DIY Trip to Andaman and Nicobar Islands on a Budget – Part 1

Andaman and Nicobar Islands are exotic and pristine isles of India, which attract thousands of tourists around the globe. Unlike any other beach destination in India, these islands boast beautiful turquoise water and soft white sand. You wouldn’t be able to get over it, just like us. 😀

It was our third time in Andaman and Nicobar and it wasn’t just any trip, it was our BABYMOON!!!

Now, this is the reason why we planned the trip ourselves as we didn’t want to rush with travel operators and since we’ve have been there before, we knew how to get things done.

In this blog post, we’ll share with you our itinerary and tips on how you can DIY Trip to Andaman and Nicobar Islands on a Budget.

We explored the islands as per our comfort and also saved money compared to the Andaman and Nicobar tour packages sold by the operators.

Keep on reading to know how 3 people travelled to Andaman and Nicobar islands for 10 days in under ₹ 90,000 (including flights, accommodation, food, activities and commute).  

Note that the blog is divided in two parts. Part 1 will have all the basic details and information on hotels and cafes. Part 2 will have the details of the activities that you can do in Andaman and Nicobar islands and a sample itinerary.

How to Reach Andaman and Nicobar Islands?

Take a Flight

The best way to reach Andaman and Nicobar Islands is by taking a flight. Most of the major cities have direct connectivity to the islands or a brief stopover. Flights from Delhi usually have a stopover at Hyderabad, Kolkata or Bangalore airport. In that case, you don’t have to change the flight, you just have to wait until the other passengers are seated.

Flights can cost you as low as ₹ 10,000 from Delhi if booked in advance. Flights from Kolkata, Chennai, Vizag are even cheaper.

When you’re about to land in Andaman and Nicobar at Veer Savarkar International Airport, view from the airplane is absolutely breath taking. Don’t forget to take a lot of photos of these little islands studded in colossal blue.

Cruise your way to Andaman

You can also reach Andaman and Nicobar by a cruise. The cruises sail from Kolkata, Vizag and Chennai. These are run by the Government and ticket price varies from ₹ 900 to ₹ 10000 depending upon the class of accommodation you opt for.

Is Andaman and Nicobar a Right Destination for You?

You must be so excited to visit Andaman and Nicobar islands after are seeing the picturesque landscape but before you book your flight, we must tell you that it’s nothing like Goa. Hence, it’s important for you to set the right expectations.

Night Life in Andaman

Tourists mumble and grumble over the lack of nightlife and various facilities in Andaman but understand that the islands are probably the last destination in India where you can still enjoy a peaceful holiday.

People in Andaman are early risers. You can see the streets bustling as early as 5 am. At night, the shops and restaurants are closed by 10:30 pm.

Come here with the expectation to enjoy nature in its full glory while you sip on your beer.

Alcohol in Andaman and Nicobar Islands

Alcohol is easily available in Port Blair and Havelock at beer and wine shops. There are a few in Port Blair but only one in Havelock called ANIIDCO Beer and Wine shop. It is run by government, so, the prices are also cheap. You can also enjoy a drink at Venom Bar in Havelock island.

Budget for a Holiday in Andaman

Is Andaman expensive?

A vacation in Andaman can be as luxurious or as budget as you want. However, you may find food and accommodation to be a tad bit expensive comparatively.

Commuting in Andaman

Taxi and autos are easily available. They charge reasonably in Port Blair, however, in Havelock they charge a lot more than they should. Tourism is the main source of income for them and they seem to be taking full advantage.

You can also hire a bike or a scooty. There are a lot of renting shops in Port Blair and Havelock.

Hiring a scooty will cost you around ₹500 for 24 hours and a cruiser bike will cost you ₹800.

Food in Andaman

Most of the things including vegetables are imported from mainland India. A taxi driver told us that tomatoes cost them at least ₹180/kg on good days. Therefore, if you choose to eat at a decent restaurant, you may find it to be a bit expensive.

For instance, a masala dosa cost us ₹150 at a local restaurant. It might be expensive for a few people but somebody who eats at Sagar Ratna, may find it reasonable.

Below is a list of our favourite restaurants and cafés in Port Blair and Havelock. We’re vegetarians, mind that. 😀

Our Favourite Restaurants and Cafés in Port Blair

Annapurna Restaurant

Must try: Paneer Lababdar and Garlic Naan, if you’re missing Punjabi food.

Cost for two: ₹600

Vegan Creek

Must try: Ghee Roast Masala Dosa is one of the best dosas we’ve ever had.

Cost for two: ₹500

Excel Bar and Restaurant

Must try: Paneer Lababdar and Garlic Naan, if you’re missing Punjabi food.

Cost for two: ₹600

Nico-Bar and Mandalay Restaurant

Must try: Indian curries, breads and finger food at the bar

Tillai’s Bakery and Sweets

Must try: Yellow sponge cake and savoury finger food.

Our Favourite Restaurants and Cafés in Havelock

Full Moon Café

Must try: Pomodoro Pasta, Fried Okra, Paneer Butter Masala, Full Moon Breakfast Platter and Lemon Iced Tea

Cost for two: ₹700

Café Salt Water

Must try: Arrabbiata Pasta, Pizza, Veg Burger, Sandwiches, Double Chocolate Shake, Cold Coffee and Dal Makhanwali

They bake their own bread, which is awesome.

Cost for two: ₹700

We would specially like to mention Rana Ji. He’s such a welcoming host that we kept going back for him (also, the food is great). He had a lot of things and experiences to talk about, we

couldn’t get enough.

Venom Bar

It is one of the places that serves alcohol. Sometimes they also organise live music.

Something Different – A Beach Side Café

We’ve only been to this café once. The food was average but the Oreo shake was good. The location of the café is really nice.

Accommodation in Andaman

Staying at these beautiful, exotic islands can be a little expensive. Backpackers, who are looking for affordable accommodation, may have a hard time finding one. Don’t expect prices that you are used to in Himachal or even in Goa for staying at a home stay. A decent homestay in Port Blair can cost you as much as ₹1200 to ₹2000 for a day in peak season. In Havelock, a budget beach resort will cost you minimum ₹2500.

On the other hand, there are a lot of options for honeymooners and luxury travellers. All the premium hotels are at great locations and offer exceptional services. Premium hotels like Seashell in Port Blair will cost you minimum ₹9000 and in Havelock, a beach resort with similar facilities will cost you ₹9500.

You can either book rooms online or do a Google search and book directly. Booking directly is cost efficient as the hosts give better prices than online portals. We also booked directly this time. The price of the same room and hotel is often quoted higher on a lot of websites. Hence, do compare prices before booking your room.

Below is a list of hotels and homestays for every budget in Port Blair and Havelock.

Hotels and Homestays in Port Blair

Lalaji Bay View

It is a backpacker’s adda (hub) in Port Blair. It also has a nice rooftop restaurant called Excel Bar and Restaurant. The location of the hotel is close to the market and other tourist spots like Cellular Jail and Marine Park.

Minimum tariff is about ₹900.

Phone no. 03192 233 322

Blue Bridge Home

This is the homestay where we stayed at this time. It is close to Aberdeen market and other tourist attractions. The host is very friendly and helpful. The rooms of the homestay are spacious and clean but basic. They also helped us in booking tickets without any extra cost. And they have a dog too. 😀

Minimum tariff is ₹2000, we payed ₹500 for an extra bed. Breakfast was included.

Phone no.: 095662 28881

Ocean Breeze Bed and Breakfast

We stayed here only for a night but have a lot of good things to say. They have free WiFi!!! And it also WORKS. Internet connectivity is too scarce on the islands, so, it was great getting connected to the online world after so many days.

The rooms are spacious and clean. They also have a kitchen. Sit out area is awesome and offers a nice view.

It a little bit away from the tourist attractions but autos are easily available.

Minimum Tariff: ₹2000 with breakfast

Phone No.: 095318 68040

Blue Sea Hotel

It is one of our favourites. We stayed here when we visited Andaman and Nicobar Islands for the first time. They have clean, spacious and air conditioned rooms. The breakfast buffet has South Indian food but it is very delicious. The hotel is five minutes away from Aberdeen market. You may prefer taking an auto to visit tourist spots.

Minimum Tariff: ₹3000

Phone no.: 03192 244 512

Fortune Resort Bay Island

We stayed at Fortune Resort Bay Island in Port Blair during our honeymoon. It’s an amazing hotel with really nice facilities. The restaurant and balcony offers a really nice view of Ross Island. You can even see the light house which is on our twenty rupees note. The swimming pool is great too.

The rooms are aesthetically done and are spacious. We highly recommend this hotel to everyone who wants to stay at a luxury property in Port Blair.

Minimum Tariff: ₹10,500

Phone no.: 03192 234 101

Hotels and Homestays in Port Blair

Gold Star Beach Resort (Not Recommended)

Gold Star Beach Resort is only on our list because it’s so bad that it needed a special mention. We do not recommend this beach resort at all. The rooms are really bad. The staff is rude and incompetent. They don’t clean the beach, they rather litter it. The complimentary breakfast is pathetic. They haven’t even maintained the bare minimum.  We do not want anyone to book it even unconsciously.

The Wild Orchid Resort

Wild Orchid is a really nice resort. The rooms are aesthetically designed and maintained properly. There is a hammock in the balcony of every room, which is great. The staff is courteous and attentive. Red Snapper, the restaurant, offers different cuisines and all of it is very yummy. We highly recommend Wild Orchid for a comfortable stay in Havelock.   

Minimum Tariff: ₹5,000

Phone  No.: 095318 35655

Outback Havelock

Outback is one of its kind resort on Havelock Island. It runs on the idea of sustainable tourism. The walls of this resort are made up of waste plastic and glass bottles. While they are taking steps to protect the island’s ecology, they also leave no stone unturned to comfort their guests. The restaurants of this resort, Salt Water, is really good too.

Minimum Tariff: ₹5,000

Phone no.: 072101 01502

Few other resorts on Havelock Island that we recommend

  • Dolphin Resort: It is a government run resort. Requires advance booking. Minimum Tariff: ₹4,700
  • Munjoh Resort
  • Symphony Palms Beach Resort
  • Green Imperial: Ideal for backpackers and budget travellers. For the price that you would be paying, don’t expect much. Minimum Tariff: ₹ 1500

This brings us to the end of Part 1. Part 2 will have all the details of things that you can do in Andaman and places that you can explore. It’ll also have an itinerary that you can follow when you plan your trip to Andaman and Nicobar Islands.

Thank you for reading!

Love Love,

His Side Her Side  

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *