Mysteries Of The Andamans
Located 960 km off the east coast of India, the Andamans are made up of a jigsaw scatter of more than 200 islands. The islands, which share history and traditions with each other, are inhabited by ancient tribes that today remain some of the most traditional in the world. Port Blair, the main town, offers civilized restaurants along with gorgeous rainforests and unspoiled beaches.
What To Do
The Andaman Islands offer plenty of interesting island-hopping, rainforest discovery tours, swimming and watersports – head to the bone-white beaches and the unspoiled coral reefs for some good snorkeling and diving.
Where To Stay
The first and only eco-friendly resort in the Andamans, Barefoot at Havelock is located exclusively on what Time Magazine rated as the best beach in Asia, and set in seven acres of tropical rainforest and fruit trees behind a lovely stretch of white sand at the quirkily named Beach No. 7 on Havelock Island. The resort consists of 18 beautifully designed and environmentally sensitive cottages spread out in the tropical foliage. The barefoot philosophy propagates the use of only natural indigenous materials in the resort. Nearly 75% of the staff are local to the island, and rainwater is harvested and drawn from a spring on the premises, so no water is taken from the village pipelines; a socially responsible measure as the tourist season coincides with the dry season in the islands. Activities include yoga, escorted nature walks, snorkeling and scuba diving.
When To Go
The seasons on the Andaman’s offer very little variation – temperatures fall within 23°C and 31°C year-round, with an average humidity of 80 per cent. Monsoons hit the islands between May and October and November and January, although the best time to visit is still mid-November to early April. The high season lasts from December to early January.
Visas: Most visitors will need a visa and they are available for different lengths of stay from one month, six months or multiple entry visas. NB check to see if your visas is valid from the date of entry of the date of issue.
Public holidays: New Year’s Day (some states); Republic Day (26 Jan); 1 May (some states); 30 June; Independence Day (15 Aug); Parsi New Year (Aug – some states); Mahatma Ghandi’s Birthday (2 Oct); Christmas; New Year’s Eve
Good buys: Pottery, jewellery, silks, crafts and antiques.
Local dishes: In the north, meat dishes are popular and the cuisine is often ‘Mughal style’, which is closer to food of the Middle East and Central Asia. The emphasis is more on spices and less on chilli, while grains and breads are more popular than rice. However in the south, more rice is eaten, there is more vegetarian food, and the curries tend to be hotter.
Original Post: http://www.cntraveller.com/guides/asia/india/andaman-islands/what-to-do