The Andaman & Nicobar Islands are a cluster of 556 stunning islands (Source: Annual Vital Statistics of 2013) located in the middle of the Bay of Bengal, south of the Indian sub-continent. A Union Territory of India, these gorgeous islands have since become much sought after holiday and tourist destination. Port Blair is the capital of these groups of islands and most of the inhabited islands are well connected via private as well as government operated ferries.
Acclaimed for their secluded white beaches, sapphire blue seas; home to an exquisite underwater world including vibrant coral reefs and a rare assortment of marine animals, this is a world-class destination for scuba diving and snorkelling. For those less proficient in swimming, there is option of enjoying glimpses of under sea paradise by means of underwater sea walk and glass bottomed boat rides. The local people of these islands are warm and friendly, possessing an enviable easy-going attitude towards life. With availability of a host of outdoor water borne activities such as jet skiing, surfing and game fishing, there is much to do for all water sports enthusiasts. For those more comfortable on dry land, guided tours, camping and hiking are great choices to indulge in these enchanting isles boasting lush rainforest like foliage and greenery.
Long gone are the days when these enchanted, sun-kissed islands remained undiscovered and its cool waters unexplored. After years of geographic isolation, the Indian Government has finally given impetus to eco-friendly tourism in these islands. However, Nicobar Islands continue to remain closed to Indian as well as foreign tourists. The advent of modern technology has made air travel both accessible and affordable and is the preferred mode of transport for majority of tourists visiting the Andaman Islands.
Both connecting and direct flights are available from the Indian cities of Chennai, Kolkata, Mumbai and Bangalore. The Airport at Port Blair is named after Veer Savarkar, a much renowned and revered Indian freedom fighter who was imprisoned in “The Cellular Jail’ during the British rule. Once you arrive at Airport, our local team receives you and drives you to your pre-booked destination.
It is also possible to reach Port Blair by sea. Ships ply regularly from the busy seaports of Chennai, Kolkata and Vishakapatnam (Andhra Pradesh). Travelling by ship is a unique experience and the most eco-friendly way of getting to the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. However, there are at present no luxury cruises to Port Blair and the amenities on board the passenger ships that currently ply these routes may prove to be a tad basic.
Indian Nationals do not require a Restricted Access Permit. Valid Photo ID and address proof such as Drivers licence, Passport and Aadhar Card are valid documents for Indian Nationals to enter the Islands. PAN Cards are not accepted ID proofs in the Andaman Islands.
PIO/OCI/NRI Travelers visiting Andaman Islands require to carry their original and valid Passports. Foreign Nationals require a valid Indian VISA along with valid passports. This also applies to tourists arriving directly to the Andaman Islands on private or chartered yachts/flights. Any of the above category travellers wishing to visit the Andaman Islands require a Restricted Area Permit (RAP) which is issued on arrival by the immigration department and only a valid Indian Passport or a valid Foreign Passport with valid Indian Visa is mandatory. The RAP is issued to tourists upon arrival at Port Blair airport or at the seaport of embarkation of ships leaving the mainland. This free of cost process takes about 20 minutes. The RAP is issued for a 30 day stay and covers the municipal areas of the Andaman Islands.
Non-municipal areas of the Andaman Islands and almost all of Nicobar Islands are reserved under the jurisdiction of either the Forest Department or the Tribal Welfare Department. As a general rule, tourists are not issued permits to visit and stay in these areas.
Please contact our team for further information.
Tourism being the primary source of income for most locals, both English and Hindi languages are extensively spoken and understood by the majority of the population. Bengali, Tamil and Telugu languages are also commonly spoken in these islands. Our team members speak a total of four languages between them, including English, Hindi, Bengali and Tamil and we will endeavour to make you feel at home.
Indian Rupee is the accepted currency in these islands and it is advisable to convert foreign currency whilst at the mainland. Hotels, independent merchants (including diving experts and local tour guides), retailers and restaurants do not accept foreign currency. Most hotels and restaurants at Havelock do not accept Credit/ Debit Card payments due to poor internet connectivity and it is advisable to carry sufficient cash. Please note that American Express and Diners cards may not be accepted at all outlets
The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are blessed with a tropical climate. The weather is mostly warm, with spells of sunshine punctuated by pleasant sea breeze almost throughout the year. Monsoon rains occur on the islands on two separate periods of the year; that is, mid-May to September and November/December during the retreating monsoons. The scenic beauty of these islands and warmth of the local people does not diminish even during the rains – which is also the time when you get the most competitive rates for travel and hotel! So rain or shine, don't miss out an opportunity to visit these islands and take away magical memories.