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In Island LONG


As soon as you arrive on Long Island you will know it is different from any other island you have visited. At first, it seems a pretty workaday sort of place. People will be going about their business at the jetty and there are no rickshaws lining up to pick up tourists! Just step away from the jetty, though, and the special quality of the island will become immediately apparent. No traffic noise! There are 2 rickshaw trucks and about 5 motorbikes and no other motor vehicles on the whole island. So everybody walks, and as they pass they will smile and greet you with a "Namaste". Local children know at least 2 words in English: "One Photo". But no-one will try to sell you anything.


The island has an electoral roll of about 2000 inhabitants, probably only about 750 live on Long Island full-time, and they survive by fishing, growing vegetables and doing casual work where they can.


Long Island is a beautiful, unspoilt island, with varied walks around the beaches, village and forests, and one of the loveliest beaches in the Andaman Islands, Lalaji Bay. You can reach Lalaji by walking through the forest (1.5 - 2 hours), going along the shore at low tide, or by boat. Apart from local fishermen, you will find the beach pretty well deserted most of the time. There is good snorkelling from Lalaji or from the beach close to Blue Planet.


Close to Long Island are some wonderful uninhabited islands with lovely beaches, including Guitar Island, North Passage Island and the spectacular Merk Bay, and further afield the intriguing North Button, South Button and Middle Button Islands. All can be reached by boat from Long Island. The scuba diving around Long Island is excellent.



How to Reach :

To get to Long Island, you can take a boat from Port Blair at 6.15am on Monday, Wednesday, Friday and Saturday. Boats go via Havelock and (except for Fridays), Neil. Boats go back to Port Blair via Havelock on Tuesday, Thursday, Friday (pm) and Sunday. There is a twice-daily boat to Yeratta, near Rangat on North Andaman if you wish to travel into North Andaman or return to Port Blair by road.