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About Havelock Island
Havelock Island offers one of Asia’s best beaches, famous for its swimming elephants and unbeatable reef. Picture the white sandy beaches of Ko Pha Ngan before backpackers, full moon parties and internet cafés, and you have Havelock Island. For those searching for a peaceful escape, cut off from mobile phones, internet and commercial beach attractions, Havelock Island is certainly the next place to tick off your list. Note that there is no nightlife on the island.
Havelock is a picturesque natural paradise with beautiful white sandy beaches, rich coral reefs and lush green forest. It is one of the populated islands in the Andaman group with an area of 113 sq. km. and is located 39 km of north-east of Port Blair.
This island, with beautiful sandy beaches fringed with green canopy of the rain-fed forests beckons everyone to enjoy the frolic and fun at the azure sea.
Attractions at Havelock Islands
1. Radhanagar Beach
Seemingly the best beach in Asia according to the TIME magazine in 2004, and well, I can totally vouch for that. With its beautiful and sparkling blue waters which make few of the calmest seas I have ever witnessed, Radhanagar beach is the first and the last place you might want to visit when you come to this island. The clear waters further facilitate amazing views of the coral reefs, and snorkeling is a must do activity. To my surprise, I came across this random guy who gets his elephant to this beach to offer rides. If you need some alone time, try walking to the right side of the beach and find this place called ‘blue lagoon’, or alternatively take your bike through the forest. Radhanagar beach is the place that’ll make you want to stay on this island.
2. Elephant Beach
This beach has suffered the effects of the 2004 tsunami and has since got reduced in size; you might find a lot of Indians here. Elephant beach is nevertheless an amazing place to visit and is famous for its coral views. The place has a no. of diving and snorkeling centers. I was more interested in coming here and relaxing with my book and some food and drinks. The place is excellent for those who seek solitude and relaxation right in the lap of the Andaman Sea. For the tourists, snorkeling, swimming and scuba diving is the main attraction. The Indian snacks like bhelpuri & pani puri are available here. The people here are pretty friendly and will always smile back at you. A great place for photography I must add.
3. Kalapathar Beach
Kalapathar beach is quiet a questionable beach for some because of it being pretty far from the main town, but the reason it was chosen for its mention was because of it being an amazing picnic spot to visit either alone or with friends. Cook your own food, and enjoy your afternoon with drinks and music. As the beach’s name suggests, black colored rocks line the coastline here, there’s a forest on one side of the road, and once you cross it, you reach the heavenly and silvery beach where you might get engulfed by the sheer solitude of the calm and relaxing environment. A brilliant place to sit by and start writing some great travel stories.
4. Vijaynagar Beach
Sometimes also called Lone Mangrove Beach, Vijaynagar Beach is yet another brilliant beach in Havelock Island and has an aura of tranquility that is unparalleled elsewhere. The beach is full of life but relaxing and will make you unwind with the lullabying effect of the soft waves. The beach provides a serene environment and white soft sands, lined with beautiful sea shells, that will make each second spent here absolutely extraordinary.
For beach lovers, Havelock Island is paradise with over seven idyllic tropical beaches, beach bums can spend a week visiting a new one every day. The most you will see of a building are the bamboo cottages hidden behind the sweeping coconut palms.
Undoubtedly, Havelock’s most popular beach is the Radhanagar Beach (Beach No.7). Once rated as Asia’s fourth best beach by TIME magazine, the Andaman Islands are worth a visit just to see it. A stroll to the beach through a dense forest leads you through to the sight of white sand and crystal clear blue water. There is a treehouse restaurant serving light meals and cold drinks behind the beach, as well as a few market stalls set back from the beach selling fresh drinking coconuts. The sunset on Radhanagar Beach is also not to be missed.
Nearby, the Elephant Beach is the perfect place for snorkeling and water sports. The most badly hit beach on Havelock Island by the 2004 Tsunami offers an alternative landscape while still a paradise of white sand and the island’s best coral. For water sports and snorkeling, this is the best spot on the Andaman Islands. Activities offered include an underwater sea walk, scuba diving, Jet Skiing, glass-bottom boats and banana rides. It is most easily accessed by a 20-minute high-speed boat from the east of the island, a boat ride that offers stunning views of the island. Refreshments such as coconut water and fruits are available, but if you are planning on staying here all day, bring some food.
5. Underwater and corals
The turquoise crystal waters are perfect for a peek into the underwater world. Visit a PADI diving school to organize a scuba diving trip to see the Andaman’s rare marine life and enchanting coral reef. Even if you are not a guest at Barefoot, contact the hotel to arrange a visit to see Rajan the Asian Elephant. Snorkeling amongst fish and swimming elephants is an experience you will never forget.
Trekking through the Andaman jungle is a must-do while visiting.
If trekking isn’t your thing, be sure to hire a moped for Rs 200 a day to explore hidden waterfalls and towering palm trees, home to exotic birds and beautiful wildlife. Due to strict government restrictions, Havelock Island is one of the only islands that tourists are permitted to drive and hire mopeds. Tribal communities are protected from tourism on the islands that have resident indigenous tribes.
Best Time to Visit
October to February is the best time to visit Andaman. Mainly honeymooners can be seen visiting the island during this time. The temperature ranges between 15 ⁰C and 34 ⁰C during these months. On the other side, the months of March and April are part of the summer season in Havelock Island are ideal to enjoy various water sports like snorkelling, diving etc.
How to Reach
Government ferries connect Phoenix Bay jetty, Port Blair to Havelock Island. Private luxury boats also ferry tourists to Havelock daily. At Havelock auto rickshaws, taxis, buses, motorbikes are available for local transport. The STS Department has also introduced two AC Deluxe bus at Havelock Island for local transportation. There are also seaplanes and helicopter services between Havelock and Port Blair.
Things to Do & See In And Around
The Island of Havelock is home to scenic beaches like Radhanagar, Vijaynagar, Elephant and Kalapather, which are the top attractions of Andaman. Amongst the best things to do in Havelock Island are beach combing, sunbathing, scuba diving, sea walk, snorkeling, surfing, swimming, game fishing, watching the sunset or sunrise, bird-watching, trekking, sailing, and kayaking.