Havelock Island, India’s best-kept secret

Havelock Island is one of the major islands in Ritchie’s archipelago in the Andaman Islands. Havelock Island has been officially renamed as “Swaraj Dweep” since Dec 2018 by Sri. Narendra Modi.

Havelock is best known for white sand beaches, diving sites, turquoise blue waters, coral reefs, and seafood. This is undoubtedly a hidden paradise right in the middle of the Andaman Sea.

How to reach Havelock Island

You can reach Havelock by ferry either from Portblair or from Neil island.

There are both government and private ferries that operates. Private ferries take about 1.5 hours from Portblair and cost roughly around Rs.1,300/-, while government ferries take 2.5 hours and cost Rs.550/-.

We took the private ferry ( Makruzz) and you can book your seats well in advance at www.go2andaman.com.

You can either ask your hotel guys to arrange for your pickup from the jetty or you can take an auto or cab. The best part is all these auto and cab guys have a fixed fare so you don’t have to worry about bargaining.

Ferry docking area with a small bridge, for the people to reach the land.
Jetty at Havelock

Where to stay in Havelock Island

Before even I go into any further details, you need to understand one thing. Havelock is an Island, everything needs to be imported from the main land of India through ships. Hence, nothing is cheap. Period. Accept it.

There are some amazing places for accommodations, based on your budget.To name a few:

  1. Bare foot at Beach no 7
  2. Symphony Palms at Beach no 5
  3. Seashell Havelock
  4. Out back Resort aka Oyo 16079 at Beach no 2

We stayed at Outback resort, rooms were pretty good, and the service was very nice. (This is not a paid promotion)

Stone construction huts with long green trees in the background.
Our stay

Where to eat in Havelock Island

Generally, food was good in almost all the places we had. We being vegetarians, cannot comment on the seafood, which is apparently one of the musts while in Havelock. So if you have tasted some seafood, let us know in the comments how you enjoyed it.

In the mean time, you can give these places a try.

  1. Full moon cafe
  2. Bare foot resort
  3. Fat Martins especially pizza and coconut shake
  4. Anju Coco
  5. Shakahaar for Tomato soup and masala kichidi
  6. Salt water for veg noodles

What to do in Havelock Island

1. Rent a two wheeler

Unless you are on a big group, two wheeler is the best mode of transport to explore the island. The 3D feel that you get while on a bike is no where to be compared to travelling in a car or an SUV.

And these bikes are good on your pocket as well. It costs you Rs.500/day + fuel extra with a refundable amount of Rs.2000/-. You will need a driver license and an address proof to hire a bike.

Intrepid Indian on bike
Intrepid Indian on bike πŸ˜›

2. Scuba Diving

Havelock has some of the best diving sites in Asia. There are quite a few diving centers which conduct diving at different levels.

I’m hydrophobic and have absolutely no idea about swimming, yet I did an entry level scuba diving and was mesmerized with the world down there.

I would highly recommend you not to miss this. Its costs you Rs.3,500/ for 45mins diving which includes 15 mins training. It is a one to one diving, which means there will be one instructor with you throughout your dive.

Always prefer the first slot, the water is very clear at this time.

Scuba diving image of intrepid indian
Deep down in the water

3. Watch the sunrise at Govind Nagar beach

Since you are on an island, you have the advantage of watching both sunrise and sunset. Govind Nagar beach is the best place to watch the sunrise while you are in Havelock.

I was glad I watched it every morning while I was there.

Sunrise over Andaman sea at Govind nagar beach
Beautiful sunrise at Govind Nagar Beach

4. Chill at Kalapathar beach

White sand, turquoise blue water, barren trees, hot Maggi I would call it heaven. Take a stroll at Kalapathar beach for an experience of your lifetime.

White sand beach
Kalapathar beach

5. Snorkeling at Elephant beach

Unfortunately, Elephant beach was closed to the public when we visited due to some accident which had occurred. So we did not get the chance to do snorkeling.

However, we did hear a lot of good reviews about this from locals, so you might want to give it a try.

6. Sunset at Radhanagar beach

This is by far the best beach I have ever visited in my life so far. No wonder its crowned as “The best beach” in Asia and 7th best in the world.

Words would not do justice to describe this. So you would not want to miss seeing what it looks like. And sunsets are the best time.

As this is quite famous, this can get really crowded in the evenings, unlike any other place we went to in Havelock. Most of the time it was only myself and my husband wherever we went.

Golden clouds over the blue andaman sea at Radhanagar beach
Radhanagar Beach

7. Explore nightlife

Spend your late evening relaxing at one of the cafes or pubs mentioned able and see life pass by at a slow pace.

Its good to be disconnected from technology and refresh life once in a while.

Things to remember while in Havelock

  1. Though you are in the same time zone as mainland India, you will be geographically close to Indonesia. So technically sunrise and sets 2 hours ahead of the Indian time zone.
  2. You are on an island and the cell phone reception is barely there, which means no internet as well. Be mentally prepared.
  3. The best season to visit is from November to February.

I hope this blog was of help to you and would love to hear your experience if you have ever visited Havelock.

Also, you might not want to miss visiting Neil Island. It’s a beauty of a different league. You can read all about it here.

4 thoughts on “Havelock Island, India’s best-kept secret

  1. Written so well..πŸ‘ it was like a virtual tour for me..😊 Doing a great job😍

  2. very well-articulated, with such detailed information it becomes very easy for travelers to plan their vacation. Please continue to add more stuff.

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