Embarking on an unparalleled adventure, the first freediving sailing retreat organised by Freediving Seychelles, transported eleven experienced freedivers on a 230km nautical journey from Mahe Island to the enchanting Amirantes outer islands. With a seasoned chef, a skilled skipper, and a luxurious 52 ft Lagoon Catamaran as our floating haven, the expedition promised a unique blend of freediving, exploration, and relaxation.
The Sailing Odyssey:
The 20-hour sail took us to the pristine islands of Desroches, Poivre, Ile Sud, D'arros, St. Joseph, Remire, and African Banks. Nestled in the heart of the Indian Ocean, these secluded havens offered an escape from the hustle and bustle of everyday life. The absence of phone signal became a luxurious detachment, leaving us to bask in the beauty of untouched nature.
Each day brought new wonders as we explored vibrant coral reefs, encountering sharks, turtles, and a kaleidoscope of marine life. The highlight of our journey unfolded at D'Arros Island, where the ethereal experience of freediving with majestic manta rays at sunrise left an indelible mark on our souls.
St. Joseph, renowned for its diverse reef, amazed us with the sight of 30 turtles in just 25 minutes. The rapid drop from 5m to 60m showcased the wonders of the underwater world. At African Banks, witnessing turtles coming ashore to lay eggs was a rare and heartwarming spectacle, while bioluminescence illuminated our last night, creating a magical ambiance on the beach.
Amidst the underwater wonders, we engaged in breathwork, yoga, and meditation on pristine shores. Evenings were filled with laughter, games, and camaraderie. With no shortage of fresh fish, our chef's culinary skills elevated each meal, turning every dining experience into a celebration of the ocean's bounty.
Challenges and Triumphs:
While the weather blessed us on most days, we encountered evening rain, strong currents during dives, and a brief storm on our return journey. However, the challenges only added to the richness of our experience, fostering resilience and bonding among the participants.
The Freediving Seychelles retreat was more than a journey; it was a transformative experience that brought us closer to the wonders of the ocean and each other. With plans to host two retreats annually in April and November, the organizers invite fellow adventurers to join them on the next voyage from November 16-23, 2024. For those seeking a unique blend of freediving, exploration, and connection, this retreat promises an unforgettable escape to the mesmerizing Amirantes outer islands.