From not being visible clearly on the maps of India to being completely invisible on the world map, Andaman formed by a cluster of islands is a surprise, that has a lot to look out for. It is well balanced in lifestyle and extremely organized. It gives a paragon of beauty. Here is a list of things you shouldn’t miss while you unwrap this one.
1. Limestone caves- A short-lived miracle at the islands
At the end of the Baratang ride, begin the limestone caves. The course to reach the caves in itself is a memorable trip. On reaching the shore, we boarded a speedboat which had its route through naturally made mangrove tunnels to reach our destination. The water consists of an enormous number of crocodiles underneath, some of which can even be spotted sunbathing at the seashore.
At the end of the mangrove tunnel begins a 1.5km trek through a beautiful tropical rainforest. Big giant trees, beautiful man-made huts and handcrafted roads give a pretty postcard-perfect scenery. On either side of the path are eco-huts to take shelter when it rains, chairs & benches made of bamboo to sit and relax.
At the end of this trek, you find limestone cave come into the view. It has been observed, that each year the caves sink an inch into the ocean and within the next few decades, will be completely immersed into the Bay Of Bengal.
2. Baratang – Mud Volcano
This is the only example of known Mud Volcano in India. They have evolved sporadically in the recent time and are now a major source of power generation.
This island is famous for its raw beauty and scarce population. It is also termed as Second Goa and is hence a major attraction for foreigners. Cars, bikes & cycles are available for rent on per day basis to roam around Havelock. It is also famous for some of the best and widest sea food variety.
Radhanagar Beach – famous for its white sand, is also a destination for honeymooners.The sparkling white sand, clear blue sky, giant trees & fashionably designed cottages & villas makes Havelock a part of a different world.
Blackstone Beach – it is a lesser-known island in Havelock and mostly empty. The fisherman mostly access this beach.
This was the only beach where I could find all live shells walking and hence recommend others to visit this beach.
4. Wandoor & Jolly Buoy Beach
Wandoor beach comes on the way to Jolly Buoy beach. It is one of the lesser known beaches in Andaman. It has some huts for accommodation.This beach is normally used by tourists, on their way to Jolly Buoy beach for relaxing & taking a night walk. The ocean on this side of the beach is extremely calm and composed.
Jolly Buoy can be reached by a ferri. It is famous for snorkeling. The flora & fauna is mesmerizing. Tourists mostly visit this beach for snorkeling. It doesn’t provide any accommodation and hence calls for a day trip only.
5. Cellular Jail
Also known as Kala Pani (Black Water), the Cellular Jail was constructed by the British to lock up Indian leaders and freedom fighters. Initially constructed with seven wings, it now has two wings left with others being demolished to make space for market and other official uses. Every evening, a show is conducted telling the story of some of the famous Indian leaders during their stay in this jail.
6. Ross & Smith Island
Ross & Smith are twin islands connected by a path formed of white sand.Wild elephants can be occasionally spotted at Ross island. Smith island on the other hand is a home to few people, forming a small village. It also has eco – huts for tourists for over night stay. The turquoise color water provides a scenic beauty.
7. Snorkeling & Scuba diving
Andaman offers some of the best snorkeling & diving experiences in the country. Due to the presence of sharks in Bay Of Bengal people are often apprehensive to try the water sports here. Havelock is one of the islands which offer an amazing diving experience.
8. Port Blair City Tour
Organic Horticulture Farm – It has thousands of varieties of plants & flowers. Also some of the plants which are best grown only in specific weather condition are grown here.
Mongluton Rubber Factory – This a major hub of rubber & black pepper plantation.
Naval Marine Museum – Gives you a ride through the area’s aquatic life.
Chatam Saw Mill - Built in 1836, one entire island comprises of only this mill. This is also the largest saw mill in Asia.
9. Way back from Havelock to Port Blair – My personal favourite
This ride is the most memorable one for me. On my way back, I got to see both primary & secondary rainbows. It was breathtakingly beautiful.The rainbows were so huge that I couldn’t even capture the rainbows in my DSLR frame.
Memento & Souvenir
There is lot to buy and fill your shopping bag here, especially if you belong to the “shop till you drop” category. Corals being one of the major jewel of sea, are used to make various types of ornaments & home decor. One major thing to keep in mind is to keep the receipt of all the things which one buys. At the time of checking in Port Blair airport if one doesn’t have the receipt then they are not allowed to carry their bought belonging.
Also taking shells & corals from any beach is a strict NO. No matter how hard you try to carry these with you, you will be caught during airport checking.The government follows a strict policy of keeping the beauty of Andaman in Andaman.