It's indeed said that 'To travel is to take a journey into yourself'. Lying at India's Southeast, Andaman and Nicobar islands is truly a place filled with serene, white sand beaches, dense tropical forest, inhabited by various tribes and immense treasure of flora and fauna. Andaman and Nicobar islands is an archipelago of around 550 islands located in Bay of Bengal, 1300 Km east from Chennai, India. It was once an important base of the British Raj, and was also ruled by the Japanese Briefly during WWII, resulting in a mishmash historical influences.
How to reach:
By air: Flights from Chennai, Mumbai, Calcutta, Delhi to Port Blair.
By cruise: Cruise from Chennai, Visakhapatnam to Port Blair.
Ross and Smith islands lies in North Andaman, 300 Km north of Port Blair. State transport buses or private vehicles are available from Port Blair to Diglipur. This is one of the isolated and pristine beach of Andaman. It encloses a stunning golden sand surrounded by coconut palms. Ross and smith are two different islands which are connected by tombolo. The highest peak of Andaman, Saddle peak is a located near Diglipur. Covered with dense tropical evergreen forest the peak provides a stunning view of the island.
Mud volcano and Limestone caves, wonders of nature are located near Baratang. Rarely found Mud volcano is great place for nature enthusiasts. A 30 min boat ride through swamp mangroves will lead you to naturally formed Limestone caves.
Neil island is one of the most beautiful island of Andaman, a place to laze on the beaches and soak in some sun. A 1 1/2 hr cruise ride from Port Blair will take you to Neil island. Bharatpur beach, Sitapur beach, Laxmanpur beach are great for enjoying water sports, sunrise, sunset. Handcrafted ornaments made from sea shells can be shopped here. Natural bridge is a rock formation with open beach on one hand and lush green forest on the other.
A 30min boat ride from Neil island will reach you to Havelock island. The World's 7th Best beach and Asia's Best beach, known as Radha Nagar Beach is one of the popular virgin beach in India. Crystal clear water, golden sand and lot of adventures water sports like Scuba diving, Snorkeling, Sea walk, Banana boat ride can be basked here. A small trek of 3 km through tropical forest takes to Elephant beach. This beach was hit by Tsunami, a decade back. The remains of the devastated trees and mangroves can be spotted here. Scuba dive is an unforgettable experience which reveals the deep water corals, various sea creatures, fishes.
Ross island was capital of Andaman during the British rule. Many reminiscent of the old British regime are still alive in this stunning Island. Island presently houses the ruins of old buildings like Hospital, Church, Commissioner's house, Bungalows, Bakery, Troop barracks etc.
Cellular jail is most popular site in Port Blair and was build by British to keep prisoners away from mainland. All the Prisoners were kept isolated and were brutally tortured. Notable freedom fighter Veer Savarkar were imprisoned here for decade long. However, today the jail is transformed into a national monument.
Chidiya Tapu is located at 20 km south from Port Blair. A small 2 km trek takes us to sunset point. A wine red horizon, cool breeze, enchanting beach is perfect place for nature lovers. Various types of birds are spotted here.
Mount Harriet is second highest peak of Andaman islands. Trek through the thick forest led us to breath taking view of North bay island. The picture behind 20 rs. note is a view of North bay island seen from here.
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