Toggle Menu SearchSearch

Seychelles

smartraveller.gov.au smartraveller.gov.au

Summary

  • Exercise normal safety precautions in Seychelles. Use common sense and look out for suspicious behaviour. Monitor the media and other sources of information for changes to local conditions.
  • You could encounter burglary, opportunistic theft or other petty crime in Seychelles. Secure your accommodation and protect your belongings at all times, especially your passport. See Safety and security.
  • Violent crime is less common but happens, including on beaches and walking trails. See Safety and security.
  • Ocean currents can be strong and most beaches don't have life guards. Several people drown each year in Seychelles. Get local advice on beach safety and be careful when swimming, especially with children. See Local travel.
  • Piracy is a risk, particularly in waters surrounding Seychelles' outer islands nearest the east coast of Africa. Private yachts have been seized. Check International Maritime Bureau piracy reports before planning any ocean activities in and near Seychelles' waters. See Local travel.
  • You could encounter severe weather in Seychelles, especially during the wet season from November to May. See Natural disasters.

Entry and exit

Visas

You won't need a visa to enter Seychelles for tourism purposes. You may need to provide evidence of accommodation bookings for your stay on arrival.

Entry and exit conditions (such as visa requirements, currency, customs and quarantine regulations) can change at short notice. Contact the nearest High Commission or Consulate of the Republic of Seychelles for up-to-date information.

Other formalities

If you're arriving from a country with yellow fever, you'll need to present a valid Yellow Fever Vaccination Certificate on arrival.

Medication available over the counter or by prescription in Australia may be illegal or considered a controlled substance in Seychelles. Any medication must be declared at customs. Check whether your medication is legal in Seychelles before you travel by checking the Seychelles Revenue Commission website or contacting its Customs Division.

Passport

Make sure your passport is valid for at least six months from the date you intend to return to Australia and has at least two blank pages.

Your passport is a valuable document and attractive to criminals who may try to use your identity to commit crimes. Always keep it in a safe place.

Be aware of attempts to get access to your passport by deception. If you are forced to hand over your passport, contact the High Commission for advice.

If your passport is lost or stolen, you must notify the Australian Government as soon as possible.

Money

The currency of Seychelles is the Seychellois Rupee (SCR). Most tourist services, including accommodation, can be paid in Euros. Money exchange services are available at banks, Seychelles International Airport, licensed operators, and at hotels and resorts. Hotels and resorts will usually exchange Euros or US dollars for guests.

ATMs aren't generally found beyond the major tourist destinations of Mahé, Praslin or La Digue, and will only dispense SCR. ATMs are also located at the international airport. Credit cards are accepted at most hotels and resorts and for many tourist services. Contact you bank to make sure that your cards will work in Seychelles.

Safety and security

Crime

Targeted burglaries and opportunistic theft against residents and tourists occur in Seychelles. Most burglaries occur in tourist destinations, such as Beau Vallon beach and the capital Victoria. Robberies and other attacks on and around Cote D'Or beach on Praslin Island, have been reported. Knives are sometimes used in burglaries and street robberies. Thieves also target parked cars.

Violent crime is less common but happens, including on beaches and walking trails.

  • Be alert to your surroundings and pay attention to your belongings at all times.
  • Carry only what you need. Leave other valuables, including your passport, in a secure location.
  • Don't tempt thieves – avoid displaying expensive watches, phones, jewellery and cameras
  • Avoid the back streets of Beau Vallon and Victoria, especially after dark.
  • Take care along Beau Vallon beach and foreshore after dark, particularly if you're alone.
  • Don't leave money or other valuables unattended at the beach.
  • Secure your accommodation at all times – lock doors and windows.
  • Keep vehicle doors locked, windows up and valuables out of sight.
  • Keep copies of important documents, including your passport, in a separate place.

Civil unrest and political tension

Demonstrations, protests and other large public gatherings can turn violent.

  • Avoid all demonstrations, protests and large public gatherings.
  • Keep an eye on the media for news of planned or possible unrest. Avoid affected areas.
  • Follow the instructions of local authorities.

Terrorism

Terrorism is a threat throughout the world.

More information: Terrorist threat worldwide

Local travel

Tours and adventure activities

The safety standards you might expect of transport and tour operators are not always met, including for adventure activities such as diving, swimming with dolphins, and ocean sports. Recommended safety precautions and maintenance standards may not be followed. Safety equipment such as lifejackets and seatbelts may not be provided.

If you plan to participate in adventure activities:

  • first talk to your travel insurer to check if the activity is covered by your insurance policy
  • check operators' credentials and safety equipment before booking
  • for ocean-based activities, make sure the operator can contact the coast guard if necessary
  • don't be afraid to ask about or insist on minimal safety requirements
  • always use available safety equipment, even if others don't
  • if appropriate safety equipment is not available, use another provider.

Beaches

There are often strong currents in Seychelles. Drownings have occurred at popular tourist beaches. Safety information is often not provided at beaches. The popular beach of Beau Vallon is prone to rip currents when the sea is rough.

  • Seek local advice before swimming.
  • Be alert to changes in sea conditions, including rips.
  • Stay within your ability.

Road travel

Driving in Seychelles is only practical on the islands of Mahé and Praslin. Roads on both islands are mountainous, narrow and winding, and are often flanked by sheer drops and hairpin bends. Safety barriers are rare.

Drink-driving is a problem in Seychelles. Some road users behave erratically.

  • Check your insurance cover before driving.
  • Familiarise yourself with local traffic laws and practices before driving.
  • Drive defensively and legally.
  • Avoid remote roads, particularly at night.
  • Don't drink and drive.

More information: Road safety and driving

Driver's licence

You can drive in Seychelles with a valid Australian driver's licence and an International Driving Permit (IDP). Get your IDP before departing Australia. The minimum driving age is 18 years old.

Motorcycles

Check with your travel insurer whether your policy covers you when using a motorcycle, quad bike or similar vehicle. Your policy may not cover you for accidents that occur while using these vehicles. Always wear a helmet. 

Taxis

Only use registered taxis and limousines, preferably those arranged through your hotel. Taxis aren't metered. Research what taxi fares to expect on trips. Negotiate with the driver before commencing your journey.

Public transport

Buses on Mahé operate from early morning to early evening. Services are infrequent on some routes.

Boat travel

Travel by boat may be dangerous as they can be overloaded and lack necessary lifesaving equipment. Always wear a life jacket, even if others don't.

Piracy is a significant threat in the Gulf of Aden and the Indian Ocean. Attacks have occurred as far as 1,000 nautical miles from the coast of Somalia and in the Seychelles' Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ). Sailing vessels are particularly vulnerable. The International Maritime Bureau publishes piracy reports.

  • Avoid travelling by yacht or leisure craft more than 12 nautical miles from the shore. This includes activities within Seychelles' EEZ beyond 12 miles of the inner granitic islands.

More information: International Maritime Bureau

Air travel

The Australian Government doesn't provide information on the safety of individual commercial airlines or flight paths. See the Aviation Safety Network website for information on aviation safety in Seychelles.

More information: Air travel

Laws

You're subject to all local laws and penalties, including those that appear harsh by Australian standards. Research local laws before travelling, especially for an extended stay.

If you're arrested or jailed, the Australian Government will do what it can to help you under our Consular Services Charter. But we can't get you out of trouble or out of jail.

Drug laws

Drug taking and smuggling are serious offences. Punishments can be severe.

More information: Carrying or using drugs

Other laws

Homosexuality was decriminalised in May 2016. 

More information: LGBTI travellers

Australian laws

Some Australian criminal laws apply overseas. If you commit these offences, you may be prosecuted in Australia. Laws include those relating to:

  • bribery of foreign public officials
  • child pornography
  • child sex tourism
  • female genital mutilation
  • forced marriage
  • money laundering
  • terrorism.

More information: Staying within the law

Dual nationals

Seychelles recognises dual nationality.

More information:

Local customs

Seychelles society can be conservative. Topless sunbathing isn't tolerated on public beaches. Nudism isn't acceptable. Avoid public displays of affection.  

Health

Travel insurance

Take out comprehensive travel insurance before you depart to cover overseas medical costs, including medical evacuation. Make sure your policy includes adequate coverage for any pre-existing conditions.

Remember, regardless of how healthy and fit you are, if you can't afford travel insurance, you can't afford to travel. The Australian Government will not pay for your medical expenses overseas or medical evacuation costs. This can be very expensive and cost you many thousands of dollars upfront.

Confirm:

  • what circumstances and activities are and are not covered under your policy
  • that you are covered for the whole time you will be away.

More information: Travel insurance

Physical and mental health

Consider your physical and mental health before travelling, especially if you have an existing medical condition.

  • At least eight weeks before you depart, see your doctor or travel clinic for a basic health check-up, and to discuss your travel plans and implications for your health.
  • Get vaccinated before you travel.

More information:

Medication

Not all medications available over the counter or by prescription in Australia are available in other countries. Some may be considered illegal or a controlled substance, even if prescribed by an Australian doctor.

Before you leave Australia, check if your medication is legal in each country you're travelling to and find out if any quantity restrictions or certification requirements apply. Consult your doctor about alternatives well in advance of travel.

Take enough legal prescription medicine with you to last for the duration of your stay so you remain in good health. Carry copies of your prescription and a letter from your doctor stating what the medicine is, how much you'll take and that it's for personal use only.

More information: Prescription medicines

Health risks

Mosquito-borne diseases

There are frequent outbreaks of dengue fever and chikungunya.

Protect yourself against mosquito-borne diseases:

  • ensure your accommodation is insect proof
  • take measures to avoid insect bites, including using insect repellent and wearing long, loose-fitting, light coloured clothing
  • seek medical advice if you have a fever, muscle pain, rash or severe headache.

More information:

Medical facilities

Medical facilities in Seychelles are limited, especially on the more remote islands where doctors are often unavailable. There are several clinics and a government owned hospital on the main island of Mahé, which deals with accidents and emergency services.

The main hospital (including accident and emergency services) is in Victoria (phone: +248 438 8000).

If you become seriously ill or injured, you'll need to be evacuated to a destination with appropriate facilities (usually Mauritius, South Africa or India). Medical evacuation is very expensive.

Natural disasters

Seychelles can experience severe weather and tsunamis.

If a natural disaster occurs:

If you're travelling during the wet season or after a natural disaster, contact your tour operator to check whether tourist services at your planned destination have been affected.

Wet season

Seychelles isn't normally affected by cyclones but the wet season (December to February) can bring severe weather, strong winds, rough seas and torrential rain. Meteorological services can be contacted on +248 4384 358.

Monitor the weather through local and international media or via:

Earthquakes and tsunamis

Seychelles is susceptible to tsunamis.

To receive tsunami alerts, register with the Global Disaster Alert and Co-ordination System.

Move immediately to high ground if advised by local or regional authorities or if you experience any of the following:

  • feel a strong earthquake that makes it hard to stand up, or a weak rolling earthquake that lasts a minute or more
  • see a sudden rise or fall in sea level
  • hear loud and unusual noises from the sea.

Do not wait for official warnings. Once on high ground, monitor local media.

Where to get help

Depending on what you need, your best option may be to first contact your family, friends, airline, travel agent, tour operator, employer or travel insurer. Your travel insurer should have a 24-hour emergency number.

Emergency phone numbers

  • Police: phone 999 or visit the nearest police station
  • Fire services: 999
  • Medical emergencies: phone 999 or go direct to a hospital

Always get a police report when reporting a crime.

Tourism services and products

For complaints relating to tourism services or products, contact your service provider directly.

Australian Government

Read the Consular Services Charter for what the Australian Government can and can't do to help you overseas.

Australia doesn't have a High Commission or Consulate in Seychelles. Contact the Australian High Commission in Mauritius for consular assistance.

Australian High Commission, Port Louis

2nd Floor, Rogers House
5 President John Kennedy Street
Port Louis, Mauritius
Phone: +230 202 0160
Fax: +230 208 8878
Website: mauritius.embassy.gov.au
Facebook: Australia in Mauritius, Seychelles, Madagascar and Comoros
Twitter: @AusHC_MU

Check the High Commission website for information about opening hours and temporary closures that may affect service provision.

If you're unable to contact the High Commission in a consular emergency, call the 24-hour Consular Emergency Centre in Canberra on +61 2 6261 3305 from overseas, or 1300 555 135 within Australia.

Additional information

Additional resources