About Lakshadweep

Don’t let anyone fool you by saying that Lakshadweep is the smallest Union Territory of India. Sure it is, but the island paradise is definitely not constrained by its space. Small and scattered as it may seem, Lakshadweep means a hundred thousand islands. Comprising 36 islands, 12 atolls, 3 reefs and 5 submerged banks, it is one of the best beach resort locations and island tourist spots in the world.

Lakshadweep is accessible by air and sea from India’s south-west coast. Kochi in Kerala is the main point of contact for travel and transport. There are many ships and cruises taking locals and travellers across.

The 10 islands of Agatti, Amini, Andrott, Bitra, Chetlat, Kadmat, Kalpeni, Kavaratti, Kiltan and Minicoy are the only ones populated out of the total 36. The islands together cover 32sq.km and the lagoons enclosed by the coral reefs cover an area of 4,200sq.km. With about 500-2,500 people/km the islands don’t seem crowded at all. The capital and administrative headquarters of Lakshadweep is Kavaratti. It is the hub of activity and a centre for locals and tourists alike.

Sir Charles Darwin, in 1842, proposed a theory as to the origin of the islands. After a volcanic island in the region submerged fully, it was let to the action of the winds and waves, and the reef to currents and temperature. This resulted is the formation of the coral islands. A fringing reef formed around the volcanic island. The islands expanded further as years went by.

How to reach Lakshadweep
Agatti airport handles flights from Cochin, Trivandrum, Calicut in Kerala, and Goa. Ships such as mv Bharatseema, mv Tipusultan, mv Aminidivi and mv Minicoy are the four ships that link Kochi and the islands.

Cruises from Goa and recently Karnataka have been started. There are several packaged cruses where you can stay onboard a ship during the nights and go visiting in the daytime.

Although the islands are humid the presence of water all around makes the area cool to live in. Lakshadweep’s temperature varies from 27oC to 30oC. The South-West monsoon pours over the islands from June to September.
The average rainfall is 1,640mm. Open areas receive moderate winds. Strong winds blow in certain parts infrequently from October to March. April and May are the hottest with an average temperature of 32oC. The relative humidity is 70-75%.

Flora and Fauna
What other than the humble coconut tree would be found in plenty here? They grace the coasts and beaches with their slender trunk and long breezy leaves. A part of the population lives by making coir and coir products. Other flora found on the islands are Vazha (Banana), Colocassia (Musaparadisiaca) , Chembu (Colocassia antiquarum), Moringakkai (Moringa Oleifera), Bread Fruit, Chakka (Artocarpus incisa) and wild almond (Terminalia Catappa). Plants like Kanni (Scaevolakeeningil), Punna, (Calaphylluminophyllum), Chavok (Casurina equisetifolia) and Cheerani (Thespesia Populnea) are found on the islands, too.

Thalassia hemprichin and Cymodocea isoetifolia two species of sea grass spotted near the beaches. They are best known for preventing sea corrosion and sedimentation of the beaches.

Cows, goats and ducks are common animals here. Most of the birds live on Pitti Island. Taratashi is the state bird. Butterfly fish, puffer fish, surgeon fish, powder blue surgeon fish, parrot fish, damsel fish, porcupine fish, octopus and many varieties of rays, sharks and eels live in the sea here. Many types of crabs, lobsters and shrimps inhabit the crevices of coral reefs.

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Cruise Lines

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Island Hotels

There are many options for the average traveller, luxury-seeker and for the budget tourist. Choose from a variety of accommodation on the islands.