I recently had been to the Andaman Islands for a vacation. I wish to share a few details if it can be of help to someone.
Arrived to Port Blair via Chennai, flight for 2 hrs. Port Blair airport was a surprise (not more than a bus terminal). But the flight went smoothly with beautiful views during landing.
Checked in at Megapode hotel, one of the best and economical places for middle class people, they have a very good restaurant and clean cottages.
Nicobari cottages are really worth for Rs.3500/= including complimentary airport pick up and drop + breakfast. Their buffet costs 250/= per head for lunch & same goes for dinner.
Their travel desk assisted us in getting ferry tickets to Havelock (charge 350/=) actual charge 260/=. Prefer upper deck only. They were kind enough to help us.
N.D Ramanujam is the ferry which took us to Havelock in the morning 6.AM and took 4 hrs to reach Havelock amidst beautiful views covered with mountains and water everywhere, we were lucky to spot 2 dolphins which is a rare site.
Upon reaching Havelock, mesmerized by the clear waters and fishes swimming around, we were delighted and we were relaxed after the 4 hr journey on the ship.
Please carry good food as you get only idly, vada and sandwiches on the ship which are not too filling and also expensive. You get tea/coffee, snacks on board the cruise.
(Wild Orchid Resort and Symphony beach resort)
We met an unknown guy by the name Karthik who owns a autorickshaw just outside the jetty, who made our stay very memorable at Havelock. We stayed at the “Wild orchids beach resort”, which is best in its own class (slightly over rated). Staff was very co-operative and the best part is the restaurant.
The prices are high for budget travelers. Remember to carry adequate cash to Havelock and Please don’t depend on credit/debit cards. Sea food is expensive than i had thought.
The room we stayed costed us 3400/ without a television. Karthik helped us find another resort nearby to this spot by name “Symphony beach resort” (owned by silver sand beach resort), which is a newly built and very tastefully built cottages with an open beach which is very nice.
The rooms did not have AC and dint have a water heater as well. The rooms were quite spacious with a price of about Rs 2000/=.
The restaurant was not up to the mark for the price they serve food. The resort arranged the return ferry tickets to Port Blair.
Karthik took us to “Radhanagar beach” (so called best beach in Havelock), it turned out to be a disappointment after having read so much about it.
Its just another ordinary beach but with clear waters. Symphony resort beach is much better and worth spending time. The charge for an auto was Rs 300/.
Karthik also arranged us a private boat to take us to “Elephant beach” (1 hr sail), one of the best thing to do at Havelock. You will find mind blowing and breathtaking views of the entire area.
It would feel like your in a dreamworld when you look at the corals which you would have seen in the TV.
We took a glass bottom boat to have a closer look at the corals, snorkeling is also good, but if you want to relax and look clearly, take a boat ride also.
Glass bottom boat ride costed about Rs 150 per head. Private boat charges were about Rs 1000/-
On arrival to Port Blair, the sail started at 2 p.m from Havelock to 6 p.m to reach Port Blair, sunsets at 5.30 during march.
We took ourselves to Megapode and relaxed.
(Corbyn’s Cove Beach)
Next morning we took a city tour to “Sagarika museum”, city zoo (few birds, monkeys, salt water crocks) not much to enjoy., “Anthropological museum” (worth seeing) and “The Emporium” for shopping (nice stuff), you can also buy real certified pearls at good rates.
We visited the “Corbyn’s cove beach” (waste of time) it is about 10-12 km with no good facilities and restaurants. We visited the “Cellular jail “which is well maintained and worth seeing.
We than took a drive to the gardens which are not so appealing as i hail from Bangalore and have seen better gardens.
The visit to sound and light show at the Cellular jail which starts at 5.30 was worth the trip and the wait.
We were all deeply involved in the show which tells the horrific tale of the sufferings of our freedom fighters and the the tortures which they endured from the Britishers and the Japanese.
Our stay in the Andaman was very memorable. We dint want to strain ourselves by travelling to different Islands so we restricted our 5 nights stay at Port Blair and Havelock which also gave us ample time to explore the places and relax.
Ideal planning to see entire Andaman would be 10 days plus.
Carry enough cash to Havelock as there were no bank atm and credit cards are not accepted everywhere.
Carry required medicines, as you have very few pharmacies at Havelock island. You can buy medicines in Port Blair which is a good city with good shopping options.
You can hire a 2 wheeler at Havelock Rs.250/= per day. Petrol is little expensive and you don’t often find petrol pumps in Havelock.
Weather keeps changing from warm to cold to a few drizzles. Evenings are pleasant.
Entry tickets to museums and parks are very cheap, don’t be cheated. Maximum entry ticket is Rs 20. Camera tickets 40/=
Food is expensive in good hotels.
Megapode is a very good hotel in Port Blair (little away from the city). If you need to stay in the shopping area you may try some other hotel. But for honeymooners, Megapode is ideal.
Restaurants operate on strict timings, so be careful or you may have to sleep with no food.
The travel blog is being posted on request by:”SYED SAMEER AHMED”
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