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Port Blair is the largest town and the capital of the Andaman and Nicobar Island group - aka the Emerald Islands - which is a union territory of India. It lies on the east coast of South Andaman Island and is the main entry point to the islands. With a cluster of tin-roofed houses, shops and restaurants, there is also the very well known Andaman Water Sports Complex that provides visitors with the entire range of water sports. Snorkelling and scuba diving are popular, as are rides on jet skis, banana boats, and speedboats. Also on offer is a variety of sea food delicacies, besides Indian, Chinese, Continental, and Burmese cuisine. Those fascinated by fauna and flora will be sure to visit the mini zoo and the Forest museum. There is also a colourful aquarium that is very interesting to those who appreciate marine life. Also on offer is a tour to North Bay Island for snorkelling and a ride in a glass bottomed boat to absorb the great views of all kinds of coral fields and sea creatures.
 
The Andamans lie on the ancient trade routes between India and the Far East. They were known to mariners from as early as the 7th century. Among the first western visitors in the 13th century was Marco Polo, who wrote of the inhabitants as being "hostile people who would kill and eat any outsider that ventured onto the islands." However, it was later established that cannibalism was not a practice in the islands.
 
The islands were first settled by the British in the late 18th century when Captain Archibald Blair, on behalf of the British East India Company, founded a naval station on Chatham Island, now known as Port Blair. In 1858 a penal colony was established in Port Blair, used mainly to hold Indian freedom fighters. The clearing of jungle areas and reclaiming of swamps by these first convicts gradually helped to establish a settlement. The growing population consisted mostly of convicts who, after they served their time, decided to stay and settle in the Andamans. During World War II, the islands were occupied by the Japanese, who incarcerated many Indians on the suspicion of being British spies. As a result the local tribes took up guerrilla activities against the Japanese. When India gained independence from Britain in 1947, the islands became part of the Indian Union.
 
Port Blair is the only town of any size in the islands and functions as the administrative capital. Situated around the main harbor and spread out over a few hills, Port Blair has the air of a lively Indian market town. A number of museums offer interesting exhibits featuring the marinelife, rare animal species found in the Andamans and the way of life of the indigenous tribes. A major tourist attraction is the Cellular Jail built by the British at the beginning of this century and regarded today as a shrine to India's freedom fighters.
 
Where You're Dock
Cruise Ships dock at Port Blair. The Chatham Jetty is about 3 miles from the town center. Taxis are generally available at the pier. We recommend you establish the fare with the driver before setting out.
 
Thing To See and Do
 
Cellular Jail
Cellular Jail, located at Port Blair, stood mute witness to the tortures meted out to the freedom fighters, who were incarcerated in this jail. The Jail, completed in the year 1906 acquired the name ‘Cellular’ because it is entirely  made Cellular Jail, Port Blairup of individual cells for the solitary confinement. It originally was a seven prolonged, puce-coloured building with central-tower acting as its fulcrum and a massive structure comprising honeycomb like corridors. The building was subsequently damaged and presently three out of the seven prongs are intact. The Jail, now a place of pilgrimage for all freedom loving people, has been declared a National Memorial. The Jail Museum here draws your memories back to those years of freedom struggle. Timings for Cellular Jail & Jail Museum: 9:00 AM to 12:30 PM, 1:30 PM to 4:45 PM Monday Closed. Entry Fee: Rs. 5/-, Camera : Rs. 10/-, Video Camera : Rs. 50/- Ph: 03192-230117
 
Son-et-Lumiere (Sound & Light Show)
The saga of the heroic freedom struggle, brought alive in a moving Son-et-Lumiere, in the Cellular Jail, is very popular among the tourists. Every day, the Hindi show start at 5.30 PM. English show is available on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 6.45 PM. On Tuesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays the second show at 6.45 PM again is in Hindi. On days of English shows, there could also be a third show in Hindi at 8 PM subject to the minimum prescribed demand. Entry fee for Adult is Rs. 20/- and Child Rs. 10/-.
 
Ross Island
This small island in less than a sq. km area that stands right across Port Blair, encompassing in a way the entire life of the Andamans. It was once the home of the indigenous tribe – Great Andamanese, whose number dwindled from 5,000 to just 28 within 20 years of the initial British occupation. The Island served as the capital from 1858 till 1941, when the Japanese occupied it and converted it into a PoW site. The ruins of the church and the Chief Commissioner’s house among overcrowding vines and aerial roots are the most evocative of the remains. Private ferries operate from Aberdeen Jetty in Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex at 8.30 am, 10.30 am, 12.30 pm and 2 pm. Service is not available on Wednesdays. The boat will take you across from the Aberdeen Jetty and bring you back after an hour’s stay. Entry ticket : Rs. 20, Camera : Rs. 25, Boat tickets : Rs. 75/-, below 5 Yrs. Free. Ph: 03192-200408.
 
Viper Island
viper islandThe Island derives its name from the vessel ‘Viper’ in which Lt. Archibald Blair came to the Islands in 1768 with the purpose of establishing a Penal Settlement. The vessel, it is believed, met with an accident and its wreckage was abandoned near the Island. Gallows built on top of a hillock, visible to all prisoners in the Island, signified death. Sher Ali, the Pathan, guilty of murdering Lord Mayao, was condemned to death and hanged at Viper Island. The Jail at Viper, where prisoners deported from the mainland were confined, was built by the British under the supervision of Major Fort. Work on the prison was started in 1867. Owing to the working conditions, the Jail earned the notorious name Viper Chain Gang Jail. Private ferry operators conduct Harbour Cruise from Aberdeen Jetty connecting Viper Island everyday at 3:00 PM. Ticket Cost : Rs. 75/-.
 
Anthropological Museum
Anthropological Museum in Port BlairStarted in the year 1975-76, the Anthropological museum in Port Blair is an ethnographic museum. It illustrates the four Negrito Tribes of the Andamans viz. the Jarawas, Sentinelese, Great Andamanese and the Onges and two Mongoloid tribes of the Nicobar viz. the Nicobarese and the Shompens. Entry Fee: Rs. 10/-, Rs. 3/- for Children. Timings: 8.30 AM to 1.00 PM, 1.30 PM to 4.30 PM. It is closed on Thursdays & Govt. Holidays. Ph: 03192-232291.
 
Fisheries Museum
Situated near Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex, Port Blair, it exhibits species of marine life endemic to the Islands and found in the Indo-Pacific and the Bay of Bengal. It is closed on Mondays and Public holidays/second Saturdays. Timings: 9.00 AM to 1.00 PM, 2.00 PM to 4.45 PM Entry Fee: Adult Rs. 5/-, Child Rs. 3/-, video without focus light : Rs. 35/-. Ph: 03192-231848.
 
Samudrika (Naval Marine Museum)
Situated opposite to Andaman Teal House Delanipur, Port Blair, this museum is meant to create awareness on various aspects of oceanic environment. A good collection of shells, corals and a few species of colorful fishes of the islands are on display. Timings: 9.00 AM-12.00 Noon, 2.00 PM -5.00 PM, Closed on Monday & Holidays. Entry Fee: Rs. 10/-. Ph: 03192-232012 ext. 2437.
 
Zoological Survey of India Museum
Situated near Andaman Teal House, this museum exhibits several varieties of sponges, corals, butterflies, and centipedes etc. Open on all working days from 9.00 AM till 5.00 PM. Saturday, Sunday & Public Holidays: 9.00 AM to 12.30 PM. Ph: 03192-233148/237582.
 
Corbyn’s Cove Beach
Corbyn Cove Beach, Port BlairCorbyn’s Cove Beach, the coconut-palm-fringed beach, ideal for sun basking is 6 km away from Port Blair town. It is the only beach in Port Blair. All facilities like hotel, restaurant, bar, changing room etc. are available near the beach. Historical remains like Japanese bunkers can be seen on the way. The Snake Island, situated just across the beach is famous for Scuba Diving. Tourist Coaches are available from Andaman Teal House to Corbyn’s Cove as a part of conducted tours.
 
North Bay Beach
North Bay Beach is just north of Port Blair. The beach and the snorkeling opportunities in its fringing coral reefs are the closest ones you will find to Port Blair, and therefore, it gets quite crowded. A ferry (9 AM and 2 PM; 30 minutes) will take you across Aberdeen Jetty and bring you back after a 3 hour stay. The corals at North Bay are rather good and spread over large area. You’re very likely to spot many fish, a lobster or two, or even clams on the coral reef. Snacks and basic meals are available in some shacks on the Beach.
 
Munda Pahar Beach, Chidiya Tapu
Before the sunset, enjoy a swim at Munda Pahar Beach, which is 1 km ahead of the bus stand at Chidiya Tapu. Frequent bus services are available from Port Blair Bus Terminus to Chidiya Tapu. Tourist Coaches are also available from Andaman Teal House to Chidiya Tapu as part of conducted tours.
 
Wandoor Beach
Twenty Five Kms. from west of Port Blair is Wandoor Beach famous for swimming & Coral Viewing. One can also go to Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park from Wandoor by boat. Conducted tours are available to Wandoor from Andaman Teal House, Port Blair.
 
Collinpur Beach
Situated near Tirur, 36 Kms. from Port Blair, this place has a beautiful sandy beach with shallow water. It is suitable for swimming, sun basking and sunset viewing.
 
Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park
The Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park at Wandoor is at a distance of 29 Kms from Port Blair and covers an area of 281.5 Sq. kms. This Marine Park, made-up of open sea, creeks and 15 small and large islands, is one of the best found anywhere in the world. Viewing of rare corals and underwater marine life through glass bottom boats, scuba-diving and snorkeling are lifetime experience for anyone. Private ferry operators arrange conducted tour to the Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park from Wandoor. Charges for boat journey to the park is Rs. 450/- per head. One needs to take a permit (issued by the Forest Department), and the boat ticket (from private boat operators) avilable at the Reception Counter of Directorate of Tourism, Port Blair from a Single Window before proceeding to Wandoor. Permit Charges are Rs. 50/- for domestic tourist (Rs. 25/- for children) and Rs. 500/- for foreigners. The boat charges are inclusive of ferry charges, glass-bottom boat, and charges at the park, snorkeling equipment, life-jacket and guide-fee. Tourists are allowed to spend 2 ½ hours in Jolly Buoy Island or Red Skin Island as a part of conducted tours. Generally, from December to May, tourists are taken to Jolly Buoy Island and from May to November to Red Skin Island. Timing: 9.00 AM to Jolly Buoy Island, 10.00 AM to Red Skin Island. Camera Charge: Rs. 25/-. It is advised to take packed lunch and water before proceeding to the Marine National Park. Closed on Mondays. Tourist Coaches are available from Andaman Teal House to Wandoor. Regular bus services are also operated from Bus Terminus to Wandoor.
 
Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex
This is the first of its kind in India that offers all possible aqua sports facilities including safe-water sports and adventure- water sports, under one water sports complex. In the safe-water sport complex, paddle-boats, row-boats, glass-bottom boats are available. In the adventure-water sport front, Jet-Ski, Para-sailing, etc are offered. The Marina Park nearby, also houses a memorial of the Battle of Aberdeen fought between the Britishers and Andamanese aboriginals in 1859.
 
Sippighat Agricultural Farm
Covering over an area of 80 acres and located 14 Kms. west of Port Blair is a Government farm for cultivation of spices like cloves, nutmeg, cinnamon, coconut and pepper etc. The Research and Demonstration farm of the Central Agricultural Research Institute (CARI) is nearby.
 
Chidiya Tapu

Chidiya Tapu is the southernmost tip of South Andaman and is 25 Kms. from Port Blair. The lush green mangroves and forests shelter numerous chirping birds. The Sylvan Sands and Munda Pahar Beaches make it an ideal picnic spot. The forest Guest House situated on top of a hillock provides a fabulous view of isolated islands, submerged corals and the breath-taking sunset. A biological park has also recently been opened for tourists. Park entry fee : Adults Rs. 20/-, Children Rs. 10/-, Foreigners Rs. 50/-, Video Camera Rs. 50/- per entry, Video Camera (Commercial) Rs. 500/- per day). Conducted tours are available from Andaman Teal House, Port Blair to Chidiya Tapu. Chidiya Tapu Forest Guest House Ph: 03192-281350.
 
Mount Harriet

Mount Harriet (55 Kms. by road/15 Kms. by ferry and trek from Port Blair). The summer headquarters of the Chief Commissioner during British Raj, this place is ideal for fascinating over view of the nearby islands and the sea. It is the highest peak in the South Andamans (365 meters high). Conducted tours to Mt. Harriet are available from Andaman Teal House. Entry fee: Rs. 25/-. Mount Harriet Forest Guest House Ph: 03192-258243.
 
Madhuban
Madhuban (75 Kms. by road/20 Kms. by ferry and trek road from Port Blair). It is north east of South Andaman. One can visit Madhuban from Mount Harriet by trekking through the jungle approximately covering 16 Kms. Exotic endemic birds, animals, butterflies are interesting sights of the trek.
 
Chatham Saw Mill
The Chatham Saw Mill is one of the oldest in Asia. It is built on a tiny island and connected to Port Blair by a bridge. It is a store house of timber like Padauk, Gurjan, Marble, Satin Wood etc. Chatham has the second largest wharf of these islands, where Island-mainland ships can berth. Within the Saw Mill compound, the Forest Department has put up a museum showcasing the varied timber wealth of the Andaman & Nicobar Islands. The museum offers an insight into forest activities through scale models and display decorative pieces made of Padauk, Marble, Peauma, Gurjan, Satin Wood etc. Entry Fee : Rs. 10/-. Closed on Sundays & Industrial Holidays. Timing : 9.00 AM to 2.00 PM.
 
Mini Zoo
Mini Zoo is situated at Haddo (Delanipur-Chatham road). It houses some of the endemic birds and animals of these Islands. The zoo is being relocated in the newly opened biological park at Chidiya Tapu (Ph: 03192-281000). Ph: 03192-232816. Timing : 8.00 AM -5.00 PM. Monday closed. Entry Fee : Rs. 2/-
 
Sagarika – Cottage Industries Emporium
It exhibits a spectrum of artifacts made of mother of pearl, sea shells and local wood products, miniatures of Nicobari canoes, palm mats for floors, tables, furniture etc. Closed on Sundays & public holidays. Timing : 9.00 AM to 7.00 PM. Ph: 03192-234774.
 
Science Centre
Science Centre, situated 5 Kms. from Port Blair town, has an ‘Andaman and Nicobar Islands Gallery’ with interactive exhibits depicting genesis of the Islands, volcanic activities, science of oceans, fun science gallery, modern technology gallery, Taramandal (portable planetarium), open air science park and an in-house butterfly corner offer a kaleidoscope science spectrum. Open on all days during 10.00AM to 5.30 PM except Mondays & Public Holidays. Entry Fee : Adult : Rs. 10/- Child, Rs. 5/- (below 14 years). Ph: 03192-229034.
 
Gandhi Park
This beautiful park at Port Blair has facilities like amusement rides, safe water sports, and nature trail around the lake, garden, restaurant and historic remains like Japanese Temple as well as a bunker. The erstwhile Dilthaman tank, which was the only source of drinking water to Port Blair, and the area around it has been developed as Gandhi Park in an as unbelievably short time of 13 days. Entry Free. Open on all days. Timing: 9.00 AM to 7.30 PM.
Eating Out 
South Indian dishes are a good choice in a variety of restaurants, as are fish, prawns or lobster. We recommend drinking only bottled water and beverages or Coconut water (daap or naaryal pani) is available everywhere.
 
Aberdeen Bazar (landmark is the clock tower) is a good place for lodging/accomodation as well as food. Quite a few restaurants are present around this place.
Annaporna Cafeteria, Aberdeen Bazaar (after Hanuman Temple, 200-yards from Clock Tower, Opposite Police Station.),  234199. Pure vegetarian restaurant, offering both South and North Indian and also Jain food. Moderately Costly.

Ananda Restaurant, Aberdeen Bazaar. Beside Annaporna Cafeteria serving both veg and non-veg.very dirty but cheap Icy Spicy, Island Aracde (near Junglighat Jetty, Junglighat), ? 03192-232704, [7]. 8AM-10PM. Pure Vegetarian Restaurant in the North Indian taste. They also have a sweets and chaat counter which serves best sweets in Andamans.Best vegeterian restaurent in the city. Moderate.
 
kattaboman hotel (Pure Veg.), Aberdeen Bazaar (Opposite SBI ATM. {100 yards from Clock Tower, before Gurudwara}). Vegetarian Restaurant Very delicious south indian food available at very reasonable price.must go there atleast for one time..

Lighthouse Residency, MA Rd (near Aberdeen Bazaar). One of Port Blair's best restaurants, with a good (Indianized) Chinese-Thai menu and North Indian favorites. The speciality here is fresh seafood; check the price and pick your fish. The tandoori masala fish is outstanding, and they also have one of the few decent bars in Port Blair.The place is not clean and the staff is unable to manage when it is crowded. ?50-200.  edit
Mandalay Restaurant, Fortune Resort, Marine Hill. The Fortune Resort restaurant but caters to non-guests. Not cheap but the food is quite good, the location peaceful, and the view is excellent. Does a good buffet for breakfast at about 250. 
New India Cafe, MA Rd (near Jagannath Guesthouse). A cheap, local eatery, great if you're on a budget. Thalis available.Food not so good. 

Corbyn’s Delight, Peerless Sarovar Resort. The Peerless Sarovar Resort's restaurant caters to non-guests too. Jet Privilege customers get 10 percent off. It is a modern multi-cuisine restaurant with an attached bar. They serve great north indian fare and decent continental and italian. The resort is the only one situated on a beach in Port Blair but the restaurant doesn't offer a great view. You can see the ocean though. ?400-500.
Gagan Restaurant, (Aberdeen Bazar, near to Babu lane, just behind the Aberdeen Bazar Clock tower). Bengali dishes available here. ?100.  Blue Sea Hotel, (Aberdeen Bazar, next to Sagarika emporium). It is one of the newly opened place, service best South Indian food in the city. It is very clean and reasonable.  TSG Emerald View, Moulana Azad Rd, Phoenix Bay, [8]. Great seafood. Has a ship-deck themed bar with a good view of the phoenix bay jetty. 
Ananda Restaurant, Aberdeen Bazaar (after Hanuman Temple, about 200 yards from the Clock Tower). Cheap & best. Try the range of south indian dishes. Bombay meal is also awesome. 
Swastik Restaurant (Bengali Club Canteen), Atul Shriti Samati,Biggi Lane,Port Blair (behind bengali club), ? 09474211255. Pure Bengali Food, Simply the best
 
Shopping
Your best buys here will be wood carvings, shells and spices. The main concentration of shops is found at Aberdeen Bazaar. Most vendors will expect you to bargain, while the State Emporium has fixed prices. Many shops close between 1:00pm and 3:00pm. The local currency is the Rupee. Jewelry, wood-carvings and Port Blair t-shirts are available around Aberdeen Bazaar. Samudrika (Govt. museum). This is a govt. museum, ask anyone for directions. Autowala will take you there. Sagarika (Govt. emporium). This is a government emporium where local made goods are available.



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