The Maldives and the Seychelles are two destinations I always thought were reserved for couples, and not just any couples, but rich, getting-married or honeymooning couples. But, fun fact, there is a lot more to do than just sit at a Hilton bungalow resort for an all inclusive week of seeing nothing else.
The culture of the Seychelles is a crazy mix of imports and exports. All the tourism and associated industry caters to English, French and Russian speaking white people, but the local people and Seychellois food was mostly Indian and Indian influenced. There were hindu temples, christian churches and muslim mosques, but total peace seems to reign between all the islanders. People smiled and greeted strangers wherever and whenever, and I had the impression people were happy. Even when the tropical rain storms hit and the hillside streets flash-flooded, it was normal to go out and play in the puddles in your bathing suit, and this made people smile at us, the crazy white people doing it too.
I didn’t totally do things wrong, since I had some handsome male company too and we actually stayed a few nights at the Hilton, but I also couchsurfed with some not-so-local locals and partied with all of their friends. My couchsurf host was an off-shore banking something something kind of guy, and his friends were the managers and HR heads of local hotel resorts.
We hiked up to the top of Morne Blanc and looked down at Mahe island as if we were flying above it. We had fresh fish and local rum and even celebrated someone else’s birthday, and caught or own fresh fish off a deep sea fishing boat. I met more Mauritians and Russians than Seychellois, except for the fishing boat captain and the first person I met on m way over to the Seychelles.
I flew Air Seychelles from Madagascar to Mahe, and got upgraded to first class after being the last one to check in on the overbooked flight. An engineer from the airline sat beside me and he was the only local friend I made all week. He took us hiking to some secret spots on the very far south of the island, including a bottomless rock pool carved into the cliffs beside the ocean. Nearby at the beach resort, we saw some giant tortoises, and even some tortoise mating! I guess humans arent the only ones having sex at the honeymoon spots.