Thanks to Vinsy :) it all happened because of her. After Bali trip, we both hadn't traveled much..She came up with this idea of going to Andaman.
Initial ground work started...went through few blogs, talked to few friends. While planning we realized that it takes at least 15 days to cover the whole bunch of islands. We just had 5 days in hand, so we restricted our trip to 2 islands, Havelock and Neil.
2 weekends of shopping [ favorite part of any trip ;) ] and some "Be-Careful" sessions at home ...we were all set to visit the archipelago.
Flight from Chennai to Port Blair was at 5:00 am, we reached Chennai airport previous night and spent the whole night admiring the Mosquitoes on airport duty :)
Reached Port Blair around 7:00 Am, from there took a ferry to reach Havelock islands. Symphony Plams resorts at Havelock is beautiful..our cottage was just 100 Mts away from the beach.There are 3 major beaches in Havelock - Radhanagar, Elephanta and kalapattar.
On Day-1, we went to Radhanagar Beach. Had rented a two wheeler and the ride to the beach was pleasant with cool breeze and greenery on both sides. First look at the beach...and I was in love with the silky white sand, turquoise sea and lush green forest :) Gorgeous! Went for a long walk on the beach. Occasional sight of European tourists reminded me of Greek sailors ;)
Clicked a few portraits and wanted to take our pics together..couldn't find anyone...so setup my tripod and tried few click-run-pose photos :) By this time Vinsy was fed up of my Camera-friendliness :D
Waited for the sunset...but was disappointed by the clouds !...we had 4 more days...hoping to get perfect sunset in the coming days,left to the hotel.
Day-2 : was the most exciting day of the trip. It was time for Scuba diving :). All geared up, we were taken to other side of Radhanagar Beach, where in a shallow region we were taught how to breath underwater using the oxygen mask and some basic underwater communication skills. After the initial training session, we entered a whole new world...initial sinking feeling did increase my heart beat...but later it was BLISS !!!!! Silently gliding through the water, with the only sound of bubbles, I was going deeper and deeper...ears hurt with pressure change, equalized my ears ..everything around was greenish blue! I saw some corals, big ones, some of them looked like giant mushrooms, a fat colorful fish, a group of small shining fishes...marine life is so beautiful...May be this is God's version of origami :)
The "Discovery Channel" experience is one for lifetime :)
Evening, we went to "Kalapathar beach", I wonder why they named it so...it should have been.."Gorapatthar beach" ! this beach is a huge collection of sea shells...lot of variety, I didn't collect any, for the scare of the slimy living beings inside ! Vinsy collected few for her niece !
In the night, wanted to shoot stars, in the pitch dark beach, lying on my back..gazed at the dark sky/stars for sometime...this was BLISS-Part2 :-)..clicked few pics..but didn't get any great pics.
Day-3 : Early morning went to the beach near the cottage to catch the rising sun, clouds were stubborn this time too ! There was a swing at the beach, my favorite place. Sat in the swing with my morning tea and pleasant ocean :) Later went to Elephanta Beach! Awesome beach with some gigantic fallen trees ! Snorkeling and other water sports didn't fancy us much! played in sand and water..few portraits..then back to resort!
|Swinging at the beach !|
|Nothingness at Neil|
From Neil, we headed to Port Blair. On the ferry, the captain allowed us onto bridge and it was quite amusing to stand at the edge of the ferry while it zooms through the blue ocean.
At Port Blair, we visited the Cellular Jail - Kalapani. Can't believe such a beautiful island has witnessed so much of brutality. These cells are constructed in such a way so as to isolate prisoners from one another. It is very disturbing even to imagine how people lived here.
After Cellular jail, we did some shopping, and we thought of indulging in a spa. This turned out to be real Kalapani for us :D. It was too expensive and not great.
We were at Veer Savarkar International Airport to catch the flight to Chennai at 7:00 AM, saying ..."Alvida Andaman" :)