Powder-soft sandy beaches, crystal-clear waters, swaying palms, and a year-round sunny climate, the Indian Ocean islands have a natural allure that has been attracting travellers for generations.
A holiday to one of these spectacularly beautiful paradise islands, which lie in the Indian Ocean between Africa, Asia and Australia, cannot fail to delight you.
From the Maldives and Mauritius to the Seychelles, there are a total of 62 islands in the Indian Ocean offering a rich diversity. The only problem is choosing which one to visit.
Divers will be delighted by the transparent water clarity and rich marine life in the Seychelles. Foodies should head to Mauritius to discover the delicious traditional Creole cuisine, while walkers will love exploring the volcanoes, waterfalls and canyons on the French Reunion Island.
For unrivalled luxury, the Maldives is the island for you. Whether you hike the smoking caldera of the Piton de la Fournaise. or swim with hawksbill sea turtles in the Seychelles, an Indian Ocean holiday has something for everyone.
Holidays in the Indian Ocean
With paradise island beaches, diverse natural beauty and exquisite resorts, the Indian Ocean islands are a wonderland just waiting to be explored.
With more than 60 islands to choose from, each offering wall-to-wall sunshine and mesmerising landscapes, it can be hard to decide which island is best for you to visit during your Indian Ocean holiday. Why not make the most of your trip by visiting more than one Indian Ocean island with a Hayes & Jarvis multi-centre holiday? Call us today and our Destination Specialists will help you create your dream holiday.
Great sample itineraries
Get inspired by our selection of popular itineraries for Indian Ocean holidays.
Our destination experts can create a bespoke holiday to the islands of the Indian Ocean, tailored to include your dream tours, visits and must-sees. Almost anything is possible, so please call us to discuss all your options.
Abu Dhabi And Seychelles Holiday
Kenya And Mauritius Twin Centre Holiday
Our favorite hotels
Browse our favourite places to stay in the Indian Ocean - we are here to help you find the perfect getaway, where you are wanting an all-inclusive hotels or a sumptuous private water villa. If you can’t see something you like, please call our Destination Specialists who will be more than happy to help.
OZEN by Atmosphere at Maadhoo
Paradise Cove Boutique Hotel
Explore Indian Ocean
Paradise islands are ten a penny in the Indian Ocean. This vast expanse – the world’s third-largest – is scattered with pristine pockets of land in every size and shape, all the way from Africa’s southern tip to Australia. You’ll live out all your desert island dreams on the beaches of the Maldives, Mauritius, and the Seychelles. Meanwhile, Sri Lanka’s temples and tea plantations will leave you craving more in the way of culture.
Relax to the max at one of the Indian Ocean’s world class spas, whose exquisite beach or jungle surroundings enhance your stay. Be pampered with an exfoliating facial or soothing wrap using fresh, local ingredients like seaweed and coconut. Lie back for a Thai or Indian massage then take the plunge in a deep hot tub. Work up a sweat at a yoga class at sunset, or rejuvenate with morning meditation among the palm trees.
With a mix of African, Indian, Asian, French, Portuguese, Dutch and English influences, every cultural element combines, to create a melting pot of customs, cuisine and art. Visit temples and mosques, admire colonial buildings, haggle for handicrafts at busy markets and watch vibrant dance displays. Be fascinated by the variety of languages and the fruits of the cultural combinations, all co-existing in this tropical heaven.
Snorkelling and scuba diving
The Indian Ocean is alive – admire intricate coral reefs and get close to the fish, turtles and rays by scuba diving or simply heading out into the lagoon with a snorkel and mask. Waters are clear so visibility is high. If you’re new to diving, experience the joy of breathing underwater for the first time by taking a beginner dive, with clownfish and seahorses as your companions.
Best time to visit Indian Ocean
The Indian Ocean islands’ tropical climate means that it is warm and sunny all year round, with average temperatures of 23°C to 32°C. However, the highest average rainfall across the islands usually occurs in January and February, so these months are best avoided if you are seeking days of undisturbed sunshine in the Indian Ocean.
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Get up nice and early to take part in the Maldives daily treasure hunt. Bottles are hidden around the island every morning, and each contains a prize ranging from a free coffee at the resort's cafe to an indulgent spa treatment.
In the Seychelles, take a day trip to the beautiful La Digue Island. Here, the main form of transport is a bicycle, so rent one for yourself and spend your time touring all the postcard-worthy beaches.”
Events & Festivals
Indian Ocean holidays offer a huge selection of fun events throughout the year and you can plan your holiday to ensure you experience them! Here are a few of our favourites:
Kiteival is an annual kite surf festival that is held every summer from the end of July to early August in Mauritius. Kite surfers of all levels are invited to come and take part in the competition. Even for spectators it is a joy to watch the participants jumping and twisting in the air as they compete on the island’s most breath-taking beaches.
Fete Afrique is a May festival in the Seychelles and is a celebration of the island’s links to Africa. During the two-day event, the Seychelles comes alive as the best of African music, dance and food is showcased.
Enjoy the parades, feasting, live music, traditional dances and much more when celebrating Independence Day in the Maldives. This celebration is to mark the day when the islands of the Maldives gained independence on 26th July, 1965.
Get a flavour of the local culture through your palate during your Indian Ocean holiday. Here are a few of our favourite dishes.
Creole curry is a mild curry and a favoured dish in both Mauritius and the Seychelles. It differs from Indian curries in that no cream or yoghurt is added, but is rather a tomato-based sauce. Chicken is often the preferred meat, and it is often left overnight to marinate before cooking.
A Seychelles favourite, grilled octopus is cooked with a heady mix of spice. It’s been an island favourite since the very beginning of visitors arriving in the Seychelles.
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How we tailor make your holiday
The Hayes & Jarvis Way
We've been tailor making holidays for 65 years. With over 60 destinations to choose from, talk to us and we'll listen to your travel ideas to create unforgettable holiday experiences.