Destination: Andaman and Nicobar Islands
The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are a group of 572 islands of which only 36(!) are inhabited. They seemingly swim like emeralds in the blue water in the Bay of Bengal. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands stretch over 500 miles of water in the Bay of Bengal.
The island group was once known as “Kalapani” (Black Waters) for its role as a convict camp of the British, however now, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands are beautiful tropical islands belonging to India and are among the world’s most beautiful islands. Here you can observe nature in all its glory. This region is regarded as one of the most biodiverse in the world. So far, 242 bird species, 58 species of mammals and 83 types of reptiles have been recorded on these islands. The best time to visit the Andaman and Nicobar islands are from October to May.
The Andaman Nicobar Islands are well connected by air to major cities like Delhi, Chennai, Bhubaneswar and Kolkotta. There are also ships that take you to Port BlairÂ from Kolkotta, Chennai and Visakhapatnam.
Die islands are flat and fertile, and major attractions are the thick coconut forests and the huts built on stilts. Other attractions include the Gandhi Park near the capital city of the Andaman Nicobar Islands, Port Blair. Enjoy the amusement parks, various water sports, hiking, restaurants and the historic ruins of a Japanese Temple. The Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park offers the open sea, creeks and coves and 15 small to larger islands. It is considered to be the best in the world.
The pristine white beaches are simply a paradise for beach lovers, sun worshipers or Scuba Divers. The most visited island of the group is without doubt Havelock island. It’s known for its beautiful beaches and water sports activities, especially snorkeling and scuba diving. For anyone who want to experience a real jungle, only one place comes to mind – Rutland Island. The beautiful mangrove forests and coral reefs are a paradise for eco-tourists.
- Radhanagar Beach: if you love nature and the environment, Vijaynagar and Radhanagar beach on Havelock Island on the Andaman Islands, are a real revelation of pristine nature. If you are looking for peace and solitude, Radhanagar beach is the place to be
- Harminder Bay Beach:this beach is located on the very quiet Hut Bay island, and is perhaps one of the best beaches in India. It is nothing unusual to find yourself all alone on this deserted beach. Here are about 96 protected areas (spread across 466kmÂ²) and 9 National Parks (with a total are of 1154 kmÂ²).
It is also here, where you can find historically significant buildings and monuments like the Cellular Jail.
- Karmatang Beach: This beach is being developed as tourist complex on the Andaman Islands. It is located at Maya Bunder, the northern part of Middle Andaman. These islands are best known for its turtle nests and a good place to get a peek of this is on Karmatang Beach.
- Ramnagar Beach: Ramnagar Beach, is one of the better known Beaches on the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. This beach is located on the beautiful forested island of Diglipur and its beach is famous for the tranquil, crystal clear waters and long sandy beaches. The island is connected to Maya Bunder and Port Blair by two daily ferries, twice a week.
- Corbyns Cove and Chirya Tapu:Â You must spend some time here to experience a perfect beach. It is one of the most beautiful beaches on the sea. This beach offers perfect water conditionsÂ to swim and to soak up the sun.
Just remember to consider the Andaman and Nicobar Islands for your next tropical Holiday!!
important travel tip:
Indian citizens do not require a permit to visit the Andaman Islands. They do however need one to visit the Nicobar Island and unfortunately these are given out rarely. An application may be made on a pre-form and sent to the Deputy Commissioner, Andaman District, Port Blair.
Non-Indians will need a Restricted Area Permit, to visit the islands, but these are now issued on arrival at the airport in Port Blair. (If you happen to travel by ship, you must produce the permit before arrival. This can be applied for in Chennai, India, or together with your Visa application for India). In general, visitors will receive a permit for a 30-day stay, but this reduces to 15 days if your return flight is not confirmed.
The application for a Restricted Area Permit must be made at least 6 weeks prior to travelling, it is however free of charge.