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Top 5 winter holiday destinations in India for a luxury getaway
Tuesday, December 30th, 2014

by Sudha Mathew

India boasts of some of the most culturally rich and diverse options to choose from, when it comes to winter holiday destinations. Although any Indian holiday spot would be a good choice for spending your winter holidays in India, there are some which are much better than the others. In this series of blog posts, we line up the best winter holiday destinations in India, along with useful travel info and tips, like the nearest airport, must try local dishes, must see places, what to pack and yes, the best restaurants and eateries that offer European menu options.   

Andamans

Floating amid the Bay of Bengal, blessed by the bountiful nature, the Andaman is one of the best winter holiday destinations in India, if not in the entire world. Though pleasant throughout the year, and a receiver of the benefits of both southwest and northeast monsoon, it is the winter season when the land become all the more cosy, snugly and truly shines.

Amazing Andamans  winter holiday destinations in india

The Amazing Islands

The Land

Andaman is the gateway to an intrusion free world of splendid isolation. The perfect blend of primitive, natural beauty and the comforts of the modern world; it is a charming escape from the humdrum of routine life. The land affords every decadence that top class luxury getaways can offer, while at the same time, it can also act as a portal to the rustic, materialism free lands long gone. The Andamans can suit any kind of taste and expectation; but the one characteristic which truly stands out and thus, is justly noteworthy is the natural splendour of Andamans. The picturesque beauty of the rolling green islands, the azure waves hugging its perimeter, the flora and fauna endemic to the region, the national parks, biospheres- the list goes on and on. In fact, it is entirely possible to spend a trip camping under the star studded sky, walking on the sands, just drinking in the natural beauty from dusk till dawn, without feeling the urge to check one’s phone, email or social media profile, even once. Andaman is beautiful, bountiful and will have you hooked from the first glance. Enough reasons by themselves to make Andamans make it to the list of best winter holiday destinations in India. But we have more, read on..

Explore Andamans - winter holiday destinations in india

Explore Andamans

Where to find European food

As mentioned before, Andaman has worked in its repertoire the ability to suit anyone’s need and deliver accordingly, and this holds true for the food fare available within the territory too. One can find gastronomic delights galore spread across the entire land, and many among these options offer a multi-cuisine menu including tons of European food options. Some of the must visit, west inclined, multi-cuisine restaurants of Andamans are:

  1. Clownfish Restaurant, Havelock – Situated near the  Andaman Bubbles dive shop on Beach 5, this restaurant offers a heavily European menu and is well known for its breakfasts, breads and ambiance.
  2. B3 – Barefoot Bar & Restaurant – Located at Village No.1, Havelock Island, this is a trendy eatery, notable for its modern decor and a Western-heavy menu.B3 is also famous for its pizza and is in fact regarded as the best pizza place in Havelock.
  3.  Mandalay – To be found at the Fortune Resort Bay, this multi-cuisine restaurant has every kind of food covered, from Indian to European. Also, the food fare is always boundless and the dining space is in an open air setting.

Must Try Dishes at Andamans Islands

Set in the wonderful isolation of the Bay of Bengal, Andamans has access to some of the choicest catch of sea food. The freshest of offerings from the depths of the waves, caught fresh and right on the island, are grilled, cooked, poached etc. according to individual tastes. The delicacies thus prepared, usually reflect a Burmese or Thai influence.

Prawn, cabs, shrimps and various kinds of fishes are available abundantly throughout the territory. But the Tandoori fish is exceptionally well prepared. The combination of the spices along with the smoky flavour of the Tandoor sealing in the juicy, tenderness of the fish, together create one succulent and mouth-watering concoction. The curried prawns, grilled lobster and crabs are also other must try and must eat dishes from the Andamans. Additionally, multiple cuisine dishes are also found throughout the islands. However, it is best to try out the local restaurants, cafes and eateries rather than having all of one’s meals in the residential hotels.

Must See Places – Andamans Islands

Andaman’s natural beauty is unparalleled, with miles of rolling greens, clear skies and azure vastness, for as far as the eyes can see. It is the ultimate destination to relax, unwind and reconnect and is often regarded as the ideal romantic getaway. A nature lover’s paradise on earth, Andaman’s true treasures are its beaches and waters, and thus the absolute must see destinations include the following:

The coral reef

Coral Reef At Havelock

  • Havelock Island – Teeming with a remarkable marine life and spectacular coral reefs, it is the ideal spot for scuba diving.
  • Radhanagar Beach – One of the most stunning destinations, this beach had earned the title of the ‘Asia’s Best Beach’ in 2004 by the TIME magazine.
  • Mt. Harriet – The ideal trekking spot, the trail stretches 16km from Mt. Harriet to Madhuban.

Useful Travel Information for an Andamans Holiday

  • Distance from nearest airport - Veer Savarkar International Airport (Port Blair Airport).
  • Average temperature during winter months - Mean minimum temperature at 23 °C (75 – 85 F) and maximum at 28 °C (78 – 95 F).
  • What to pack- Since temperatures are moderate even during winters, winter garments like sweaters and pullovers are not required. You can pack in a light jacket if you want. Other than that normal, light clothing (plain cotton or cotton/synthetic blends), bathing suits, sunglasses, sun block lotion are enough. You can also pack in an umbrella and some mosquito repellent, in case you want to camp outside. Also remember to pack in enough changes of under garments to last your entire trip, as the cost of laundry is usually exorbitant.
  • Languages spoken – Hindi, English
  • Popular modes of local transport - Local bus services are neither very developed nor dependable. However, reliable and regular ferries ply to all important destinations and islands. Auto rickshaws and taxis are also abundantly and easily available.
  • Other nearby destinations – The capital city of Port Blair which houses the historic cellular jail; the colonial capital of Andamans- Ross Island is another attraction. It is a 20-minute boat ride from Aberdeen Jetty in Port Blair. The lush mangrove forests at the southernmost tip of the islands – Chidiyatapu, Baratang Island’s mud volcano and limestone caves and the marine life rich eco-tourism spot – Neil Island, are all excellent destinations located around the Andamans.
  • Barefoot – Special facilities - Andaman a diving hotspot, and probably the best in India. From Beach no. 3 “Barefoot Scuba” or the Barefoot dive resort a trainer’s services can be availed for an enjoyable scuba diving experience. The dive centre is renowned for the Quality of its service and you can also choose various level of dive certification available at the PADI Certified dive school of Barefoot. Other facilities provided here are snorkelling, short excursions to Elephant Beach and Aquarium and kayaking. Apart from the adventure spots there are also other relaxing options available like at The Ayurveda Massage Hub, where the rejuvenation therapy is must try for all visitors who want a completely relaxing experience. The whole stay is perfectly rounded off at the Barefoot, by the delectable delicacies offered at the multi-cuisine restaurant of the resort.

 

Cheers
Sudha

Picture courtesy: wikipedia, triponaslip

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Posted by Sudha at 4:20 pm
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Plan to travel to an Indian holiday destination?

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About me

The wise man travels to discover himself - JR Lowell

 

My name is Sudha Mathew. I'm an ex-banker who quit the rat race after a decade to follow my passion for travel and to combine it with my experience in understanding client requirements and exceeding their expectations.

 

While our content is mostly about the holiday experience, the accommodation and services, there's so much more to a journey. I have discovered a whole new me through travel. So I've reserved this corner of the website to share the unexpected aspects of travel. This space is also to hear from you about your journeys and discoveries. Bon Voyage!

 
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