The next day plan was the previous-day-planned Baratang island trip.We boarded the bus at 4am in the morning.Needless to say,we dozed off immediately.Baratang island is around 100 kms from Port Blair.After an hour,bus made its way through a dense forest which leads to the Jarawa tribal reserve.The gate is opened by the forest departments officials for Baratang and all the vehicles are allowed to pass through the Jarawa Tribal reserve in a convoy.We were expecting to see Jarawa tribe people and saw a happy couple.There are a lot of do’s and dont’s here including no photography/videography and no interaction with the tribal people.After two hours of journey through the forest,we reached the end point- Baratang jetty.
Another 10min ferry ride to reach Baratang island.The ferry seemed to be the only connection of the island to the mainland.
Followed by a speed boat ride to Limestone caves.we were four pairs in the boat : 3 honeymoon couples and we two.:P
After almost 45 minutes,we had a 5 minute breathtaking mangrove ride which marks the start of the limestone cave trek.
The journey is beautiful.The 1.5 km nature walk that followed through the roots was an absolutely brilliant experience.You need to visit the place to feel what I can’t express here:)
You can buy refreshments in the middle of the journey.
and take a lot of photos on the way to the caves of stalactites and stalagmites:P
All these adventures to see these limestone caves!Personally, I felt the caves are overhyped,though the journey was thilling.Travel isn’t only about the destination,in fact it is more about the journey.Quite true! You need to use a lot of imagination and creativity while looking at these limestone caves which are natural deposits of sedimentary rocks.They are formed over millions of years when various deposits of marine life,shells,coral,skeletons underwent a natural compression to form unique shapes within the caves.
Once again, 1.5km trek-then-speed boat ride and we reached jetty.We were so damn hungry.I rushed to nearby washroom.Salt water to wash face:( Apparently this island is short of drinking water.We had quick lunch and took a jeep to mud volcano.Such a jeep drive through kaccha roads!!Bless my whole body:P
I badly wanted to visit Barren island to see the active volcano but could not due to time constraints.But Mud volcano was way to smaller and simpler than I expected.
There are tiny little eruptions.(mind you,this is a MUD volcano,not the lava volcano we see on TV).
Unless you are interested in Science,geography,how Andaman formed and all;you can skip this place.
But again,journey is beautiful:)
By the time we reached the foot of the hill,we were very thirsty.We saw an old man selling tender coconuts.We asked him to give two coconuts.He said,”Madam,one will be enough for both of you”.Not possible,we thought! Trust me,being a Goan,I have never tasted such a delicious tender coconut and these two thirsty people were struggling to finish a single coconut!
We got back to Port Blair after another 4 hours!and we were dead!:P
To be continued…