The capital of Andaman and Nicobar, Port Blair serves as the entry point to the Union Territory of India. It is located in Bay of Bengal and has gained a lot of popularity in India and across the world. Port Blair is named after Archibald Blair, Bombay Marine lieutenant who was the first to discover this place. The city lacks the facilities you can get in mainland India but it is still the lifeline of Andaman. People from different parts of the islands rely on Port Blair for their urban facilities. It gets all the commodities and services as imports from India.
The city is well known to offer world-class amenities to the tourists in several luxury hotels around Phoenix Bay and local food joints, restaurants and hotels around Junglighat and Aberdeen Bazaar. People from different traditions and cultures live in Port Blair. You can taste dishes of all kinds here and find different food options in and around the city.
Port Blair is the most vital city as it is well connected to the rest of Andaman Islands and serves as the lifeline of Andaman and Nicobar. You can avail all the facilities and services from mainland India in Port Blair. There is still a lack of 4G connectivity here. 3G is still the maximum limit for internet connection, and it is also available in specific hotspots. There are plenty of tourist attractions in Port Blair like museums, water sports, beaches and islands.
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How about the weather at Port Blair?
Andaman and Nicobar Islands usually witness tropical and warm climates and receive pleasant weather all year round. It doesn’t have a winter season. It receives monsoon for around 180 days with medium to heavy rains. The monsoon starts by the end of May. There is no chilling winter or hot summer here. There is no issue of traffic jams or water clogging in monsoons here. It is also a great season to explore nature at its best and enjoy sightseeing and pleasant holidays. However, monsoon is not the best time for water sports. Average temperature hovers around 25 to 27 degrees C.
How to Reach Port Blair?
Port Blair is the capital of Andaman and is easily accessible by sea and air. You can easily reach Port Blair by ships and flights from mainland India.
If you are planning a holiday for a fixed duration, you can easily access flights. From mainland India, it is around 1300 km which is covered in around 2.5 hours. You can get direct flights from Delhi, Chennai, Bangalore and Kolkata through airlines like Spicejet, Air India, Go Air, and Indigo. Indigo and Go Air flights also operate from Mumbai, Ahmedabad, and Hyderabad in peak season. Keep in mind that flights don’t take off after sunset. You can take the first flight at around 7am up to 4PM.
You can also reach Port Blair by sea. Chennai, Vizag and Kolkata are the major ports available where government ships sail to Andaman. You can book tickets through Shipping Corporation or Directorate of Shipping of the ports of departure. Ships sail only once in a month from Chennai and Vizag and 2 times a week from Kolkata. These ships take around 3 days to reach Andaman in clear weather. To save time, it is always better to take flights. If you are coming to Andaman for a long vacation, you can take a ship.
27 Best Places to Visit in Port Blair
Beaches & Islands
1. Ross Island (Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Island)
The first administrative British settlement in Andaman Islands, Ross Islands are well known to have the ruins of Japanese cannons and bunkers. You can also find deer and birds across the island. You can rest assured to have breathtaking views of nature.
2. North Bay Island
You can enjoy a lot of water activities at Northbay Island. You can get there by boat which sails from Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex. You can also visit Ross Island from here on a day trip. You can visit these islands through chartered boats. It has a lot of food joints for lunch and snacks along with washrooms and changing facilities. You can also ride a semi-submarine boat for coral safari. You need to buy entry and ferry tickets in advance. The timings for boats are from 8.30 AM to 10AM and entry is not allowed on Wednesday. You can enjoy Sea Walking, Scuba Diving, Glass bottom boat rides, Snorkeling, and other rides here.
3. Mundapahar Beach
Set in the emerald greens, Mundapahar Beach is located only 25 km from Port Blair. It is located in Chidiya Tapu where you can see the meandering cover of mangroves. It is located around 40 minutes away by road. It is known to have rocky seabed which is not good for swimming.
4. Wandoor Beach
Located 25 km from Port Blair airport, Wandoor Beach is among the major attractions of Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park. With sustainable forest conservation and tourism, the beach is covered by vast flora species.
5. Collinpur Beach
Located in South Andaman, Collinpur Beach is well regarded for tranquil stretch of sands and cobalt water. The beach is covered by smooth sand covers as well as dense greens covering various shades of green. It is an exotic beach with a dense veil of palm greens. It is a U-shaped beach ideal for picnic spots.
6. Corbyn’s Cove Beach
Closely located to Port Blair, the Corbyn’s Cove is a crescent coconut tree fringed beach which is good for sunbathing, swimming and relaxation. You can enjoy a lot of activities like speed boat and Jet Ski rides. Refreshments are easily available in a small hotel here. You can relax and grab some snacks by the beach. It is accessible by road and is located only 8 km from the city center.
7. Jolly buoy Island
Jolly Buoy is well known to have pristine white sands with turquoise blue waters with exotic coastlines. It is rich in marine life and exotic corals and is located around a short drive from Port Blair of 30 km. The island is covered by tranquility and surrealism where nature lies in its true form. The tropical greens and mangrove swamps provide serene landscape to the island with a touch of great appeal. You can experience the true beauty of nature with seclusion.
8. Red Skin Island
Located in Marine National Park, Red Skin Island is a great place to chill and indulge in various refreshing and relaxing activities. You can find corals in abundance on the coastal region.
9. Madhuban Beach
It is a long, serene white sandy stretch where you can get the rare sight of logging elephants being trained here. It has been considered as the ideal place to enjoy trekking and other adventure sports. From Mount Harriet, there is a rocky stretch to Madhuban extending from a great hammock. It is literally blessed with wild creatures, exotic wilderness and rare species.
10. Viper Island
This island belongs to South Andaman and is located around 4 km from Port Blair. It is a tranquil tourist destination located around the harbor of Port Blair and is accessible from Phoenix Bay jetty in 20 minutes. You can take Harbor Cruise from the jetty to offer an overall view of several points. A lot of tourists can visit this place as it has a lot of attractions.
11. Barren Island
Located in the Andaman Sea, Barren Island is the only active volcano of South Asia with a chain of volcanoes. It is located around 138 km northeast of Port Blair. It has a lot of barren lands and is uninhabited by the human population.
12. Cinque Island
It is located around 26 km from Port Blair. It is one of the uninhabited and untouched parts of Andaman. It is located towards the north between Duncan and Passage Island. It is further categorized into South Cinque and North Islands.
13. Cellular jail
Earlier called Kalapani, the Cellular Jail was built in the late 18th century by the British where freedom fighters of India were imprisoned. It is now a national memorial and shows the sufferings and tortures faced by freedom fighters here. It had seven wings with 663 cells in total and one prisoner was kept in one cell. There are only three wings left today and rest was destroyed. Today, the jail silently tells the barbarous treatment and dark history of British settlement. You can also attend the light and sound shows about Indian freedom fighters.
14. Samudrika Naval Marine Museum
You can find a huge range of fossils, shells, corals and vivid fishes in this Samudrika museum. Indian Navy operates this museum and you can witness five galleries related to geography, history, anthropology and marine life of the islands.
15. Zonal Anthropological Museum
Established in 1975, this anthropology museum covers the culture and lifestyle of native tribes in Andaman. It presents the clothes, tools, art and crafts, handicrafts, pictures and other display items. You can get the details of all 6 tribes in this island inhabited here ages ago and how they survived without any contact to the rest of the world.
16. Chatham Saw Mill Museum
It was a government mill founded in 1883 and was one of the largest and oldest in Asia. Now, it has a museum with several decorative marbles, satin wood, Padauks, Peauma, and Gurjan. The mill opens 8AM to 2PM and closes on Sunday. You can get there by road to Chatham Island from Port Blair.
17. Fisheries Aquarium
You can witness over 350 marine species here. It presents specimens of several creatures from small creatures to whales and sharks. You can witness variety of corals, shells, and skeletal ruins of marine creatures. You can see the specimens and remains preserved in chemicals and glass.
18. Kalapani Museum
This private museum showcases the history of Andaman through paintings, photos and models. Don’t miss a short film dedicated to Veer Savarkar at the end of tour. You can learn the history of Japanese occupancy and British empire in World War II.
Park & Zoo
19. Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex
Also called as Marine Park, Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex is one-stop destination for several water sports in North Bay. This park is an ideal place to walk and relax and is covered by the sea. It is known to have a tranquil view of seascapes and an ideal place to explore during evenings.
20. Gandhi Park
You can have a soothing nature walk at Gandhi Park. Located centrally in the city, Gandhi Park also has Japanese bunker as well as Mahatma Gandhi’s statue in the heart of the park. You can have quick strolls and relax with serene views.
21. Mount Harriet
The highest peak in South Andaman and second highest in Andaman, Mount Harriet forest national park is located around 15 km by ferry and 55 km by road from Port Blair. It was named after Harriet, wife of Robert Christopher Tytler, who was a British soldier. You can witness a variety of flora and fauna from the peak.
22. Jogger’s Park
The Jogger’s Park offers a tranquil view at one of the highest peaks. Its beauty is enchanted during the evening. It offers a panoramic view of the airport’s runway and is one of the cleanest parks itself.
23. Mini Zoo
It is the compact and modest zoo in Andaman which gives a taste of beautiful creatures to its visitors in Andaman Islands. It has birds, reptiles and animals as well. You can learn about the diverse ecology of Andaman. A lot of animals were moved after the opening of Chidiya Tapu Biological Park.
24. Chidyatapu Zoo
Established in 2001, the Chidiya Tapu Zoo has been aimed to study and conserve the rare and endangered species of wildlife in Andaman. It has been the hub of conservation and biodiversity where you can witness the rich fauna. It has got the environment looks like dense and green jungles to recreate the magic of this natural habitat.
25. Sippighat Farm
Sippighat Farm is located around 15 km from Port Blair and is accessible by road to Wandoor. The Central Government Agricultural Research Institute manages this farm for scientific research and improves cultivation of other plants and production of spices. It is a research center spread over 80 acres where researchers experiment various crops like horticulture and spices like nutmeg, clove, pepper etc.
26. The Flag Hoisting Point
You can learn about the epic history of the pre-independence era and legendary freedom fighters. It is a remembrance of several historical events. This point has a great historical value as it is the same place where Indian flag was hoisted for the first time by Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose on December 30, 1943 in Indian soil. At South Point of Port Blair at 150 ft. above the sea level, a flag pole is proudly standing here. You can see Netaji’s statue here.
27. Science Centre
You can witness a lot of exhibits offering fun-filled learning in a serene environment. It has a playground with small swings and slides in the compound. It is best suited to amaze your children as it presents scientific knowledge in an interactive way.