The Andaman Islands are a serene and pristine cluster of over 572 islands that are truly a paradise on Earth. The intense colonial history, culture, and the beautiful beaches have made the islands a perfect destination to fulfill your vacation needs!
One of the perks of being a citizen of the Indian subcontinent is that you don’t need a passport, visa, or any other official document to visit the islands. All you need to do is take into consideration the information put out by the administration of Andaman.
If you’re a foreign traveler, you will definitely need to carry your passport along with your visa. Most foreign nationals don’t require a RAP, ie. a Restricted Area Permit. However, if you’re traveling from Afghanistan, Myanmar, China, and Pakistan, you will have to get one from the Ministry of Home Affairs.
The first step of your journey to Andaman would require you to reach Port Blair, the capital of Andaman.
You can reach Port Blair, the capital of Andaman, by either air or water from most major cities in India. Travelers can take direct flights from major Indian cities, which will last 2.5-4 hours. You will easily get many hopping flights or ‘one-stop’ options for the rest of the cities.
For those who want to reach Andaman by water, ships are operated by the Indian Government from the ports in three coastal cities in India. This journey will take you almost 3 to 4 days, and you will land at the main sea-port at Port Blair. However, we don’t recommend this as a mode of travel, because it’s not a cruise-type vessel but more of a basic passenger + cargo ship.
How and Where to Travel by Air?
Taking a flight is the fastest way to reach Andaman from mainland India. You can take a direct flight from Kolkata, Bengaluru, Chennai, Hyderabad, Delhi and Vizag to reach Andaman within 2.5 to 3.5 hours! There are also connecting flights from other airports in the country.
Foreign travelers may note that there are no direct international flights to and from Andaman, since there’s no international airport as of now. You will have to fly here from Mainland India.
Veer Savarkar airport is the only commercial airport in Port Blair, Andaman. Popular domestic flight services like Indigo Airlines, Air India, Indian Airlines, Spice Jet, Go Air and Vistara have daily flights from major Indian cities. You can get exciting offers or discounts if you book in advance! Also, keep a close eye on last-minute deals that come through from time to time, especially if you’re not the type of traveler who books their trip well in advance.
A flight from Delhi will take you around 5 hours. For those living in Kolkata or Chennai, travel time shouldn’t be more than 2.5 hours! If you’re traveling from anywhere else in India, you will have a layover or a hopping flight.
Tip: Take an early morning flight and don’t lose out on the day!
Travel by Sea
While this doesn’t come recommended by us, for those who want to take up the option of reaching by sea, you can board a ship from Kolkata and Chennai 3-4 times a month and only once from Visakhapatnam. However, the travel time would be around 3-4 days (50-60 hours).
We don’t recommend traveling by sea in these passenger ships due to the duration, limited food choice, possible sea-sickness and no entertainment options. You’ll have plenty of time surrounded by beautiful waters when you reach Andaman!
It isn’t really easy to make a booking for these ships either, as travelers will have to physically visit the Tickets Corporation Offices in Chennai, Calcutta and Visakhapatnam.