“To me, being spiritual means…whispering to trees, laughing with flowers, falling in love with sunsets, consulting water and worshipping the stars. One hand to my heart. One hand to the Earth.” – Tanya Markul
The increasing stress of today’s life makes people seek ways to refresh and rejuvenate themselves. Some travel, some meditate, some listen music, some head to the sacred places and some go into seclusion while some take the path of yogic life. And for me getting away from the mad rat race of the normal life and going back to the roots is a way to refresh my soul. Experiential holidays are a wonderful way of rejuvenating our energies and also to just lay down for a while away from the targets and the societal pressures. So I spent a few days just doing ‘nothing in particular’ at a quiet village in Mayabunder tehsil of North and Middle Andaman district.
Somewhere beyond the rainforests, lies the Webi village; a place where the Karen tribe originally from Myanmar erstwhile Burma now truly Indian chose to build their habitat and live in proximity to nature and away from other people due to their shy and peace loving nature. As the history goes back to the British occupation of these Islands; the Karens were brought by the missionaries from Burma as forest labourers.
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I took the one less travelled by. And that has made all the difference.”
I remember these lines of Robert Frost when I think about the experience I had while crossing the sandbar @Ross and Smith, two islands connected with a strip of sand thus earning the nickname “Twin Islands” which in itself is a unique spectacle of nature. While on a trip to Andaman and Nicobar Islands, if you have been to Radhanagar beach in Havelock and thought you have seen the best beach in Asia, then wait till you have set foot on the Ross and Smith Islands in Diglipur. Continue reading
Beaches and scuba diving
Its 4:30 am and I rub my eyes to ward off sleep and get ready to witness yet another sunrise about to happen soon! I walk from my house towards the beach when the first shreds of light starts setting in the skies preparing for the onset of a spectacular sunrise. Finally the sun rises with its golden glow and spreads lovely colors in the entire landscape.
With the sunrise, all tourist activity starts in this tourist centre of Andamans called Havelock Island. Interestingly, most of the islands in Andamans are named after some British General reminding everyone of the stronghold once the Britishers had over these islands. So originates the name Havelock too!
The world seems to be on a standstill when you are here. Everything is quiet except for occasional noises of fishermen passing by on their dungis. I watch the colors of the sky turn from blue to dark to orange and then blue again. I was challenging myself to try this experience which looked eerie at first but then as time passed I started to relax and bask in the surroundings.
Skip luxury and even basic comforts of life for a while and spend a night at “Waterhouse” along the backwaters of Andaman sea. This is a simple spacious house built next to small quiet island near Port Blair. Dinaz Noble who also runs a homestay owns this island and this unique house. The house was built by the family for camping occasionally and now they have opened it for visitors who can appreciate this kind of experience.
Andaman being a place of pristine beaches, rich coral ecosystems, and among the best dive sites had always attracted me. It was a dream to witness immense beauty of these islands which finally took shape this year in November.
Eleven days, four girls, seven islands of the Andaman archipelago; it was truly a trip of a lifetime and an amazing ‘girls only’ vacation. We set out first to explore the more popular among the tourists, the South Andaman and then bidding goodbye to two fellow travellers, two of us set out to explore the less travelled Middle and North Andaman.
The rendezvous started with Chidiya Tapu, which is around 30 kms from Port Blair. It is a small beach famous for its scenic sunsets among tourists and as the name suggests it has a good variety of indigenous birds.