A staggeringly beautiful paradise – garlanded with coconut trees basking in the sun, the most scenic, deep burgundy sunsets, and unexplored coral reefs – Neil Island is such beauty! If you, like us, love exploring tiny islands, familiarizing yourself with the way locals live there, this island should find a place on your bucket list for sure!
The picturesque imagery of Neil Island and a trip here would spoil you rotten. It is a small island, about 7 km from corner to corner, so can be covered in about 2 hours! 🙂 You can base yourself in a nice hotel and uncover all the attractions in 2 days. A number of scooty rental companies have booths at the Jetty and offer convenient and economical means for exploring the cutesy island.
Having a nifty scooty makes it so much easier to witness the untamed beauty! We warn you – it is not any ordinary island destination where you can party and booze till late night. But it has a different pastoral charm where you can absorb the local culture, uncover some truly beautiful gems, and bask in the generosity of the locals.
Highlights of our visit to Neil Island Andaman:
- Meeting the most generous locals (who served us their local produce heartily 🙂 ) They are always ready to strike a conversation
- Slow and laid-back pace of life that we both love
- White sandy beaches with green canopy of forests & unexplored coral reefs
- Magical landscapes and gorgeous burgundy sunsets
- Awesome snorkeling and diving spots
- Stunning scenery
How to reach Neil Island?
The only entry and exit point of the island is a jetty at Neil Kendra. You can take a regular boat from Port Blair (Phoenix Bay Jetty) or Havelock (Havelock Jetty ) to reach Neil, or opt for a private cruise ship, Makruzz.
You can check schedules for Makruzz online and book in advance accordingly. As tickets for Makruzz usually get sold out fast, make sure you don’t miss out on that. We paid $15 for a one-way cruise to Neil Island from Havelock.
Accommodation in Neil Island Andaman
After 4 days of being completely out of touch with the outside world (due to dodgy mobile connectivity and no wifi), we finally had another reason to love Summer Sands Neil Island – Good wifi. 🙂 For us, home is where good wifi is and so we loved being in this little piece of heaven! All those looking for hotels in Neil Island Andaman can consider a stay at Summer Sands. Check pictures from our stay at Summer Sands, here.
Here’s what you could be doing in Neil Island Andaman:
- A Paradise for the Beach Bums
Day trips from Neil Island Andaman are about beach bumming at Bharatpur, Laxmanpur, and Sitapur Beach. The cool fact is all the beaches have been named after the mythological characters of Ramayana – Laxman, Sita, and Bharat. Finding a secluded piece of sun-soaked heaven is quite easy on all the beaches as Neil Island is yet to go tourist crazy!
Picture yourself sitting quietly on a beach with a book in one hand and coconut in another. Well, do nothing and just soak up the beauty around. Or, you could go swimming or snorkeling for coral watching. The vegetation surrounding the beach is just soothing.
The gorgeous landscape offers a perfect backdrop for a tranquil day at the Laxmanpur beach. Mostly, tourists come to this beach (popular for its spur of white shell sand) for watching the sunset. We went to the secluded side of the beach that lies 2km north of Neil Pier post lunch and spent few languorous moments there. Perhaps we found the reading perfect spot, so you could add this to the list of things to do in Andaman Neil Island.
Unlike Laxmanpur and Bharatpur beach, Sitapur beach is best suited for watching the sunrise in the striking backdrop of limestone formations. The beach is 5km south of Neil Island and the journey to the beach is extremely refreshing. Just sit back and indulge in unhurried conversations for you’ll never forget your time in the dreamy paradise that Neil Island is.
2. Howrah Natural Bridge, Neil Island
Our visit to the Howrah Natural Bridge wasn’t as easy as it might have been for other visitors. We reached quite late in the evening as we wanted to get away from the crowds and spend memorable time while waiting for the sun to set. As the beach is exposed to open sea, eventually lower tides turned into higher, and we were scared for our lives. See the magical transformation of the sun setting at the bridge that we witnessed, here.
3. Talk to the Locals
People in Andaman, particularly Neil Island are so warm and friendly. We were welcomed with a big endearing hello and cheery smiles wherever we went. While coming back from Sitapur Beach we spoke to a local lady who we met while gawking at the mango plantation. An introductory talk on general life at Neil Island later, she offered us freshly picked mangoes, which we loved gorging on. Don’t ever hesitate to speak to the locals as they would rather appreciate being in your company.
Wanderer Hub’s Tips:
- Rent a scooty to explore Neil Island. It would set you back by 400 INR|6USD for a day.
- Apply sunscreen generously before heading to the beaches and carry an umbrella with you.
- You can find a few shacks and kiosks selling knick-knacks at almost all the beaches so don’t worry about the food.
- Neil Island is not for the people who wish to party late into the night, it’s perfect for people who enjoy slow travel.
- Carry lots of flowy dresses and kimonos to be fashion forward on your Neil Island holiday.
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