Touring the island of Mahe in the Seychelles

While we were in the Seychelles we did a driving tour around the island of Mahe.  The green line on the map below shows the route that we took starting and ending from the Savoy in Beau Vallon.  We stopped frequently to take photos, and check out the beaches.  We also stopped at Surfer’s Beach restaurant for lunch which I recommend, the food was great.  We then continued on to Eden island and the capital city of Victoria before continuing back to the Savoy.  We played tourist for about 6 hours.  These are some of the photos that I took of the island and the Indian Ocean.  The photos are in order starting with the beach in Beau Vallon.

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Thanks to Expert Africa for the map

Beau Vallon

Morne Seychellois National Park

The first part of the drive was through the Morne Seychellois National Park, but most of my pictures are of the ocean views from the part.  Eden Island can be seen in two of the photos below.

 Grand Anse

The pictures were all taken on the south west side of the island, in the Grand Anse region.  Therese Island can be seen in the distance.

Barbarons Beach in Grand Anse

This was a tiny little beach but it was one of my favourite on the island.  It was sheltered by the little peninsula so the water was very calm close to the beach.

Anse Boileau to Anse a la Mouche

These images were all taken from Anse Boileau to Anse a la Mouche.

 

 Anse Baleine

At this point in our little road trip around the island we stopped for lunch at Surfer’s Beach restaurant which is right on the beach at Anse Baleine.  The restaurant is partially sheltered from the wind by large palm trees lining the beach, but it was still quite windy.  The food was excellent, it was a great spot to stop for a bite.

Anse Royale

These pictures are all from the Anse Royale area on the south East side of the island of Mahe.

 Eden Island

Eden Island has the only mall in the Seychelles, and is home to a few restaurants.  It also has a marina complete with fancy yachts.

 

Eden Island
Eden Island

Victoria

The capital of the Seychelle islands is Victoria.  It is a little city with one set of traffic lights.

Anse Nord D’Est

The last leg of our drive was the north east end of the island.

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Anse Nord D’Est

 

All photographs are (c) Sarah Patterson 2014.

Beau Vallon, Mahe, Seychelles

View from the Airport
View from the Airport

Welcome to Beau Vallon, Mahe, Seychelles

We got off the plane at 6:45am after 33 or so hours of travel and an eleven hour time change to winter at the equator.  Hot sticky warm weather.  After 2 days of travel I was missing fresh air, between planes and airports we had not been outside for days.

Driving

After a nervous 30 minutes or so waiting for the luggage to arrive we headed to the car rental to pick up the skinniest SUV I have ever seen a Daihatsu Terios.  In the Seychelles they drive on the left side of the road, which would be a challenge without the sleep deprivation we just endured.  So off we go with a map without street names, but Anthony from Hertz assured us if we just turn left at the lights (the only set on the island) we would be fine.  I don’t know if it was the lack of sleep or the lack of signage but we struggled to find the hotel.  Normally I am a great co-pilot but that is because I depend on both maps and streets to be named and marked, this wasn’t the case in the Seychelles.  All I can say is the ride to the hotel was scary.  The roads are narrow, winding, hilly, lacking sidewalks, curbs and there were people everywhere.  Bus stops were in the middle of the road, and cars parked where ever.   The roads just drop off down a cliff, or into a deep gutter at the edge of the lane.  There were dogs, and even people sleeping on the side of the road.  It is interesting though to get immersed in the driving culture of another country, there were people in the back of trucks, moms with babes in arms in the front seat, and children piled into the backseat all major no no’s in Canada, but the norm there.

 

Coral Strand Hotel

So when we finally found the Coral Strand Hotel after stopping for directions more than once, I was relieved.  I was even happier when they had a room ready for us at 8:30am when check in was stated as 2:00pm.  What I wasn’t prepared for was the pool being closed and the hotel being under construction.  When we got the room we overlooked the parking lot, and mountains, not the worst view but not the best either.  We then headed for our third breakfast in a row.  We had breakfast as the meal on the last 2 flights we took so why not go for a trifecta.  Breakfast was great but the view was better.

 

The Pool

After a nap we headed to the pool at The Savoy and it was 100 times better than what would have been the pool at our hotel, SCORE.

The Food

We learned something very quickly about the cost of living on the island, food is expensive.  We live on an island in Canada and food is typically more expensive here than the rest of the country but food in the Seychelles is more expensive than anywhere I have ever been.  Dinner was typically costing $90.00 Canadian for two entrées and two drinks, no appies, no desert, no coffee.  But the quality of food was excellent in every place we ate and you could just tell that the cooks had pride in what they prepared.

The Boat House Restaurant
The Boat House Restaurant

 

 

 

 

 

The Beach

Most days were not complete without a walk on the beach.  This was the beach at Beau Vallon the area that we were staying in.

 

The Spa

No vacation is complete without a trip to the spa, and I must say that I was spoiled rotten at the Spa at the Savoy.  The resort had only been opened for a couple of months and were running some great discounts at the spa.  I have the most amazing treatments with Zuluai (the therapist).  I have had spa visits all over the globe but the massage I had at the Savoy spa was the best of my life, it was worth the 19 hours of flying.  Accidentally I got locked in the spa with another guest who happened to be staying at the Coral Strand, we trash talked the Coral Strand for a little bit while we waited for someone with a key to let us out.  We learned that we both had husbands working on the island, so we became fast friends and hung out by the pool a couple of days.  Thanks Des for keeping me company.

 

The Savoy

So after the first night at the Coral Stand a couple moved into the adjoining room next door.   I could hear the people in the adjoining room breathing, no jokes.  We could also see the lights in their room on all sides of the door and the crack in the door itself.  The people in the other room were incredibly respectful, because obviously they could hear us too, BUT I still didn’t want to hear them.  So after a couple of nights of sleeping with ear plugs we moved over to the Savoy.  The Coral Strand and the Savoy are owned by the same person so it wasn’t very difficult.  The Savoy was heaven.  At only 2 months old everything was new and pristine, and quiet, so very very quiet.

 

The Doctor

Who doesn’t want to go to the Doctor while in a strange country?  It seems that seeing a medical professional was in the cards for me while in the Seychelles.  After a bit of a discussion with the front desk about my possible options I decided to walk over to the pharmacy to try to get another round of antibiotics.  Amazingly enough I walked in with my the antibiotic prescription I just finished which didn’t work, and walked out minutes later with a new one.  Now for the doctors out there, please don’t freak out.  After 5 days of antibiotics I still had all the symptoms of the initial infection and I used the same judgement that led me to the Doctor in Canada.  I know that antibiotics are highly over used, but there was no part of me that was going to suffer through a bladder infection on a 33 hour return trip.  The first world dweller in me Googled the name of the antibiotic they gave me before I took them just in case.

 

Playing Tourist

Here was the best part of the trip.  My husband was working almost the entire trip but he did manage to take a day off and play tourist with me.  I will post about our tour around the island soon.  Below is a little taste of what is to come.

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Living a spoiled life in the Seychelles

IMG_20140804_140449I have landed in paradise and I am living a spoiled life.  My day goes something like this, breakfast with my husband before he goes to work then a walk on the beach, a trip to the gym, lie in the sun by the pool reading a book, swim, nap, dinner, bed.  I have managed to fit in time for a couple of spa treatments and a trip to the shops.  I can now imagine what it can feel like to be a house wife with no kids who follows their husband around the globe.  Maybe after a while it gets boring, but in the week I have it’s not going to happen.

It’s nice to have someone cook, clean, do laundry, bring bedtime sweets, and put slippers beside my bed every night.  I fear that there will be a culture shock when I get home and those chores once again belong to me. I am getting spoiled and I love it.

My life is hectic with 2 little kids, a full-time job, my desire to make things constantly and the general demands of life.  I am not complaining I chose all of those things, but it really nice to take a break and just think and reflect on life.  I am relaxed and on my way to becoming recharged.

More on the Seychelles in the coming days, until then keep relaxing and recharging.

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YYJ-SEA-DXB-SEZ

This post is a little different from most of my blog posts.  I didn’t make anything because I am on VACATION.  The airports that I travelled through are above and might not be familiar to many, at least those of us in North America.  We started our journey in Victoria British Columbia Canada and landed in Victoria Mahe Seychelles.  We a left on a Thursday afternoon and arrived on Saturday morning.  The night before we left I was freaking out a little bit because I couldn’t book us seats on the 14 hour flight to Dubai from Seattle, the flight appeared to be full.  Even though my husband and I booked through the same travel agent we were not on the same reservation, and don’t have the same last name, so I feared that I would be stuck in the middle of a four without my husband (I know first world worries).  In addition to being worried about being separated I found out less than 24 hours before I flew that I had a bladder infection (sorry too much information) but I was really worried about not being on an aisle and feeling crappy for 14 hours.  When we checked into our first flight to Seattle the agent couldn’t give us boarding passes for the rest of our journey which didn’t really surprise me, she said we would be assigned seats and pick up the boarding passes at the gate.  I knew there was no way we would be together because the flight was overbooked.  On arrival in Seattle we picked up our bags, went through customs and headed directly to the check in counter because I figured that we would have much better luck hours before the flight getting seats together and an aisle seat for my bladder.  I am happy to report that we got seats together and an aisle seat to boot.

You might have guessed by this point that there were only 2 of us travelling.  We left the kids at home in very capable hands.  I leave the kids a couple of times a month with their dad when I travel for work, and this is the third time since Sasha was born that we have had an adults only vacation.  I always worry when I leave the kids and maybe a little bit more this time because we are on the other side of the world.  But I think that spending time with your partner alone is more important than worrying about what might happen to the kids.  I also think that its great fun for the kids to spend some time away from us and get spoiled by their grandparents and aunt.

We flew Emirates in Economy which is like flying first class on most other airlines.  What I love about the Emirates is:

  • You don’t need your credit card on board unless you want to buy champagne
  • there was a blanket, pillow, headphones and amenity kit in every seat
  • all drinks were complimentary and free-flowing like an open bar wedding
  • there were a billion movies, tv shows, music channels and video games to choose from and I didn’t need a credit card to watch them or get carpel tunnel from holding a rented device
  • they served hot food from a menu, as in there was a choice of entree
  • they served hot snacks
  • there was even a hot towel service

The service on Emirates puts all of the airlines in North America to shame.  Here are some pictures of the Emirates highlights.

 

I will post soon about our experience in the Seychelles, stay tuned for more to come.

Keep travelling, experiencing and adventuring.