The Andaman Islands are an Indian archipelago in the Bay of Bengal. These roughly 300 islands are known for their palm-lined, white-sand beaches, mangroves and tropical rainforests. Coral reefs supporting marine life such as sharks and rays make for popular diving and snorkeling sites. Indigenous Andaman Islanders inhabit the more remote islands, many of which are off limits to visitors.
Wildlife sanctuaries include the Mahatma Gandhi Marine National Park, home to mangrove forests, coral reefs and a cluster of islands. Cellular Jail, a colonial prison where British authorities held freedom fighters during the Indian struggle for independence, is a national memorial in Port Blair, the Andaman Islands’ capital. Havelock Island, with beach resorts, is prized for its snorkeling and scuba spots. To its south is laid-back Neil Island. Ross Island is home to the ruins of the British administrative headquarters, abandoned in the mid-20th century following an earthquake.