TOP-45 interesting facts about Seychelles and Seychellois people

Seychelles is an island country in the Indian Ocean, east of the coast of Africa, that shares many similarities with its neighbours. But at the same time, it is a unique country with its own customs, history and culture. In our article, we have collected 45 fascinating facts about this country and its inhabitants, which will help you form a first impression and plan your holiday in Seychelles.

45 most amazing facts about Seychellois and Seychelles

So, let’s begin our journey through the history, traditions and sights of this amazing country.

Historical facts

1. These islands in the Indian Ocean were first visited by Arab navigators. On some of the islands are found graves of unknown sailors and inscriptions in Arabic, which date back to the 10th century AD.

2. the archipelago was first discovered by the Portuguese Vasco da Gama during his famous voyage to India in the early 16th century.

3. The first settlements of Europeans on the islands belonged to the British. In the XVII century there were bases of English pirates.

4. Since 1756 Seychelles is declared a colony of France. By the end of the century, slaves from Madagascar were brought to the islands and the first settlements appeared.

5. The islands got their name – Seychelles – in honour of the French Minister of Finance of that time Moreau de Séchelle.

6. After Napoleon’s defeat, the islands came under British control. The British abolished slavery and began to bring workers from India and Mauritius.

7. Seychelles did not gain independence until 1976, remaining a member of the British Commonwealth.

Seychelles today

8. Modern Seychelles is a presidential republic, one of the smallest and most sparsely populated states in the world. They have an area of 459 square kilometres and 97,000 people live on the islands.

9. The country’s only city and its capital, Victoria, is located on the largest island of the archipelago, Mahe. There live a quarter of the total population of the republic – 24 thousand people.

10. Victoria was founded by the French in 1778 and was originally named Port-Royal (Royal Port). The British renamed the future capital Victoria in honour of their queen.

11. Nearly 90 per cent of the population of the islands are Creoles, descendants of mixed marriages between Europeans and Africans. Almost all are Catholic, but many continue to believe in spirits and magic.

12. The main article of the country’s economy is tourism. This industry employs a third of the country’s population and contributes 25 per cent of GDP.

Сейшельские рыбаки

13. In addition to tourism, Seychelles has a developed fishing industry. The main part of imports is supplies of fresh and tinned tuna and shrimps.

14. Seychelles is one of the world’s most important offshore centres. There are 140 thousand international companies registered here, attracted by the favourable taxation system.

15. Even now, most of the beaches on the islands remain wild. According to local laws, any person has the right to have free and unhindered rest on any beach, even those belonging to a hotel.

16. Primary education is free in the republic, and therefore literacy among young people is one of the highest on the continent – 92%.

17. There is only one public hospital in Seychelles, and yet the inhabitants of the archipelago live to the age of 72 on average.

18. Motor traffic here is left-handed, but islanders prefer to use bicycles or, quite old-fashioned, ox sleds.

19. There is only one international airport in the Republic, located on the capital island of Mahe. Thirteen local airports and ferries are used to connect with other islands and atolls.

20. The only bridge in the country connects Mahe and the artificial island of Eden. It was severely damaged by the 2004 tsunami.


21. The main architectural sights of the islands are concentrated mainly in the capital city. Among them, Victoria’s true symbol is the Clock Tower, an original column that is a scaled-down copy of England’s Little Ben, which stands in Westminster.

22. The principal church of the republic is the Cathedral of the Immaculate Conception. It was built in 1874 and is ornamented with openwork. Its clock strikes off the exact time every half hour.

Собор непорочного зачатия

23. Victoria is also home to Arul Mihu, the islands’ only Hindu temple, named after the god of prosperity and security.

24. Any tourist must also visit the main market of the islands, Sir Selwyn Clark’s Market. It is located in the old quarter of Victoria and has been open since 1869.

25. The highest point of the archipelago (907 metres) is also on the island of Mahe. At the top of Morne Blanc Peak, there is an observation deck that offers an amazing view of the island itself and the surrounding ocean.

Seychellois character and customs

26. Seychellois are for the most part a very friendly, hospitable and cheerful people who do not like haste and fuss. They treat tourists well and love to invite them to visit.

27. Going to visit a Seychellois, you should definitely take care of a gift. It can be an inexpensive trinket, which is usually given to the eldest woman in the house.

28. There is matriarchy in local families. Seychellois believe that the woman-mother is the main in the family. She is responsible for finances and household management.

29. Wedding ceremonies on the islands are very lavish, with a lot of guests and treats, so now poor Seychellois practically do not hold them, and the official conclusion of marriage in the republic is a rare phenomenon.

30. At the same time, despite the reigning matriarchy, local men often have extramarital affairs and mistresses. The number of mistresses can even add to a man’s weight in society.

31. Seychellois girls are very beautiful and perhaps that is why there was twice held a competition «Miss World», in 1997 and 1998. But Seychellois women did not win at these contests.

Сейшельские красавицы

32. Seychellois favourably differs from other peoples of the region by the fact that they never impose on tourists, do not show intrusiveness and do not beg for money.

33. The main folk crafts of the inhabitants of the archipelago are making household items and jewellery from turtle shells and coconuts.

34. Seychellois are very musical people and their national dance is Mutia. This dance has African roots and is reminiscent of the Mauritian Sega. It is danced to the accompaniment of a goatskin drum.

35. The national musical instruments of Seychellois are the zese, the African equivalent of the lute, the bongo drums and the makalapo, the local harp.

36. Many Seychellois still believes in the existence of nature spirits, which they call Gris, and in witchcraft. In almost every village you can find a good sorcerer, Bonhom-du-bois, and an evil one, Ti Albert.

37. The superstition of the Seychellois is expressed in many strange customs. For instance, they never praise another person’s hair. For it is believed that such praise may cause the hair to fall out.

38. Another custom of Seychellois is related to pregnant women. It is believed that a pregnant woman can very easily jinx a person, so the locals treat them with caution and try to fulfil any wishes.

39. One of the common funeral ceremonies of the islands is a night vigil at the open coffin. Aborigines believe that in this way they will protect a deceased relative from turning into a zombie.


40. The Seychelles archipelago consists of 115 islands of two types of formation. Several large islands have a granite platform at their base and are considered to be the remains of an ancient continent. The rest of the islands are formed by coral polyps – they are atolls.

41. The climate of the islands is tropical with two monsoon seasons. Dry south-eastern monsoons blow here in summer and humid north-western monsoons in winter. The air temperature stays at +30 degrees Celsius all year round.


42. The pride of the archipelago is the famous coconut palm Coco de Mayor. Its fruit weighs up to 20 kilograms, and the natives believe that it was the forbidden fruit for which Adam and Eve were expelled from Paradise.

43. Despite their small size, the islands have several national parks and reserves. The largest of these is on the island of Praslin. It is called Vallee de Me and covers an area of over 19 hectares.

44. A natural attraction of Seychelles are the huge black boulders of La Digue Island. It is a favourite place for photo shoots.

Сейшельская черепаха

45. The islands are home to many interesting and unusual animals, including giant tortoises on Aldabr Island. They can weigh up to 250 kilograms and live for about 150 years.


Friends, if you know any more interesting facts about Seychellois and Seychelles, please share them in the comments. This country is full of amazing stories, culture and traditions, and many people would be glad to learn something new. We will be very grateful to you!

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