The Andaman and Nicobar Islands are one of the most mysterious places on Earth. Unlike other globally popular tropical destinations, most of these islands is completely unexplored. There are about 572 islands and only around 36 of them are inhabited. moreover, access to Nicobar is granted only exclusively for research and survey, so its hard for tourists to even get there.
The islands are on of the few places whose history is completely in the dark. We don't really know how the indigenous population got there. You must have read about the sentinelese already who are not only the most isolated but also the most hostile people on Earth!!! they are surprisingly skilled marksmen who have intense physical build and muscular strength. They've never let anyone in. And also have never left the 50 sq km island since at least 400 centuries! They were settled there while humans were still evolving in other parts of the world! Trust me they're different then the natives from Brazil or Papua new guinea. You can read more about them elsewhere.
Andaman are also unique in their wildlife. The biggest crocodiles, heaviest turtles, longest snakes, most colorful fish and the most beautiful butterflies!!! all can be found here.
Here we are presenting 15 Amazing Jaw droping Facts About The Andaman & Nicobar Islands You Never Knew
1. The words 'Andaman' and 'Nicobar' are taken from the Malay language.
'Andaman' is derived from the Malay word for the Hindu deity Hanuman, and 'Nicobar' means ‘the land of naked people.’
2. The most widely spoken language on the islands is not Andamanese or Nicobarese.
The most common language here is Bengali followed by Hindi, Tamil, Telgu and Malayalam.
3. The tribes inhabiting these islands don’t interact with outsiders.
Residents of these islands mainly belong to the ‘Jarwa’ tribe, fondly known as the adivasi. They are less than 500 in number and do not interact with outsiders. North Sentinel Island is home to one of the most isolated human populations in the world.
4. The largest sea turtles nest here.
These islands inhabit endless marine cultures, but the most famous of them all are sea turtles. Dermocheleys Coriacea, the largest sea turtles in the world nest here. They are huge in size and thousands of them flock to the Andamans every year. Additionally, even the Olive Ridely turtles come to the Andamans and use it as their nesting ground.
5. Commercial fishing is banned on the Andaman Islands.
Yes, and that’s great news because this is one of the very few places in the world where fish die of old age and get to live their entire life.
6. The largest living arthropod Birgus Latro "Coconut crab" resides here.
These crabs are also known as coconut crabs because they eat tender coconuts. They are large in size and hate water. In South Asia, the highest numbers of these crabs are found at the Andamans.
7. The 20 rupee note depicts a scene from Andaman and Nicobar islands
The scenery on our red coloured 20 rupee note depicts a natural scene on the Andaman and Nicobar islands.
8. Two islands at Andaman are named after officers of the East India Company.
And these are the Havelock and Neil islands.
9. During WW2, Andaman and Nicobar islands were the only part of India to come under Japanese occupation.
The Japanese did occupy parts of North-Eastern India, but only for six months. Surprisingly, these islands were a part of Japanese occupation for three years.
10. The state animal of Andaman and Nicobar islands is Dugong.
Dugongs are a special sea mammal that are extremely shy to mate. There are only five breeding centres for these sea animals and Andaman is one of them. You can spot these in Little Andaman.
11. These islands are the happy land of butterflies.
A lot of butterflies flock to Andaman and Nicobar from nearby tropical islands. Thousands of butterflies migrate to Andaman and Nicobar Island. Indian Government has also released postage stamps in fond memory of the butterflies that flock to the island.
12. These islands received the first sunrise of this millennium.
Katchal Islands enjoyed the distinction of being the first place to receive the sun rays this millennium sunrise.
13. The only active volcano in India is present in Andaman.
The only active volcano in the entire Southern Asia is present in Andaman and Nicobar Islands. Barren Island, situated 135 km away from Port Blair, is where you can see this live volcano.
14. Kala Pani – The dark side of Andaman & Nicobar islands
Amidst all the beauty and charm of Andaman & Nicobar Islands, there's one dark side of this place that none of us would like to look at. Andaman & Nicobar would certainly be home to one of the most cruel prison of all time, which is much better known as “Kala Pani”. Today the Jail is open to tourists, and a light and sound show at evening will give you a glimpse of the past.
15. Recorded 197 different species of coral out of which 111 are newly identified.
These coral reefs are the least affected by the coral bleaching in the entire world. Nearly 197 species of coral were identified in thirteen sites.Nearly 111 species of these 197 species are newly recorded – previously not known.These coral reefs have not been much affected by the coral bleaching which affected the coral reefs in other part of the world too
Check out this BBC documentary on the sea life of Andaman:
Reef Life of the Andaman (full marine biology documentary)
The known history of the Andamans is full of misery and torture, in contrast to the sheer natural bliss. The only volcano of India is here on Barren Island. Aptly named, there is little vegetation around the active volcano, and the only residents there are sheep! Also, many of the islands there are highly similar to the undiscovered island they showed in Life Of Pi. Places…where no human has ever set foot. Be sure to visit. Cheers!
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