Location: Bangaram Island Resort, Lakshadweep
Blessed with the perpetually warm weather, Lakshadweep makes for an ideal beach vacation to discover the vibrant marine life or simply admire the pristine white beaches or get your fill of adventure. Each and every island in Lakshadweep has its own charm. The leisurely pace of life here is infectious.
As our twenty seater ATR turned and started pulling into Agatti airport the dark blue of the ocean gave way to the turquoise blue waters and in the distance, we could see a tiny island with an even tinier runway. My eyes were glued to the plane window, as the plane drew closer to the island, the glimpse of pristine white powdery beaches, the lush green palm trees surrounded by the aqua blue water started emerging.It was love at first sight. 🙂
After Andaman, this is the second place where I have seen the ocean with such dreamy shades of blue in India.
We were greeted by the staffs from the tourism board at the airport and after a brief introduction, we were taken to one of the guest house at Agatti for lunch. The lunch was ok. After having our lunch, we had to wait in the guest house till 2 PM as it was a Friday and the staffs were busy with their Friday prayers.
Once the staffs were back, we headed straight to the jetty. The drive was mesmerizing — turquoise blue waters and beaches dotted with palm trees on each side of the narrow road. The view was punctuated by a lot of new resorts/hotels mushrooming on the island and construction work going on in a full swing.
We were awestruck with the vista at the jetty. The landscape was strikingly beautiful and we could not resist the urge of clicking some pictures at the jetty before boarding the speedboat that we shared with four other travelers — a couple from Italy and two women, who came all the way from Texas, US.
As the speedboat started cruising, we passed by boats moored to the shore, fishermen busy fishing, children playing on the pristine beaches of the island. Within minutes our boat started bobbing in the waves and we were greeted by dolphins out of nowhere.
After some time, we were transferred to another boat mid-sea that was heading to Bangaram while the other boat headed to Kadmat Island. The second boat was way smaller as compared to the first one.
As the boat sailed towards Bangaram Island and we left the deep-sea to cruise towards a shallow lagoon, we saw a bale of sea turtles of different sizes popping all over. The water was so shallow that the floor of the seabed was clearly visible. It was so surreal that I find myself short of adjectives to describe the beauty of the place.
Sitting in a small fishing boat bobbing up and down in the waves, surrounded by a shallow lagoon shimmering in million shades of blue — full of sea-turtles, adding to it a striking blue sky with not a single cloud hovering, gentle breeze ruffling my hair and hordes of seagulls making noise which felt like music to my ears.
Words can’t do justice to this place. It’s better to take you on a virtual trip to Bangaram and the nearby islands.
• • • Bangaram Island • • •
Unimaginably beautiful lagoons, amazing marine life, and closeness to the airport were some of the reasons why we opted to stay at Bangaram island. Bangaram island is one of many uninhabited islands full of secluded beaches and hidden coves.
The island assures scenic vistas, uninterrupted solitude, and tranquility. Not just tranquility, but the islands offer an amazing diving and snorkeling experience. The coral reefs here are teeming with multi-hued schools of fish and the shallow lagoon makes it perfect to swim. You can snorkel at sites of a shipwreck or dive to get up close and personal with the vibrant and colorful corals.
• • • Stay • • •
Bangaram Island resort is the only option to stay at Bangaram island. The resort was closed for years due to the legal issue on lease extension between the government and CGH. But tents were set up on the island to cater to tourists for all these years and restoration is still on.
The resort is going to be fully operational starting this September and will be run by Lakshadweep tourism.
Stay on the island is not that luxurious, it is very basic as compared to the price you pay but there is no other option. There are Non AC cottages for tourists. But yes, there are 4 AC cottages that are reserved only for VVIP government officials.
Our cottage was sea facing one, we used to wake up to the crashing of waves, chase hermit crabs, snorkel in search of colorful fishes all day, star gaze at nights and most importantly do nothing most of the time. The islands are just perfect for relaxation and unwinding.
At Thinnakara :
Stay is also at the Non AC cottage on the island. All the cottages on the island are dotted at the shores and facilities are basic as well. But yes, cross-ventilation is good.
• • • Food • • •
All meals are included. We were served breakfast, lunch, evening snacks and dinner on the islands. There is no à la carte and all the meals are served in buffet style.
Breakfast included Bread, Butter, Idli, Uttapam, Dosa, Cornflakes, Puri Bhaji and boiled eggs. Lunch & Dinner menu included Rice, Roti, Chicken curry, Dal, Sāmbhar, Veg curry, Mushroom chili, Fish fry, Salads, and Papad.
Tea/Coffee and Onion Pakora ( Fritter) was also served for evening snacks. The food was ok.
• • • Staff • • •
The resort staffs were super friendly and very helpful. Be it the captain of the boat or scuba dive instructor everyone was very cordial and took utmost care of all the needs.
• • • Activities • • •
The resorts offer too many activities to keep you occupied. Parasailing, banana boat ride, night fishing, shipwreck snorkeling to name a few.
At Thinnakara :
Beach Volley Ball is an addition.
• • • Day Trip • • •
You can easily hop on to a boat and explore the nearby islands any day at any time. Island trip to Pareli -1, Pareli 2, Agatti and Thinnakara island could be easily arranged from the resort at a reasonable price. All the five islands are located close to each other.
• • • How To Get There • • •
By Boat: Bangaram Island is just 30 minutes away from Agatti island by boat. ( Note: Timing may vary depending on the boat ) and Thinnakara is 40 min -1 hour by boat.
By Air: You can also use the chopper service to reach Bangaram Island.
• • • Overall • • •
Stay was not luxurious but the beauty of this place is mesmerizing enough to overlook the logistics and infrastructure. Lakshadweep islands are darn stunning, boasts of having outstanding corals, miles of sun-drenched beaches adorned with coconut groves and looks like a live picture postcard.
We loved our time lazing around on the island, chasing multi-hued fishes and snorkeling with sea turtles. It was surely an escape to this dreamy world of heavenly sun-kissed beaches and prized solitude.
We would highly urge you put this little corner on your bucket list and contribute a little bit to the growing economy of the island.
And last but not the least, where in the world would you see flying fishes so often ??
There is no room service.
Bathing water stinks on this island due to sulphur content. :(. Thinnakara is far better off. We would recommend staying at Thinnakara instead of Bangaram if you cannot withstand the smell.
You have to rely on the resort for food.
Booking in advance ( a month before ) is recommended as there are just 10-15 cottages on the island.
Pack something to snack all day if you are a foodie.
It is advisable to carry cash for water activities as there are no ATM’s on the island.
BSNL network works fine on the island and Airtel works only near the helipad. No network for Vodafone users. 🙁
Permit is a must to visit any of the islands of Lakshadweep. Permits can be easily arranged by travel agents or SPORTS.
Important Link: Packages and How to book.
PS: We booked via SPORTS but you can also book via any other authorized travel agents.
SHOP THE STYLE
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