Seychelles and Maldives are two islands in the Indian Ocean that are very similar in their geographical appearance and natural beauty. Both of these are popular tourist destinations. Here we have compared various factors of these two islands. Some of these are location, cost of a stay, climate, things to do, accommodation, and others.
You will surely get an idea of what to expect when you visit each of these islands. We will also highlight the best features of each of these locations. This way, you can make an informed choice and make the best of your stay, wherever you choose.
Both of these beautiful islands are located in the Indian Ocean. But where Seychelles has eastern Africa as its immediate neighbor, Maldives is closer to Sri Lanka and India. It is located in the Arabian Sea part of the Indian Ocean. Due to this difference in location, they are both part of the African and Asian continents, respectively.
Since they lie on the same latitudes on the planet (with maybe a slight difference), these two tourist destination islands share the same warm, tropical weather.
From a western perspective, Maldives is an archipelago (a group of islands) located to the far east. Its direction from India is straight down south and just to the immediate left (southwest). From Sri Lanka, too, the direction is southwesterly but relatively a little closer. The Maldives is in the Arabian Sea, part of the Indian Ocean.
Seychelles is located very close to Somalia and Tanzania on the east coast of Africa. It is also an island in the Indian Ocean. As it is close to Africa, Seychelles’ people, culture, and language are influenced by Africans (Arabic and French).
If you have to compare the two locations, they are practically next to each other from a worldwide perspective. However, Seychelles is a little more to the south than the Maldives. The latter is closer to the equator and the northern hemisphere; the former is in the southern hemisphere.
Where location is concerned, we cannot say if one trumps the other as they are that similar. Hence, it is a tie.
Both Seychelles and Maldives experience temperature and tropical climates simultaneously, with mean temperatures hovering around 28°C throughout the year. They range between 24°C and 30°C in the case of Seychelles. Thus, they are again quite similar weather-wise.
One significant difference is that the Maldives has more of a monsoon-like climate, humid and with wet winds when it rains. In Seychelles, you can experience slightly warmer but drier weather.
Weather-wise, Seychelles emerges a winner by a narrow margin. For instance, you would not like to be soaked with sweat or rainwater when out surfing constantly.
We have already discussed that the climate in the Maldives is tropical, rainy, warm, and humid. It experiences this kind of weather, particularly between the 3 to 4 months of the second half of the year. Hence, it would be wise to visit the Maldives during the winter to spring months – between November and April. This is the time when rainfall activity decreases in this area.
Seychelles is best from April to September.
Being in a more southerly direction, Seychelles experiences rain between December and February. Between April and September, it has a drier, more pleasant climate.
Considering November to April is the holiday time, with Christmas and New Year, the Maldives has the edge over Seychelles regarding the best time to go. The best time in Seychelles is usually when schools and offices fully function.
As a group of islands, Maldives is mainly flat with no other distinctive features like huge mountains, boulders, or rivers. Apart from the sand, the sea, and the beach, there are just a few small mounds to be found here and there.
You get to see prominent and dramatic rock formations in the island group of Seychelles. This group mainly consists of granitic and coralline islands. These huge boulders and rock formations add a lot to the calm blue ocean water and greenery around them.
When it comes to landscape differences, Seychelles wins hands down!
In the Maldives, you get extremely warm and hospitable people who immediately make you feel at home. Its culture has numerous influences – from Indian and Sri Lankan to a mix of Arabic, Indonesian, and even a little African influence.
The culture of the people in Seychelles draws influence mainly from European (mainly British) nations, with Africa being the second strongest cultural influence. Here, people keep to themselves, and you are guaranteed complete privacy wherever you are.
It is not easy to compare the cultures of these two tourist islands – both have their unique features. This is more of a personal choice. Hence, a tie.
Most of the accommodation options in the Maldives are beach resorts or beach hotels. That’s not to say that it is costly to travel here.
With individual homes to rent out, villas, and beach houses apart from the more prestigious and luxurious hotels, Seychelles has a more diverse range of accommodation choices. But cost-wise, Maldives is more affordable.
The Maldives has calm white sand and mostly blue-green water. However, this is the standard scenery wherever you are.
Seychelles is better for more rock formations and other features on its beaches which certainly make it more pleasing to the eye. These rock formations range from just a few inches above the ocean water to more than 10 feet.
The Maldives has great ones like the Maayaa Thila, the Naseemo Thila, and Banana Reef. These offer clear, transparent blue waters with an equally eye-catching underwater life.
Seychelles also offers equally great diving spots like the Beau Vallon and the La Digue, amongst others.
Diving spot-wise, both are equally good.
The Seychelles isn’t a surfing destination at all. On the other hand, the Maldives are very famous for their worldclass spots in secluded atolls. The Maldives feature many perfect reefbreaks with translucid water that are what your dreams are made of. And contrary to some destinations like Indonesia, Hawaii and Tahiti, these reefbreaks are relatively user-friendly.
If that is surfing that you are looking for, look no further, Maldives is your pick over Seychelles, and by a long shot.
Again, the culture of the people in Seychelles makes for a vibrant nightlife. Several famous nightclubs in Seychelles; are a must-visit for tourists and locals alike.
The Maldives nightlife consists of famous bars and restaurants here that people can visit after sundown.
All in all, Seychelles wins as a tourist hub with livelier nightlife.
The Maldives is one of the most popular honeymoon destinations in the world. Relatively more affordable and with its local extending warm hospitality, you are bound to make some great memories here.
Seychelles is also an excellent honeymoon archipelago. It gives off a more high-end, uber-chic vibe. With its slightly more vibrant nightlife and culture that is more European, westerners might love Seychelles a tad more.
For your honeymoon, again, it is a personal choice where you wish to go. Both score in their way.
The Maldives is a great yachting destination because, among other things, it costs slightly less to rent a yacht here. However, with the landscape not changing much, it is not very exciting if you want to try different weather. It might get monotonous to go on a yacht after some time.
Sailing in Seychelles is excellent because of its unique landscape, among other things. A boat or yacht ride offers the tourist even more scenic vistas than on land.
The Maldives trumps Seychelles in affordability; the latter offers a better experience.
Maldives vs. Seychelles cost
The Maldives is less expensive. The Maldivian rufiyaa is the currency used here.
Seychelles is more expensive comparatively. Seychelles rupees is the currency accepted here, though euros and US dollars are accepted too. Overall, the cost of accommodation, sports activities, and renting boats and yachts is higher in Seychelles.
Both of these tourist islands are unique destinations having their features. Honestly, there is hardly anything negative to state about them. Where you choose to go depends on your budget, with whom, and why you travel.