Culture

The Seychellois, the citizens who live in the Seychelles, are from varied ethnicities, many of which come from Africa, and this is reflected in all elements of the culture from music to cooking to architecture! Having said this, there is no indigenous culture to the country. Creole, French and English are the primary languages spoken in the Seychelles.

Influenced by Polynesian, Arcadian and Indian styles, folk music plays a big role, and you can expect some heavy beats of drumming and wonderful singing during your Seychelles tour. About 90% of Seychellois are Catholic and there are also Protestant Christians, Muslims and Hindus inhabiting the islands.

Even with organized religion in full-flow, many Seychellois believe in witchcraft, sorcery and magic as these traditions were brought over with the African slaves. The Seychellois also believe in ghosts and during your Seychelles tours you may find each island has its own myths and fables. It is not uncommon for shamans, known as bonom di bwa (man of the woods), to consult on daily life.

Top Seychelles Travel Tips – Culture:

  • You can witness the culture for yourself during the Creole Festival, which takes places every October.
  • Don’t miss the moutya, a traditional, erotic dance that has its roots in the sad history of island slavery.

Cuisine

Coconuts play a major role in the tropical flavors of the Seychelles

You can expect excellent food during your private Seychelles tour! Taking the best of African, American, Indian, British, Chinese and French cuisine, the dishes are varied with their tangy, sweet and spicy flavors. For example, it would not be unusual to find yourself eating a giant crab soup with ingredients of sweet potato and citronella!

Chillies are prominent in the cuisine, with a different variety used for different dishes. You can expect all sorts of seafood, from shark, kingfish and barracuda to octopus, red snapper and jack fish, and Seychelles beef is the term used to describe turtle meat. Fish and rice make up much of the cuisine of Seychelles, but are usually served with delicious aromas like coconut milk.

Enjoy a vast array of tropical fruits and vegetables that are grown locally, such as spinach, aubergine, calabashes, breadfruit, lychee, guava and melon. On your Seychelles holidays, you ‘ll find that every ingredient is fresh because of transport challenges!

Don’t miss the following Seychelles specialities:

  • Cari bernique: curried limpet (shellfish)
  • Daube: a sweet sauce
  • Rougaille: a tomato based sauce
  • Carii coco: a mild fish or meat curry that has been flavored with cream of coconut
  • Salade de palmiste: a salad consisting of coconut palm, known as millionaire’s salad
  • Chatini: chutney of crushed chillies, ginger and garlic
  • Chatini requin: shark chutney, made from boiled and mashed shark meat, bilimbi (cucumber), lime, turmeric and fried onion, most commonly served with lentils and shredded green papaya.
  • Ladob: a soft, creamy sweet or savory dish made from sweet potatoes and ripe plantain and boiled in coconut milk, nutmeg, vanilla and sugar. The salted version has salted fish in it.
  • Creole sauce: a sauce made with tomatoes, green bell peppers, onions and cayenne pepper.
  • Soupe de tectec: a clam cooked in tomatoes, ginger and garlic.
  • Bouillon bréde: a broth made of spinach
  • Zourit: a creamy curry made with octopus.
  • Carotte bananas: an exotic snack made with bananas that have been wrapped in its leaves with honey and vanilla and dried.

Top Seychelles Travel Tips – Cuisine:

  • The more adventurous traveler may wish to try Rousettes! These are fruit bats that taste a little like venison but have many small bones to contend with.
  • Try the Seybrew German lager, made locally on one of the islands; palm wine or calou, an alcoholic spirit made from coconut sap; or bacca, a sugarcane liquor.

The Enchanting Travels team is happy to help you plan your private and luxurious Seychelles holidays. 

History

Oh arrr me hearties! If you wish to experience some true pirate history then there is no place like the the Seychelles beaches. The islands’ coves were once ideal havens for smugglers and they were the only inhabitants when Europeans discovered them. The French settled in the Seychelles in 1770, but then control went to the British during the Napoleonic Wars

During this time the population stood at around 7,000 and important crop-producing estates were established. Slaves from Africa and Arab nations were brought to the islands. The whites (known as the Gran’bla or big whites), originating from France, dominated over plantations even after the British prohibited slavery in 1853.

The Seychelles gained its independence in 1976, except for a few islands retained under British Indian Ocean Territory, including the US military base of Diego Garcia. With the country considered one of the least crowded in the world, it is no wonder that Seychelles holidays are exceedingly popular with honeymooners and leisure travelers.

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