Floating in splendid isolation in the middle of the Bay of Bengal are the Andaman Islands. The islands are one of the most remote and least visited areas of the world and offer excellent prospects for diving and exploration.Book A Dive Center Online
Administered by India, the 300 or so Andaman Islands are the highest peaks of a submerged mountain range that stretches from Sumatra in the south to the Irawaddy delta in the north.
The Andaman Islands have everything you could desire from an adventurous yachting destination. There are literally hundreds of deserted islands to explore, each one seemingly more spectacular than the last. The beaches are magnificently pristine. The snorkelling and scuba diving is amongst the best in the world with an almost untouched marine ecosystem.
There is a live volcano, thousands of square miles of untouched jungle, exotic and thriving wildlife and primitive hunter-gatherer tribes. The fishing is amongst the best in the world and the Andaman Islands are also starting to develop a superb reputation as a frontier surfing destination where the reef breaks have never been surfed before. They were declared a World Heritage Site in 2002.
The very best way to explore and dive the islands is by liveaboard but there are hotels we can recommend so if you want to go somewhere that is about as remote as you can get then the Andaman Islands may be the place for you.
Many dive sites are within easy access and offer large coral fields, which are difficult to match and provide fertile breeding grounds for marine critters of all sizes. You can also find the bigger stuff such as manta rays, devil rays, white-tip reef sharks, a variety of groupers, turtles, octopi and so on.
Excellent diving can be found throughout the island chain, but the most spectacular sites are located at Narcondam and Barren islands. Both are designated wildlife sanctuaries, but their remote locations mean the best way to get there is by liveaboard. These are world-class dive sites.
The coral in the Andaman Islands isn’t what it used to be but the fish life remains excellent. Large scale fishing has never really happened here so fish die of old age meaning they get both big and numerous.
Go now before too many people do!
The Andaman Islands have a moderate temperature all through the year within the range of 23°C to 31°C. It has a tropical climate. There are no severe climate conditions except for tropical storms and rains in late summers and monsoons. The best time to visit Andaman is from October to May though the dive season is from mid-December through to April as the seas are calmest. Water temperatures range from 27c to 30c.
The Andaman Islands are the focus of increasing marine conservation initiatives. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands Environmental Team (ANET: http://www.anetindia.org/) has taken a leading role in organizing local conservation efforts. Their initiatives combine research, education and conservation initiatives in hopes of protecting the 527 islands. They strive to better understand the region’s unique biological diversity, using that knowledge to guide sustainable development. This team has been in operation since 1989.
Currently large scale fishing is not allowed, and is policed well. There are a number of marine reserve areas, which protect both marine and terrestrial life, along with fascinating indigenous cultures. There are also number of other non-profits, including the WWF, which are actively involved in protecting the area.
Long Island is definitely not touristy at all. We lived on Long Island in the Middle Andamans from November 2013- April 2014, so I am not too sure about the end of August, but I believe the real monsoon season is over. They sometimes get a second wave around October. From what I heard there are no more diving courses on Long Island, but the island is definitely worth a visit If you want to get some inspiration, watch this video gallery with two underwater clips and one on land: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CvlCJi3OXEk&list=PLFZloRSBXy8xCWMZuyjtucIJ7C0MZr0HN