You’re doing Port Blair. You’re doing Havelock. You’re doing Neil Island. But, you also want to go somewhere off-beat and this is where Diglipur comes in.
Diglipur is quite a huge town in the far North of the Andaman Islands. It is about 290 kilometers (km) by road and 180 kilometers (km) by water from Port Blair. So, you can get here either by ferry or road, they’re both options available to travellers.
A spot especially favoured by nature-lovers, Diglipur will charm you with its pretty treks, hikes, scenic views and small-town energy. If you’re looking for a mix of solitude and adventure, Diglipur won’t disappoint.
With the serenity of its quiet beaches, the stunning twin islands of Ross and Smith, its active mud volcanoes, the highest peak in the Bay of Bengal and turtle nesting spots, Diglipur has a lot to offer to travellers looking to make the most out of their trip to the Andamans.
Most travellers choose to spend more time at other popular islands like Port Blair and Havelock, so Diglipur remains mostly under-adored. The main reason for that is because of how far it is from other popular tourist destinations in Andaman but also because the infrastructure at Diglipur for travellers is quite under-developed, as compared to Havelock or Neil Island.
A trip to Diglipur usually starts at Port Blair and requires 3-4 days in itself. This guide will tell you our top 5 reasons for why you shouldn’t miss a visit to this town! And they are:
1. Ross and Smith Island
As you glide on a dinghy across gem-green waters towards Ross & Smith Island, you’ll see two equally stunning islands connected by a thin 50-metre long strip of sand. The high-tide swallows the strip of sand, letting the waters meet and during low tide, it parts to expose the thin strip of sand. During this time, you can actually walk on the sand bar from one island to the other. Sounds pretty magical, doesn’t it?
A beautiful boat journey from Aerial Bay Jetty will take you to Ross & Smith Islands and it will take all of half an hour. A 6-seater boat costs Rs. 5000 and you can either choose to charter it all for yourself, or if you have the time, you can wait for other passengers to join you.
Since Ross Island is a protected area, you need permission from the Forest Department to visit. So, make sure you have your permits ready.
Trekking through the forests here is another adventure you can pursue. However, we recommend you do this with a guide, to avoid any mishaps (aka. getting lost).
Read More: Ross & Smith Islands
2. A Walk through the Saddle Peak National Park
White sand, tropical rainforests and wildlife: does that sound like your dream place to be? Then, we recommend you make the long, but worth-it journey to Saddle Peak National Park. There are trekking routes to 3 different peaks and they’re entirely uninhabited by human beings.
This reserve area is home to a unique combination of birds, animals, and plants that make up the thriving flora and fauna of Andaman. On top of the Saddle Peak, you will find a man-made vantage point to get a breath-taking view of the island.
You can go for long hikes and treks around here, if you are the kind of traveller who enjoys physical activity and a beautiful view to go along with it. Travellers can guide themselves or find a local guide.
Read More: Saddle Peak National Park
3. Visit the Alfred Caves
An amazing cluster of 41 caves, Alfred caves are limestone caves that are similar to the limestone caves in Baratang. If you are up for a slightly more intense adventure, visit the limestone caves in Diglipur.
Early mornings are the best time to do this activity as this leads to a better chance for you to spot birds. If you’re lucky, you may spot some Swiftlet birds while on tour. Keep an eye out for them!
To get to the Alfred caves, get down at Ramnagar via the bus stand at Diglipur or reach there from Kalara junction. A guide will be available to take you through an hour-long intermediate-level trek in the jungle to reach the caves. While this trip comes absolutely free of entry-charges, you will still have to pay a guide, who will also help you secure a permit.
Insider Tip: Watch-out for bats. Carry plenty of water and some snacks with you. Also, carry a bag for your waste!
4. Pristine Waters of Craggy Island
Situated at Kalipur beach, Craggy Island is tiny but the experiences you’ll have here are larger-than-life. It’s home to crystal clear water, shoals of fish and other wonderful, ocean-loving creatures. To explore this island and its wonders, travellers can take a boat to the island. Highly-experienced swimmers are known to have taken the opportunity to reach the island with a 20-minute swim, but this doesn’t come recommended unless you are a professional-level swimmer and are used to swimming long distances in the ocean. You’ll still need to have a boat on stand-by.
Snorkelling is the most famous activity on the beach and it lets you experience the awe-inspiring coral life here. Take care of tidal waves when pursuing this trip, as some parts of the North are known for intense currents. We recommend this visit if you want to explore Diglipur more, during your trip to the Andamans.
5. Visit the Mud Volcano
Mud volcanoes are a natural wonder on the Andamans. But unlike most natural wonders, they’re kind of ugly. You’ll find mud volcanoes in Diglipur, just like the ones in Baratang. And while they may not be aesthetically appealing to most travelers, this is still a once-in-a-lifetime experience.
The perfect place to explore the mud volcanoes would be Diglipur. It’s super-serene because of the lack of tourists flooding the place and what is even more attractive about this visit is the short tour by foot into a jungle that will lead you to this destination.
At first glance, a larger and dormant mud volcano can be seen. You’ll see fresh growing mud volcanoes after a few minutes of walking. It’s just the perfect escape from the hustle of city life and a chance to reconnect with nature in a form you wouldn’t expect. If you’re going without a guide, ask the locals for information on how to see “Jal Tikry”.
6. Watch Turtle Nesting at Kalipur Beach
Kalipur Beach is a sight for sore eyes, with its exotic light-gray-colored sand and beautiful greenery.
If you’re lucky, you will be able to witness a beautiful natural phenomenon on Kalipur beach, where hundreds of turtles swim to the beach to lay eggs. To witness this stunning sight, you can pick a time after sunset. Be perfectly silent so as to not startle the turtles or they may retreat to the waters. Also, be sure to keep the flash off on your cameras and do not touch the turtles.
If you visit between October and March, your chances of seeing this incredible sight are better.
You can also explore the marine-life-rich reefs in and around by indulging in activities like snorkelling or scuba diving.
Read More: Kalipur Beach
So, that is a round-up of all the absolute best things to do in Diglipur. A minimum of two to three days at Diglipur are ideal when you plan your trip to Andaman. This way, you’ll have enough time to enjoy all the exciting activities we just told you about!
Hello! We’re a bunch of content enthusiasts writing about all things Andaman. Our blogs are the result of our immersive first-hand travels to the Andamans and the experiences of those we know closely. We keep a close watch on the travel space in the Andamans, so we can always bring to you the most updated information. Hope you enjoyed reading this blog as much as we enjoyed writing it!