Family Magazine

Cruising Praslin Island, Seychelles

By Behan Gifford @sailingtotem

DSC_2577We spent much of our first month in Seychelles anchored off Victoria. With a watermaker on the fritz, it’s been helpful to be near the (very welcoming!) Seychelles Yacht Club and the drinking water tap at their boat ramp. Victoria is also the hub where we can do everything from buy locally grown produce to see new releases at a little cinema. The working harbor has its charm, but we craved clean beaches, water we can swim in, and a bit of peace and quiet.


The kicker was when boats in the harbor were targeted by thieves over a series of events, and petty theft escalated to the assault of a cruising couple. We try not to be naive, and avoid opportunistic theft, similar to the view that’s really nicely expressed here by Diane from Ceilydh (one of the boats that was boarded). So with a couple of weeks of waiting for our watermaker parts to arrive before we can head south, we decided it was just one more reason to change the scenery and sailed across to Seychelles’ second largest island, Praslin.


Watch out for that surf landing in the dinghy!

Arriving in the open bay at Anse Lazio, it’s immediately apparent why the vessel ‘Divanty’ – anchored nearby – has termed this Velcro Bay. I never want to leave! It’s beautiful, with turquoise water and a long stretch of beach interrupted by the red granite boulders that make up most of Praslin. There is no development visible at all; this end of the island is tropical forest with a few modest homes tucked in the hillside…not even lights at night, except those from other vessels in the bay.


Our singlehander buddy Bill on Solstice, snuggling up to the all-women crew on Shakespeare. Hey wouldn’t you?!

In 2011, there was a spate of shark attacks; two people were killed here in a span of just a few weeks. It hasn’t kept us from swimming, but we pay a little more attention. When I toss a few food scraps overboard, they’re tackled by our new resident fleet of remoras, and I can’t help but be reminded that they are commonly in company with sharks- a commensal host remoras attach to with the suckers on their heads.


For the record, they adore pasta but won’t touch greens.

A couple of the crew from Shakespeare gave me a tour to some favorite snorkeling spots. They’re serious freedivers – a joy to swim with! Fancy fins now on my wish list. Not just because they give you mile-long legs…OK maybe partly…



On shore, the hiking is beautiful. The kids bushwhacked their way to the top of the ridge behind the bay; we chosen tamer paths to follow, but still have to beat through the underbrush occasionally.




Always treasures to find: feather in the hand, birds in the bush.



One mark of a special place is a retail operation based entirely on trust. At home, it might be a fruit and vegetable stand in season. Here in Anse Lazio, there’s Honesty Bar. A small sign on the beach points to up a path.


A short distance behind the beach, Honesty Bar overlooks the curve of the bay. Wooden tables and scattered chairs take up the space. The owner keeps a refrigerator full of beer and soft drinks; a price list and a bowl are on the counter. Take what you want. Leave what you owe. There aren’t a lot of places in the world you can do this…I think it must be part of the definition for places I’d want to settle.


A mellow evening with friends at Honesty Bar

I wondered if getting away from the Victoria’s diesel generator would help my sinus problems. They’ve improved! Probably not a surprise.


Goooood morning Victoria!

We’ll head back to Victoria towards the end of this week to refill the water tanks. And then, we will be sorely tempted to make a U-turn back to Praslin until our packages arrive.


Thanks for taking a minute to click through to Sailfeed and tossing some change in our cruising kitty!

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