The ultimate tropical paradise, this archipelago of over 500 islands boasts white sands and turquoise waters that are spectacularly stunning. And you can blissfully soak it all in from the idyllic palm-fringed shores! Despite being small in size, the Andaman Islands are full of surprises.


1. Unknown fact about Cellular Jail.



Confinement in the small cells gave this facility its name ‘Cellular Jail’. About 20,000 cubic feet of local stone and 30,00,000 bricks made by prisoners were used to construct the jail. The infrastructure for hard labor such as Iron grills, chains, fetters, shackles, flogging stands, and oil mills was brought from England.


2. Commercial fishing is banned in Andaman Sea.



In an effort to preserve underwater flora and fauna including indigenous marine life like dugongs and giant sea turtles along with its rich coral reserves, commercial fishing in the waters surrounding the Andaman Islands is banned.


3. Andaman has South Asia’s only active volcano.  



On the uninhabited Barren Island, about 135 kilometers from Port Blair, is where you will find Asia’s only known active volcano. Barren Volcano first erupted in 1787 and then in 2010—an eruption that lasted six months. It’s been known to spew lava in smaller eruptions since then.


4. It’s illegal to interact with any tribals in Andaman Islands.



In parts of the South and Middle Andaman Islands, the nomadic Jarawa's are a protected tribe whose population ranges between 250-400 individuals. Any attempt to interact with the isolated tribe, who themselves shun contact with outsiders, is deemed illegal.


5. Andaman’s name is derived from Lord Hanuman.



Ever wondered how the Andaman Islands got its name? It’s believed that it’s a derivation of Lord Hanuman who halted in the region while on his way to Lanka. Famous islands including Neil and Ross are named after British engineers, dating back to the East India Company. Who knew?


6. Andaman Islands was an active war zone during World War II.



The serenity of the Andaman Islands was disrupted during World War II, when Japan controlled the region before giving it up to the British in 1945. The Museum of the Japanese Occupation in Port Blair documents the events of the active war zone at the time.


7. Andaman is home to the largest crabs Species in the world!



The hermit crabs, or Birgus Latro as they are scientifically called, are the largest known anthropoids that stay mostly on land. They are also known as coconut crabs, robber crabs, and palm thieves. The Andaman Islands are home to the highest number of these crustaceans.


8. Dugong (Peaceful Animal), is also the state animal of Andaman & Nicobar Islands.



The tranquil Dugongs can be found grazing contentedly on seagrass in the warm coastal waters of Andaman and Nicobar Island. They are large, chubby marine vegetarians with short, paddle-like front flippers. The Ritchie's archipelago, North Reef, Little Andaman, and some of Nicobar are among the locations where one may see these sluggish creatures, sometimes known as "angels of the sea."


9. Islands are the biggest nesting site for leatherback turtles.



The leatherback sea turtle is the largest of all living turtles. That’s quite a distinction! Every year, they make their way by the hundreds, if not more, to the Andaman Islands to nest here. To give you an idea of how huge they are, adults average a size of between 1-1.75 meters in length and between 250-700 kilograms in weight.


10. Mud volcano can only be seen in Baratang-Andamans-India.



Believe it or not, the sight of bubbling mud is a major attraction in the Andaman Islands. The mud volcanoes on Baratang Island are the only ones of their kind in India and are formed because of chemical reactions between water and gases under the surface. Spewing once in a while, the mud craters are quite a geological phenomenon.