The Andaman and Nicobar Islands, located in the east of the Indian mainland geographically, float in splendid isolation in the Bay of Bengal. Once a hill range extending from Myanmar to Indonesia, these picturesque undulating islands, islets numbering around 572, are covered with dense rain-fed, damp and evergreen forests and endless varieties of exotic flora and fauna. Most of these islands (about 550) are in the Andaman Group, 28 of which are inhabited. The smaller Nicobars, comprise some 22 main islands (10 inhabited). The Andaman and Nicobars are separated by the Ten Degree Channel which is 150 Kms. wide.
These islands also boast of freedom fighting days’ historically significant landmarks viz. Cellular Jail, Ross Island, Viper Island, Hopetown and Mount Harriet. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands have been declared as two of the 218 endemic bird area of the world. As many as 270 species and sub-species of birds have been reported existing in these islands, 106 of them being endemic. The Andaman Wood Pigeon, Andaman Padauk and Dugong are declared as State Bird, State Tree and State Animal respectively. There are about 96 Wildlife Sanctuaries, nine National Parks and one Biosphere Reserve in the islands. These islands are blessed with the bounties of both south-west and north-east monsoons.
Andaman and Nicobar culture show a mix of the indigenous cultures of the Negroid and the Mongoloid settlers of the island, as well as a more mainstream culture brought down by the descendants of the early settlers in the island from the Indian mainland.
The migrants also contributed to the culture of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The greatest feature of Andaman and Nicobar Islands culture is the peaceful coexistence of these two strains of cultural lives.
How to Reach
By Air :
Port Blair is connected with Chennai and Calcutta by air.
By Sea :
Regular passenger ship services are available to Port Blair from Chennai, Calcutta and Vishakhapatnam and back. The voyage takes about 50 to 60 hours.
Port Blair is the Andaman's major gateway which is well connected by air & sea while regular passenger ship services are available to Port Blair from the India’s major cities Chennai, Kolkata and Vishakhapatnam, The best way to reach these exotic islands is to take flight from New Delhi, Kolkata & Chennai. At presently the regular domestic flight services of all these India’s major cities as mention below.
PLACES TO VISIT
Port Blair :
Port Blair on South Andaman Island is the capital city of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, an Indian territory in the Bay of Bengal. Its seafront Cellular Jail, completed in 1906, hints at its past as a British penal colony and is now a memorial to Indian independence activists. Inland, the Samudrika Marine Museum showcases local marine life. The Anthropological Museum focuses on the islands' indigenous tribes.
The Andaman Islands are an Indian archipelago in the Bay of Bengal, between India and Myanmar (formerly Burma). Port Blair, the archipelago’s capital, is on South Andaman Island, and is a gateway to neighboring islands. The city’s Cellular Jail is named for its myriad small cells, meant for the solitary confinement of Indian freedom fighters during the 1900s.
Nearby, Samudrika Naval Marine Museum is home to corals and colorful fish. The Anthropological Museum displays traditional weapons and clothing from the archipelago’s tribes. The Chatham Saw Mill, linked to Port Blair by a bridge, has a museum exhibiting different types of wood from the islands. To the west, the Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park comprises several islands surrounded by clear, fish-filled waters. Northeast of Port Blair is Havelock Island, with beaches like wide Radhanagar Beach and Elephant Beach, a popular snorkeling site. On North Andaman Island, Diglipur town’s Kalipur Beach is known as a turtle-nesting ground.
Havelock Island is part of Ritchie’s Archipelago, in India’s Andaman Islands. It’s known for its dive sites and beaches, like Elephant Beach, with its coral reefs. Crescent-shaped Radhanagar Beach is a popular spot for watching the sunset. On the island’s east side, rocky sections mark long, tree-lined Vijaynagar Beach. The island's forested interior is home to birdlife such as white-headed mynas and woodpeckers.
Neill Island is an island of the Andaman Islands, located in Ritchie's Archipelago. It belongs to the South Andaman administrative district, part of the Indian union territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. the island is lying 36 km northeast from Port Blair.
Indira Point or Pygmalion Point is a village in the Nicobar district of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India. It is located in the Great Nicobar tehsil. It is the location of the southernmost point of India's territory.
Rutland Island is an island of the Andaman Islands. It belongs to the South Andaman administrative district, part of the Indian union territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. the island is lying 20 km south from Port Blair.
Baratang Island is an island of the Andaman Islands. It belongs to the North and Middle Andaman administrative district, part of the Indian union territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. the island is lying 150 km north from Port Blair.
The Cellular Jail, also known as Kala Pani, was a colonial prison in the Andaman and Nicobar Islands, India. The prison was used by the British especially to exile political prisoners to the remote archipelago.