PACKAGE: Kavaratti, Kalpeni, Minicoy
Lakshadweep is the smallest Union Territory of India, covering just 32sq.km. The 36 islands, islets and atolls and the waters in between together take 4,200sq.km of space. Kavaratti is the administrative capital of the union territory. ‘Lakshadweep’ means a thousand islands, and it is located about 220km from Kerala’s Malabar Coast. Most of the natives are followers of Islam, with a smattering of Hindus and Christians. Coconut cultivation, fishing and coir making are the major occupations of the island people.
Those who like water sports and adventure activities will have a great time here. Everything from sea swimming to deep sea fishing is possible. Out of 36 islands, only 10 are inhabited. Many islands can only be visited during the day to explore their flora and fauna. The Pitti island is completely converted into a bird sanctuary. Terns are found in plenty there. So are turtles. The islands of Lakshadweep are rich in wildlife and eco-tourism is fast catching up. Bird watching and turtle walking are something you can do as a pastime here.
In the islands tourists can opt for adventure sports and water sports. You can also go for boating, kayaking and deep sea fishing. Water scooters and jet skis are available on rent. In boating, there are pedal boats, kayaks and glass-bottom ones you can take. On a boat ride you can view small corals under the shallow blue waters, fish that swim close to your boat, and many birds, too. There are agencies that offer equipment and crew on hire. A walk around the villages is refreshing and you can meet the locals and interact with them.
Some Important Facts:-
Non-natives of Lakshadweep and foreign nationals should get prior permission from the authorities concerned to visit or stay on the islands. This is done to protect the Scheduled Tribes of the islands, who make up almost 95% of the total population.
According to the Laccadive, Minicoy and Amindivi Islands (Restriction on Entry and Residence) Rules, 1967, every person, who is not a native of these islands, shall have to obtain a permit in the Prescribed Form from the Competent authority, for entering into and residing in these islands. Only the Government Officials and Armed Force members working or visiting these islands and their family members are exempted from this.
Foreign Tourists need to have a valid passport and visa for visiting India. They can visit the islands of Agatti, Kadmat and Bangaram, with permission from the Administrator. Foreign Nationals permitted by the Government of India, Ministry of Home Affairs, for official purposes can also visit these islands.
DETAILED DAYWISE PROGRAMME
|Day 1||Report at the Lakshadweep Jetty (from where the ship departs for Lakshadweep) Afternoon Dep. Cochin for Minicoy Island… (Overnight Journey by Kavaratti Ship)
Dinner on Board.
|Day 2||Morning arrival Minicoy Island….After breakfast on Board & Dep. for Minicoy Island by local Motor Boat…Appx time of travel from main ship to Island is 40 mins through the beautiful blue Lagoons Arrival Minicoy Island..Lunch on Island- Visit Minicoy Light House, Kayaking.. Free for water Sports/ Leisure… Scuba Diving is also available at Kadmat Island- On Direct Payment
Basis….Evening Dep. Minicoy Island for Kavaratti Island…(Overnight Ship Journey)
Dinner on Board.
|Day 3||Arrival Kavaratti Island: Breakfast on Board. Full day at Kavaratti Island…Enjoy the water sports like- Kayaking, Glass Bottom Boat. Lunch on Island. These sports activities are included in the package cost…..Scuba Diving is also available at Kavaratti Island- On Direct Payment Basis….Evening Dep. Kavaratti Island for Kalpeni Island…(Overnight Ship Journey)
Dinner on Board.
|Day 4||Arrival Kalpeni Island: Breakfast on Board. Full day at Kalpeni Island… Lunch on Island. Snorkelling Is inclusive in the cost. Evening Dep. Kalpeni Island for Cochin…
(Overnight Ship Journey)
Dinner on Board.
|Day 5||Arrival Cochin around 12 Noon; Check in at Hotel after refreshment Visit Cochin Local Sightseeing and Halt; End of the Lakshadweep Package|
|Day 6||After breakfast Check out from hotel at 11.00 A.M and departure for your Destination by Flight ; Tour End With Golden Memories.|
Samudram Cruise Packages: Seats Available (LTC Package)
Lakshadweep means ‘a hundred thousand islands’ in Malayalam, the local language. However there are only 36 islands having a total area of 32 sq. kilometers. It is the tiniest Union Territory of India with 12 atolls, 3 reefs and 5 submerged banks. Ten Islands are inhabited. They are Agatti, Amini, Andrott, Bitra, Chetlat, Kadmat, Kalpeni, Kavaratti, Kiltan and Minicoy.
Theories about coral atoll formation are inconclusive. However the most prominent and perhaps most accepted one is given by the Sir Charles Darwin in 1842. According to him the base of the islands below the reef is a volcanic formation over which corals settled and built fringing reefs, which transformed to barrier reefs and finally to atolls due to geological submergence of volcanic base.
According to legends, small settlements started in the islands of Amini, Kavaratti Andrott and Kalpeni first and later people from these islands moved to other islands of Agatti, Kiltan, Chetlat and Kadmat.
The advent of Islam dates back to the 7th century. St. Ubaidulla of Mecca dreamt that prophet Mohammed wanted him to go to Jeddah, take a ship from there and go to distant places. While he was sailing near these small islands, a storm wrecked his ship. Floating on a plank he was swept ashore on the island of Amini. Ubaidulla started propagating Islam in the islands.
Still 93% of the inhabitants of Lakshadweep are Muslims.
People are mostly engaged in fishing and coconut cultivation. The islands are virtually crime-free.
Lakshadweep is one of the world’s most spectacular tropical island systems. Thirty- two sq. km of land spread over 36 islands surrounded by 4200 sq. km of lagoon rich in marine wealth. The precious heritage of ecology and culture is supported by an extremely fragile ecosystem. Committed to the cause of Eco tourism Union Territory of Lakshadweep has consciously followed a middle path between tourism promotion and environmental conservation. The Administration is carefully monitoring the environmental impact of coastal tourism and has taken steps to promote tourism in a way that is consistent with ecological concerns. As an effective strategy to avoid pressure on ecological environment, the efforts to promote tourism have been synchronized with the carrying capacity of the islands.
Some Important Facts about Lakshadweep
Climate: Tropical. 27° C – 32° C
The population is only 60595 as per 2001 census, of which 95% are Muslims. Ethnically they are similar to the people of Kerala. They speak a dialect of Malayalam except in Minicoy where “Mahl” a form of Divehi is spoken.
Languages: Malayalam & Mahl.
How to get there:
Four all weather ships M.V. Kavaratti ,M.V Tipusultan, M.V Arabian Sea M.V Minicoy operate between Kochi and the islands. Air India also operate flight from Kochi to Agatti Island in morning time.
Boarding & Lodging:
While on a day tour package cruise, you will get back to the ship at the end of the day. Staying tourists are accommodated in Kavaratti, Kalpeni, Minicoy Agatti and Kadmat. The tourist huts in each island occupy ideal locations on the beach itself. Each hut has one or two twin-bedded bedrooms with attached baths. For Indian/Overseas tourists there is also a holiday resort at Bangaram.
Spiced coconut-rich Vegetarian & Non vegetarian food. Curried, fried and barbecued fish.
October – May for the ship based tour packages. Agatti and Bangaram may be visited throughout the year.
Things to do:
These are basically leisure tours and Sea/Lagoon based tours.There are plenty of opportunities for Scuba diving, Yachting, Pedal boating, Kayaking, Canoeing, Swimming, Snorkeling and sunbathing. One may also visit local houses, Marine museum, LightHouse and a few local industries
Things not to do:
Consumption of alcoholic beverages is prohibited in all islands except Bangaram. Picking up Corals is a punishable crime.