Ep - 2 A Day in Havelock Island, Water sports at Havelock island, Radha nagar beach ,Andaman Islands
Namaskar friends! Welcome to Visa2explore! This is your host Harish Bali. Right now, we are in Andaman. This morning we left Port Blair in a government ferry to reach Havelock Island. You will see our journey to Havelock Island on our other channel, Harish Bali Travels. During this 2.5 hours journey, I realized that...
...you must stand out on the ferry deck at least 10 minutes before you reach the shore. This is because the ferry stops just for 10 minutes at the jetty point before starting back. In case you miss out the announcement and keep sitting inside... ...the ferry will pick up new passengers and leave the dock. So, this is my important hint to those travelling in this region. Do you see this ship docked here? I don't know where this ship is headed - either Neel Island or Port Blair. There are three big ship operators here - Makkruz, government ferries & Green Ocean.
Right! On this side, I see lots of smaller boats. We will spend the day here and the night as well. Tomorrow, we will go to the Neel Island. Right! So let us now leave to visit the island. Taking the morning ferry has the added benefit that you've the whole day at your disposal. After deboarding at the jetty, we had to travel 10 KM to reach the TSG Resort.
I first tried to book a government accommodation on this island. When we couldn't get that, I looked for a property closer to the Radha Nagar beach. The Radha Nagar beach is just 10-12 minutes of walking distance from here. That's why we booked this property.
If you want government accommodation, you need to book at least a month in advance. Because we couldn't get it even 20 days earlier. And it isn't even peak season. That would be in November, December, and January. At that time, you might need to book a room a month or two in advance.
We have paid tariff of Rs 5000 for this room. For two rooms, we paid a tariff of Rs 10,000. Room is nice! Looks overall comfortable! Now, the scene is that the time is 10.45 AM.
We also talked to a taxi driver once we reached here. He will bring the car in a short while so that we can carry out our program for today. We will take that and go to Elephant Beach. We have reached the spot from where we will take the boat to Elephant Beach. I have understood their whole system.
The per person charge for this boat journey is Rs 1000. When they get a group of 10 persons, the boat leaves the dock. We are a group of four here. We could have had to wait till our group of 10 is complete. So, to save time, we've hired the whole boat for this journey.
So, instead of paying Rs 4000 for our group of 4, we've paid Rs 10,000 for the whole boat. I have also noted that they offer a lot of activities at the Elephant Beach. This gentleman here is properly explaining each activity to tourists. He is also suggesting that we must book our activities here. Anyways, I will book the tickets for a few activities now.
Give me tickets for jet-ski. And sea walk too! For some reason, we aren't able to do the said activity, then? Then Rs 1000 will be deducted in case of sea walking. Rest of the money will be refunded.
What are the charges for the sea walk? It is Rs 3500 per person including photography. Alright. So it would be Rs 4000 if we also ask you for a video shot? With photography, it is Rs 3500 per person? Per person! Alright, sounds good! QR code? Yes, I am giving that to you. In case you visit here, the boat service begins at 8 AM. The last boat of the day leaves here at 1 PM.
So, that means, if you come here at 2.30 PM thinking of visiting the Elephant Beach... ...you won't be able to go and from the beach, the last boat leaves back at 3.30 PM. 3.30 PM is the last time to leave the beach because it is forest area. The boats will stay there till 3.30 PM along with the crew and captain of the boat. If you want to go into the water, you can keep your valuables, mobile phones, etc in the locker. But you will need to remember the boat name because you will tracked with that.
Okay? This is your ticket and your boat's name is "Shaheen Seaways." Shaheen Seaways! I need to remember this. Where is the boat person? Shall we go? Let's go.
In this place, the options in vegetarian food are limited. There are restaurants, but they serve fast food, takeaway type food. There aren't many joints serving vegetarian food. That is my observation on the face of it, rest, there might be more restaurants elsewhere.
Let me eat some biryani before we start our journey. This biryani costs Rs 200 and I bought it from a nearby stall. Nice! Simple taste! There is something in the air of this place because we are already feeling happy When you will come here, you'll feel that... ..the sea, the clouds, the sky, this whole environment is speaking to you. To encapsulate this feeling, I would say a positive energy enters your being.
While we were talking on the way, Shubhankar told me the sea wasn't so rough today. Usually, in a rough sea, the water rises in huge waves. Finally, we've reached the Elephant Beach. It is looking good, right? There are lots of water activities going on here. The public is enjoying even as a light drizzle is falling from the sky. Wow! Amazing! How many tourists visit here during the day? Normally, more than a thousand visit during a day.
More than a thousand! Ahaa! What fun! I have now come to a side of the beach. On this side, there are lots of stalls selling bhelpuri, fruit chaat, cold drinks. Apart from that, there is coconut water, of course. Water sports activities are the key attraction of this place. The second attraction here is the corals.
So, let's do one thing, instead of going for water activity in this rain, let us go & see corals. It would be good to go for snorkeling first. On return, we will go for jet-ski. Our ticket worth Rs 1000 includes a free snorkeling session. But now, this gentleman is telling me that the package snorkeling lasts only for 5 minutes. If you want a deep-sea experience of snorkeling...
...it would last at least 15-20 minutes. That would cost Rs 1000 with complementary photography & videography included. I am thinking why not spend a few more bucks and enjoy this experience as well. Shall we? Yes, let me help you put on a life jacket before I send you further.
Okay, alright! You should then tell us your experience! Yes, sure! Let's go. Come! I will have to leave the microphone behind. You should push your feet back, alright! Yes, lower yourself into water. Keep your feet back! Just lie down on your chest Sir. I've done snorkeling after ages. I did it for the first time many years ago, and now, for the second time here today.
First, they made me wear a mask. And do you see those people? That is where they took us, about 100-125 meters into water. Down there, we saw corals. We saw lots of fish, with smaller ones floating right next to me. We also saw large-size fish. Now, the guides swim alongside you, and you are also swimming in a way.
They keep telling you names of different fish from above the surface & you're able to hear. Overall, good experience! This activity took us about 15-20 minutes to complete, including the time taken to travel. Right! Let us go on. As I've already said, it can rain anytime here, like it was bright and sunny a minute ago. And now it has started raining again! I am going to ride jet-ski now. You know, we have purchased tickets for jet-ski in advance.
Right before we boarded the boat. On reaching here, I realized that it was a better idea to buy tickets once you reach here. That way, you can choose to do activities at your own pace.
Rather than buying all tickets at once and later realizing that.... ...you wanted to do one activity twice and the other not at all. So, I think it is better to do activities one by one and buy tickets accordingly. I am thinking of going for a banana boat ride now. So, brother tell me, who will sit with me? There will be a guide. A guide, yes. There will be a guide.
Where is the guide? The guide is on a ride currently. Yes, please call the guide. And also, what are the charges for this disco? Rs 600. Rs 600 per person? All the activities cost Rs 600 per person.
Alright! This is great! You don't have to worry about different rates for different activities. It is straight up Rs 600. It's possible while watching this video, you might think we're using lot of on-face camera.
You won't be seeing lot of scenes from the surroundings in this video. And that is how it is going to be till the end of this video. The reason is that today, for the second time on this trip, our camera took in some water. You remember we visited Chidiay Tapu and Munda Mountain in our previous episode.
The camera took in some water during the rainfall there and we weren't able to dry it up. But as it happened again today, we lost complete data in our secondary camera. This is the reason you'll not see many views in this episode. I really enjoying the banana boat ride here. Thank you, brother! You gave us a perfectly enjoyable ride. It felt so good to put your feet into water during the ride.
Since i was the only one riding, I've got quite some water into my eyes as well. Now, I am double-minded about whether I should go for a sea walk or not because.... ...of the problem that my eyes have already started itching from the seawater. So, it would be better to avoid the sea walk.
For that, let us return. He will deduct Rs 1000 and return me Rs 3000 of my ticket cost. Rest, I would like to say this before I leave. I really enjoyed this banana boat ride with you. Thank you! Let me take a shower and then we'll walk up to the boat. Sure! Alright! Oh! I forgot to pick up my jacket.
I am back after taking my shower, which costs Rs 50 per person. I am thinking of eating something before I leave here. Bhelpuri, Papdi-Chaat! Do you have Papdi-chaat? Yes, we have. Papdi-chaat and bhelpuri? We have bhelpuri, papdi-chaat, jeera-chaat! For now, give me bhelpuri. How much is it for?
You have prepared it in advance? 60 rs for bhelpuri! Good! In any case, when you come back from a water sports activity... ...and get to eat something tangy like this. Just perfect! See, you won't get proper food to eat here. From what I've seen here, you will get such snack items only.
Nothing like dal-chawal! What more do you have? We have papdi-chaat. It will be sweet and sour! How much for papdi-chaat? 100 Rs. For 100 rs. Just make it as best as you can. I thought you would add dahi (yogurt) to the papdi-chaat. No dahi! It is a different recipe.
It is different? Yes! Where is your partner? He must be around somewhere here. Hmm! I am happy to have done two things here. No.1 is banana boat ride! No. 2 eating papdi-chaat!
Bhelpuri is nice too! But papdi-chaat is good! To be honest, so far, I've had papdi-chaat only with dahi. I was carrying that flavour in my mind. But this is very tangy! Yes Sir, it is different. Right, it is tangy! Mmm! Very good! Lovely! We will leave here once your partner gets back. We cannot even make a phone call as there is no network here.
Which telecom provider has the best network on Havelock Island? Here, we have good services by Airtel and Jio. Airtel and Jio! At our hotel, we only have Airtel, not Jio. Jio works here but for that you need to head to a specific location. But overall, BSNL works the best here.
BSNL, Airtel, and Jio! The island is vacant now, see everybody is leaving. The time is 3.32 PM. It will take us 30 minutes to reach back. We will reach there by 4 or 4.05 PM. And by 4.30 PM, we should reach the Radha Nagar beach.
Come, let's go! As soon as we hear Andaman, the first thing that comes to mind is the beautiful beaches. Then, the water sports activities, especially scuba-diving. I believe this place has a lot more to offer than just sea beaches. Like the environment! While travelling on roads here, when you see greenery on either side, you feel satisfied! What they call 'mesmerising.' Then there is the fresh, crisp air, the cloud-filled sky! And almost no traffic at all.
You won't find any traffic signals on the roads here. Port Blair also didn't have any signals earlier. But with the influx of tourists, a few traffic signals have been put up.
But we are in Havelock island right now. And we are getting strong village vibes here. We have reached the Radha Nagar beach.
Now, let us walk up to the beach. I am quite excited to visit this beach because it has been awarded a "Blue Flag." Not many Indian beaches have earned this recognition.
This beach is one of the few. See people are enjoying deep into the sea. I have been hearing for years that you must visit Havelock when you visit the Andamans. In Havelock, everyone suggested we should visit the Radha Nagar beach.
It has only been a minute since we entered here and we are already on cloud nine. What a natural beauty! People are enjoying so much in the water. When I reached here, someone asked if I wanted to take a swim in the shallow water. They said, it would be fun! But as is the case at every beach... Being on the edge of the beach is okay, but if you venture any further... ...the sea water will pull you in. Safety first! Though, I've just come back from a beach, I still feel like getting into the water here.
Wow! Nice! One more thing that I've noticed here is that the sand is very soft. Usually sand around sea beaches isn't so soft and also check out its colour. It is a mix of grey and white colours.
(Public Announcement!) The first thing that comes to mind when you think of Havelock Island is.... ...this famous Radha Nagar Beach. But I liked Bharatpur beach more than Radha Nagar beach. That you will see in the coming episodes of Neil Island.
The new name for Neil Island is 'Shaheed Dweep.' If you start following the trees that you see in the front... ...I mean if you take a complete circle following these trees along the beach... ...it would feel as if you were watching a 'C' shape beach. The English alphabet 'C'.
With the sea in front of it. This further enhances the natural beauty of this place. It has been fun to be here and I've noticed one more thing here. There are huts built along the beach here.
A lot of tourists are also sitting inside the huts. And they are watching the sea from there. Great! We have been here now for about 50 minutes. It will become dark in another 5-7 minutes. Now, we will go back from here. We will look for an eatery outside and eat a snack or have dinner.
Please come! We have come to one of the 4-5 eateries in front of the parking lot. And we have ordered Paneer Bhurji and Dal. The good thing is we got tawa chapati here. This is what I generally prefer, as I have already mentioned several times. I prefer tawa chapati over tandoori roti. Oh! This is a light chapati.
Very simple taste! It has fewer spices than what we put into the one we cook at home. The overall taste is good. Dal is just okay! Though, I liked the paneer bhurji. Wherever you travel in India, you will get local food to eat. But in Andaman, you won't get to eat the local tribal food anywhere. Because people from all communities live her.e
They cook their own food. Generally, restaurants serve North and South Indian cuisines. There are more people from Bengali community than any other community. Tourists cannot visit the tribal areas here When you will travel from Port Blair to Baratang, you will pass through a tribal area. You cannot stop on the way there and, more importantly, you cannot click photos too. It is 6.30 PM
We are ending our day here. When we are traveling on the mainland, ending our day at 6.30 PM means a huge thing. I don't remember when was the last time we packed up at 6.30 PM.
It happened once or twice, but never three times in a row. But here, it gets really dark by 6.30 PM and people have their dinner by 7.00 PM. And you won't see anyone on the road after 8 PM. I am talking of Havelock Island and in Port Blair as well, it is completely quiet after 9 PM. I mentioned it before that calling someone in Port Blair at or after 9 PM is considered odd.
But 6 PM is perfectly alright. Anyways, the market is still open. There are few more eateries where we had our dinner. Our hotel is at walking distance and we will reach there in 10 minutes. Tomorrow, we plan to visit Kala Pathar early morning to watch the sunrise. It will take a lot of determination because we'll have to leave at 4.30 AM.
We will have to leave at 4.20 or 4.30 AM to reach there in time. Bye-bye! Thanks for your time!