Middle Andaman: Long Island
Long Island is the ultimate eco-friendly destination for nature lovers. It is that space you want to get in for an exotic holiday. This island is a world away from smartphones, computers, and even roads.
With no modes of communication, there are only walkways through the village near the jetty and this particular walkway eventually dwindles to the beautiful forest trail. This mostly remains an undiscovered Island where trekking is an everyday affair.
The picturesque beauty called Long Island is located 47 nautical miles from the city of Port Blair having an area of 18 sq.km. Long Island is inhabited by three villages within it a namely Long village, Middle village, and Lalaji Bay.
The unique characteristics of the island are that it has its powerhouse, boat building yard, wireless facilities, hospital, range forest office along with a police outpost.
How to Reach Long Island?
You can reach Long Island from Rangat, Port Blair, Havelock, and Neil Island.
Long Island from Rangat
The most affordable way to reach Long Island is by bus from the city of Port Blair. You can reach Rangat by the Government-operated bus at 4.30 AM. It nearly takes around 8 hours to reach Rangat from Port Blair.
The bus will travel through Andaman Grand Trunk Road(ATR) to reach Yeratta Jetty at Rangat. From Yeratta Jetty you can board a Government ferry to Long Island. However, the catch is the buses do not operate daily. It operates on alternative days usually Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday at 9.00 AM and 4.00 PM.
Long Island from Havelock and Neil Island
The Government ferry that sails from Port Blair is the same that sails from Havelock Island. The ferry is functional on alternative days and it takes a stop at Neil Island before moving to Long Island.
Option of Accommodation in Long Island
There are a lot of options for you to decide to accommodate yourself in Long Island. You can take Government accommodation at Surmai Resort or can choose the best tour packages from RSR Tours and Travels. The Surmai resort is mostly preferred by travellers as it consists of essential amenities.
You can also visit Blue Planet which is a private property known as an eco-friendly hut. The hut has thatched roofing, walls, low lying mattresses, and mosquito nets essential for backpackers.
The accommodations at Long Island are very basic and kind of environmentally friendly. So, it is better not to expect any luxurious accommodation in Long Island.
Activities To Do At Long Island
Every Island is a haven for different water sports activities. Long Island is no different. The serenity and beauty of Long Island have made it a perfect place for various sea activities.
You can spend your time swimming, lazing around in the beaches and can also board a private chartered boat. Nature walks, scuba diving, trekking, and view of sunset are some activities to do in Long Island.
Major Attractions of Long Island
Some of the major attractions of Long Island include Lalaji Beach, Guitar Island, and the most popular Merk Bay Beach.
Lalaji Bay Beach is a pristine sandy beaches on the western coast of Long Island. You need to take a fiber boat from Long Island jetty to get to the scenic beach.
Guitar Island is the most adorable beach near Long Island. The island’s name is derived from the shape and its appearance. The island is joined by a sandbar that acts like the fret-board.
Merk Bay Beach, on the other hand, is another beautiful beach accessible from Long Island and is situated on North Passage Island. North Passage Island is very close to Strait Island that hosts the Onge tribe community.
To visit all the three major attractions you will normally require 1 full day. You can also hire a private charter from Long Island to visit from one island to another and can complete exploring all the three islands in one go.
Long Island is mostly recognized for its village tourism. It is famous for its dense natural vegetation and marine life.The unexplored scenery and exotic beauty of the island attract tourists for a nature adventure.
It belongs to the East Baratang Group Islands and is part of Rangat Taluk. Long Island is home to about 2000 locals mainly scattered within Middle, Long, and Lalaji Bay village. The underwater ecosystem is vast and includes colourful corals, tortoise, fishes, and more.
The best time to visit Long Island is during the winter season that begins from November to January. Most people visit the island for snorkelling as the water level is appropriate enough for the activity to dive into the wild.
Long Island may look small but there is a lot to explore and experience on that Island. The luscious and thick mangroves form a unique part of the forest ecosystem.
Being far away from the mainland, there is no particular cuisine on the island. However, if you are hungry, you can have fresh seafood, coffee, tea, and a few selective fresh juices.
For those who love to gobble over South Indian food, there is a Laxmi Hotel that serves best South Indian food.
Guitar Island has been tagged as the most scenic and adorable beach located on Long Island in the land of Andamans. The beach possesses crystal clear water filled with a tranquil environment. The island is located just opposite what is known as Small Guitar Island.
If you want to completely relax and disconnect yourself from the hustle and bustle of life, then this beach is an ideal spot for you to explore a peaceful environment.
Guitar Island Beach is one of the rare and subtly explored places in Middle Andaman Island. the surreal shape of the island is a treat to watch as it forms the shape of a guitar from the top.
The long beach invites you to waves splashing against the sun-kissed shore full of colourful sea creatures. The beach is home to unique sea creatures such as sand crabs, hermit crabs, and several other insects. The island is also connected to other neighbouring islands that can be accessed during low tide.
Way To Guitar Island Beach?
You can make your way towards Guitar Island which is just 90km from the city of Port Blair. You can travel either by road or through the sea using a traditional boat.
A drive from Port Blair to Rangat usually takes 5 to 6 hours post which you can take a 30 minutes bus ride to Yerrata Jetty. Guitar Island is a part of Long Island and can be approached by dinghy which is a traditional boat. From Havelock Island, you can opt for the Government ferry which runs every alternate day to reach Long Island.
Best Time To Visit Guitar Island
The concentration of tourists is from December to February on Guitar Island. The island can be accessed throughout the year depending on a visitor’s choice of holiday.
The temperature shoots up to 35 degrees on summers from February to May. It is a serene island composed of picturesque beauty. The winter season, normally from October to January is cooler and the temperature hits 20-Degree Celsius. You are requested to avoid your visit to that place during monsoons.
Places To Visit Near Guitar Island
There are not too many places Guitar Island Beach for exploration. A few places to visit include Small Guitar Island, Rangat, Aamkunj Beach, etc.
Small Guitar Island is a neighbouring island of Guitar Island resembling spotless white sandy beaches with crystal clear underwater.
Rangat, on the other hand, is a mangrove region bestowed with nature’s wonder. Being a hub of eco-tourism, Rangat has quite a few eco-friendly resorts and full of surprises for travellers.
A nice dive into the Aamkunj beach is what you shall remember after visiting the Andaman Islands. Moricidera is another eco-tourism spot in Rangat ideal to go for picnics with your friends and family.
Lalaji Bay Island
Lalaji Bay Beach is a beautiful white sand beach on the west coast of Long Island. You need to take a fiber boat from the Long Island jetty to approach the beautiful beach. The route from the Long Island to Lalaji Bay Beach is through the open sea and indeed an enthralling adventure.
On your way, the boat will cross through the lush mangrove forest which itself is a perfect scenic view for a vacation. The island is bestowed with a white sandy beaches and crystal clear water. One can easily get sun-soaked or get immersed in turquoise water to relax the mind and body.
Ways To Reach Lalaji Bay Beach
There are two ways to approach Lalaji Bay Beach. One you can take a chartered fiber boat from Long Island to Lalaji Beach and the second option is to visit through trekking.
The private chartered boat will take about 30 to 40 minutes on a clear day when there is low tide. This remains the most comfortable option but is a little expensive.
You can start the trekking trail near the Blue Planet eco huts that will take 1.5 hours to reach your destination. This option is quite economic and adventurous for travellers.
Best Time To Visit Lalaji Bay Beach
The weather of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands is usually mild and cool. But the best time to visit Lalaji Bay Beach is between October and March. The weather during that period remains cool with less humidity.
Activities To Do At Lalaji Bay Beach
The adventurous activities to participate at Lalaji Bay Beach comprised of swimming and snorkelling. However, to feel the crashing waves hitting the shimmering coastlines is a treat for peace lovers. To get to the beach, you need to take a 2-hour long walk through lush greenery and can derive the utmost pleasure from the moment.
Lalaji Beach is well connected to Rangat through continuous ferry boat service but lies at a distance of 89 kilometers from the city of Port Blair. To avoid lengthy sea trips, people like to board the bus to reach Rangat.
Places To Visit At Lalaji Beach
Lalaji Bay Beach is a magical box of thrilling experiences. You can be assured of an adventure-packed ride to satisfy your adventurous spirits. One of the most popular destinations to go for a visit include excursion right in the city of Port Blair.
This is a getaway for tourists to explore amazing water sports activities. Long Island is a private island known as a dream island situated near the coastline. Blue Planet hosts a good number of water sports activities and has lovely eco huts for travellers who wish to visit the island.
Delicious Cuisines Near Lalaji Bay Beach
Andaman Beaches have popular restaurants providing excellent sea food. The most popular restaurant near Lalaji Bay Beach has to be an Excel Dining establishment. It offers delicious cuisines and breathes taking sea surroundings with a lot of eating options.
If you want to gobble over regional cuisines you can go for Red Snapper. The Kerala coffee shop along with Nemo Cafe are budget-friendly options for travellers. If you are a vegan, then Fat Martin Cafe is a delightful meal option for you.
You can grab the best holiday deals from RSR Tours and Travel for a comfortable staycation at Lalaji Bay Beach with your friends and family.
It is always good to explore nature and rejuvenate your inner self to work efficiently. Nature has its way of healing people. What is needed is time and a little bit of effort to make that happen. The rest is all peace.