If you think you have seen all the natural beauty in India, think again. There are just whole new paradisiacal natural gems lie in waiting. And, if you carry the love for the uncrowded, unexplored, undiscovered spots, you might as well visit Andaman and Nicobar Islands’ capital Port Blair.
At first, the city would welcome you with its clear blue skies and a rugged coastline bordering the ever-green tropical forests. But, as you traverse further, you’ll realise the more you explore, the better you’ll get the essence of the city’s expanse of serenity and beauty. Finder is the keeper! On this island where there are only about 1 lakh people, you can still find a rich diverse mix of people – Telugus, Burmese, Bengalis, Nicobarese, and Tamils. The place has more surprises for you than you can imagine. There are historical places with the aura of Agra, beach-fun like Goa, and thrills of a treasure trove of a sheer wonderland. It’s difficult to figure out the whole city in a day. You need be a whole week in to admire its body and soul.
Being so far from the real metropolitan areas, you might think this place would be quite old-fashioned, under-developed, and the whole trip thing might turn out be a weary experience. But, give it a chance and it will clear all your misconception and will even surpass all your expectations. A historical sighting, abundant of nature’s bliss, or if you’re going for splashing waters – Port Blair entertains all your leisure and fun demands.
Andaman Cellular Jail
It is quite a uniqueness of Port Blair and should definitely be on your itinerary. For what was once a torture ground for freedom fighters has now been turned into an immaculate well-kept tourist site. You’d be surprised to see where so many people were executed, whipped, and even incarcerated is now a national monument decorated with gardens! Worth the thrills!
When you’re in the town, why wouldn’t you go to one of its highly-liked beach (especially by the locals)! Blue waters and the green coconut palms dotting the coast – there’s no backdrop better than this to indulge in sunbathing, surfing, and swimming.
You know Port Blair was once occupied by Japan during the World War II? Considering their rule here and given the times of a war, we were sure to get something of sorts of bunkers. A chain of bunkers was placed at strategic locations for surveillance purposes. Most of them now are in ruins, hangouts for anti-social elements, and even garbage dumps. However, the operationalisation of some bunkers has been started. Time to step back into the ’40s.
Places like Barren Volcano, Munda Pahar Beach, and Mount Harriet are also worth your time.
Things You Should Do
Since Port Blair is surrounded by water, we don’t need to tell you that lots of water sports are on the cards.
- Snorkeling, jet ski, and scuba are staples here. North Bay is the perfect place to try your hand at these. Don’t forget to enjoy sea walking where you climb down from a ship into the sea with an oxygen mask. You can watch corals or see fish gather around you in a number of hundreds (only small ones, relax) when you show fish food in your hand. You can also have underwater photographs with some charge.
- However, if you want to have a better look at corals or fishes, try snorkeling at Jolly Buoy.
- Another place where you can enjoy sea walking and be in the company of fishes is Sealink Adventure’s. The area is barricaded in order to prevent entry of crocodiles in here.
- You don’t want to go back without souvenirs, do you? Wood-carvings, jewellery, and even Port Blair t-shirts – you’re going to be taken by surprise at every nook of Aberdeen Bazaar.
Where to Eat and Drink?
The island can even give you those tastebud-thrills when you relish Chinese takeouts at your home. From south Indian dosa to fresh seafood, you can find it all in Port Blair. Check out these hot eateries:
- Aberdeen Bazaar: Like we said, Aberdeen Bazaar can leave you astonished in more ways than you can think. The amazeballs food here will keep you coming back here for more. Annaporna Cafeteria, Kattaboman hotel, and Ananda Restaurant are quite popular here.
- Mandalay Restaurant, Marine Hill: What’s better than enjoying quality food with a picturesque backdrop? You can dig in with all strength in the buffet while basking in the excellent views.
- Corbyn’s Delight, Peerless Sarovar Resort: An ocean view, check. Multi-cuisine dishes, check. A bar, check! From Indian fare to Italian and continental, you can get great food at this Port Blair’s only restaurant situated on a beach.
- Lighthouse Residency, MA Rd: Whether it’s the tandoori masala fish or the Indianised Chinese dishes, you get it all here at very fair prices. They also have cool bars in here.
Not all budgets are made the same. So whether your money is on the tight-leash or if you’re here to splurge, you can select your lodgings accordingly.
For Budgeted Tourists:
Aashiaanaa Residency Inn, Marine Hill
Central Lodge, Link Rd
Jagannath Guesthouse, MA Rd
For Mid-Range Tourists:
Zam Bed and Breakfast
Lighthouse Residency, 11 MG Rd
Fortune Resort Bay Island, Marine Hill,
For High-end Tourists:
Fortune Resort, Marine Hill
Sea Princess Beach Resort
Liking what you’re seeing? Port Blair is a paradise, if to be described in one word. So, visit this island and have one-of-a-kind experience.