The island of Mahé in the Seychelles has some excellent sites for the practice of snorkeling. To really discover the different spots, the ideal is to rent a car to move freely, but it is also possible to travel around Mahé with bus lines like the Seychellois mode. Buses are frequent and ride you virtually everywhere on the island, but with the scenic routes it will be long. At the end of the post, a video let you see what we have seen on each of these snorkeling sites.
Snorkeling on the north of Mahe Island
The north of the island has some great snorkeling sites. In the far north, close to the beach of Beauvallon you can go to the beach of “Sunset Beach” Hotel. It is a five minute drive from Beauvallon, this is a small cove with small rocks on both sides that extend under the water with corals. You’ll find here an abundant and colorful marine life. The right side of the bay consists of rocky islets which are flush and the depth is about 3m. you can observe many butterfly fish, surgeon fish and parrot fish.
The sandy area that separates this side of the bay on the other is conducive to parades of eagle rays we also saw there small white tip sharks (less than one meter). The other side of the Bay begins with a zone in a restaurant on stilts, which is full of small fish like sergeant, demoiselles and silver moon. Once past this pack of excited and not shy fishes, you will fall on a beautiful coral reef to 3/4 meters deep with again beautiful angel fish, labrus and colorful oriental diagram.
A little further down on the west side of the island is the marine park of Ternay Bay. Beauvallon dive center goes there regularly, it is accessible by boat and the center “offers” snorkeling trip (rather expensive). A land access is possible through a former education center, but this one is private and a guard filter the input. It is possible to get there by late afternoon, as the guard finished early, so you can pass since there is no grid. The beach is sandy and a bit muddy due to the presence of Mangrove around the cove. You must therefore move away from the beach side to enjoy the submarine landscape. That said, even without putting your head under water, Ternay Bay beach is so beautiful that it would be a shame to miss it.
Returning by the road from Bay Ternay to Port Launay it is worth dwelling on small beaches along the road, as many have snorkeling sites that are worth visiting and are most of the time desert. The Port Launay Bay itself is interesting at the center of the bay in particular. The seabed on the sides of the bay consist mainly of algae, it is better to focus on the center of the bay, which is not very deep but provided corals with a depth of around 2 meters on average. Many angel fish, parrot fish, and demoiselles are waiting on seabed where visibility is sometimes disturbed by white sand suspensions when the bay is choppy.
Snorkeling spots on West Mahe
On the west side of the island several very good snorkeling sites are accessible. We loved Anse Soleil besides the beauty of the typical range of Seychelles beaches, it offers a wide range of rocks and corals on the width of the beach a few tens of meters from the shore. The left side of the beach of Anse Soleil in particular made us beautiful encounters with beautiful and really large parrot fish, various angel fish and rays. Numerous species are present around the islands that emerge slightly from the surface, in short this site is great for snorkeling.
Close to Anse Soleil, on the west coast you will find Petite Anse which again is a beautiful and large beach despite its name. This beach requires a little more demanding level of swimming because you have to cross small waves area in order to reach the coral reef, fins are mandatory because there is also some current depending on the tides. But once these small efforts done, seabeds are very beautiful, and we crossed several times sea turtles (you can see one in Petite Anse precisely on the video below).
Further down lies Anse Takamaka. Again you have to move away form the shore to see fish on this beach and the currents are frequent so it is wise to be well equipped (ins are mandatory) and trained to swim / snorkeling. I do not recommend this site with children, but if you are a good swimmer and equipped it looks nice and rich in stripes among others.
We did not have time to explore in detail the east coast of Mahé, we did a tour on the beach facing the mouse island, and if the beach is really beautiful (you’ll make here some really nice photos for sure), it has no interest of a snorkeling viewpoint. We neither have time to go to the Marine Park of Saint Anne, so we’ll have to return to Seychelles