Entry to Seychelles. Stolen Kiss 2006
HF 7696 Day
HF 3296 Night
Called to ask for weather 300nm from Seychelles. Guys were so happy to assist and wanted us to call in every day for a chat!
Once contact is established they ask you to do to their working frequency Ch 82 which is a duplex channel. Ship tx 8246 Ship rx 8770. Apparently they have a listening watch on this frequency from 0800 to 2000hrs, but could only raise them on calling frequency.
On Approach to Port Victoria:
We found C-map 2002 charts accurate for entrance.
Called Victoria Port Control on VHF Ch 16 on approach (they have a 24 hours listening watch) who directed us to the outside quarantine anchorage at approx 04 37.177N 055 28.566E. 12m of water. Entry to port is well marked in main channel (St Annes) and clear of obstacles.
Boat came out next day to clear us in, but we were charged 50 USD for this! We were not aware of this charge until we went to clear out. We argued about the charge as we cleared in with another yacht. The fee was then split between the two yachts. Clearance was very easy and no bribes were expected or asked for. If you are asked for a clearance fee, say that you have no USD and need to go to the bank. A day or so after check in, you need to visit customs to pay the clearance fee. (half price if you go to the black market!) Fee is approx 300rp, so not very expensive.
After clearance you are free to make your way to inner harbour (inform Victoria Port Control of you intention) or alternative anchorage about 1 mile to the south which has good holding, is secure and can bus into town. Inner harbour can be crowded and difficult holding, although we did not experience any problems. Yacht Club in the inner harbour offers a safe tie up for dinghies and a good meeting place for yachties.
Contact Victoria Port Control on any movement in or out of harbour. You need to submit a loose itinerary to the Harbour Master to visit other islands/anchorages and get clearance from them before departing the inner harbour/ Port Victoria. No one checked it. Make it longer than you expect to be.
Anchorages- June/July 2006
Wind was mostly 15 – 30 knots SE which made for some rolly anchorages and wet passages between the islands! Despite many yachts mentioning anchoring fees, we were only asked for a 5 USD mooring fee once at Ans La Petit Cour, Praslin Island. Basically, it was very relaxed and not a lot of interest was shown in where we went.
North end of the island is more mountainous which makes for stronger bullets and more rain! However, all holding is in sand and appears to be excellent. The upside is that it is nice and cool!
Beau Vallon, Port Launay and Ans a la Mouche are excellent anchorages. We stayed at Ans a la Mouch for a week. Good restaurant, small supermarkets and bus into town. Excellent walk around coast to the south. Some art galleries and restaurants that are worth a visit. We were never asked for any anchorage fees.
Baie Ternay (between Beau Vallon and Port Launay) is a marine park and there are moorings to use. We came in late afternoon and passed the ranger coming out. We picked up a mooring for the night without any problems. However, if the winds are strong, the bullets that come down through the mountain are huge!! Pretty stunning scenery though.
Rather than go back to the harbour, we caught the bus and checked out from the Seychelles from Beau Vallon anchorage.
Lazio Bay (Baie Chevalier) is beautiful but rolly. A bit of a challenge landing the dinghy! Try up in the SW (?) corner of the bay in between the boulders. Watch for the rocks/reef on your approach if coming from Mahe. It is all on the chart.
Ans la Petit Cour is an excellent sheltered anchorage and you may get access to the beach through the local resort. There is a bus right outside to take you to town. We toured the island from here and also went to Valley Der Mai from here. We stayed here for 5 nights in total and were asked for an anchorage fee once. We also stayed here after checking out waiting for good weather. You can also dinghy over to Curiese from here. (Giant turtles)
Outside anchorage was very rolly so we went inside and Med moored. Called La Digue Jetty on VHF 16 before entry. Stayed for a few nights and were not asked to pay any fees. Mooring is quite shallow. On LWS we had 100 ml underneath us and we draw 1.2m. Min depth at entrance at half tide was 3.2m. Tie up furtherrout from the wall if your draft is deeper. Hire a bike and tour the island! Beautiful island with an excellent supermarket. We could have stayed for a month!!
There are other islands to explore, weather permitting. A yacht who charted there for 10 years informed us that Silhouette Is is expensive, North Isle is private, and you are not allowed to go to Frigate.
A permit is needed to go to the southern islands ie Aldabra.
Seychelles is a fascinating, funky place. Enjoy!