With 115 islands to explore and 340+ days of sunshine, combined with white-sandy beaches, colorful festival and vibrant music, there’s always something exciting happening in the Seychelles.
- Festival Kreol –(International Carnival of Victoria) – October
Over the world, carnivals are always considered as celebration of culture and people, time when people set aside their everyday individuality, all with goal to experience heightened sense of unity, a time of letting go of oneself and enjoy partying with the largest crowd in the area.
While we may never know from which culture carnivals were initiated, it is hard to deny that most carnivals are patterned after the Caribbean or Brazilian spectacles. And International Carnival de Victoria is no different.
Tourists who find themselves in Seychelles are quite lucky if they visit during the time of this electrifying carnival, as it is one of the most inspiring global event which attracts an international crowd with over 30,000 tourists in the paradise island of the Seychelles.
In 2021, Carnival de Victoria is celebrating its 11th year of existence, where parades and special events will mark this colorful 3-day event, celebrating the rich history and different cultures that have shaped the Seychelles to this day.
Main event is taking place across Mahé Island in the first few weeks of February, but there are various events & musical shows on all Praslin and La Digue as well. It is a memorable event not to be missed!
In 2017, the festival was merged with the Festival Kreol, and moved from April to October, but still remains an amazing event and a priceless chance for visitors to actually celebrate in the spirit of the Creole way of life, and actually experience Seychelles at its best!
Carnival starts with procession from the Seychelles National library, past the clock tower to the Bicentennial Monument at the end of Independence Avenue.
Attendance is open to the public, however it is advisable to reach Victoria early, as the capital becomes very crowded on this occasion.
2. Fête de la Francophonie – March
March 20 celebrates the International Day of La Francophonie. The 300 million Francophones on the 5 continents celebrate their shared language and the diversity of the Francophonie, as the Seychelles’ culture is heavily influenced by its French history, and this week-long party taking place on Mahé Island goes all out with an array of art exhibitions, literature, music, dance, fashion and food inspired by French culture.
The Republic of Seychelles has been a full member of the Francophonie since June 1976 and with 3 official languages: Seychelles Creole (seselwa), English and French.
3. Seychelles Arts Festival – May
The Seychelles Arts Festival is a riot of color, culture and music, showcasing island’s cultural richness of artistic expression, where best local artists are invited, promoted and marketed to locals and visitors and is considered one of the best opportunities for them to exhibit not only their work, but overall cultural heritage. Seychelles Arts Festival is curated by the National Arts Council which organizes the festival every year during month of May.
Not only that, but they do offer courses for people to learn the art forms they are specialized in, together with top local chefs who serve up some best Creole dishes, while best dance and music groups come up with their performances to amuse the spectators.
4. National Day (Seychelles Independence Day) – June 29th
People of Republic of Seychelles (French: République des Seychelles; Creole: La Repiblik Sesel) celebrate it’s Independence day by enjoying the day off by spending time with their families with meals and picnics. The colorful flag of Seychelles is flown proudly and the night sky is lit by plenty of fireworks, dancing, singing at this patriotic celebration.
Since gaining independence from the UK in 1976, the Seychelles comes alive on 29 June every year as locals display their national pride in true Seychellois style.
Want to know more? See History of Seychelles.
5. Seychelles Eco-Friendly Marathon – February
Traditionally held on the last Sunday of February, in 2021 Seychelles Marathon will celebrate its 14th edition. This marathon is very challenging and rewarding. Challenging because about 50% of the course is hilly but rewarding because you get to discover the main island by covering almost the whole of the northern and central part.
The marathon indeed helps to bring Seychelles to the attention of more travelers and contributes to lifting the Seychelles brand around the world. Usually there are some 1000 overseas participants, on top of 3000 local participants.
It starts from Beau Vallon, covering northern and north-eastern areas of the main island of Mahé, as well as it’s capital Victoria.
As for the structure of the marathon, there is something for a wide range of fitness levels – 5km, 10km, half-marathon and marathon.