in splendid, east of the Indian mainland is the archipelago of 5272 emerald
island, islets and rocks known as Andaman & Nicobar Islands. This Union
Territory is stretched over an area of more than 700 Kms. from north to
south with 36 inhabited islands. Once a hill range extending from Burma
(Myanmar) to Indonesia, these undulating islands are covered with dense
forests and endless variety of exotic flowers and birds. The topography of
the islands is hilly and abounds in evergreen forests. The sandy beaches on
the edge of meandering coastline are fringed with coconut-palms that sway to
the rhythm of the sea. The sea around the islands offer excellent scope for
water sports. The rare flora and fauna, underwater marine life and corals,
with crystal clear water and mangrove-lined creeks, offer a dream-view of
the rare gifts of nature-lover, who seek absolute peace and tranquility in
the lap of mother nature. Adventure tourism like trekking, island camping,
snorkeling, scuba diving etc.. are the real attractions. A visit to these
islands is a memorable lifetime experience.
Mythologically, the name Andaman was presumed to be derived from Hanuman,
who was known to the Malays as Handuman. Since pre-historic times, these
islands were the home of aboriginal tribes. The tribes of the Andaman group
of islands were the home of aboriginal tribes. The tribes of the Andaman
group of islands are the Great Andamanese, Onges, Jarawas, and Setinalese,
all of Negrito origin, while the tri
of Nicobars are the Nicobarese and Shompens, both of Mongoloid stock. The
first settlement by the British took place in 1789, which was later
abandoned in 1796. The second settlement was basically a penal settlement,
taken up in 1858, after the First War of Independence, followed by the
settlement of convicts, Moplas, come criminal tribes from Central and United
Provinces, refugees from erstwhile East Pakistan, Burman and Sri Lanka as
In these islands people of all faiths - Hindus, Muslims, Christians, Sikhs
etc., and of all languages like Hindi, Bengali, Malayalam, Tamil, Telugu,
Punjabi, Nicobari etc., live together in complete peace and harmony.
Inter-religion and inter-regional marriages are common. This amazing racial
and cultural mix is correctly described as Mini-India.
Forests are the green gold of the islands. The reserved and protected
forests extend over 86% area of the territory and the forest cover is more
than 92%. About 50% of the forests has been set aside as Tribal Reserves,
National parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries, Which are inviolate. Luxuriant
mangroves, perhaps the richest in the world, occupy nearly 11.5 % of the
territory. More than 150 plant and animal species are endemic in nature.
Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park is rich in corals, varieties of coloured
fishes, sea turtles etc., beside other out of which 39 are endemic.
Megaopde, Swiflet, Hornbaill and Pigeon are some of the specialities of the
Andanman & Nicobar Islands.