The second island we visited after La Digue was Praslin. Here we spent 4 nights as well, but during 2 of the days we didn’t do pretty much anything because it was raining.
Even though we “lost’ 2 days, I think that we still managed to see pretty much everything that there is to see on Praslin. The island is not that big and if you have a car, you can move around quickly and visit many things in a short period of time.
Praslin is the second largest island in the Seychelles and also home to the rare tropical palm Coco de Mer – found only here! We will talk more about this a bit later.
In this guide I will share with you our full Praslin itinerary – the things we did, the places we visited, as well as personal recommendations.
How to get to Praslin
The only international airport in the Seychelles is located on the main and biggest island – Mahe. From there, you have two means of transportation to choose from – either by a small plane or by a ferry.
Flying is usually about double the price of the ferry, but it is also quicker. We took the ferry on our way there and then hopped on a flight on the way back, so I can speak about both experiences. If you get seasick easily, I certainly recommend booking a flight. Let me just say that I was praying we would reach land asap while on the ferry – this is how sick I was.
You can check out the prices and book a ferry from here, but be sure to do it at least 48 hours in advance. The trip takes 1h 15 min and there are regular trips on a daily basis. The price is usually around 50-60 euros.
Use this link to check out the flight options as well as prices. The flights are operated by Air Seychelles and the trip between Mahe and Praslin takes around 30 minutes (you’d also need to be at the airport 30 minutes before the flight). The prices are usually around 80-100 euros, but they can vary, so I recommend booking in advance. The planes are quite small and there are around 10 passengers per flight, which makes them more exciting (you can feel the turbulence, take off and landing much harsher!). Oh, and the views from up there are just spectacular…
Getting around Praslin
The moment we arrived at Praslin, we hired a car directly. (We actually had a car hire arranged for us from our hosts at La Digue, where we stayed previously.) The car cost us around 35-40 euros/day and we were able to drive everywhere with it, which made things so much easier.
Keep in mind that the roads are steep and narrow. Another challenge for most people is the fact that here you need to drive on the left side of the road. Other than that, getting around Praslin is quite easy as the island isn’t too big and there are only 2 main roads.
Things to do in Praslin
See where the Coco de Mer grows
Coco de Mer is a palm tree, unique to the Seychelles Islands only. An interesting fact is that the nut of coco de mer is the largest nut and the largest seed in the world! It is indeed a nut, however it isn’t edible, and it is also a seed – when it falls to the ground, it plants itself and this is how a new palm grows.
Coco de Mer grows up to 35 metres tall and its leaves feel like plastic. They are so big that the could serve you as an umbrella during the rainy days.
It takes around 30+ years for a coco de mer palm to reach its full size and around 25 years to grow fruits. It is possible to buy the nut of coco de mer, but only from a licensed seller- the prices start at €300!
Vallee de Mai Nature Reserve
Vallee de Mai is a nature park on Praslin, and it was also added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites. The park is the habitat of the endemic coco-de-mer, which is a unique palm for the Seychelles islands, more specifically for Praslin.
Vallee de Mai is the more popular nature reserve on Praslin, hence it attracts bigger crowds. The entrance fee here is €25/person and you need to pay extra if you want to have a guide with you.
After comparing Vallee de Mai and Fond Ferdinand, we decided to visit the second place, where you can also see the beautiful coco de mer!
Fond Ferdinand is a nature reserve on Praslin where visitors can also learn more about the unique coco de mer, but for a much cheaper price!
The entrance costs around €9/person and a guide is included! You need to check the tours beforehand so you get there on time, but other than that, I think that Fond Ferdinand offers better value for money.
We had a lovely local guide, who told us a lot of information about coco de mer and the reserve as a whole. A great bonus of Fond Ferdinand is that you can climb up to a beautiful viewpoint (the trail just happens to go through the reserve). We wanted to climb to the top, but the ground was wet from the rain, and our guide advised us not to do it, as it is too slippery and dangerous. However, if you get the chance to do it – just do it!
Beaches in Praslin
If you’ve ever come across a list of the “most beautiful beaches in the world”, you would’ve surely seen Anse Lazio on there. This is because this beach is often classified as one of the best worldwide.
When I think of Anse Lazio, I remember the long sandy beach, beautiful granite formations and crystal-clear water. At the far right end of the beach you will find a hung swing – perfect photo location, if you ask me!
Keep in mind that Anse Lazio is quite popular and it can get really busy. We visited the Seychelles right after they opened for tourism after 1 year of closed borders, so there were almost no tourists yet, but under normal circumstances aim to arrive early if you want to avoid crowds.
Anse Lazio is great for snorkeling as there is good visibility, so don’t forget your snorkeling gear. However, the water gets deep quite quickly – keep in mind if you’re visiting with kids!
Cote d’Or is another extremely long and beautiful beach in Praslin. It is so long that it passes by numerous accommodation properties, so it is possible that you get to have access to Cote d’Or right in front of your door.
Besides swimming and snorkelling in the shallow water, you can enjoy a wide variety of other activities, such as surfing, windsurfing, scuba diving, fishing, and sailing, with plenty of rentals and excursions available. It is possible that you get approached by local vendors to go on a boat tour with them, however, I do recommend booking with a licensed tour operator.
Cote d’Or is one of the few beaches in the Seychelles that is equally suitable for both families and couples – it has safe, shallow waters, perfect for children, and is big enough for couples to find a quiet spot and enjoy each other’s company.
This is one of the more “secluded” beaches as it is a bit more challenging to get to. Anse Georgette is located in front of Hotel Constance Lemuria and you can only reach it by passing through the hotel. Here comes the first “hurdle” – you need to register as a visitor at least one day in advance, but it would be best if you did it a week in advance.
Once you have contacted the hotel and let them know you’ll be coming, you’re all set! Just be aware that you need to walk about 2km through the jungle, which is the second “hurdle”. However, if you manage to contact them on time and you don’t mind the walk, you’ll be good to go.
Sadly, we didn’t manage to organise our visit in time, so I have no personal impressions from Anse Georgette. Well, from what I’ve heard and read, it is definitely worth it to go through all this trouble and visit it.
Day trips from Praslin
Curieuse Island is close to the north coast of Praslin and is one of the most popular day-trip destinations from here. Apart from Praslin, Curieuse is the other island where the unique coco de mer palms grow naturally.
In order to protect the native wildlife, in 1979, Curieuse and its surrounding waters were declared as Curieuse Marine National Park. Between 1978 and 1982, a conservation project relocated some Aldabra giant tortoises from Aldabra to Curieuse. Today, the island is home to more than 300 Aldabra giant tortoises, which you will surely come across upon visiting the Seychelles.
You can go to Curieuse island by booking one of the many day excursions, offered by local companies.
Along with Mahe and Praslin, La Digue is the third most-visited island in the Seychelles. It is a very small one, but it is also a favourite of many (us included).
La Digue can easily be reached by ferry, which takes only 15 minutes to get there. I 100% recommend visiting this small paradise, even if it’s just for a day trip. The beaches here are the most beautiful I’ve ever seen, and you can come across the giant tortoises which roam around freely.
What’s interesting about La Digue is the fact that there are almost no cars on the island and all tourists get around by bike – this is how small the island is!
Read all of my tips and things you can do in La Digue here.
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