcosis.  This basically feels like your a bit drunk!!  We had to do a little test on the boat on the way out: letters were all scrambled and we had to order them, this was timed.  We then had to do it at 30m to see if we were effected by Nitrogen Narcosis.  I was affected the most, although that doesn’t surprise me, I’m a big lightweight when drinking so why would any thing else be different!!!

The Nitrox dive was a regular dive but breathing air with a higher Oxygen level then usual….it didn’t feel any differen.

Underwater Navigator involved using a compass and basically swimming in a square underwater.  I was surprisingly alright at this.  I’m terrible with directions of any sort but it was not so bad!

Diving Seychelles PADI advanced course

Sure I know how to use a compass!!!

The best dive we had was for our fish identification course.  We got to go to a dive site I had not been to before called Marianne it is the most beautiful place!  Sooooooooo many fish but even aside from that just the whole area is amazing, so much to see!

Diving Seychelles Diving Seychelles

Diving Seychelles

Me & Dad- underwater selfies 🙂

Diving Seychelles

Me and Mum

 

Thats it for now!  Hope you enjoyed some Seychelles Time!  Thanks for stopping by!

Ohh, quick thanks to my Dad for taking all these pictures 🙂 xx

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Boat Trips {Seychelles Time}

This is the first ‘Seychelles Time’ post.  I’m going to start with the ultimate!  We have been lucky enough to get to go on some amazing boats and have had opportunities to do some fantastic boat trips.

We have yet to take Arthur on a boat trip but I imagine it won’t be too long!

Going on a boat trip is definitely one of the best ways to explore some of the beautiful little islands in the Seychelles, Praslin in particular has some amazing islands near by.  While you are there you can go snorkelling and get on to the islands to explore and check out the wildlife.

The islands of choice for the boat charter companies seem to be Coco, Félicitié, and the sister islands (Grande Soeur and Petite Soeur).

Félicité is a private island where some mega luxury apartments were being built but the project ran out of money and it was then abandoned leaving it looking a little bit like a James Bond villain’s lair!  Apparently, the project has started again now, so if you’ve got a spare few million pounds and you’re in the market for a place on a tropical island it might be your spot!!  As its private you can’t actually get onto the island (apart from the beach as all beaches in Seychelles are public property) but there is some AMAZING snorkelling to be had there!

Coco island was actually used in a Carling beer tv advert.  The one where the crab is running on a treadmill to keep the fridge cool!?  This is a beautiful island to explore and you will often have it to yourselves when you visit!!

 

Here are some pictures of the islands, and the fun things you find on these trips and of course some obligatory photos of us on these trips, just so you know we really have done them!!!

 I hope you enjoy some Seychelles Time

Boat trips Seychelles

Boat Trips Seychelles Grand Soeur island

Boat Trips Seychelles Coco Island

Boat Trips Seychelles

Boat Trips Seychelles snorkelling

Boat Trips Seychelles Hawksbill Turtle

Boat Trips Seychelles Snorkelling Felicite island

Boat Trips Fruit bat on Coco Island Seychelles

 

 

The best boat trips end with a beautiful sunset 🙂

Boat Trip sunset Seychelles

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Seychelles Time

Not so long ago I wrote a post about an average day for me. It led me on to wanting to write down the things we do outside of our daily routine. These things me and Mark call ‘Seychelles Time’. It could be anything from going to the beach, going for a walk, swimming, diving, lunch, dinner. Anything where we are taking advantage of the fact we live in the Seychelles.

It is surprisingly easy to forget that we live in a beautiful place and daily life can often get in the way of that, even here! We make sure that at least one day a week, although preferably more depending on how busy things are for Mark at work, we take some Seychelles Time.

I thought I would do these as kind of a mini series of posts!

So watch this space for updates and take a while to enjoy some ‘Seychelles Time’ with us!

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Chantelle
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