If stunning surroundings and idyllic privacy are what you are looking for in a beach holiday, then Lakshadweep Island are the perfect island hideaway for you !
The dazzlingly beautiful coral archipelago of Lakshadweep is one of the most secluded beach destinations in India. Covered by a carpet of lush coconut palms, fringed by silvery white sand bordering an ocean where the colour of water ranges from the palest aquamarine to the deepest sapphire, these exotic islands are the perfect hideaway for those who enjoy the barefoot life. Here’s a look at the idyllic islands of Lakshadweep through 15 photos that will make you want to pack your bags and leave right away !
1. An Airport Fringed by Coral reefs
Agatti Island is the gateway to the Lakshadweep Islands. Designed for Dornier 228-type airplanes, the Agatti Aerodrome is located on a tiny strip of land fringed by cerulean waters and is the only one serving the Lakshadweep islands. As your flight lands at Agatti, feast your eyes on the shimmering waters of the lagoon that appear to merge into the blue horizon.
2. Thrills of Scuba Diving
Scuba diving and snorkelling are the best way to get a closer look at the island’s rich marine life. Take a PADI diving course at the Laccadives Diving School and swim alongside stately turtles, curious schools of colourful fish and the occasional manta ray in the lagoons. You can also take your passion for photography to the next level by learning underwater photography too!
3. Solitude and Serenity
The teardrop-shaped island of Bangaram is bewitchingly beautiful. The laidback island is the perfect place to linger over a delicious dinner, as you listen to the waves and stargaze to your heart’s content. But should you feel the need for a little more adventure, Bangaram is also the ideal location to try out deep sea big game fishing.
4. Tryst with a Historical Mosque
Set in the capital of Lakshadweep, Kavaratti, the 17th-century Ujra mosque is said to have been built by Sheikh Mohammad Kasim, who introduced the practice of ratheeb (a religious performance to invoke blessings) on the island. His grave is located in the mosque complex and is a place of pilgrimage for people from all the islands. Legend has it that the ornate ceiling of the simple yet stunning mosque was carved out of a single piece of driftwood.
5. Island Hopping
Let the sun, sand and surf cast a spell on you as you go island hopping in Lakshadweep. The tiniest union territory of India, Lakshadweep has 36 islands, of which 10 are inhabited. Take some walks on these picturesque islands, mingle with the locals, peer at corals emerging from their underwater abode at low tide, and frolic in the warm waters of the Arabian Sea.
6. Surreal Sunsets
Lakshadweep is the perfect place to luxuriate in pure seclusion. At dusk, watch the sun’s dying rays paint the lagoon into unforgettable and dramatic vistas as you stroll along the jetty at Kadmat Island, the only footprints in the sand being your own.
7. A Quirky Little Museum
The winding roads on Agatti take you through sparse palm groves to the only museum dedicated to Lakshadweep history, the Golden Jubilee Museum. The museum has several wooden chests recovered from shipwrecks, an imposing skeleton of a sperm whale and three gold coins found in the graveyard of the Agatti Masjid, believed to have been issued by the 16th-century Ottoman ruler, Suleiman the Magnificent.
8. Canoeing In Crystal Clear Waters
Heaven for water sports lovers, Lakshadweep offers a plethora of options for those who want to explore the glistening waters of Laccadive sea (as it is locally called). You can choose from water skiing, yachting, wind surfing and much more, but paddling through the crystal clear waters of Lakshadweep is definitely the best way to revel in the island’s languorous beauty.
9. Pristine Sandbanks of Pareli Island
At the Pareli Island, walk over a huge bank of coral debris to reach the island’s pristine sandbanks. Soak in the solitude of this uninhabited island as you sit surrounded by the raucous cries of sea birds and throngs of scurrying hermit crabs. If you are lucky, a turtle may just waddle out of the sea to give you company!
10. Coconut and Fish are the Lifeline of Local Industry
Unexplored by the world till the 18th century, Kadmat was used as a fishing outpost by the fishermen of the nearby Amini island. At Kadmat, indigenous products are crafted out of palm fronds and coconut coir that is soaked, dried and turned into ropes. Pick up some of these local handicrafts before a Malabar-inspired lunch at the Kadmat resort. Coconut bondas, moha appam, octopus fry and pickled tuna are some must try local delicacies.
11. Lighthouse of Minicoy
The biggest island of the Lakshadweep, Minicoy is famous for its towering 49 metre lighthouse that was built in 1885. Locally called Maliku, Minicoy island is closer to Maldives than it is to India! The people of Minicoy live in carefully arranged villages called the avahand speak a unique language called Divehibas, which is similar to the Maldive’s national language. With a unique culture and three large shipwrecks off its coast waiting to be explored, Minicoy is definitely a must-visit.
12. Life in Lakshadweep
The local inhabitants of Lakshadweep are friendly, warm and welcoming. Stroll through the sandy streets of a quiet village to visit local craft workshops and watch the fishermen go about their business as the day’s catch is unloaded at the dock. Do make time to attend a performance of the traditional dance forms of the locals like lava, kolkali (stick dance) and parichakali (shield dance) that are organised quite frequently by the tourism department.
13. Jahadhoni Boat Race
Minicoy is famous for its boat building tradition. The jahadhoni, a colourful and elegant race boat, is a masterpiece made by indigenous Minicoy craftsmen. The annual jahadhoniboat race is also conducted with great enthusiasm as a part of the National Minicoy Fest that is held every year to showcase the unique culture of Lakshadweep, especially Minicoy.
14. Heaven for Beach Bums
Every island on Lakshadweep has something unique to offer and every beach feels similar yet different. Soak up the sun and work on getting that perfect tan or build castles in the silvery sand for a perfectly languid day at the beach. At night, watch blooms of bioluminescent plankton wash ashore on the coral sands, transforming them into a mirror of the starlit sky.
15. Cruising to the Coral Islands
Travelling by ship is also a good option to reach the spectacular tropical island of Lakshadweep. There are several all-weather ships in the Lakshadweep fleet, perfect for an exciting cruise holiday to the islands. On the cruise, make sure you watch out for the tiny four-winged flying fish that jump out of the blue waters straight onto the decks!