Latest Information on Travelling to Andaman Islands?
  • Andaman Tourism Opens

    Updated: 14 Aug 2021

    Andaman Tourism Opens: The Andaman & Nicobar administration has announced that all tourist spots in the South Andaman district will be opened for tourism activities with immediate effect 8 Feb 2022.

  • What is the advisory to travel to North & Middle Andaman District?

    Updated: 14 Aug 2021

    The tourists are allowed to visit Baratang/North & Middle Andaman on production of double dose covid certificate/ All other passengers viz. unvaccinated and partially vaccinated passengers (those who have taken only 1S1 dose of COVID vaccine) shall have to produce RT-PCR negative test report

  • RT PCR report on arrival

    Updated: 14 Aug 2021

    A negative RT PCR report has to be presented by all passengers on arrival.

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  • All asymptomatic fully vaccinated persons coming to these islands from mainland are exempted from the requirement of carrying RT-PCR negative test report,irrespective of the type of vaccine received and country of origin. Such fullyvaccinated individuals shall produce the final vaccination certificate at the origin airport, sea port in the mainland and at Port Blair Airport / sea port.
  • Alt asymptomatic children below 5 years of age are exempted from carrying RT-PCR negative test report and further RT-PCR testing at Port Blair Airport.
  • All other passengers viz. unvaccinated and partially vaccinated passengers (those who have taken only 1S1 dose of COVID vaccine) shall have to produce RT-PCR negative test report to travel to Port Blair from the mainland, as is the practice now. Such an RT-PCR test should have been taken within 48 hours prior to commencement of journey from the origin airport connecting Port Blair. Such passengers will also have to undergo additional RT-PCR test on arrival at Port Blair. Such passengers shall remain in self-quarantine till the arrival of the test report.
  • If a passenger on arrival is tested positive then, the prescribed quarantine protocol is to be followed.
  • All Airlines shall ensure strict compliance of this order and observance of COVID Appropriate Behaviour. Any non-compliance shall invite action under Disaster Management Act and other applicable laws. 
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General Guidelines defined for traveling to Andaman Islands during COVID :

  1. The Tourism Activities are permitted only in South Andaman & North & Middle Andaman District except Nicobar District.
  2. Persons above 65 years of age, persons with home co-morbidities, pregnant women and children below the age of 10 years advised not to travel for tourism purposes.
  3. Tourists/Visitors who are at higher risk due to some medical history are advised to take extra precautions.
  4. Tourists/visitors shall minimize contact with other staff and visitors as far as possible and zero contact policy should be followed at all tourist destinations.
  5. All tourists/visitors shall be briefed by the hotel concerned about do’s & don’ts to be mandatorily followed during their stay and movements.
  6. While travelling tourists/visitors should wear a face mask and carry their own sanitizer and wet wipes for personal use.
  7. At all tourist destinations, staff must wear face masks and wash/sanitize hands regularly while performing their duties.
  8. Arogya Setu App shall be mandatory for all incoming tourists/visitors.
  9. Respiratory etiquettes to be strictly followed. This involves strict practice of covering one’s mouth and nose while coughing/sneezing with a tissue handkerchief/flexed elbow and disposing off used tissues properly after use.
  10. The tourists/visitors on arrival at Port Blair airport have to undergo mandatory Covid-19 screening with RTPCR test free of cost. Thereafter the tourists/ visitors are allowed to move to their respective hotels. However, they will have to be under quarantine at Port Blair in their hotel rooms until the result of RTPCR tests are received. In case of RTPCR positive test results, the tourists/visitors shall remain in institutional quarantine in hotels notified by the Hoteliers Association in consent with the A&%N Administration, on rate as specified or to the designated hospital/ Covid 19 care centre on case to case basis.
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What are the guidelines for testing for tourists coming to Andaman after August 03 2021?

On arrival at Port Blair :

1. The tourists need to carry COVID-19 negative test report from mainland based 1CMR approved lab using Reverse Transcriptase-Polymerase Chain Reaction (RTPCR). However, the sample for RTPCR test should have been taken within 48 hours prior to starting the journey from the origin station. (For e.g. if the tourist takes a flight from Delhi at 0600 hrs. on 1st September, 2021, the sample for RTPCR test should have been taken not before 0600 hrs. on 30th August, 2021).

2. The tourists/visitors on arrival at Port Blair airport have to undergo mandatory Covid-19 screening with RTPCR test free of cost. Thereafter the tourists/visitors are allowed to move to their respective hotels. However, they will have to be under quarantine at Port Blair in their hotel rooms until the result of RTPCR tests are received. In case of RTPCR positive test results, the tourists/visitors shall remain in
institutional quarantine in hotels notified by the Hoteliers Association in consent with the A&N Administration, on rates as specified or to the designated hospital/ Covid-19 care centre on case-to-case basis.

3. Tourists may also have to undergo random Rapid Antigen Test conducted from time to time on payment basis as prescribed by A8N Administration.

What if the tourists test positive after arriving at the Andaman Islands?


If the tourists tests positive during their stay in the Islands, he/she will need to undergo institutional isolation as per existing health protocols. The
cost of such isolation for govt. facility will be paid by the tourists as fixed by the administration from time to time.

If the patient wants to stay at hotels, he/she can stay in the hotels if all the conditions below are met:

a) Patients are not symptomatic and not more than 60 years old.
b) Request/ undertaking is made by patient in writing.
c)lf allowed by doctors.

Hotels will make necessary arrangements to designate a part of their rooms for institutional isolation for this purpose.

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  • Regular flights to Port Blair (the capital of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands) are operational now.
  • There are direct flights from Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, and Delhi.
  • Public transports like cabs, taxis, and bus services are also functional.
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Travellers should carefully follow social distancing norms and wear masks as well. Also, before making any booking, they should refer to the latest travel news on the government website of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

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Travel Guide To Neil Island

Travel Guide To Neil Island
Date : 08 Feb 2021
Categories: Travel Guide

Just like the size of the word, Neil Island is also a small island spread across 13.7 square kilometres of land floating over the mesmerising ocean. Officially termed as Shaheed Dweep, this island along with Havelock Island come under the administrative part of South Andaman district and hence are located separately far from the mainland in the sea towards east. It is almost 37 km away from Port Blair, thus easily accessible via ferries. Locally known as the vegetable bowl of Andaman, this island has the suitable climate to Carrying with it a soothing aura to relax and admire the beauty, this island has very much contrast characteristics with that of Havelock Island. If you are an adventurer who wishes to find serenity in the beaches of Andaman, then Neil Island should be your first choice. The unmatchable biodiversity that is left untouched on the white sandy beaches sharing the space with the enthusiastic ocean water is truly admirable. Travellers with the motive of spending quality time alone or with you family/friends in a comparatively less crowded place, away from the hustle-bustle of commercialisation should visit this island without a second thought. Since, it has not been many years that this island was made available for tourists, so it is also one of the reasons for less crowd, which is an added advantage for peace lovers.

This island is known to be much popular amongst foreign tourists than Indian tourists because they tend to spend weeks in comparison to Indians who just visit here for a day. The untrodden paths and isolated beaches are not the things to miss when you come here to give yourself a treat. The roads are a delight, filled with paddy cultivation and banana plantations that diffuses a delicious smell in the air as you travel by.

Our Package

Best Time to Visit Neil Island:

The ideal time to pay your visit to Neil Island is from December to February as the winter season is bearable and enjoyable. If you don’t want to have a sweaty and exhausted sightseeing experience then you should definitely plan your trip during the winter months. Light rain showers can also result in spotting spellbinding rainbows, adding vibrant colours to your trip. This season is preferred over summer and monsoon because it does not create hindrances in terms of temperature and water sports availability. And on the top of it, you won’t face issues regarding ferry delays during this time of the year so you can enjoy a convenient vacation.

How to Reach Neil Island:

Once you reach Port Blair or Havelock Island, it is very easy to make your way to Neil Island. The closest airport to Neil Island is the Veer Savarkar Airport in Port Blair. There are inter island ferries available to connect you to Neil Island via Government ferries, private ferries and helicopter services. The most preferred and recommended route for the tourists is Port Blair – Havelock Island (Swaraj Dweep) – Neil Island (Shaheed Dweep) – Port Blair route but if you wish to avoid crowded journeys you can definitely take up Port Blair – Neil Island (Shaheed Dweep) – Havelock Island (Swaraj Dweep) – Port Blair route. It totally depends on you to decide upon the route and mode of transportation as per your preferences. The ferry takes 60-90 minutes to land you to Neil Island whereas the helicopter takes only 15 minutes to travel the distance.

Airways:

The Government administered helicopter services- Pawan Hans operates in this island which allows tourists to travel to and fro Port Blair and Neil Island within no time. This service was introduced as an addition to the faster mode of travel in case of Government officials and medical emergencies. It is considered to take 15 minutes to land you on Neil Island with proper safety and precautions. If you have a restricted time period for travelling and spending your vacation, then you should definitely consider this option to save time and invest it in dwelling the time in moving around the island.

Seaways:

Travelling via seaways could be a warm hug in the cool splashy ocean. The sight of the never ending sea would want you to reconsider your idea of spending your rest of the life on land. There are two available option to avail via seaways- government ferries and Private ferries, out of which private ferries give you a comparatively more enjoyable and commodious journey. The jetty at Bharatpur Beach is the only jetty on the islands and this is where all private and government ships dock.

Government Ferries:

Government ferries are the budget friendly mode of transportation except the fact that it requires lot of patience to stand in the queue to book your tickets. These have to be done 3 days before the departure so if you have planned to stay in Andaman for long then you might go for this option. If you have hired any tour operator or travel agent then you can approach them for your conveyance but then it would bear extra charges. The sailing schedules for these ferries are also published in the Administrative News of Andamans daily so you can take a look and decide accordingly. The most annoying disadvantage of travelling via Government ferries is that there is a high possibility of tickets not being confirmed so why take a risk, isn’t it? The earlier you sort out the mode of transportation, the better it is for you to experience less hectic journey.

Tickets can be booked in advance in Port Blair and Havelock; you can even get the tickets done from our portal. From Rangat  (via Long Island and Havelock) there is also a ferry coming from the north to Neil that takes approx. 1 hour but the boat timings are subject to change/cancellation due to weather and one should always check the latest boat schedule (incl. fares) for a smooth journey overall. The timings of the regular ferries leaving at Phoenix Jetty are:
Time
Duration to Reach Neil Island
6:00 AM
2 hrs
11:00 AM
2 hrs

Private Ferries:

The private ferries is preferred to provide a touch of luxury to your travel journey. It is not only the destination that one should enjoy, the journey has its own beauty- which stand true in case of surfing through the ocean waves in private ferries. You can have a feel of Tiny Titanic and enjoy the prestige of the royal travel. These ferries ply from Port Blair Phoenix Bay Harbor & Haddo wharf. There are various private ferries operators you can choose from, amongst which the popular ones are:
Makruzz
Green Ocean Cruise
ITT Majestic
The bookings can be made via our portal for your convenience.

Transportation of Neil Island:

Since Neil Island is a tiny one spread around over only a few kilometres, the transportation ways are far more convenient and easily accessible than any other island. The flat, easy going and well navigated roads is the reason why tourists do not find it difficult to make their way around the entire island. Along with it if you cannot locate your way, the local residents would make your heart melt with their warm and kind gestures to help you out. There are various transportation available depending upon the personal choice of the tourists. It is generally recommendable to rent two wheelers and turn on the beach mode by putting on your favourite outfits.
The options available to you can be listed down as:

Bicycles: To give your young bones a remembrance of childhood fun, you can definitely go for a bicycle as the eco-friendly mode of transportation. It is one of the best mode to witness every minute scenic beauty with a pause and appreciation. Many hotel, resorts or transportation services can provide you rental bicycles @ Rs. 150/- approx.

Scooters: This is the best possible option for you to explore the Neil Island with your family and friends. There are many options available near the jetty and around the hotels too to book your rental bikes and scooters for a day. It almost costs around Rs. 500-600/- for renting a scooter for the entire day along with the licence card. Pro tip: Since there is no petrol pump on this island, make sure you fuel in the tank before 5 in the evening and make your travel worth by visiting all the best places and not missing out on any place.

Bus: There is only one Government bus that is available here for the public transport and starts from the main bazaar (market) and goes till Sitapur Beach. It comes after every 1.5 hrs, through which you can have the entire visit to the Island twice. The ticket costs around Rs. 20/- which is very cheap. The bus cater you to have interaction with other tourists and local people to collect verbal and heartful memories.

Auto-rickshaws: The tourists can also go for auto-rickshaws, for which there is no fixed price and thus differs largely depending upon the mode and place of bookings.

Rented/ Pre-booked Cabs: If you are with your family, then the best option for you is pre-booked cabs that can be booked online and are available throughout the year. Also, to cover the 3 point trip, Rented cabs is the most suitable option.  The rates for this also varies but they are around Rs. 1500/-

Duration of Stay in Neil Island:

It solely depends on the tourists regarding their duration of stay. Frankly, this place deserves a lot more importance as the vibes are unmatchable along with the
tranquillity and relaxing atmosphere. Usually tourists with families plan their trip to Neil in their itinerary as a one day event but wander lust and peace lovers spend more than a week here, jamming, playing and calming their bubbling thoughts of eternal life. Technically, the tropical greenery of this island is one of the reasons of why one should reconsider spending more time on this island.

People of Neil Island:

This island has a population of 3,040 (2011 census), thus making it an unpopulated environment to isolate and find peace in the phenomenal beaches of this island. Like Havelock, the vast majority of settlers at Neill were refugees from erstwhile Bangladesh, following the exodus of Hindu Bangladeshis prior to that country's war of independence in 1971. Agriculture is the primary occupation of the villagers, and the island supplies vegetables to the rest of Andaman. The people will guide you to the tour of this tiny island very conveniently and they are the most reliable people to ask for directions and reviews on the island.

Culture of Neil Island:

The culture of Neil Island is subtle, chill and breezy. Tourists come here to find their inner peace and takes away a whole set of memories while exploring this small island. Just like Havelock Island, here too the tourists enjoy the diverse cultural festivals which adds colours to the skies. The exotic dishes, fancy restaurants, luxury hotels and perfect ambience is the USP of this place. The loveliness of this island is reflected through its rich, painted like green surroundings with plantations and agricultural avenue.

Language of Neil Island:

The communicating language is diverse as this place is influenced by the refugees and their mother tongues. Most frequently, Hindi is used by most of the people and hence widely understood but along with it, regional languages such as Bengali and Tamil. Because of increased foreign tourism, English language has also prevailed as one of the conversing languages, which is also now common amongst the local residents.

Exploring Neil Island:

Beaches: The sands of the overwhelming beach sticks to the body and gleams under the bright sun while one embraces the soulful breaths filled with the sound of playing water in this Island. The beaches of this island serves you the perfect get away with your family and friends away from the overburdening city chores. The glorious mood of these beaches would want you to lay down from dusk till dawn with a lovely, heart-warming sunset. The beaches are comparatively quiet and offers the perfect location to give a rest to your ears and mind. There are 5 beaches on this island which are named after the characters of the Ramayana- the Hindu epic, namely: Ramnagar Beach, Laxmanpur Beach, Sitapur Beach, Bharatpur Beach and Natural Bridge Formation.
 
Ramnagar Beach: This beach is close to the Atreya Mangrove Point and is highly underestimated by the tourists. The beauty of this beach lies in its splendid sunset which many of the tourists fail to encounter due to tiredness of their day tour of the island. The beach is located in an off area near the Sitapur Beach, full of varied species of trees and vibrant coral reefs. The water sport available on this beach is snorkelling as the ample of fishes, swimming and cutting through the water hypes up the thrill of this water sport.

Laxmanpur Beach: Crowned by the title of being the 2nd best beach of Andaman after Radhanagar Beach, this triangular beach is an awe of wonder in terms of sightseeing with a wide shoreline. The sides separates the beach into a dense forest canopy and a never ending ocean where the forest side locates small benches and huts to relax and calm the mind. The white shell along with shallow water is the perfect place to try the hand on snorkelling and embrace the experience of vacations. The waters of this beach resides amusing creatures, the natural rock and coral formation is a terrific geological creation and the witnessing the sunset on this beach is like a dreamy note with musical backdrop.

Sitapur Beach: Sitapur Beach gives you the start to your tour in Neil Island. With the heart clinching sunset, one stands irresistibly still to appreciate the morning rays that falls on the faces, glowing up the face golden and glossy. It has a curved shoreline stretching all over with surrounding tropical trees and hilly rocks on the sides, trapping the water in the middle and opens up into a wide view of the horizon. The ocean is not suitable for swimming and other water sports because of the deal corals and rocky features but the dual curved bays and small caves still makes this beach a worth visit. The natural vegetation and limestone formations cover most of the part of this beach’s attraction.

Bharatpur Beach: This beach is located half kilometres away from the Neil Island jetty, and it glorifies the presence of one of the best corals which can be explored by glass boat riding. This beach offers variety of options to try out various water sports activities like scuba diving, jet skiing, snorkelling, game fishing etc. to enjoy with family and friends. The shoreline is stretched wide and is seen to be parked with both personal and commercial boats. The natural aura along with commercialisation makes this place to pay heed to.

Natural Rock Formation: This magnificent geological structure has surpassed the tests of time by projecting its eyes-warming sight of beauty to the tourists. It is located near Laxmanpur Beach 2 but it is not visible from the beach thus tourists shall have to take a left from the Laxmanpur beach shoreline to reach there. The best time to visit this place is during the low tides as the waves take away the dead coral, making it easier to walk and reducing the risk of slipping. In addition to this, Natural Bridge 2 can also be explored if you are a travel freak.

Water Sports: These beaches provide ample of opportunities for tourists to indulge in several water sports activities to rejuvenate the playful vibes and get lost in the ocean of madness and fun. With pleasant morning, sun and frolic afternoon and relaxing evening, your stay in Neil Island can be a fairy tale with all the modern and classic facilities provided by the hospitality businesses and resorts. The water sports available here can sink your heart in the ocean of excitement. The vendors are available to guide you and give you the most memorable experience to imbibe in your memory book. The water sports available in Neil Island can be penned down as:
Scuba diving
Snorkelling
Jet skiing
Glass bottom boat ride
Swimming

3 Point Tour of Neil Island: If you have set your itinerary of one day stay at Neil Island, then this plan is for you to cover all the beautiful beaches of Neil Island. This tour allows you to visit the 3 main beaches of Neil Island, namely: Sitapur Beach, Bharatpur Beach and Laxmanpur Beach. The beautiful sunrise of Sitapur Beach, followed by the marvellous and enriching experience of the water sports and activities of Bharatpur Island and lastly, the soothing white sand walks on Laxmanpur Beach will set your soul on fire and water at the same time.

Trekking and Bird Watching: The tropical forest of the Neil Island suits best for trekking, but with a proper hired guide to ease the pathways and prevent from losing sight of your group. The forest is also a home to wide variety of bird species which can be carefully observed by patiently keeping an eye on the movements and sounds in the dense forest. Your binoculars could be your best buddy and camera your best tool to capture the diversity and dynamism of this island.

Candlelight Dinner: What could be more perfect than to spend the tired evening with your partner under the moon hung sky along the beach side, with 2 perfectly lit candles and exotic food served on the platter? Such daydreams can come true during the nightlife of Neil Island. The Gentle romantic music diffuses a charm and passion in the ambience, serving as the perfect place to shred off the tiredness of the entire day with your loved ones. With less tourism in Neil, the candlelight dinner is generally chaos free here unlike Havelock and other commercialised islands.

Nightlife in Neil Island: Even though not being a place to party and have a nightlife, still this place offers some private rooms and halls in some resorts and hotels to enjoy in Neil Island. Certain hotels and resorts also hosts pool parties, outdoor parties and other café parties for their customers and in the tourism season.

Village in Neil Island:

The 5 villages of Neil island, namely: Sitapur, Bharatpur, Ramnagar, Laxmanpur and Neil Kendra are vivacious and full of amazing beauty. The evergreen splendour of the forests and the cultural ethnicity of these villages brings to you the traditional lifestyle of Andaman. These villages have the 5 beaches of this island and thus, a lot of people take a tour of both the villages and the beaches hand in hand. You can go lost in the villages and revive in the beaches with the cool winds and bouncy sea waves.

Hotels to Stay in Neil Island:

Through the tourism rate is low here, but the hotels are no less in luxury and comfort. There are various hotels and resorts available in Neil Island which offers you both traditional and modern life setting aroma within your rooms. The hotels that you must consider when you visit Neil Island are listed below:

Restaurants in Neil Island:

The delicious beachy cuisine would trigger the food explorer in you and you won’t be able to resist yourself to try out the meals from one of the best places of Neil Island. The eateries here are really rich in taste and offers a calm and cool environment to eat and enjoy with family and friends. Some of which we would really like you to go and give a try are:
1. Hungry Stone Restaurant
2. Seashell Restaurant
3.Ripon Sea foods
4.Yatri Dhaba
5. Full Moon Café
6. Dugong Restaurant
7. Sea Zaika

Markets in Neil Island:

Neil Island has a sophisticatedly small market which has small shops that sell all the required commodities for the locals and the tourists. Since, Neil Island is the vegetable bowl of Andaman, there is ample supply of the fresh fruits and vegetables. It is duly noted that Port Blair also attains the fruits and vegetables from Neil Island market. The local population can be found here in great numbers during the evening and often it is seen to be the most crowded place on Neil Island. On an interesting note, this island has only two ATMs and both are located at the bazaar – Syndicate Bank and Cooperative Bank. Here, no money exchange takes place and some small resort owners do accept foreign currency especially in emergency situations and later exchange this in Port Blair.

Connectivity in Neil Island:

This island does not support broadband connectivity and data network is available but is turtle-slow and difficult to operate. BSNL provides a better range of network and connectivity but only at some specific locations.

Healthcare and Safety in Neil Island:

Neil Island has only one primary healthcare centre which serves free treatment. Emergencies and special healthcare, the Port Blair hospitals are referred. Here as well, the Andaman and Nicobar Police operates and ensures the law enforcement with proper discipline efficiently. In case of emergencies, the following numbers could be of great help and support:
Primary Health Center & Ambulance Service: 03192-282627
Police Station: 03192-282602
Police Radio: 03192-282676

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