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UK METRO publication: A Seychelles holiday gives you sun, sea, beaches and the Carnaval International de Victoria!

UK METRO publication: A Seychelles holiday gives you sun, sea, beaches and the Carnaval International de Victoria! ( The South Africans put on a show (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)
Jimmy Nsubuga for wrote on Wednesday 1 June 2016 :- Normal carnivals are great, but ones in the Seychelles are better. The African nation is already synonymous with honeymoons, and famously hosted Prince William and Kate Middleton for theirs. But after sampling the Seychelles’ version of a carnival – Carnaval International de Victoria – I think you may want to head there for a party with your friends instead.
Mauritius brought it! (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)

The annual event, at the end of April, is more like 26 carnivals in one. That’s how many nation took part when I went this year. South Africa, Germany and China were just a few of the countries that showed up to the party, which took place in capital Victoria, on Mahe Island. They all brought a little bit of their culture, in a strange but interesting mix that went from booty shaking to magic tricks.

I also had the chance to be patriotic as the Notting Hill carnival turned up with its brilliant steel band and dancers.

The Notting Hill carnival dancers were not messing around (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)
Big up London: The Notting Hill Carnival were in attendance (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)
It ended up winning a top prize at the event, which was a great achievement considering how impressive runners up French Reunion Island were.

More members of the Notting Hill parade (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)
How can you not get caught up in this?

We were given a special area that allowed us to view the parade from the comfort of our seats but we were having none of it.

Instead we moved along with the floats to get up close to the dancers, singers and acrobats.

We could have sat down and watched from the seats on the left but decided not to (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)

There was also a chance to admire the young performers on the last day of the festival, with the special children’s carnival procession. It was a more relaxed affair but the local kids put on a great show.

The carnival kicked off with an opening ceremony on Friday night (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)
After party
The party didn’t stop once all the participants had packed up their floats for the day.

There was also a mini festival and market in the evening on all three days where we had the chance to mingle with the locals.

These events took place mainly in Freedom Square, the Waterfront Park and outside the People’s Stadium in Victoria.

Just picture the Lambeth County show but with better weather and stunning views.

Ethiopa entertained the crowd during the opening night (Picture: Vanessa Lucas/STB)
On the first night we got to go to the opening ceremony where the participating countries teased us with a bit of their acts.

And what a tease it was.

After watching the performers somersault, bang their instruments and balance things on their body we were left wanting more.

They also provided a brilliant fireworks show.

Gran Kaz CasinoGran Kaz Casino
For those who still had energy left after all this (me) it was time to hit the main strip.

We headed to the Gran Kaz Casino, which provided us with a bit of Las Vegas in Seychelles.

You could also hit up a number of nightclubs in Victoria, including Katiolo where things could get a bit wild.

A Seychelles holiday gives you sun, sea, beaches and carnival
A view of Beau Vallon beach in Mahe (Picture: AFP/Getty Images)
Sun, sea and beaches
Of course, the rest of the time (or if carnival just isn’t your thing) there’s a lot of sun, sea and beaches.

You can visit any time (now is great for sailing) but the best months are thought to be April, May, October and November.

IMG9-Beau-Vallon (1).jpg
The Beau Vallon is a beauty to behold (Picture: Gerard Larose)
We were staying on the main island, Mahe, with access to more than 65 beaches.

With that much choice we had to filter them down somehow and, after getting advice from the locals, we found out the Beau Vallon was the best.

It lived up to its reputation – absolutely stunning.

Sailing is big here (Picture: Gerard Lerose/STB)
Water sports
Chilling on a private yacht is probably the best way to enjoy the Seychelles.

But for those with a more adventurous spirit you could try water-skiing, jet skiing, parachute rides or banana boat rides.

You could also take a dive (or snorkel) and have a closer look at the marine life.

A Seychelles holiday gives you sun, sea, beaches and carnival
You could dive in these beautiful waters (Picture: Getty)
For those diving trips you should consider the Underwater Centre Seychelles, at the Berjaya Beau Vallon Bay Resort And Casino.

It will cost you £30 per trip or, if you really love diving, you can buy 10 trips for £255.

You might see an angelfish (Picture: Tony Baskeyfield/STB)
Or maybe you will spot a hawksbill turtle (Picture: Tony Baskeyfield/STB)
If you’re staying on the inner islands (like Mahe) you may catch a glimpse of butterflyfish, angelfish or soldierfish among the endless varieties.

And of course there’s also the beautiful coral reef that is home to octopuses, spiny lobsters and nudibranchs.

Teddy’s Glass Bottom Boat is pretty cool (Picture: STB)
Teddy’s Glass Bottom Boat is pretty cool (Picture: STB)
One of the best ways to observe the sealife is on Teddy’s Glass Bottom Boat.

It’s what it says on the tin and costs £86 per ticket.

AVANI Seychelles Barbarons ResortAVANI Seychelles Barbarons Resort
Where to stay
OK, this isn’t going to be the cheapest holiday in the world.

We stayed at the Avani Seychelles Barbarons Resort and Spa which cost around £212 on double bed and breakfast basis per night.

It had a pretty beach and most of the trappings you’d expect from a top hotel.

The rooms were simple but adequate.

IMG4-Market (1).jpg
The local street vendors were great (and cheap) for food (Picture: Gerard Larose)
Where to eat
There’s plenty of top notch restaurants like Del Place Bar and Restaurant on Port Launay Rd, which serves Creole food, and seafood joint Le Jardin du Roi in Victoria.

But if you fancy something cheaper then why not try the smaller vendors in the capital, that are influenced by countries including France and China.

It only cost us 50 Seychelles rupees (around £2.60) for a Chinese chicken and rice dish.

It was a long flight but worth it (Picture: Gerard Larose)
How to get there
There are no direct flights to Seychelles from the UK so we had to catch a connecting flight in Dubai, which took around 13 hours in total (including a stop over).

This may seem like a bit of the faff but Emirates was a great airline to fly with and had great food and entertainment to keep you occupied.

A return ticket in economy class from Heathrow or Gatwick Airport costs from £805 to £846, while a business class ride will set you back £3,345 to £3,376.


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