Andaman is an archipelago located in the Bay of Bengal, off the eastern coast of India. It is known for its white sand beaches, crystal-clear waters, and diverse marine life.
A trip to Andaman is a perfect getaway for those looking for some adventure, relaxation, and natural beauty.
In this article, we will take you on a virtual tour of Andaman and explore the must-visit places, the best things to do, and some travel tips to make your trip memorable.
A Step-by-Step Guide to Planning Your Trip to Andaman Islands (Updated 2023)
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Arrival and check-in On the first day, you will arrive at Port Blair, the capital city of Andaman. You can take a flight or a ship from the Indian mainland to reach here.
Once you reach, you can check-in to your hotel, freshen up, and relax. In the evening, you can explore the local markets, taste the delicious street food, and interact with the locals to know more about their culture.
Visit to Cellular Jail and Ross Island On the second day, you can visit the Cellular Jail, a colonial-era prison that was used by the British to imprison Indian freedom fighters.
It is now a museum that showcases the struggles and sacrifices of the Indian freedom fighters.
You can then head to Ross Island, which was the administrative headquarters of the British during their rule in Andaman. It has a rich history and is home to some beautiful colonial-era buildings.
Visit to Havelock Island On the third day, you can take a ferry from Port Blair to Havelock Island, which is known for its pristine beaches and water sports.
You can relax on the beach, swim in the crystal-clear waters, or indulge in adventure sports like scuba diving, snorkeling, and jet skiing. You can also visit the famous Radhanagar Beach, which is considered one of the best beaches in Asia.
Visit to Neil Island On the fourth day, you can take a ferry from Havelock Island to Neil Island, which is known for its coral reefs and marine life.
You can go for a snorkeling or scuba diving trip to explore the underwater world, or relax on the beach and soak in the sun.
Visit to Baratang Island On the fifth day, you can take a day trip to Baratang Island, which is known for its limestone caves and mangrove forests.
You can take a boat ride through the mangrove forests and witness the natural beauty of the island. You can also visit the famous limestone caves, which are a natural wonder.
Visit to Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park On the sixth day, you can visit the Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park, which is home to a rich variety of marine life, including coral reefs, sea turtles, and dolphins.
You can go for a glass-bottom boat ride to witness the underwater world, or go for a snorkeling or scuba diving trip to explore the coral reefs.
Departure On the seventh day, you can check out from your hotel and take a flight or a ship back to the Indian mainland.
Travel Tips to plan your visit to Andaman
- Best Time to Visit Andaman: The best time to visit Andaman is from November to May, which is the dry season. During this time, the weather is pleasant and ideal for water sports, sightseeing, and exploring the islands.
- Getting There: The most convenient way to reach Andaman is by air. Port Blair, the capital city of Andaman, has a well-connected airport with regular flights from major cities in India such as Delhi, Kolkata, and Chennai. Alternatively, you can take a ferry from Kolkata, Chennai, or Vishakhapatnam to reach Andaman.
- Accommodations: Andaman has a range of accommodations to suit all budgets, from budget-friendly hostels to luxury resorts. It is advisable to book your accommodation in advance, especially during peak season, to avoid last-minute hassles.
- Getting Around: The most common mode of transportation in Andaman is a hired car or motorcycle. You can also rent bicycles to explore the islands. Public transport is limited in Andaman, and it is advisable to hire a private vehicle to save time and explore the island at your own pace.
Fun Activities to do in Andaman
Andaman has many beautiful places to visit, such as Cellular Jail, Ross Island, Radhanagar Beach, Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park, and more.
Make sure to plan your itinerary in advance to make the most of your time in Andaman.
- Water Sports: Andaman is a paradise for water sports enthusiasts, offering a range of activities such as snorkeling, scuba diving, sea walking, and more. Make sure to book your water sports activities in advance to avoid last-minute disappointments.
- Food: Andaman offers a range of delicious seafood and local cuisine. Make sure to try out the local delicacies such as fish curry, prawn masala, and crab meat. Vegetarian options are also available in most restaurants.
- Packing Essentials: Some essential items to pack for your Andaman trip include comfortable clothes, sunscreen lotion, sunglasses, hats, insect repellent, swimwear, and a camera.
- Safety: Andaman is a safe destination for travelers. However, it is advisable to take necessary precautions such as avoiding isolated areas, not venturing out alone at night, and not consuming food or drinks from unhygienic places.
- Permits: Indian nationals do not require any permits to visit Andaman. However, foreign nationals require a permit to enter Andaman, which can be obtained on arrival at Port Blair airport or in advance from Indian Missions abroad.
How To Reach Andaman
Andaman and Nicobar Islands is a beautiful archipelago in the Bay of Bengal, which is home to pristine beaches, lush forests, and vibrant coral reefs.
It is located about 1,200 kilometers from the Indian mainland, and can be reached by air and sea.
- By Air: The most convenient way to reach Andaman is by air. The Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair is well connected to major cities in India, such as Chennai, Kolkata, and Bengaluru.
There are regular direct flights operated by Air India, Indigo, SpiceJet, GoAir, and Vistara. The flying time from Chennai to Port Blair is around 2 hours and 15 minutes, while it takes around 2 hours and 30 minutes from Kolkata.
- By Sea: One can also reach Andaman by sea, but it takes longer and can be quite challenging. The Andaman and Nicobar Administration operates passenger ships between the mainland and the islands.
The ships depart from Chennai, Kolkata, and Visakhapatnam, and the journey takes around 50 to 60 hours.
However, it is important to note that the schedule and availability of these ships can be unpredictable, so it is best to check with the authorities before planning your travel.
- Getting Around: Once you reach Port Blair, you can use taxis, auto-rickshaws, and buses to get around the town. However, if you plan to explore the other islands, you will need to take ferries or speedboats.
The Directorate of Shipping Services operates regular ferry services between the islands, and private operators also offer similar services.
In conclusion, Andaman is a beautiful and serene destination that can be reached by air and sea.
While air travel is the most convenient and reliable option, sea travel can be a unique and adventurous experience.
Regardless of how you choose trip to Andaman is definitely worth the journey.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q1: What is the best time to visit Andaman?
The best time to visit Andaman is between October and May as the weather is pleasant and perfect for outdoor activities such as water sports and sightseeing.
Q2: How to reach Andaman?
The most convenient way to reach Andaman is by air. The Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair is well-connected to major cities in India. Alternatively, one can also reach Andaman by taking a ship or a ferry from Chennai, Kolkata or Vishakhapatnam.
Q3: What are some must-visit places in Andaman?
Some must-visit places in Andaman are Cellular Jail, Radhanagar Beach, Ross Island, Baratang Island, and Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park.
Q4: What are some popular water sports activities in Andaman?
Some popular water sports activities in Andaman are scuba diving, snorkeling, sea walking, banana boat rides, jet skiing, and parasailing.
Q5: What is the local cuisine of Andaman?
The local cuisine of Andaman is a blend of South Indian and Bengali cuisine with a strong emphasis on seafood. Some popular dishes include fish curry, prawn masala, crab fry, and coconut-based desserts such as payasam and laddoo.