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Neil Island

Neil Island is a beautiful and sparsely populated tranquil island to the south of Havelock Island and 40 kilometers offshore northeast of Port Blair. The island falls under the Ritchie Archipelago Islands of Bay of Bengal. Ritchie Archipelago Islands form the smaller islands east of main island of Andaman. It was named ‘Neil’ after a British soldier who was successful in suppressing the revolt of 1857. Neil Island is a coral island with rich bio-diversity. It is secluded in nature and preferred over Havelock islands for less rush and silent touring. The island is enriched with clear sandy beaches and dense tropical forests. Beaches itself are dotted by tall tropical trees complimented by limestone structures here and there. It is interesting to note that the names of these beaches are kept after the Hindu mythological characters like Bharatpur, Lakshmanpur and Sitapur. Village names of Neil Island are also something like that. For example-Sitapur, Lakshmanpur, Bharatpur and Ram Nagar. Agriculture is the major economic activity of the people residing here. Neil Island is the major supplier of vegetables to the rest of the Andaman. 

Neil Island’s natural beauty is the driving factor for its tourism industry. It has abundant beaches with crystal clear water to be explored by the tourists. Adventure activities is another major attraction here. The aquatic life, tranquility, limestone structures and dense vegetation draw people from far and wide. There is another small island south of Neil Island. It’s called Sir Hugh Ross Island. This island was declared a wildlife sanctuary and special permissions are required to visit it.

Adventure Sports in Neil

Neil Island is a very small island. Two hours walk can explore the whole island. The island is ideal for adventure activities like cycling, swimming, snorkeling, scuba diving, trekking, fishing etc. Different beaches specialize in different activities. Bharatpur and Lakshmanpur beaches are ideal for coral watching and swimming. Sitapur for sunrise and limestone formation watching. Lakshmanpur - 11 beach is famous for the aquatic life. The island itself can be an interesting place to explore through cycling and trekking.

What to See

Natural Rock Formation

There are natural limestone bridges just beside Lakshmanpur beach. This rock formation is called Howrah Bridge. It’s a spectacular stone bridge surrounded by small boulders of rock of the same type as the bridge. Those rocks seem to be paying homage to the archaic bridge. The bridge gets jutted into the ocean during high tide, therefore one needs to visit it only during low tides. Howrah Bridge is just 15-20 minutes’ walk from Lakshmanpur beach.

Bharatpur Beach

This Beach is ideal for snorkeling and swimming. The whole region is surrounded by coral reefs accompanied by lavish gatherings of aquatic life. Bharatpur beach spreads broad over the northern coasts of the island. It is distinguished for its white sand and spacious beach.

Lakshmanpur-1 Beach

Lakshmanpur Beach is an interesting beach of Neil island because it is rocky in stature and inhabited by shells, corals, fishes and urchins. High and low tide waves beating against the rocky cum sandy beach is an interesting sight to see.

Sitapur Beach

Sitapur Beach is located in the southeastern coastal strip of Neil Island. It is exposed to open sea and experiences high tides. The beach is extremely good for sunset watching.

Transport and Communication

Neil Island can be reached only through ferry and helicopter / seaplane service from Port Blair.

Regular ferry services are operational from Port Blair to Neil Island and vice versa. They journey hour is maximum two hours one way. Bharatpur Jetty is the only jetty entry and exit point of the island.

Map of Neil Island

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