Seychelles vs Mauritius vs Zanzibar

I get this question a lot and I know that some of you are already planning your Summer vacation. Hope this blog gets you one step closer to deciding on a destination.

DestinationSeychellesMauritiusZanzibar
HotelConstance
Ephelia – 5*
Le Victoria
Beachcomber – 4*
My Blue
Hotel – 3*
Value for moneyIt’s a spoilExcellentQuestionable
Quality of the foodExcellentGoodInconsistent
Beach condition ExcellentGoodUnable to swim
Hotel amenitiesExcellentExcellentAverage
ExpectationsExceededMetNot met
Travel time5 hrs4hrs 20mins3hrs 20 mins

Seychelles

When is the best time to go: April, May, October and November

When did we visit: November

Cost per person: approx R35000 per person

PRO’s

  • Seychelles boasts some of the world’s best beaches and resorts, catering well for both families and couples.
  • Picture soft white sand, picturesque surroundings, beautiful beaches and luke warm water.
  • One can easily get around the island of Mahe with a rental car and visit the many amazing beaches.
  • If you enjoy snorkelling and diving, then you would love it here.
  • Water sports and snorkelling can be enjoyed at select resorts without having to go on an excursion
  • Depends on the resort, but the staff at Constance Ephelia made our stay.
  • We didn’t feel the need to dine out, because the food at the resort was included in our package and highly impressive

CON’s

  • Drinks are not included in your travel package.
  • It’s not great value for money for South Africans because everything is priced in US Dollars.
  • Both tours and drinks are not only priced in US Dollars, they are also steep.
  • I am sure there are resorts that offer all-inclusive packages (i.e select water sports, breakfast, lunch and dinner as well as all-day drinks) but they are few and far between and we already blew the budget with the half board package (breakfast and dinner – drinks excluded).

Mauritius

When did we go: November

When is the best time to go: May to December

Cost per person: R25 000 per person

PRO’s

  • It is a short flight from SA so ideal if you travelling with kids. Before you know it you on holiday without feeling the effects of jet lag.
  • We found that Mauritius offered the best value for money in terms of beach resort accommodation, as it offers both the half board (i.e. breakfast and dinner included) and full board offering (i.e. breakfast, lunch and dinner, selected drinks and watersports included).
  • The snorkelling is great. There are loads of activities at kid friendly resorts, enough to keep them occupied.
  • The food is just amazing and there is something for everyone, including the fussiest eater.
  • The staff are professional and friendly, waiting on your every need.

CON’s

  • Whilst Mauritius has pristine beaches, some resorts have coral all the way up to the shoreline. Aqua shoes need to be worn at all times due to the sea urchins. However this isn’t unique to Mauritius.

PS. I’ve recommended this hotel to a number of family and friends and they have always delighted on the upside. https://www.beachcomber-hotels.com/en/hotel/victoria-resort-spa

Le Victoria Mauritius

Zanzibar

When did we go: October

When is the best time to go: June to October or December to February

Cost per person: R15 000 per person

PRO’s

  • Zanzibar is rich in history, and offers you an immersive tourist experience.
  • It’s Africa so the people are friendly and welcoming, which lends itself to a relaxed and warm atmosphere.
  • Whilst we stayed at Nungwi Beach, there are a number of different coastal locations where you may decide to visit.
  • The travel packages are more affordable for South Africans. Most of the beach resorts offer an all-inclusive package (i.e. breakfast, lunch and dinner, as well as selected drinks).
  • The Safari Blue, Spice and Stone Town tours were amazing experiences.
  • We never felt unsafe

CON’s

  • Zanzibar is a Malaria area. You will probably be advised to take Malaria tablets. This also makes it unsuitable for children.
  • We stayed at a resort on Nungwi Beach which is further away from town. However, we were unable to swim in the sea due to the jellyfish larvae that left a slight sting each time we came into contact with it. We were told it is seasonal so do your research.
  • The beach boys (or the masai) are keen to socialise with tourists and whilst they friendly, if you looking for a peaceful escape then you may find the interaction unpleasant.
  • The accommodation may be slightly outdated.
  • The airport was under renovation when we were there and it was unkempt.
  • Really depends on the resort, but the quality of the food was inconsistent. Our favourite meal was the dinner on the beach, which was held on one night only.

Because you spend so much time at the hotel on a beach holiday, it can really make or break your vacation. Choose carefully. Zanzibar was an amazing cultural experience, but relative to our other beach holidays, i am not sure that i will be rushing back.

For a detailed review of our trip to Zanzibar, check out our blog.

Disclaimer: The opinions expressed in this blog are based on our personal experience at the hotels mentioned above. Your stay will depend on your location and type of resort.

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