Andaman Tourism Blog
Tourist Review About His Trip To Andaman And Nicobar Islands on Social Media
April-May being the most sought after months for vacations I was fortunate to put together the time table of all for a family vacation and hop to Andaman and Nicobar islands. Even luck was on my side as I was able to get tickets without hassles, may be because it was the 4th week of May and end of the vacation period. Once the tickets were booked I was prioritising my wish list of places to visit there.
The very mention of the Cellular jail (also known as Kala Pani) of Port Blair gives goosebumps to all those who know the history of this colonial prison. Naturally a visit to this prison, now declared a national monument, topped the list of my itinerary during my recent visit to this archipelago. Though I had seen the pictures and had and read about it especially the agony and cruelty suffered by the inmates and had conjured a vision of it, there is nothing like seeing it face to face.
The crystal clear waters of the spotless beeches, getting a close look at the underwater marine life, trying to get a glimpse of the indigenous Jarawa tribes in the thick forests and having a look at the historical ruins of the British at Ross Island and enjoying the clean environs topped the list of my priorities. This visit to this non-polluted island where crime rate is zero remains an unforgettable experience of my life.
We left Mangalore on 20th May and our Air India flight to Port Blair was scheduled at 5 am on 22nd. The driver of our Innova taxi who had taken us around Chennai the previous day almost ruined our holiday plan as he came 35 minutes late and we had to cover a distance of 15 km to the airport. Even that early morning the route to the airport was quite busy and we managed to reach the airport at the nick of time and frantically barged into the check in counter and heaved a sigh of relief.
It is a two hour journey from Chennai to Port Blair over the Bay of Bengal covering a distance of 1190 kms. It is interesting to note that the distance to some South East Asian countries is much less than from India. The closest country from Andaman Indonesia which is 147 kms, Burma is 193 kms and Bangladesh is 805 kms from this archipelago.
Though Andaman Islands comprise 572 islands only 37 islands are inhabited. My colleagues in Port Blair had suggested that could spend five days in Andaman Nicobar islands and my traveller also had arranged the itinerary accordingly. Our schedule did not include visit to Nicobar Islands. The first day of the tour began on the arrival day in the afternoon with a visit to coconut palm fringed Carbyns Cove Beach just 9 kms from Port Blair followed by a visit in the evening to the much awaited Cellular Jail.
Mesmerizing yet Nauseating
Though outwardly the jail fails to impress, once inside what we see is a massive three-storied structure. We were told by the guide that four of the original seven wings of the jail were damaged in the 1941 earthquake and were subsequently demolished. The remaining three wings have been preserved and it has been declared as a national monument. But even this truncated structure looks massive and deadly and I did feel a bone-chilling moment when the guide began to give explicit details about the torture and brutality inflicted on the political prisoner’s nay our freedom fighters. The cellular jail was called so because it had 698 solitary cells measuring 4.5X2.7 meters. Standing down the guide showed us the cell that had housed Veer Savarkar for 12 long years in solitary confinement. His cell was the last in the row in the third storey and was intentionally given to him so that he could see and hear the cries of those prisoners who were sent to the gallows.
It was really sickening to see the “Fansi Ghar” with three ropes with noose standing testimony to the merciless and brutal treatment given to prisoners, who sacrificed their lives. A visit to the dark room down from where the wooden board was displaced to hang convicts was quite a nauseating experience. Every inch of the Cellular prison is a stark reminder of the sacrifices made by these freedom fighters, be it the sight of the flogging stand, the oil mill, the sight of different kinds of iron chains, uniform made of gunny bag or the neck ring shackle. Interestingly most of the freedom fighters who sacrificed their lives in this Cellular Jail were from Bengal and Punjab, clearly showing that these people were in the forefront of freedom movement. A sound and light sound show late in the evening was worth a dekho as it gave a glimpse of the dark moments of the history of this island.
The second day was scheduled for Port Blair city tour and shopping. The day started off with a visit to the Chatam Saw Mill, believed to be the largest and oldest saw mill in Asia. It was established by the British in 1833 and is still functioning. A forest museum a bomb crater and Japanese bunkers are the other attractions at the premises of the mill. Evening was meant for shopping where we ended up buying some sea-shell jewellery which is a major industry here. We took time off to the busy schedule to visit local fish and vegetable market. .
Joy Ride to Bartang Island
Another keenly awaited tour in our itinerary was to Bartang Island, passing through the no overtake zone of evergreen Jarawa Reserve forest, a 90 km journey from Port Blair. The day began at 3.30 am as all vehicles heading to Bartang have to go through police escort from Jirkatang check post, a 40 km drive from Port Blair. The experienced driver of our tempo told us to be alert to spot the tribes as we pass through. Though others in the tempo could get a quick glance of two Jarawa men I was fortunate to get a full glimpse of a family of four during the return journey. The woman holding a small child in her arms beamed a smile at us with her white teeth against dark skin flashing like a fluorescent bulb. Unlike the popular belief all the four were fully dressed like normal people. Since photographing Jarawas is prohibited I could only capture that scene in the lens of my eyes. Once in Bartang we had a joy ride on a boat and our eyes feasted on some of the dense mangrove forest before reaching Lime stone cave, a major tourist destination. We cruised through the same backwaters and went to see the mud volcano, the only known examples of such live mud volcano in India. Though it looks normal without any activity on careful observation one could see mud oozing out in small quantity. It can be said the volcano has deleterious impact on surrounding vegetation as all trees in its vicinity are dead.
Havelock Island – A Earthly Paradise
Havelock Island was our destination on the 4th day and once again our day began early morning at 5.30. We had to catch the inter-island ferry to go to Havelock covering a distance of 57 km by sea. It is a two hour journey and ticket cost is quite expensive even for economy class Rs. 1000/- per ticket one- way journey. Nevertheless it was worth it because we cruised through a rough sea which encountered heavy breeze and good rains and travelling in the middle of the sea in such a situation is a treasured experience. On arrival we headed to Radha Nagar beach, one of the top beaches of Asia. It has crystal clear blue-green waters resembling a rainbow from a distance and the beach is so spotlessly clean even the silver sand of the beach is visible through the water. My children who knew swimming enjoyed skylarking in the sea for nearly three hours along with a big crowd of tourists.
The beach is an ideal destination even for those who just love to watch the waters from a distance sitting under the shades of huge trees that we usually don’t see in beaches. Our guide had told us to be ready to catch the same ferry back scheduled at 4 pm and after a good lunch and some shopping we travelled back to Port Blair. The back journey was quite entertaining as enthusiastic tourists danced to the tunes of popular numbers.
The much awaited water sport - scuba diving was part of our itinerary for the final day of our tour and the destination was North Bay Island. In the morning we visited Ross Island, the former residential and administrative island of the British Empire. Ross Island which once upon a time was the luxurious abode of the British today is in ruins with overgrown vegetation on the walls of those once majestic structures. Yet there is so much to see and savour those splendorous edifices that speak of the might of the British Empire. Scuba diving was quite an exhilarating experience and we came back with those memories intact.
The place attracts tourists from all over India and abroad. It is surely favourite honeymoon destination and we spotted many lovebirds there. The place is clean and its scenic beauty is incredibly idealistic. The weather was just perfect when we went and so was the tour itinerary. We were back in Chennai by early morning flight next day and from there boarded an evening train to reach in Mangalore the next day morning.
Andaman Islands, Top Travel Destinations This Summer Survey 2015
Indians explored new destinations this summer as they gave the traditional summer hotspots of Goa and Jammu & Kashmir a miss, says a survey conducted by Delhi-based travel market place. While Kerala emerged as one of the top spots for andaman travellers during the summer, even Himachal Pradesh and Andaman Islands were amongst the frequently booked holiday spots. Mauritius, Maldives and Sri Lanka were the top foreign destinations preferred by Indians travelling overseas. Price continued to be the deciding factor for selection of holiday packages, followed by services offered in the itinerary and guarantee of experience andaman tour.
Andaman Beaches seemed to be the most preferred destinations with more than 53% of total andaman tour packages booked for destinations near coastlines, while hill-stations too continued to be popular as summer retreats with 36% holiday-goers selecting hilly destinations to beat the heat. Off-beat and adventure destinations featured in 11% of package bookings, highlighting a growing trend of opting for adventure andaman holidays.
Almost 65% of travellers preferred to travel for medium duration trips, whereas 25% of them opted for short weekend getaways. Only 10% of the travellers preferred longer holidays. The report, which was compiled based on the bookings showed andaman honeymoon couples as the leading holiday demographic with almost 50% bookings, while summer vacations and leisure holidays with andaman family tour packages made for 32% travellers and the rest 18% being travel for religious and spiritual reasons.
A Solo Bag Packing Trip To The Andaman Nicobar Islands
Andamans resembles a bit of dots hung together in the BlueBay of Bengal, straight out of a fantasy set. It is flanked by the delightful and entrancing North andSouth Andaman Islands, and extends till the Nicobar gathering of islands in the south. Comprising of around 556 islets, this otherworldly land has some astounding concealed diamonds that are far from the typical touristy hotspots. There are some of these, which are just as, if not less, engaging and picturesque than the generally referred to places, for example, Havelock and Neil Islands. My voyage to the islands was expected to appear as something else and a touch challenging, so to say. It was a performance exploring outing, the climate was not helpful, and I would say there was never a solitary minute I lament being isolated. You can without much of a stretch fly to Andamans from any city through Chennai or Kolkata (which is generally a two-hour venture). Global explorers and sightseers would, on the other hand, need to have a grant to enter the islands, which can be serenely benefited from the powers upon entry. So here's my definitive schedule for you to dive into the dark blue waters and virgin islands of Andamans and make a performance hiking outing yourself.
Long Island and Guitar Island
A small bit of characteristic marvel concealed off the eastern bank of the North and Middle Andamans, Guitar Island has a clear as can be white sandy shoreline that you can have just for yourself. It is not possessed by human populace aside from a couple water crafts cruising and circumnavigating it for angling. The whole shoreline is yours, fair you, the sand, and the ocean. Where else on earth would I be able to discover such a spot, I pondered. Be that as it may, why this name, I asked inquisitively. "Its ethereal perspective is fit as a fiddle of a guitar and henceforth its name," says the timberland office official who went with me to the island. These authorities conquered the storms to convey me here to witness its stunning excellence. Situated off the Long Island, Guitar Island has a pleasant and colorful quality that spells a mysterious appeal. Another astounding shoreline you ought to visit is Lalaji Bay Beach, which is an immaculate hotspot for shoreline brushing, swimming and nature photography. It is arranged on the upper east bank of Long Island and one would require a nation pontoon (a ride of 45 minutes from Long Island breakwater) to achieve here. You can reach Long Island by boarding one of the Andaman and Nicobar Administration worked boats from Port Blair. It would generally take four to five hours (and about Rs600-700) to reach Long Island from Port Blair by boat (by means of Havelock/Strait Island). This spot is off a touristy agenda and justifiably, there are not very many staying alternatives on this island. I stayed for a night at the Vanashree, the Forest Guest House (verify you book it ahead of time). There is likewise an exclusive resort on this Island. The Forest Guest House has four fundamental breezy rooms, a manicured greenery enclosure, sandalwood trees and a perspective of the ocean. You can get the most astonishing fish sear here, which I had amid my sit tight. The staff is friendly, respectful and would give you your decision of the supper on time. I asked for a dinghy to make a speedy excursion to Guitar Island. It was made but with a drifting cloudy. Following a brief 15-moment drive, our vessel tied down on the coast and I got off to set my foot shaped impression on the disconnected and unfathomably calm shoreline. Bunches of ocean animals, sand crabs, recluse crabs, shells came through to the shoreline and I swiftly caught them on my lens. One must be truly quick to photo them; one squint of an eye and they are gone, inundated underneath their sandy openings. Meanwhile, the cloudy sky took an all the more undermining symbol. It kept on growwing darker and darker. Luckily, as an issue of safeguard and to ensure my camera, I had brought an umbrella. We moored back our watercraft subsequent to investing some energy in the shoreline, pursued the mists and breezed past the rough waves to reach Long Island.
Rangat in Middle Andaman
I got myself a vessel ride of around an hour from Long Island (withdrew at 7 am) and come to Yerrata Creek close Rangat traveling through the absolute most lovely, quiet and flawless mangrove rivers. At the other side (Yerrata Creek close Rangat), my vehicle was prepared to lift me up for my trip. I ate in transit at Rangat (this is a clamoring center and you can discover nearby shops and eateries in the business sector. The Andaman Tourism division has its own particular visitor house, Hawksbill Nest, which offers an agreeable stay with nearby delights. Rangat is honored with a couple of exceptional eco-tourism spots, for example, Aamkunj Beach, Morice Dera Beach and Dhani Nallah Mangrove Walkway. On my way, I initially ceased at Aamkunj shoreline (8 km from Rangat) which is a long, sandy and inconsistent stretch blended with stones. You can appreciate watching the waves, or sit unobtrusively for quite a while at the eco-accommodating seats, for example, log couches and log teapoys. Next was Morice Dera shoreline (12 km from Rangat) which has been produced by the tourism and backwoods division as an eco-tourism hotspot. It has remarkable twin rock developments right on the shoreline where you can stroll along the edges through a pathway. Be that as it may, the most energizing part was the 700-meter Mangrove walkway at Dhani Nallah. It is a praiseworthy showcase of mangrove preservation endeavors by the Andaman and Nicobar organization. The walkway takes you through the rich biodiversity of mangroves, palm trees, breathing roots, and Hathi Kaan orchids. The walkway prompts a really long and energizing shoreline called the Dhani Nallah shoreline. It is an unfathomable field of sand extending from Curtbert Bay at one hand to the extent my eyes could go then again.
Ross & Smith Islands in North Andaman Islands
A watercraft ride of very nearly 15-30 minutes from Aerial Bay breakwater in Diglipur (North Andaman) conveys you to the wonderful Ross and Smith Islands in North Andaman. The organization has kept up some astounding eco-tourism activities in Smith Island. These are absolute minimum, given that the twosome islands are yet to take off in the national and global tourism circuit as a prevalent traveler destination. In any case, I felt these were satisfactory — there spoke the truth 10-15 thatched cottages, sitting enclosure, sufficient cleanliness offices, evolving room, a few swings set impractically in the midst of coconut trees, and shoreline leaning back seats. Interestingly, the west side of Ross and Smith Islands was to a great degree blustery while the east side was out of the blue quiet. The waters in the eastern side were still and quiet as though it's a swimming pool. When you arrive, take counsel from the backwoods and tourism authorities on the off chance that you need to swim over its shorelines. Ross and Smith Islands are ideal for seeing the dawn, shoreline brushing and sunbathing. You can stroll over the sandy stretch associating the pair islands amid low tide.
Hutbay in Little Andaman Island
Get yourself a chopper ticket from the State-run Pawan Hans Limited between island chopper administrations to fly from Port Blair to Hutbay. A ticket for Hutbay would cost you Rs2,625 and you can serenely achieve there in 45 minutes. On the other hand, there are day by day ships from Port Blair that will take five to eight hours relying upon their rate. Hutbay brags of facilitating the best surfing destination in India. It's not a misrepresentation and when you visit this isle, you would trust that. Situated in Little Andamans, Hutbay has the longest shoreline of Andaman and Nicobar Group of Islands — 22-km stretch — from Netaji Nagar toward one side till Butler Bay shoreline at the other hand by means of Kalapathar. The Butler Bay shoreline, which is picking up notoriety among household and worldwide surfers for its wonderful ocean surfing waves, is overflowed with exercises amid winter and summer. A large group of private resorts flanking Netaji Nagar offer surf sheets on rent, however do check with them preceding landing. There should be satisfactory foundation offices on this shoreline yet you would be entranced by the brilliant sandy stretch here. On the off chance that you are not a surfer, you can go for snorkeling, sun showering, or sailing in the midst of the reasonable waters. When you have had your fill from the ocean and the sand, you can make a beeline for a close-by waterfall which is the main surf waterfall in Andamans. It is situated inside a timberland and would oblige you to make a short wilderness trek of 10 minutes from the principle door going through a few rivers. There is a passage expense of Rs20 per individual and a vehicle charge of Rs20. Andaman's just waterfall, concealed inside the verdant and thick rainforests, coaxes you. Seeing this beguiling 20-meter perfect waterfall will doubtlessly excite you. You can likewise take a plunge underneath its clear as can be waters, encompassed by bamboo and banana ranch. While on your trek to Little Andaman, you can stay at one of the private eco-resorts at Hutbay or the Government-claimed APWD visitor house. Room levies at the private resorts begin from greatly sensible Rs400 every night, while the APWD visitor house (which can be occupied through the Directorate of Tourism) charges about Rs500 per bed every night. A large portion of these private resorts likewise offer bikes to travelers for touring at Rs300 every day. There aren't any extravagance or top of the line resorts in Hutbay.
About Andaman Beaches Forest And Natural Attractions
This is the main city in the Andaman And Nicobar Islands. Port Blair is the operational hub of the economy of the Islands. Port Blair is situated in the south-east elixir of south Andaman division. The city gets its name from Archibald Blair, splendid surveyor who was dispatched by the British Government in the eighteenth century for a punitive settlement. It is the capital of A & N Islands, taking care of a large portion of their payload & traveler movement. The city has air terminal which gets travelers by Boeing 737 of Indian carriers. Presently the battle is worked by Alliance Ltd, a backup organization of Indian aircrafts. The aggregate geological region of the town is 7.9 sq.kms. it has 57 income towns with a populace of 74,955 as 1991 evaluation. Around 26.7% of aggregate populace of A & N Islands is living in the city. The word related part of the city is partitioned into five classifications in particular government representatives, school and school instructors' proprietor of little scale mechanical unit's exchanges, talented specialist and workers and so forth. Taxis government transport transports are the main methods of travel. The port blair city has various vacation destinations and spot of noteworthy interest and noteworthiness; its grand excellence pull in alarge number of sightseers both from terrain and abroad.
Shoreline's in Andaman " Little Andaman ( kalapathar shoreline) Kalapathar Beach is a characteristic shoreline in Little Andaman. This is one of the renowned shoreline in little Andaman. which is made by dark Rock by nature so it's called Kalapathar shoreline. Here ocean water is too sharp and clean. Loads of individuals can visit to little Andaman to watch kalapathar shoreline. South Andaman (North narrows shoreline) The shoreline and the snorkeling, Scuba jumping & ocean strolling open doors in its bordering coral reefs are the nearest ones you will discover to Port Blair, and in this way, it gets entirely swarmed. South Andaman (Carbyn's inlet Beach) This stand out shoreline close to Port Blair city.The coconut-palm-bordered shoreline, perfect for sun lolling. Offices like lodging, eatery, bar, changing room and so forth are accessible close to the shoreline. Verifiable stays like Japanese shelters can be seen in transit. South Andaman (Wandoor Beach) Wandoor Beach popular for swimming & for Coral Viewing. One can likewise go to Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park from Wandoor by pontoon. South Andaman (MundaPahar Beach) Before the dusk, appreciate a swim at Munda Pahar Beach. One more name chidiyatapu shoreline. Diglipur (Ross & Smith) The most elevated Point in the Andaman is adjacent. Kalpongsea, the main waterway of Andaman streams from here. Ross and Smith, the twin islands joined by a charming sand bar. Mayabunder (Turtle Beach) Turtle Beach is on the longest shoreline in Andaman that is in Mayabunder town.Turtle shoreline is having one more name is Karmatang Beach. In a season turtles are coming to laying egg's. Near the shoreline, you can likewise see a segment of mangrove woodland. Havelock Island ( Radhanagar Beach) In entire Asia RadhaNagar is going to 7 no. position. This is Grade beach& exceptional quality. This shoreline is additionally appraised as the best shoreline in Asia by TIME Magazine. The nature of water at Radha Nagar shoreline is incredibly quiet and clear .This shoreline is for the most part celebrated for white sand. Havelock Island (Elephant Beach) Elephant Beach is one of he well known Beach Located In Andaman Islands (Havelock island) .prominent For snorkelling,Sea strolling & scuba plunging Elephant shoreline is a percentage of the lively coral reefs. Red skin Island The shoreline and the snorkeling open doors in its bordering coral reefs.
The aggregate geological range of the domain speaks the truth 8293 sq. kms of which 7144 sq. kms is under woods. Held woods is 2912 sq. kms and ensured backwoods 4232 sq. kms. The backwoods go under the general central belt of tropical evergreen, soggy deciduous and mangrove timberland. There speak the truth 200 species yet just 44 are collected of which just 29 are utilized for modern reason. The run of the mill Andaman backwoods are loaded with evergreen trees. The woods division began working in 1883. Separation and remoteness from the limitation. In timber was affirmed to a couple specie in particular Padauk, silvergrey and Koko.
Characteristic Attraction Climates: Climate is a component that essentially influences tourism industry especially in A & N Islands.. The best atmosphere/season to visit A & N Islands is from October to might. More or less, these islands get precipitation for at least five months and a greatest of six months. The south west storms initiate in start of May and proceed till mid-October. At that point, from mid-October, north east rainstorm begins and proceeds till the mid December. At the point when contrasted and south west rainstorm, north east storm brings less rain. The period in the middle of January and April is loaded with daylight and warmth. Remote voyagers like this atmosphere and amid this season/atmosphere, the nonnatives appreciate sunbath on the ocean shore for quite a while and they go for ocean shower. Obviously, the Indian vacationers like the atmosphere of cloud-less daylight, charming cool climate which wins for the most part amid the time between Octobersto December. Amid the period, the sightseers require not stress over downpour; climate is exceptionally charming, cool wind blows and ocean stays extremely quiet. Going to Inter islands by watercraft/boat amid this season/atmosphere is truly magnificent. Sightseers can witness the neighborly fish (human brained), dolphins coming in gathering and their wonderful swimming, bouncing and other wicked exercises they go with the vessel to some separation. Grand Beauty: The slopes, high points and low points of these Islands convey larger piece of the beautiful magnificence. They have superlatives, crests, swifts, living types of plants and winged creatures and creatures like crabs. The brilliant sandy shorelines, shining clear as can be ocean, encompassed by excellent mangrove backwoods, thick blustery timberlands are the nature's blessing to these islands. When a traveler goes into the backwoods (not held one) he will overlook himself and can appreciate the essence of peace. The coral reefs, submerged marine life, multicolour fishes, ocean growth's plants and blooms make these islands as lala land and office is given by organization as an approach to achieve this fairyland. Travelers from distinctive parts of the nation appreciate the picturesque excellence of the lavish green woods. Another fascination of the spot lies with its streams and asylums. Going through the rivulets, encompassed by the thick mangrove backwoods, truly fulfill the visitors and merry. These streams are suitably situated for film shooting. The picturesque perspectives starting with one end then onto the next with some Island/Islands are foundation has its own excellence, which can't be seen somewhere else in world. As an asset, this picturesque asset (common asset) has not in any manner been touched for abuse for any financially gainful purposes. This range is interested in the scientists also.
History in the Making: Spice Jet All Set for the First Night Landing at Port Blair Runway
Port Blair, Sept. 10: One of the major hurdles hampering isles tourism was considered to be the restriction of passenger aircrafts to land during night at Port Blair’s Veer Savarkar International Airport. The restriction had not only affected the tourism industry but is also considered as one of the reasons for the soaring airfare in the Island – mainland sector.
After several serious deliberations with the Aviation Companies operating in the islands and with the Defence Authorities, Spice Jet has finally announced its first night landing in the islands.
Spice Jet flight will depart from Kolkata at 1605 Hrs on 11th Sept. 2015and make the first night landing at Port Blair’s Veer Savarkar International Airport at 1805 Hrs. The flight will then depart from Port Blair at 1835 Hrs to Kolkata.
It would not be out of place to mention that the credit for the same goes to the Hon’ble Lt. Governor of A&N Islands, Lt. Gen. (Retd.) A.K. Singh who has been tirelessly taking up the issue with the concerned authorities at New Delhi. General AK Singh had earlier been successful in convincing GoAir to provide 30% Concession on the Basic Fare for the Islanders apart from introducing Air India’s Chartered Flights from Chennai-Port Blair- Chennai Sector and also Port Blair – Car Nicobar, thereby connecting the farthest District of the country with the Capital.
With the first night landing of Spice Jet at Port Blair, it is expected that other airline companies operating in the islands will soon start similar operations. Commencement of night landing in Port Blair is also considered to open up the scope for International Flights to connect with Andamans en route South Eastern Countries and vice versa.