Latest Information on Travelling to Andaman Islands?
  • Runway Status for Port Blair Airport From October,22 to February, 23

    Updated: 19 Sep 2022
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  • 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.

  • RT PCR report on arrival

    Updated: 14 Aug 2021

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

  • 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

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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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About Barren Island

Situated in the Andaman Sea, India lies one of the most intriguing locations on the planet, Barren Island. This small island, the only confirmed active volcano in South Asia, is a geological masterpiece wrapped in a shroud of mystery and adorned with raw, natural beauty.

Despite its name, Barren Island isn't entirely barren. While the harsh environment of active volcanic activity limits biodiversity, life has found a way to persist. The waters surrounding the island teem with an array of marine species, making it a popular spot for scuba diving enthusiasts. Within its nutrient-rich waters, you will find a diverse array of marine creatures, from fascinatingly vibrant corals to exotic fish species and even some larger marine mammals. Barren Island offers a uniquely thrilling underwater experience, a world far removed from the barren landscape above.

Geological Wonder: The Volcano

The primary allure of Barren Island is undoubtedly its volcano. This stratovolcano is one of the few active ones on the Indian subcontinent, with the last eruption recorded in 2021. Towering at a height of 354 meters, the volcano has an approximately 2 km wide caldera, encompassing the main crater.

The first documented eruption dates back to 1787, and since then, it has shown frequent volcanic activity, with major eruptions noted in the 1700s, and then in the 1800s. The 1991 eruption was particularly notable due to the extensive lava flow, and subsequent eruptions in the 21st century have kept scientists and geologists across the world intrigued.

How to Reach Barren Island

Barren Island, due to its active volcanic nature, remains uninhabited by humans. That being said, the island is accessible to tourists and researchers, but with certain conditions. The Indian government permits only day visits, with no overnight stays allowed. As it is located at a remote location in the Andaman Sea, the primary access point for Barren Island is Port Blair or Havelock Island. If you are travelling to Barren Island from Havelock Island, you’d have to first take a ferry to Havelock as the most common way to reach Barren Island is by chartering a private boat or yacht. As the island is around 100 kilometres from Havelock and 140 kilometres from Port Blair, the boat trip usually takes around 3 to 5 hours one way, depending on the weather and sea conditions.

It's important to note that visiting Barren Island requires prior permission from the Forest Department in Port Blair. Also, you can visit the island only during the daytime, and you are not allowed to stay overnight due to safety reasons.

While direct landing on the island is prohibited, the boat ride offers stunning views of the volcanic island and its surroundings. For those adventurous at heart, a trip to Barren Island is certainly a unique experience, offering an opportunity to witness an active volcano and a diverse marine ecosystem.

Water Sports in Barren Island: What are Your Options?

Despite its seemingly inhospitable environment, Barren Island is a paradise for water sports enthusiasts. The highlight of these aquatic activities is undoubtedly snorkelling and scuba diving, which provide an unfiltered view into the thriving marine ecosystem that surrounds the island.

Snorkelling: The waters near Barren Island are an exciting world of undersea flora and fauna waiting to be explored. With clear visibility, these azure waters offer snorkellers a chance to observe the spectacular coral reefs that thrive in the volcano's vicinity. The warm tropical waters of the Andaman Sea and the mineral-rich outflows from volcanic activity have created an ideal habitat for a wide range of marine species.

You can enjoy sightings of a variety of fish like clownfish, parrotfish, sea anemones, and if you're lucky, you might even spot a manta ray or a reef shark. You don’t need to be an expert swimmer to snorkel in Barren Island. And don’t worry, you’ll also have a guide who’ll guide you along the way. 

Scuba diving: Scuba diving around Barren Island is an experience that divers often consider the pinnacle of their underwater adventures. It's not every day that you get the chance to dive around an active volcano, making this experience uniquely thrilling and enthralling. However, you need to be an advanced level experienced scuba diver to be able to dive near Barren Island. 

Advanced divers have the opportunity to dive deeper and explore parts of the sea that remain untouched and unexplored. This could include diving along underwater cliffs, through lava tunnels, and around black sand stretches. The unique mix of volcanic geology and marine biodiversity offers unparalleled opportunities for underwater photography. There are three main diving points at Barren Island – Manta Point, Barren Garden, and Purple Haze. 

Game Fishing in Barren Island

For the angler with a taste for adventure, the waters surrounding Barren Island offer an unparalleled open-sea game-fishing experience. The area around Barren Island, due to its lack of human habitation, offers pristine and fertile fishing grounds for those seeking a challenge. Barren Island's waters are teeming with a variety of fish species that make for excellent game fishing targets. Some of the most sought-after species include the Giant Trevally, Dogtooth Tuna, Yellowfin Tuna, Sailfish, and Marlin.

For the best game fishing experience, you should charter a professional fishing boat with experienced crews. These services generally include top-grade fishing equipment and expert advice to increase your chances of landing a trophy fish.

How much will it cost you to visit Barren Island?

Calculating the cost of visiting Barren Island can depend on several factors, including the number of people in your party, the specific services you wish to utilise, and any additional activities you plan to experience. Here are some of the primary expenses you might encounter:

Boat/Yacht Rental: The primary way to reach Barren Island is by hiring a private boat or yacht from Port Blair. Prices can vary significantly depending on the size and luxury level of the boat, ranging from INR 25,000 to upwards of INR 130,000 for a round trip.

Guide and Tour Operator Fees: You should go with a certified tour operator who knows the region well and can ensure safety. Fees can range anywhere from INR 2,500 to INR 5,000 per person. In some charter boat services, the guide service is included in the total cost. 

Permit: As Barren Island is a protected area, you need to obtain permits from the Forest Department at Port Blair. Indian nationals usually have to pay around INR 500-1000, while the fee for foreign nationals is around INR 2500. 

Snorkelling/Scuba Diving: If you're interested in snorkelling or scuba diving, you will need to consider equipment rental fees and potentially instructor fees. Depending on the dive operator, a single dive may cost anywhere between INR 3,500 and INR 6,500. Note that this does not include any other costs. 

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