Andaman Nicobar Islands

According to myths, the name 'Andaman' is said to be derived from 'Hanuman', who was known to the Malays as Handuman. The first settlement by the British took place in 1789, which was later abandoned in 1796. The second settlement was basically a penal settlement, taken up in 1858, after the First War of Independence, followed by the settlement of convicts, Moplas, some criminal tribes from Central and United Provinces, refugees from erstwhile East Pakistan, Burma and Sri Lanka as well as ex-servicemen.

The aboriginal tribes of the Andamans have been living on these islands since pre-historic times. The tribes on Andaman islands are the Great Andamanese, Onges, Jarawas, and Sentinatese, all of Negrito origin. The tribes of Nicobars are of Mongoloid stock - Nicobarese and Shompens. The indigenous peoples of the Nicobars (unrelated to the Andamanese) have a similarly isolated and lengthy association with the islands. There are two main groups: the Nicobarese, or Nicobari, living throughout many of the islands; and the Shompen, restricted to the interior of Great Nicobar. In these islands people of all faiths - Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs etc., and of all languages like Hindi, Bengali, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu, Punjabi, Nicobari etc., live together in complete peace and harmony. Inter-religion and inter-regional marriages are common. This amazing racial and cultural mix is correctly called Mini-India.

Paddy is the main food crop. It is mostly cultivated in Andaman group of islands, whereas coconut and areca nut are the cash crops of Nicobar group of islands. The best time to visit the Andaman and Nicobar Islands is between October and May. Cotton is the best material to be worn here, it's comfortable and light.

Andaman Nicobar Resoures

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GENERAL INFORMATION

Area : 8248 sq.kms. (Andaman- 6408, Nicobar- 1841 sq.kms.)
Altitude : Varies from sea-level to 732 metres.(Highest Point- Saddle Peak).
Temperature : Mean minimum 23 deg C, Mean maximum 30 deg C.
Rainfall : 3000 mms (May to Mid-September & November to January).
Relative Humidity : 70% to 90%.
Forest cover : 86%.
Best Season : October to April.
Languages Spoken : Nicobari, Bengali, Tamil, Telegu, Malayalam, Hindi, English.
ISD Code : +91-3192 (STD 03192).

How to get there
The Andaman group of Islands is well connected by Air and Sea. While regular passenger ship services are available to Port Blair from Chennai, Kolkata and Vishakapatnam, there are regular domestic flight services to Port Blair from Chennai and Kolkata.
By Air
• Jet Airways – daily flights.
• Air Deccan – daily flights.
By Ship
• Chennai - Port Blair - Journey time about 60 hrs
• Calcutta - Port Blair - Journey time about 66 hrs
• Vishakapatnam - Port Blair - Journey time about 56 hrs
Ships to Chennai and Kolkata are available about 4 times a month and to Vishakapatnam once in a month. There are various classes on board the ships – AC Deluxe, Cabins etc. The ships are MV Nicobar, M. V. Nancowry M. V. Swaraj Dweep, M. V. Harshavardhana and M. V. Akbar.

List Of Islands

Little Andaman Island
This island has a beautiful beach at Butler Bay, a waterfall and plantations of oil palms. There are several sandy beaches all along the coastline of the island. You can watch the sunset at Hut Bay. The Onge tribals live here as well as Nicobarese. There are settlers from erstwhile East Pakistan and other places too. However entry to tribal areas is restricted. It takes about nine hours from Port Blair by sea to reach this island. Little Andaman Island Packages

Rangat
It’s a long but wonderful ride by car. It takes about nine hours to get here from Port Blair. On the way we pass through rain forests and waterfalls and since it’s the native land of the Jarawas, Andamans own tribes, you can spot them too in their native habitats. It’s apt for tourists who love to travel, frolic at the sea and are adventurous.
It takes 90 km by sea and at Cuthbert Bay beach you will find a turtle nesting ground. If you love to lie in the lap of pristine nature, come to Rangat and adorn yourself with its bounties. Rangat Beach Resort Packages

Ross Island
It was the erstwhile administrative headquarters of the British while they ruled here. It was known as the as the Paris of the East in the early 20th century. You can see clubhouses, swimming pools, granaries, officer’s messes, tennis courts and a majestic church that lie in ruins. It was reclaimed after an earthquake in June 1941.
Today, deer roam the islands, peering from behind the thick bushes, and if they fell safe, they’ll eat biscuits out of your hand. There’s an old graveyard, now owned by the navy. Some parts are off limits for visitors. A small museum displays pictures of its old grandeur. The entire island is quite small and can be explored by foot. The island is open every day except Wednesday. Ross Island Packages

Havelock Island
The white sandy beaches, blue waters, and coral reefs with lot of marine life including dolphins, turtles and fish are a great way to spend your evenings. It’s an ideal location for snorkeling & scuba diving. The Havelock Island is about 57 kms North East of Port Blair. Only one third of the Northern Island is inhabited. The two main beaches are the Vijaynagar Beach and the Radhanagar Beach - the most popular beach in Andamans for its crystal clear turquoise waters. Spend time with your family or friends here on these beaches; it’ll be the best holiday ever.There’s a speed boat that leaves from Port Blair at 7.00 am daily and reaches Havelock at 9.30 am. The return boat leaves Havelock at 10.00 am and reaches Port Blair at 1.00 pm. Please note that it’s not possible to leave for Havelock Island if your flight arrives after 7 00 am. We’ll have to leave the next day.Havelock Island Packages (Cruise)

Long Island
This amazing island is home to a lovely sandy beach at Lalaji Bay. It also has a beautiful area of forests and coconut plantations. It’s quite popular as it shares its name with the famous Long Island in the U.S.By sea it’s is 82 km from Port Blair. There’s a ferry thrice a week from Phoenix Bay Jetty which connects the island to Port Blair.Long Island Packages

Neil Island
The island has lush green forests and white sandy beaches that provide an ideal holiday for tourists. Camp tents are available to be put up at the beaches here. You can go snorkeling and scuba diving and watch the beautiful fish swim around you or see corals and other marine life. Neil Island is 36 kms towards the east of Port Blair. Neil Island Packages

Cinque Island
Surrounded by untouched coral reefs, the uninhabited North and South Cinque Islands are among the most attractive islands in the Andamans. It takes two hours from Chidiyatapu, and three-and-a-half hours from Wandoor by boat. There are no regular boat services but the ones available are pretty good. Special permission must be taken from the Forest Department to visit this island. Once you are here, it’s ecstatic beauty all around! Cinque Island Packages

Baratang Island
This island is situated about hundred kilometers from Port Blair by road. It’s located between South and Middle Andamans. The famous Andaman Trunk Road which connects Rangat and Mayabunder runs through this island. With the permission of the Forest Department you can visit the limestone caves and mud volcanoes about the island. It’s the perfect getaway for those nature lovers who wanna stay close to nature.Baratang Island Packages