Seychelles Travel Guide

The Complete Guide to the Seychelles Book accomodation

Geography of the Seychelles

Where is the Seychelles?

Seychelles is an archipelago located in the Indian Ocean which, between 480 and 1,600 km from the east coast of Africa. Despite this distance from the continent's mainland, the nation is, politically, part of Africa. The Seychelles consists of 115 islands, of which 42 are designated as granite or granitic islands, and 73 as coral islands. These islands are then sub-divided into the so-called Inner Islands and the Outer Islands. The Seychelles is also divided into 25 separate administrative regions, all of which are located on the Inner Islands. These islands are mostly made up of granite, but also include the Northern Coral Islands, while the Outer Islands consist of the Southern Coral Islands, the Amirantes, the Alphonse Group, the Farquhar Group, and the Aldabra Group.

The Seychelles is located in the GMT/UTC +4 time zone, which means that is three hours ahead of Central Europe in the winter months, and two hours ahead in the summer.

Image: Geographical location of the Seychelles

How big is the Seychelles?

The 115 islands of the Seychelles are a total of 455 km² (175 sq. miles) in size. In total, if you count the total oceanic area of the country, it takes up an enormous 390,000 km² (150,000 sq. miles). The largest land mass in the Seychelles is the uninhabited Aldabra Atoll, with the main island of Mahé coming in second.

South of the Seychelles lie the island states of Madagascar, Mauritius, and Comoros, all of which are larger than the Seychelles. The main islands of the Seychelles are located approximately 1000 km (660 miles) from Madagascar, 1750 km (1092 miles) from Mauritius, and 1550 km (960 miles) from Comoros. The distance from the Seychelles to the Maldives, in the east, is approximately 2140 km (1330 miles).

What is the Seychelles known for?

The Seychelles is known for its picturesque beaches, ecological diversity, dense tropical forests, and the deep azure ocean that surrounds it, all of which combine to make the archipelago world-famous. The Seychelles is also home to two UNESCO World Heritage sites: the famous Vallée de Mai on Praslin, in which the rare Coco de Mer palm tree grows, and Aldabra, the world's largest raised coral atoll.

Detailed map of the Seychelles