Trip Planning

You’ll find this page useful for planning your trip to the Andamans and how to reach our dive centre in Havelock, as well as other information like ferry timings, what to pack etc.

When is the best time to visit?

All entry level courses are offered all year round. Even when it rains, the conditions underwater remain largely unchanged, because visibility and currents are reasonably consistent throughout the year and are affected more by the tides and the cycle of the moon than by the change in seasons.

The “peak” season in the Andamans was traditionally from September until May with optimum diving conditions (for the most discerning divers) seen between January to March. June to August was traditionally considered to be the “off” season because of the monsoon, but over the last few years, the diving industry in India has evolved to accommodate divers who wish to visit during the rains too. The conditions during the monsoons are slightly choppier than the rest of the year, but the underwater marine life more than makes up for the rough ride on the surface. It is definitely a less busy time to visit, so this is when travellers who are looking to stay away from crowds visit. There are some great low season deals on offer too.

Sometimes, however, the monsoon brings heavy winds, which can cause the surface conditions (waves) to become a bit rough and this can be restrictive to boat diving. We have quite a few dive sites to choose from, however, so we can almost always find a sheltered spot and training can continue uninterrupted. Shore diving continues in all except the worst of weather (cyclones and other severe weather warning situations).

How do I get to the Andaman Islands?

The main airport in the Andamans is Port Blair (IXZ). Most of the major airlines like GoAir, Indigo, SpiceJet, Vistara and Air India have daily and direct flights from almost all major cities. Some smaller cities will probably require 1 stop flights through Bangalore, Hyderabad, Chennai or Calcutta. Connectivity between the more popular islands has also improved dramatically over the last few years, so it is relatively easy to plan your travel to and within the Andamans in advance.

Do I need a visa or a permit to visit?

If you are an Indian National, you won’t need any special permission to travel to the Andaman Islands.

All foreign nationals entering India are required to possess a valid international travel document in the form of a national passport with a valid visa from an Indian Mission/Post or eVisa from the Bureau of Immigration, Ministry of Home Affairs.The restricted area permit (RAP) is now completely removed and foreigners may stay as long as desired, per the visa validity. It is best, however, to make sure there haven’t been any sudden changes to this information prior to travel.

What are the ferry timings?
Port Blair to Havelock Departs Arrives Duration
Makruzz 8:00 9:30 1:30
Makruzz 14:00 13:30 1:30
Sea Link Cruise 6:00 8:00 2:00
Green Ocean 6:30 9:00 2:30
Green Ocean 12:30 14:45 2:15
ITT Majestic 8:30 10:00 1:30
Havelock to Port Blair Departs Arrives Duration
Makruzz 10:00 11:45 1:45
Makruzz 16:00 17:45 1:45
Sea Link Cruise 15:30 17:30 2:00
Green Ocean 9:30 12:15 2:45
Green Ocean 15:00 17:45 2:45
ITT Majestic 10:15 12:30 2:15
Health information

The Andamans is quite safe when it comes to Malaria and other tropical diseases. Insect repellent (especially mosquito repellent) is highly recommended and is sold in most stores on the island. The medical centre and facilities in Havelock are quite rudimentary, so it’s best you bring any specific prescription medication with you. Havelock Divers has a reasonably well stocked medical kit at the dive centre, and all our staff are trained in emergency response.

Other information
  • Currency: Indian Rupee. Credit cards are accepted in a few places (we have a card machine!), but cash is still the best option. There are three ATMs on the island and SBI and HDFC banks have their branches in Havelock too. It’s best you exchange any foreign currency in mainland India before you travel to the islands, because the exchange rates on the island are exorbitant.
  • Electricity: 230V-50Hz. Plugs and sockets have either grounded / earthed 3 Pin connections (Type D) or ungrounded 2 pin connections (Type C).
  • Cell phone networks: GSM networks have become more reliable over the last few years. BSNL, Airtel and Vodafone are the three network operators that offer service in the Andamans. GPRS and 3G/4G networks come and go, with BSNL being your best bet for mobile data.
  • Internet: found in hotels and dive centers, but rather slow!
  • Safety: Havelock is a very safe place in general. Cases of crime are few and far between and the seriousness rarely goes further than petty theft. Women travellers should feel quite comfortable, even if travelling alone.