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“Minicoy island of Lakshdweep & its lovely lagoon with Bluish green waters and white sand”
Review of Minicoy Island

Reviewed 12 April 2017

Minicoy is the Last Indian Island in Arabian Sea and is the southern most island in Lakshadweep. It is second largest island with dense coconut groves & crescent shaped and has one of the largest lagoons. This lagoon is very beautiful & has lovely color - Bluish green water and white sand. I easily walked over half kilometer in this lagoon with water being hardly 5 feet ... it is lovely feeling walking on white sand there in crystal clear water ... it is like gigantic luxurious swimming pool.

At Minicoy you are closer to Maldives (about 50 km away in west) than Indian mainland (over 300 km away in east). I enjoyed Scuba diving there (INR 2000 per person for aboout 10 minutes). You can also enjoy Kayaking, Snorkelling etc. The facilities are good and local people are friendly. Other attractions are over 130 year old light house (built in 1885), tuna canning factory etc. The beaches have bathing huts and change rooms.

I had been there thru Samudram Cruise package offered by Lakshadweep Govt on INS Kavaratti ( a Govt vessel which has accommodation for 200 tourists and also acts as passenger vessel for locals). Samudram package is an excellent cruise of 5 Days & 4 nights and takes you to three islands - Kavaratti, Kalpeni & Minicoy. One can book it thru IRCTC - a Govt of India portal. One should avoid private tour oprtators for this package as they are cheats and I had bitter experience with one of them and had to police to get refund. The cruise starts from Kochi and ends on Kochi. Each morning you are taken to an island where you are stationed at the resort on each island during daytime. You can enjoy Scuba, Kayaking, Snorkelling, speed boats etc on each island. Scuba is on payment basis of INR 2000 on each island. Scuba @ Minicoy was best.

The best weather is from Oct to Mar to visit Lakshadweep though I enjoyed it during early May of 2016 also.

10  Thank Shoox
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 29 March 2017

Minicoy island has a semi-lunar shape.It is the only island in Which the Mahl language is spoken and on all the other islands Malaylam is spoken.This island is ideal for tuna fishing.

2  Thank goldenpatu2002
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 19 January 2017

Have travelled to many beach locations. A trip to Minicoy is special due to the below:

- Lovely bluish green waters and white sand. Fell in love with the colors. We can see different colors of the water (Light bluish green at the shallow ends, Dark bluish green as it gets deeper, water takes an entirely different color (that of the corals) in patches in between.
- Minicoy is around 10 kms in length and is in an arch shape, the width varies along starting from a few mts at the south and northern tips to close to a km at the middle. The island separates the deep open waters from the shallow lagoon.
- View from the light house is spectacular. Preferably visit before noon
- It is a perfect place for water sports - Scuba diving, Snorkeling, Kayaking, Speed/Banana boat rides.
- Specific mention abt Scuba dive. Minicoy had 3 ship wrecks and each of this ship wreck is a hub for marine life. One has to dive in to the open waters to visit these. We dived to one of the ship wrecks, it was an amazing experience. A must do in Minicoy.

13  Thank Sumabala J
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 31 December 2016 via mobile

This island is a very small island and only way to go is by ship. It takes 14-18 hours by ship. The ships only start from kochi. The island is only 12 km is length. There is only one resort on the island. The resort also offers scuba diving with underwater video. The water is very clean around the island. The island is surrounded by coral reefs. To go to island u need to book a package from a tour company which will take permit for u to visit island. The island is not open to visit who do not have permission from island administration. Liquor is not sold on island and consumption is also strictly prohibited on the island. There is minicoy fest celebrate every year during December. This time is good to visit this island.

11  Thank vineetp114
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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Reviewed 26 December 2016

I recommend you read the review by joemdas - 19 November 2016 - which is detailed and very accurate.

We also booked the Samudram package via Mint Valley, but travelled on 21st November for four nights. We travelled as a group of four, and were amongst only 7 Europeans on the cruise. Usually there are none, as this cruise is very much geared towards the Indian tourist. As a foreigner you need to be aware of the regulations concerning the special Lakshadweep permit and ensure that your travel agent arranges this at least three weeks before you embark. They will need electronic copies of your Indian visa and passport.

Embarkation occurs at Lakshadweep Wharf. The process is quite crowded and chaotic, but eventually you will get through - collecting tickets, checking in, security check etc. Be aware that no alcohol is allowed to be carried or consumed on this cruise. Although I normally enjoy a drink I have to say this didn't seem a huge sacrifice. We let the company take our luggage on board and it was at the cabin by the time we got there.

MV Kavaratti is a working passenger ship which transports the islanders from Kochi to the islands and between the islands. On the days it drops the 'tourists' off at the tourist resort islands it spends the way visiting other islands. Do not expect 'western' cruise ship luxuries. The swimming pool had no water in it and the small snack bar is very limited in stock and opening hours. None of this matters, because there is a packed itinerary to keep you fully occupied. The ship itself is only 8 years old and comparable to passenger ships I've travelled in around the UK. It is clean and well maintained. The cabins are a reasonable size and have AC power and en suite bathrooms. The aircon is sufficient and the ship is relatively quiet on the upper decks. We slept really well.

The first meal served after departure was a very basic biriyani, with little meat (non-veg version) and many of our fellow passengers were complaining. However, the subsequent meals on board were fine; a mixture of rice, dhal, veg dish and a meat / tuna curry with chapatti and pickles. It was clearly designed to please the mainly north indian tourists - we would have preferred a few south indian dishes as variety, but that's a minor quibble. The filtered water is safe to drink. The tea is always sweetened, in true indian style, but we found it possible to request a pot of tea with no sugar (though the crew thought this rather strange).

The Tourists visit three islands in turn. We visited Kavaratti, Minicoy, and Kalpeni in that order - but the order does change. The order of the day is similar each day: 7am breakfast (we didn't bother with 6.30am sweetened tea), then don lifejackets (provided in cabin) to jump onto the launches which take you to the island. Back on the launches between 4-5pm, then dinner at 7.30pm.

Kavaratti was the first island we visited. The 'resort' is not far from the port. The beach appears idyllic, but there is some diesel pollution from the nearby harbour. The (free) trip in the glass bottomed boat was great - we saw three turtles and a small shark, as well as hundreds of brightly coloured fish. Various other activities are offered, including scuba diving, and jet-ski. The jet-ski was allowed to operate right up to the beach, which was dangerous, and would be forbidden on european beaches. A tour of the island was offered in the afternoon, which is interesting. We also went for a walk to explore our surroundings on foot. The island is very built up compared to Minicoy and Kalpeni.

Next day we visited Minicoy, which involves a long 30-40 minute transfer by launch from MV Kavaratti. First stop was the lighthouse, built by the Brits in 1885. You can see the whole island from the top! The 'resort' was excellent and the buffet offered at lunchtime, as on the other two islands, was really excellent. At Minicoy snorkelling costs a few hundred rupees. You must do this - the coral was absolutely sensational. Not as dramatic as the Barrier Reef or as colourful as Fiji, but there was a huge variety of colourful fish and the giant clams were amazing. You are expected to wear lifejackets for this activity but may be allowed to discard them, as we were, by explaining that you can actually swim.

Our final stop was Kalpeni, which is perhaps the most picturesque of the islands. The snorkelling here is free. Again, you must do it - though the coral doesn't rival Minicoy's. We borrowed a bicycle from some of the local workers and went off to explore the local village - which was a great experience. The organised tours in the afternoon, including the T-shirt shop, were chaotic and meant we didn't get back to MV Kavaratti until it was nearly dark.

Every day was a full on experience. Once back on the MV Kavaratti you will just want to shower, eat your evening meal, and then sleep. The lack of 'luxury cruise ship' amenities is immaterial because of the excitement of each island visit.

As joemdas says, make sure you have adequate sun protection, especially for pale white skin. We carried beach shoes, which are good for walking along coral beaches. Our indian friends appeared to get 3G connection, but we couldn't afford to check this!

Finally, we have to say, the staff of the MV Kavaratti were fantastic: always friendly and helpful. We found there was really good spirit amongst our fellow passengers too - we may have been in a minority as european tourists, but everyone was really friendly. I have to say this is our experience generally in India, which is why we love travelling in this country.

35  Thank Major_Cholmondeley
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC

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