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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.

Destination Highlights

  • Observe the world’s largest gathering of Asian elephants at Minneriya National Park in Sri Lanka
  • Hike up Piton de la Fournaise Volcano, taking in the dramatic views over Reunion Island along the way
  • Visit the Seven Coloured Earths in Mauritius and delight in seeing the pretty pink rainbow-coloured sand dunes
  • Swim with hawksbill sea turtles off the shores of Coco Island in the Seychelles

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.

LUX* South Ari Atoll Spa and Fitness

Multi Centre Holidays Sri Lanka And Maldives

  • 12 Days
  • Guide Price £4,099 PP
Sri Lanka and the Maldives are the perfect pairing for a multi-centre holiday. Our itinerary offers an immersive cultural experience...
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All inclusive holidays
Anse Lazio, Praslin, Seychelles

Abu Dhabi And Seychelles Holiday

  • 10 Days
  • Guide Price £3,299 PP
Abu Dhabi the capital city of the United Arab Emirates is located only a one hour drive from Dubai. Abu...
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Multi centre holidays
Leopard in Kenya

Kenya And Mauritius Twin Centre Holiday

  • 14 Days
  • Guide Price £5,099 PP
Our multi-centre holiday in Kenya and Mauritius takes you on an exhilarating journey of action packed days driving through rugged...
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Safari holidays
Whales and Dolphins Cap La Houssaye

Mauritius And Reunion Island Holidays

  • 11 Days
  • Guide Price £3,199 PP
It’s no secret that Mauritius is a paradise island. One glance at its striking sapphire waters, pristine white sand beaches...
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Beach holidays

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.

Aerial view OZEN by Atmosphere at Maadhoo
Maldives

OZEN by Atmosphere at Maadhoo

On Maadhoo, a serene island in the South Male Atoll, lies OZEN by Atmosphere. The resort combines contemporary design with...
H&J Rating
Guide Price £3,799
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Swimming pool
Sri Lanka

The Fortress

The Fortress Resort and Spa is situated close to Galle on Sri Lanka’s south coast, and is designed to reflect...
H&J Rating
Guide Price £1,099
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Infinity pool, Paradise Cove
Anse La Raie

Paradise Cove Boutique Hotel

Located at the water’s edge on a sheltered cove in northern Mauritius, the Paradise Cove Boutique Hotel and Spa proves...
H&J Rating
Guide Price £1,499
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a statue of a large rock
Felicite Island

Six Senses Zil Pasyon

Located on the private island of Felicite, Six Senses is home to magnificent granite rock formations, white sand beaches and stunning...
H&J Rating
Guide Price £4,799
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Explore Indian Ocean

Time Zone

Maldives - GMT +5 hours, Mauritius and Seychelles - GMT +4 hours, Sri Lanka GMT+5:30

Flight Time

Approx. 11–12 hours; Direct flights from the UK are available to Mauritius and Sri Lanka. Indirect flights from the UK are available to the Maldives and the Seychelles via Dubai, Abu Dhabi and other countries

Currency

Rufiyaa (Maldives), Mauritian rupee (Mauritius), Seychelles rupee (Seychelles), Sri Lanka rupee (Sri Lanka)

Visa Information

British citizens do not need to obtain a visa for travel to the Maldives, Mauritius and the Seychelles with a 30 day tourist visit. For travel to Sri Lanka British citizens must obtain an online visa prior to travel.

Language

Maldives – Divehi, Sri Lanka - Tamil, Sinhalese, Mauritius and Seychelles - Creole, French and English is widely spoken

Health Info

No special vaccinations are required for travel to the Maldives, Mauritius, Sri Lanka or the Seychelles.

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.

Luxury spas

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.

Otentik Cook Class, Mauritius

Cultural discoveries

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.

Marine life, Seychelles

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.

  • Best Weather
  • Good Weather
  • Average Weather

Average Weather in January

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
31° C
8 mm
Mauritius
28° C
228 mm
Seychelles
28° C
380 mm
Sri Lanka
31° C
62 mm

Average Weather in February

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
31° C
3 mm
Mauritius
28° C
228 mm
Seychelles
29° C
270 mm
Sri Lanka
31° C
69 mm

Average Weather in March

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
31° C
7 mm
Mauritius
28° C
178 mm
Seychelles
30° C
220 mm
Sri Lanka
32° C
130 mm

Average Weather in April

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
32° C
10 mm
Mauritius
27° C
178 mm
Seychelles
30° C
180 mm
Sri Lanka
29° C
253 mm

Average Weather in May

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
31° C
20 mm
Mauritius
26° C
101 mm
Seychelles
30° C
160 mm
Sri Lanka
31° C
382 mm

Average Weather in June

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
31° C
18 mm
Mauritius
24° C
76 mm
Seychelles
28° C
90 mm
Sri Lanka
30° C
186 mm

Average Weather in July

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
31° C
18 mm
Mauritius
23° C
76 mm
Seychelles
27° C
80 mm
Sri Lanka
30° C
125 mm

Average Weather in August

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
31° C
26 mm
Mauritius
23° C
76 mm
Seychelles
27° C
70 mm
Sri Lanka
30° C
114 mm

Average Weather in September

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
30° C
11 mm
Mauritius
24° C
50 mm
Seychelles
28° C
130 mm
Sri Lanka
30° C
236 mm

Average Weather in October

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
30° C
31 mm
Mauritius
25° C
50 mm
Seychelles
28° C
160 mm
Sri Lanka
30° C
369 mm

Average Weather in November

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
30° C
25 mm
Mauritius
27° C
50 mm
Seychelles
29° C
220 mm
Sri Lanka
30° C
310 mm

Average Weather in December

Destination Destination Avg Temp Avg Temperature Avg Rainfall Avg Monthly Rainfall
Maldives
30° C
12 mm
Mauritius
28° C
152 mm
Seychelles
28° C
330 mm
Sri Lanka
30° C
168 mm
a man smiling for the camera

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.

Aveenash
Destination Specialist
Tejal, Destination Specialist

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.” 

Tejal
Destination Specialist

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

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

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.

Independence Day

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.

Local Cuisine

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

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.

Grilled Octopus

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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