With what feels like an endless amount of accessible coastline on the island, there is no shortage of stunning beaches to visit during your time in Mahé. White sand and crystal blue water surround the island, making the question of which beaches are the best a tough one.
The good news is that this means there are not really any bad choices. However, each beach has something different to offer. Whether you want beautiful views, great snorkeling, water sports, privacy, or safe swimming, there is a beach that will fit your needs.
Before giving you our list of the best beaches, here are a few useful generalizations about the beaches in Mahé:
- By law, all of the beaches in Seychelles are public property. So you are welcome to enjoy any beach you come across.
- If you rent a car, parking at the various beaches is easy. They all have parking lots or available street parking. Often the parking lots will be called “Parkplatz” on google maps.
- The beaches on the south end of the island are generally the most beautiful but further removed from most amenities such as restaurants and shops so go prepared.
- Most of the beaches do not have food or drinks available on the beach itself. If you aren’t going to one of the most popular ones, you should plan to eat elsewhere or bring some food and drinks. At more popular beaches, keep an eye out for locals selling fresh coconuts to drink (or coconut with rum)!
- Beau Vallon is the most popular and touristy and will have the most to offer outside of simply enjoying the beach itself.
- Drinking alcohol on the beach is perfectly fine.
- There is not really a definitive answer to which beaches have rough or calm waters and are therefore easier for swimming. This depends on the time of year and monsoon season. We visited in late December through early January, and it was the northwest monsoon during that time.
Let’s get started on our list of beaches!
Anse Major was my favorite overall beach experience. It is made up of a set of two small beaches that you can walk between. The only way to access the beach is to either hike there or take a boat.
The hike is not too challenging and takes around 45 minutes each way if you drive past the trailhead to the end of the paved road. The scenery during the hike is breathtaking, and you reach a viewpoint that allows for a spectacular, birds-eye view of Anse Major beach from a distance.
Both beaches are absolutely gorgeous, but the fact that they are small means they can get a bit crowded at times, particularly with the boats dropping and picking up at times. The waves can be somewhat rough, but it is still a great spot for swimming as long as you keep an eye out for the boats that are coming and going.
Although it can be crowded at times, you may be able to have it all to yourself if you wait until the end of the day and are willing to hike out a bit in the dark. The hike is not difficult so you can easily do this if you go prepared with a headlamp. We did this and had both beaches completely to ourselves for about an hour. It was magical.
Anse Royale is made up of two neighboring beaches right off of the side of the road. Despite being next to the road, this beach is undeniably gorgeous.
The smaller beach is bordered by massive boulders and looks out onto a small, rocky island just a short distance off the shore. This makes for absolutely stunning photographs at this end of the beach. It is, without question, what I would call the “most instagrammable” beach.
The water remains pretty shallow for a distance off the shore, making this an easy and popular spot for snorkeling. You can also easily swim to the nearby island given that you can walk about half of the distance. The views looking out at the beach from the island are spectacular.
Another bonus of this beach is that it’s very close to the Takamaka distillery, making it super convenient to combine a tasting and a beach day in this area.
Parking is along the side of the road and very easy to spot once you arrive.
Petite Anse is absolutely breathtaking. While all of the beaches in Seychelles are beautiful, the beauty of this beach truly stands apart from the other beaches. With massive, towering cliffs on one end of the beach and lush, green hills bordering the other end, the views are nothing short of stunning.
This beach has lovely, soft sand and is also great for swimming and snorkeling. We were even able to see big, beautiful fish through the crystal clear water without any snorkel gear.
To get to the beach, you have to park at Four Seasons hotel. It is a free, public beach but crossing hotel property is the only way to access it. Simply check in at the outside gate and walk about 10 minutes downhill to get to the beach.
Remember, you’ll have to walk back up the hill when you leave, of course. No reservation or entry fee required.
Anse Intendance is also absolutely gorgeous and has a long, sandy beach. Be careful, as many people warned that currents can be strong at this beach. That being said, the current was fine for us, and the beach proved to be a great spot for swimming while we were there. Another plus is that this beach was not very crowded when we visited.
The sunset was epic from this side of the island, with fiery red shades lighting up the evening sky. Unlike most other beaches in Seychelles, this beach has an adorable little beach bar with reasonable prices. So grab a drink before the sun sets and enjoy!
There is a free parking lot next to the beach. Simply follow google maps to Intendance public parking and it’ll take you straight there. You may have to go down what feels like an unfinished road, but it’s easily drivable in a compact car.
Beau Vallon is easily the most popular and most touristy of all of the beaches. And for good reason. Beau Vallon is located where most of the tourist lodging can be found, making it very easily accessible for most visitors. And don’t worry, there will still be lots of locals there!
It’s a big, beautiful beach that is great for lounging and swimming. Compared to most other beaches, it has far more bars, restaurants and other amenities along the beach and in close proximity. It is also where you will find most excursions like scuba diving or riding jet skis.
There are a couple of parking lots nearby that are free and easily accessible if you simply search for “parkplatz” in google maps.
Port Launay was recommended to us by a few different locals and will likely be frequented by locals when you visit. The lush, green hills surrounding both sides of the beach form a bay, which results in very calm waters that make for great swimming.
When we visited, the beach was decently crowded, with lots of boats anchoring in the area. Although the water is great for swimming, you will want to beware of boat traffic.
There is a small parking lot that is basically on the beach. It is easily accessible from the street. You will likely find some locals hanging by their cars, listening to music, and drinking while enjoying the beach.
Leave a Reply