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Grande Soeur (also known as East Sister) is located off the northern tip of La Digue. With Petite Soeur (or West Sister), they form the “Sisters Islands”. These two tiny private islands are covered by lush vegetation and surrounded by well-preserved coral reefs. The beach situated on the west side of Grande Soeur is, for many people, the most beautiful beach in Seychelles. Marine life is exceptionally abundant on the coral reef stretching in front of it: sea turtles, hundreds of tropical fish, and small reef sharks.

View of Grande Soeur Island, Seychelles
Grande Soeur western beach.

How to get to Grande Soeur snorkeling spot?

To get to Grande Soeur, you can choose from three main options:

  1. Staying in Le Château de Feuilles in Praslin, which is managing the private island. It will give you access to the island. This is by far the best option, but also the most expensive one.
  2. Booking a day tour with Le Chateau de Feuilles (10 am-3 pm), including barbecue and full access to the island for the day. The cost for this tour (only offered on weekends) is euro 195 per person, including the boat transfer.
  3. If you visit Seychelles by boat, you can request a permit to moor next to the island and snorkel the reef.

Grande Soeur snorkeling map, Seychelles

Water entrance for snorkeling Grande Soeur

Enter the water directly from the beach (if you are on the island), or from your boat.

Grande Soeur reef snorkeling tips

The recommended snorkeling area is the 100 meters wide coral reef edging the island’s western shore. Starting from the beach, you will swim over sandy beds with small coral patches for about 50 meters (↕2-6ft/0.5-1,5m). As you get closer to the reef edge, the coral gets more dense and more lively.

Blackwedged butterflyfish at Grande Soeur, Seychelles
A pair of blackwedged butterflyfish in Grande Soeur.

The reef flat is shallow but covered by healthy hard coral. Snorkeling the reef, you will easily spot several species of butterflyfish and surgeonfish. Dozens of other fish species are common at this location, including pufferfish, parrotfish and angelfish.

The reef drop-off is much deeper (↕9-18ft/3-6m). This is the area where you will have the best chance to encounter hawksbill sea turtles. They seem used to human presence and rest quietly just under the surface. In these deeper areas, you may also spot one of the small reef sharks which regularly visit the area.

Reef shark at Grande Soeur, Seychelles
Encounter with a reef shark at the foot of the reef drop-off.

Restaurants and accommodation nearby

Day tours include a barbecue on the beach.


  • Level required Beginner
  • Maximum depth6m
  • Water entranceEasy, from a sandy beach
  • LifeguardNo
  • Visitor numbersLow
  • Access costsDay tour price (euro 195pp.)

MAP Spot

Sea turtle watching in La Digue Island


Hawksbill sea turtles are a familiar sight in La Digue and its neighboring islands, like Grande Soeur. In order to be a responsible snorkeler, be sure to respect the following rules when observing them:

  1. Do not attempt to touch or ride sea turtles
  2. Stay at a distance (6 to 10ft) from sea turtles
  3. Do not chase a turtle swimming away
  4. Avoid sudden movement and allow sea turtles plenty of space when they come up to the surface to breathe

On La Digue main island, Anse Patates and Anse Caiman (both with free shore access) are also excellent snorkeling spots to encounter hawksbill sea turtles.

These snorkeling spots are accessible to beginners and kids. You will enter the water gradually from a beach, or in a less than 3ft. deep area. The sea is generally calm, shallow, with almost no waves or currents. These spots are usually located in marked and/or monitored swimming areas. It is not necessary to swim long distances to discover the sea life.

This level only apply when the spot experiences optimal sea and/or weather conditions. It is not applicable if the sea and/or weather conditions deteriorate, in particular in the presence of rough sea, rain, strong wind, unusual current, large tides, waves and/or swell. You can find more details about the definition of our snorkeling levels on our snorkeling safety page.