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Baratang Island is strongly recommended on the wish list of Andaman’s if dense canopy of jungles, creepers at every juncture, inhabited surfaces and a sense of mystery hanging over the island categorize your ideal vacation. Baratang would appear like a pre-historic island to the visitor. It befalls on the junction between the Middle and South Andaman districts of Andaman Island. Baratang is a scarcely inhabited island of a scarcely inhabited district. Yet the conveniences are not far, Port Blair is just 100 kilometers road drive from Baratang Jetty. The charm of this island lies in mangrove creeks, virgin tropical forests, sandy coastlines and beaches (with names Baludera, Rogalchang, Nayadera etc) and inexhaustible marine life.

The mangrove creeks have great boating on offer, so is creek safari and bird watching. While the coastlines is excellent for snorkeling, scuba-diving, boating trekking, hiking and bird watching. The jewels of this island are profuse. Apart from the mangrove and tropical forests and beaches.

Baratang is distinguished for its limestone caves and mud volcano. Limestones caves can be reached by passing through a dense tropical forest of the island. Most tourists visit the caves by taking a speedboat ride which in itself is an exhilarating experience. Parrot Island is another beautiful island close to Baratang jetty. While travelling, one has to pass through Jarawa Tribe Reserve. Interacting with the tribesmen, giving them food and clicking pictures is strictly prohibited.

To See

Limestone Caves

They can be accessed by boat from motor boat from Baratang Jetty. The boats take you through the mangrove creeks which look familiar to Amazon forest clips we watch on television. The Limestone caves are located about two kilometers inside the island. Baratang limestone caves are accessible natural caves unlike the one in Diglipur. They are larger in size and very deep inside. Stalagmites and stalactites formations are at their full bloom and limestone pillars are common sight. It’s quite dark inside the cave. Please carry torch and drinking water while visiting. The surface of the cave is slippery therefore proper footwear is must for the visitors. Baratang Island is an eco-friendly area. Throwing plastic materials on the island or outside the island is strictly prohibited. Note: Baratang Limestone Caves are closed on Mondays. They are 50 minutes boat ride from Baratang Jetty.

Mud Volcano

There are some active mud volcanoes at a distance of 9 kilometers from Baratang. They do not emit mud now but one can see hot air bubbles on the surface. The whole area is muddy mount.

Parrot Island

An interesting phenomenon occurs in an inhabited island close to Barantang Jetty. Every evening thousands of parrots (approximately specified as parakeets) come to the island, prune the leaves of specific area and then leave in the morning. Nobody knows what attracts them to this particular island and why do they the trim the mangrove leaves of a specific patch. This curious phenomenon has won the island the name of Parrot Island. Complete ritual occurs in sequence. Early twilight, a small group of parrots fly over the island. Then follows another group who inspect the island. Once satisfied, thousands of parrots from different directions come flying to the island and sit over the topmost portion of the mangrove trees in a specific patch not to leave till morning. Within the period of twilight to morning, they trim the leaves of the specific mangrove tree area. Early morning they leave with the hope of coming back in the evening. Tourists can witness this extraordinary phenomenon by hiring a boat (dungi) from Baratang Jetty. It will take only 45 minutes to reach to Parrot Island. Note: Best time to visit Parrot Island is in the evening. It is also a good place for watching sunset.

Getting There

Baratang Jetty can only be accessible through road. One needs to start early from port Blair to reach Baratang Jetty. National Highway 223 runs from Port Blair to Baratang Jetty area. One needs to pass through many check points and take a ferry ride to reach Baratang Jetty. Most of the road from Port Blair to Baratang runs through the Jarwa reserve. Tourism within Jarwa area is strictly prohibited. You can not take photographs, offer food or in any other way interact with one of the most endangered aboriginal inhabitants of earth.

Map of Baratang

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