Andaman is a remarkable destination with plenty of history and natural beauty. Located approximately 1,200 km away from mainland India, it is a group of 572 islands in the Indian Ocean. It boasts captivating beaches, tropical islands and pristine marine reserves. From touristy things to unusual things, I am going to share the 15 most amazing things to do in Andaman. You will see the best of the Andaman Islands with this list.
Things To Do in Andaman
- Cellular Jail Light And Sound Show
- Stroll The Shoreline of Radhanagar Beach
- Go Scuba And Snorkeling
- Ride Glass Bottom Boat in Elephant Island
- Wander Around The Abandoned Ross Island
- Soak in The Vistas of Baratang Island
- See Turtle Nesting in Diglipur
- Visit Asia’s Oldest Saw Mill
- Go Museum Hopping in Port Blair
- Watch The Sunset at Chidiya Tapu
- Walk The Natural Bridge of Neil Island
- Take A Tour of Parrot Island
- Birding at Mount Harriet National Park
- Visit Ross and Smith Islands
- Explore Seashells at Kalapathar Beach
1. Cellular Jail Light and Sound Show
I have witnessed light and sound shows at several places but Cellular Jail’s show was indeed different. It was stunning and thought-provoking at the same time.
The light and sound effects kind of recreate the aura of the British-era prison. One can almost visualize what would have happened back then in this dreaded jail.
The cells and corridors of the jail are lit in a synchronized manner as they narrate the heart-wrenching stories of India’s freedom struggle.
I recommend watching this show if you are visiting Port Blair. It is one of the best things to do in Andaman. The show is conducted in Hindi and English, and the first show for the day starts at 6 pm.
Also Read: 12 Best Places in Port Blair To Visit.
2. Stroll the Shoreline of Radhanagar Beach
Imagine an expansive white sand beachfront outlined by dense foliage, complemented by serene waters and a gentle wind. In an idyllic corner of Andaman exists one of India’s most famous beaches, known as Radhanagar Beach.
It is located in Havelock Island, nearly 11 km away from the island’s only jetty. This beach is famed for receiving the accolade of Asia’s best beach by Time Magazine.
Amongst all the amazing things to do in Andaman, a visit to this beach is a must. Take a peaceful amble along the scenic shorelines and soak in the astounding vistas of the beach.
Also Read: Radhanagar Beach – A Quick Travel Guide.
3. Go Scuba and Snorkeling
The Andaman Sea is home to bountiful marine life, including coral reefs and beautiful fish. It offers opportunities to explore the undersea world by indulging in scuba diving and snorkeling.
Havelock Island is the main hub of all such water activities. You need to undergo short training before you go scuba diving. There is no training required as such for snorkeling and it is one of the coolest things to do in Andaman.
Whether you engage in scuba or snorkeling, an instructor always accompanies you. All the efforts feel worthy when you come across schools of colourful fishes playing hide and seek with you. 🙂
4. Ride Glass Bottom Boat in Elephant Island
Elephant Island is accessible from Havelock through ferries. The azure water sea here is brimming with marine life.
Riding a glass-bottom boat is one of the best ways to delve into the mesmerizing world of corals. You can explore this from the comfort of a boat. Unlike diving and snorkeling, you don’t need to wear any additional gear.
5. Wander Around The Abandoned Ross Island
Once a buzzing town of the British period, the ruins of Ross Island are a major draw for tourists. British used this island as a place for penal settlement for political convicts.
From lavish mansions to clubhouses to markets, they had all on this tiny island to suit their extravagant lifestyle. It was abandoned later and prisoners were shifted to other jails.
Japanese briefly ruled over this island during the second world war. This was the time when eminent freedom fighter Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose visited here. The island was renamed after him by the Government of India in 2018.
Taking a half-day trip to Ross Island is one of the best things to do in Andaman. It is reachable by ferry from Port Blair.
You can still see the remains of the colonial-era structures that are mostly covered with roots and trees. Apart from that, you get to meet the wild inhabitants of the island.
It is not inhabited by humans but is home to deer, peacocks and rabbits. Much to my surprise, Ross Island’s deer are friendly and take a lot of pride in posing for the camera. 🙂
Also Read: Ross Islands – 10 Things To Know Before Visiting.
6. Soak in The Vistas of Baratang Island
Baratang is one of the most picturesque islands in the archipelago, and a wealth of rare natural marvels earns it a mention on the list of things to do in Andaman.
In addition, you can enjoy a scenic journey through dense tropical forests when you take a trip from Port Blair to Baratang.
It is located in the North and Middle Andaman district, some 100 km away from Port Blair. The road to Baratang also crosses protected forests that are home to Jarawa tribes.
Limestone stone caves and mud volcanoes are popular attractions here. The beautiful limestone formations of Baratang caves are a feast for the eyes.
Mud volcanoes are also worth-seeing because it is unique. These are natural formations that spew out watery clay (mud) instead of hot molten lava.
7. See Turtle Nesting in Diglipur
Away from the usual tourist circuit of the archipelago, Diglipur Island lies in the northern part of the Andaman Islands. It is located around 300 km from Port Blair.
Diglipur is connected to Port Blair by road and by ferry. Besides private cabs, buses also ply between the two locations. Kalipur Beach and Ramnagar Beach are some of the best spots in Diglipur where you can see the turtle nesting.
Witnessing the mass nesting of turtles is a sight to behold. It is one of the most wonderful things to do in Andaman for nature lovers.
In the winter season (November to February), thousands of rare turtles come ashore to lay eggs. Visit the beach in the evening to catch a glimpse of this unbelievable sight.
8. Visit Asia’s Oldest Saw Mill
Famous as one of the oldest sawmills in Asia, Chatham Saw Mill has 130 plus years-long history associated with it. What intrigued me the most is the fact that the mill is still functional with old machines.
For those interested in exploring sites beyond beaches, the sawmill tour is one of the best things to do in Andaman. A walkthrough of the mill gives an overview of how timbers were processed in the olden days.
The mill was damaged in bombing during World War II but it was rebuilt and production resumed after the war. It also hosts a saw museum and a Japanese bunker.
9. Go Museum Hopping in Port Blair
The capital city of Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Port Blair hosts several museums of great importance. They offer deep insights into the native culture, marine life and vegetation of the region.
Samudrika Marine Museum, Anthropological Museum and Fisheries Museum (aquarium) are some of the best museums in the city that are worth checking. Samudrika Marine Museum demonstrates different aspects of the marine ecosystem of the Andaman Islands.
With a fabulous collection of artifacts, the Anthropological Museum provides a glimpse into the tribal culture of Andaman. In the Fisheries Museum, a wide range of seashells and corals on display is a major attraction for visitors.
10. Watch The Sunset at Chidiya Tapu
The sunset scenery at Chidiya Tapu Beach is more beautiful than mere words can describe. The beach is around 30 minutes drive from Port Blair city.
Watching a soothing sunset at this beach is one of the coolest things to do in Andaman. As the sun dips below the horizon, the beach is adorned in a golden glow. Sit at the shore and look at the magic happening.
11. Walk The Natural Bridge of Neil Island
Counted amongst the most gorgeous islands in India, Neil Island is famed for its natural attractions. The Natural Bridge, also known as the Howrah Bridge of Andaman is one such prized possession. It is a rock formation at Lakshmanpur beach number II in Neil Island.
You can visit here only at low tide. The approach to the bridge is through rocky surfaces and dead corals. But it is worth all the efforts.
Once you get there, enjoy splendid views of the natural bridge with turquoise blue Andaman Sea in the backdrop. The beach is replete with shallow pools which are flourishing habitats for sea creatures.
In addition to beautiful fishes, you can spot sea cucumbers and many types of crabs. Exploring the Natural Bridge in Neil Island is definitely one of the most amazing things to do in Andaman.
Also read: 6 Best Things To See and Do in Neil Island.
12. Take a Tour of Parrot Island
When you are done exploring the caves and mud volcanoes of Baratang, head over to Parrot Island. Hire a boat from Baratang jetty which is about a 30-minutes ride. Sunset is the best time to visit here.
As soon as the sun sets, you are rewarded with astounding views of myriad parrots flocking together in the sky. Visiting this birding paradise is one of the unforgettable things to do in Andaman for nature lovers.
13. Birding At Mount Harriet National Park
Set at a distance of about 20 km from Port Blair, Mount Harriet National Park is a picturesque hamlet in South Andaman. It was made a national park in 1979.
The park is accessible by ferry through Chatham Jetty in Port Blair. It is home to numerous endemic birds. Some of the birds found here include Andaman cuckoo-dove, Andaman woodpecker and Andaman treepie.
For birdwatchers, ambling the tropical forests of Mount Harriet National Park is one of the wonderful things to do in Andaman.
Besides the avifauna (birds), it is home to the endangered Andaman wild pigs, albeit rare to sight. With copious trekking trails, the park is also popular amongst trekkers.
If you are interested to know more about planning a trip to Mount Harriet, check this post: Travel Guide To Mount Harriet National Park.
14. Visit Ross and Smith Islands
Situated approximately 20 km off the Aerial Bay jetty in Diglipur is the pristine Ross and Smith Islands. It is also referred to as twin islands. Do not confuse it with South Andaman’s Ross Island.
It is reachable from Aerial Bay jetty by a speed boat. Ross and Smith are two separate islands, connected by a natural sand bridge. In high tide, the sand bar gets submerged in water. So, you can see it only when there is low tide.
If you want to go offbeat, taking a trip to twin islands is one of the wonderful things to do in Andaman. Away from the touristy crowd of South Andaman, spend some time absorbing the peaceful environs. Additionally, scuba diving and snorkeling are also offered here.
15. Explore Seashells at Kalapathar Beach
One of the least crowded beaches in Andaman, Kalapathar Beach is known for its picture-perfect landscapes. And what sets it apart is the abundance of seashells on the seashore.
It is located in Havelock Island, some 13 km away from Radhanagar Beach. Take a gentle amble along the shoreline and you will stumble upon plenty of seashells scattered around.
Over To You Now…
This was my pick of the 15 best things to do in Andaman. Did I miss something worth exploring? Share your thoughts and ideas in the comment section below.