The Lesser Known, Stellar Destinations of Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Travelling was just a source of fun a few years back but with the passing of time, as I grew into a woman from a girl, travelling seems to fetch new heights and meaning for me. It has slowly turned into my ultimate passion for it has helped me grow as a person and find the inner peace that I always wished for. Travelling has taught me to love the humblest of things and to be content and grateful for the life that I live now. My then meaningless life has now found its meaning and depth. I have learned to embrace the person I am. I am a solo traveller who also works as a software engineer to earn a living (of which a large portion goes to my travel fund). Every trip has taught me something or inspired me to be a better person. I am a person who loves to preserve each and every detail of my travel experience, which is why I record stories and details of my trip in a moderately large diary that I have. Last day, I was going through my diary, when I read the travel account on my Andaman trip. Andaman and Nicobar Islands are one of those places in India that comes under the trending list. Andaman and Nicobar Islands is an archipelago of 572 islands. It is situated in the Eastern part of India in the Bay of Bengal. The capital of Andaman and Nicobar Islands is the Port Blair City where the Vir Savarkar International Airport is situated. The island is also said to have received the first sunrise of the millennium. A major population in the area converse in Bengali though Hindi is the official language of the area. In a short span of time, Andaman and Nicobar Islands have gained immense popularity. You can either visit the islands alone or avail for a tour package to Andaman and Nicobar Islands from popular travel planners like Andaman Tour Planners. But last year I visited some offbeat destinations of the islands, which are extremely beautiful but not that popular.

Cinque Island
The Cinque Island is a fabulous destination in the archipelago that can be put under the most attractive offbeat destinations of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The island is located in the Northern part of Duncan Passage and in the centre of Rutland and Passage Islands. The Cinque Island is separated by a sandbar into two major parts called the North Cinque and South Cinque Island. The Island is a great spot for underwater diving which is why every holiday package to Andaman which includes Cinque Island comes with underwater diving provisions. As a traveller, there is one thing that ought to be noted about Cinque Island, that it is situated in the very famous Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park. The island is blessed with a rich marine life which is why tourists love engaging themselves in underwater activities like scuba diving and snorkelling. The main highlight of this tourist destination is definitely the rich collection of colorful corals and possession of rich thriving underwater life. Cinque Island is so beautiful that it could compete with an island of the world; it is like a mini Mauritius in India. It is easier for you to travel from Port Blair to Cinque Island as it is situated at a distance of 39 km from the capital city.

Ross and Smith Island
Belonging to the North Island, and separated by a sandbar the Ross and Smith Island together, is called the Twin Islands. Like any other island in Andaman, the Ross and Smith Island is also blessed with fabulous beaches, deep blue waters and lush green vegetation. The main attraction of the island is the Marine Sanctuary where one gets to witness an amazing array of thriving marine life. You get to see unique species of colorful fishes and coral reefs. One also gets to see the turtle nesting on the islands as it is home to Oliver Ridley Turtles. You shouldn't miss the opportunity as turtle nesting is a very interesting sight that is quite rare. Snorkelling and swimming are the most favorite activities of the tourists. You can travel to the island from Aerial Jetty, which is the right place to take a private boat. You could also reach Ross and Smith Island by road which is almost 200 km away from Port Blair, the capital city of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. A trip to Ross and Smith Island is going to be a very different experience for you and do add it in your itinerary to Andaman.

Campbell Bay
The southernmost point of India, Indira Point lies in Campbell Bay, a village in the Nicobar Islands of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The bay is also popular for the Campbell Bay National Park, which also a part of the Great Nicobar Biosphere Reserve. The park, established in 1992 is a heaven for Nature lovers. It is home to thick tropical forests, orchids, ferns, Nicobar pigeons, crab-eating macaque, megapode etc. that are exclusively seen in Andaman and Nicobar Islands. The park also houses thick, beautiful mangrove forests. The basin side of Glatiya River lies in the Campbell Bay National Park. Nature walk through the luscious green ferns and tropical forests are one of the most loved activities of the tourists. India's southernmost Naval air station, INS Baaz was opened recently in Campbell Bay. You can reach Campbell Bay via helicopter from Port Blair as the spot is located at a distance of 529km from the capital city of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Due to this very reason, availing helicopter services will be much easier and convenient for travellers. Campbell Bay is gradually turning into one of the most loved tourist destinations in the archipelago of islands.

Sri Vetrimalai Murugan Temple
Sri Vetrimalai Murugan Temple is one of the most famous temples of Port Blair, the capital city of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Andaman is not a travel destination wholly dedicated for beach lovers alone. It is a tourist destination that suits every sort of traveller. The temple is an example for the same. Devotees from far and wide come to visit this temple and take part in the main festivals conducted here. The deity of the temple is the Hindu God, Lord Muruga, the son of Lord Siva. The main festivals celebrated in the temple are Kanda Shashti and Panguni Uthram. Sri Vetrimalai Murugan Temple has a beautiful architecture that is influenced by the Dravidian style of architecture. The Gopuram of the temple houses ancient paintings that are going to leave you awestruck. The temple also has a historical significance. The temple was built in the year 1926, by the then British Government in order to please the Tamil population and attain their loyalty. At first, the temple was built in the Ross Island, which was the administrative capital during the British rule. After independence, the temple got shifted to Port Blair. The temple also conducts charity works, where they offer meals to the poor people of the island. They arrange as much food as to serve 40,000 people. Travelling to this temple is quite easy as it is well connected to the capital city, Port Blair. The temple is also close to many tourist destinations like Cellular Jail which is just a 20-minute drive from it. If you are a devotee of Lord Muruga, then you should never miss the Sri Vetrimalai Murugan Temple.