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How To Reach Neil Island
Neil Island is a beautiful piece of beach haven located in the Andamans. It is known for its stretch of quiet, untouched beaches, kissed by crystal blue waters and lined by a varied mix of coloured coral reefs. The charm of this island is that it is tucked away from tourist glare and sleeps and wakes with nature everyday. You will find yourself indulging like a water baby here, with swimming, jet skiing, snorkelling and diving to keep you company.
Over time and tourism development in Andaman, most big islands like Havelock Island, Port Blair etc are well connected to the rest of the world by air and water. Neil is also now included in places well connected. If you want to know how to reach Neil island, read on!
The nearest airport to Neil Island is Veer Savarkar International Airport in Port Blair. It receives regular flights from major Indian and International destinations like Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Frankfurt, London, Madrid etc. A few popular Indian airways that connect to Port Blair include Air India, Jet Airways, Jal Hans, Vistara and Spice Jet. Taxis, private cars or even boats and jetties are ready on hire and take you to Neil Island from Port Blair in half an hour.
Some helicopters also fly to Neil Island from Port Blair, but are quite expensive.
One of the best ways to reach a land surrounded by water is to travel by water! Neil island has some very well developed waterways and regular boats and ferries ply to and from the island. Neil is 36 km away from Port Blair and the ferry ride of half an hour is truly rejuvenating, with fresh, salt-laden breeze blowing in your face.
Advance booking for boat is advised as queues are long and arduous during peak tourist season. International travellers need their passport, visa and travel documents handy even while booking the tickets.
Getting by Locally
Neil is a small island and easily explored on foot in less than 2 hours. The walk does good to your body and soul, with farms and trees waving you by.
Boats and ferries are your best bet if you want to go island-hopping. These internal ferries are not very expensive and become a scenic way to go to other islands like Havelock.
For those who are not too keen on walking, autos are available in Neil. The drivers do not charge much, nor do they rip the tourists off. They may also sometimes double up as tour guides.
Hiring cycles or mopeds is another great way to get by in the island. At 50-100 INR, these are relatively cheaper than taxis and autos.