Weather in the Seychelles
All the clichés that describe tropical islands – crystalline waters, lush vegetation, palm-fringed soft white sands and such like – hold true for the beautiful Seychelles archipelago of 115 islands scattered in the Indian Ocean, east of Africa. When it comes to the weather, too, the Seychelles is as close to perfect as one can get on earth.
Situated just below the equator (the islands cover an area of ocean between 4° and 11° south) these tropical gems are blessed with a year-round equably warm, pleasant climate which make Seychelles the perfect holiday destination for those in search of fun in the sea and sun, and its romantic environment makes it a popular choice for honeymooners.
The mean temperature varies little on the Seychelles islands throughout the year – on the main island, Mahé, the average temperature has been measured as ranging between 24°C and 30°C. One might imagine that in the tropics it should be much hotter, but the Seychelles are fanned by cooling ocean breezes. Humidity is high all year round though.
The coolest months on the Seychelles are during July and August, which is the heart of the cooling south-east trade wind season. The south-east trades blow during May, June, July, August, September, October and November each year, bringing winds of between 10 and 20 knots, making the sea choppy at times – great sailing weather. This is also the driest time of year.
From November the trade winds switch to north-westerly, which are far less brisk and carry in more rainfall, upping the humidity, and temperatures spike at highs of around 31° C during the hottest island months of December, January, February, March and April. The north-westerly season lasts until March.
When it comes to rain, like any tropical territory Seychelles is subject to heavy monsoon showers, although these tend to be more prevalent on the interior mountains than on the coast. The wettest time of year is during the north-westerly trade season during November, December, January, February and March.
When is the best time to visit Seychelles
The Seychelles is welcoming all year round, but those intent on particular activities might want to consider the two opposing trade wind seasons. The brisk south-easterlies during May, June, July, August, September and October make for exciting sailing and surf sports, including fishing, while the calmer months of November, December, January, February and March are great for swimming in luke warm seas or lounging around, although rain showers are possible. Generally April – the transitional month between the two seasons, is the most pleasant weather-wise and offers the best visibility for scuba diving and snorkelling.
What to pack
Light clothing, plenty of swimwear, sunhat, sunglasses and a pair of rubber sandals to protect your feet on the coral reefs are essentials. It is also advisable to take plenty of toiletries, medications and a high factor sunscreen, as these can be hard (and expensive) to obtain on the islands. A daypack in which to carry camera, water and essentials if you plan to go exploring is useful, and, during the rainy season, a light waterproof poncho for unexpected showers.