Snorkelling in Havelock Island close to the shore of its tropical beaches is an opportunity to experience a magical underwater world for the uninitiated. An array of shoals of exotic fishes and vivid corals from marine species that include manta rays, clownfish, peacock mantis, reef sharks, jellyfish, etc. along with massive coral reefs including black corals, fire corals, gorgonians, etc. Exploring and swimming in this amazing ecosystem is truly a mesmerizing experience that should not be missed, and the easiest way to do so is going snorkelling in the waters of Havelock island.
If you’re thinking about snorkelling in the Andamans, you might also want to consider scuba diving in Havelock. There are some options that are perfect for beginners – you don’t even have to know how to swim. Check out our blog for more information: Scuba Diving in Andamans for Beginners.
Havelock Island, officially Swaraj Dweep, is one of the largest islands of Andaman and Nicobar Islands. It is located in the northeast of the capital city of Port Blair and belongs to the Ritchie's Archipelago, between Peel and Neil Island. The island is surrounded by the crystal clear waters of the Andaman sea.
The island is a paradise of seven idyllic beaches, considered to be some of the best in Asia, famous for their swimming elephants and magnificent coral reefs. These white sand beaches are lined by sweeping coconut palms with many bamboo cottages peeking through, and various shacks along the shore that serve delicious seafood. Havelock Island is the perfect place for a tropical getaway.
Snorkelling in Havelock: Itinerary
Snorkelling in Andaman is a great experience for people of all age groups and it takes you closer to the rich aquatic life of Havelock without requiring any sort of certification or expensive gear. There are multiple snorkelling trips that are listed on The Great Next website starting from INR 1400 to INR 4000. These packages include all snorkelling equipment required for the activity and boat transfers to the dive site, along with an experienced instructor to help you.
For snorkelling in Havelock, you have to report to the dive centre and collect your gear after which you are taken to the dive site. If you're booking a shore dive, then you'll head to the shore and if you're booking a boat dive, then you'll be taken to the dive site via a boat. There, you engage in a snorkelling session of 45 mins and explore the exotic waters of Havelock. After the snorkelling session, you head back to the dive centre and return your gear, and depart for your hotel. The snorkelling trip ends here.
Snorkelling in Havelock: Getting to Havelock
To get to Havelock, you first have to reach Port Blair which is connected to India by air and sea. Flying is the most convenient and easiest way to reach Port Blair, with regular flights from major cities like Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Bangalore, etc. However, if you have a few days to spare, then you can even take a cruise from Kolkata, Vizag or Chennai. These ships run on a monthly basis and take up to 70 hours to reach there.
From Port Blair, you can take a government run ferry or a catamaran ferry to reach Havelock. Catamaran ferries take 90 min to reach and government ferries take 2.5 hours, but are comparatively cheaper.
Pawan Hans also runs Cessna seaplane services between Port Blair and Havelock, but these are usually irregular and expensive.
Snorkelling in Havelock: Getting around in Havelock
The best way to get around in Havelock is walking; it is free and you don't have to rely on public transport. Apart from this, there are 2 rickety buses running across in Havelock along with few shared jeeps.
You can even hire a private taxi with driver which costs around INR 550 per 35 km or a motorcycle which costs around INR 300 to INR 400 for a day. All the prices are subjective and can change as per seasons.
Snorkelling in Havelock: Best time to go
The best time to go snorkelling in Havelock is during the months of winter and summer. In summer, the atmosphere is warm and the waters are calm, with temperatures ranging from 24 to 37 degrees Celsius. And during the months of winter, the weather is light and neutral with temperatures ranging from 20 to 30 degrees Celsius. The water too is cool and calm with great visibility.
However, monsoons should be avoided if you want to do any kind of watersport in Havelock. During these months, the island faces heavy rainfall and strong winds, along with rough seas. Hence, most water sports including snorkelling are inaccessible during this season.
Snorkelling in Havelock: Packing list
For snorkelling in Havelock, the tour operator will provide all the snorkelling equipment required for snorkelling. The snorkelling in Havelock costs include a snorkel, mask and fins, along with boat transfer fees to take you to the dive site and back.
So you only have to carry the essentials, starting with swimsuit/bikini/swimming trunks for the snorkelling session, extra pair of comfortable clothes, sunscreen, sunglasses and sun-cap to protect your skin from the sun.
It is also a good idea to always carry a daypack with personal toiletries, med kits, extra sunscreen and mosquito repellent with you all the time.
What else to do in Havelock apart from snorkelling
When you're not snorkelling in Havelock, you can embark on various other activities in Havelock. If you're feeling a bit adventurous, then you can head out for a short trek through the dense forests of the island or you can go kayaking or bumper boat rides, jet ski rides, etc. along the shores.
If you further want to explore the rich aquatic life and get close to the corals, you can sign up for one of the many scuba diving trips and courses in Havelock. These trips range from 45-min try dives to full-fledged PADI/SSI certified courses.
Connectivity in Havelock
Havelock only has two ATMs of SBI and Axis banks, and most hotels and resorts do not perform card transactions. Do remember to carry sufficient cash when you're in Havelock.
As for mobile network, BSNL works best in Havelock. The island also has Airtel and Vodafone cell-towers but the connection is sporadic. Many cafes and hotels also have WiFi but it can be slow and expensive.
Snorkelling in Havelock Trip Summary
- State: Andaman Nicobar
- Nearest city: Port Blair
- Total days: 1 day
- Grade: Easy
- Season: Summer and winter
- Avg temperature: 20 to 37 degrees Celsius