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Bangaram Island
experience hotel

There are many things missing from this island in the Lakshadweep. People, for one. But to compensate, you'll get swaying palms, crystal waters and some of the best diving in the world.

The Lakshadweep or Laccadives, as they were formerly called, are a string of little-known islands, lying 250 or so miles off the Malabar coast of India.

There are 36 main islands in all, forming a world of silver sands and clear warm waters, of submerged banks and virgin reefs, enclosing a fascinating underwater world.

Legend has it that the islands were discovered by shipwrecked sailors during the reign of Cheraman Perumal, a legendary King of Kerala, around 435 AD. Frankly, things haven't really changed much since. Nature and culture have both remained preserved over the centuries, miles from the mainland and the trade routes.

The reefs remain pristine.The people continue to fish, grow coconuts and smile a lot. And that's in the handful of islands that have any population at all. The vast majority still remain much as they were the day nature conjured them up.

Called sometimes the Jewel of the Lakshadweep, Bangaram Island is an sparsely populated haven. Barring the occasional visitor from nearby Agatti (where the airport is situated), the only residents are the resort staff.
Teardrop shaped, thick with cool coconut plantations and encircled by a corona of silver sand, Bangaram lives up to every 'desert island' fantasy you've ever had.

The air is fresh with ozone. Sparkling coral reefs unwind around turquoise blue lagoons, bursting with tropical life. The waters are calm, warm and perfect for swimming, snorkeling, diving or just plain wading and messing about.

All this, of course, would tend to leave you with a difficult choice. Activity or inactivity?

If you're in an unhurried mood, you can simply laze on the silver beaches, soak in the sun, listen to the sound of the waves and watch the swaying of the palms.

The island feels like it was designed specifically for relaxation. Step out, stretch and watch the beach dances of hermit crabs, or listen to the raucous music of a hundred-piece seabird chorus.

But should you feel the need for a little more adventure on your holiday, Bangaram island offers a wholly different set of activities.

   

The resort offers you a variety of outdoor activity - Kayaking, Catamaran sailing, snorkelling, deep sea fishing, and scuba diving.

A well-equipped and professionally manned Scuba Diving facility is available at the resort. As a diving location, the virgin reefs of Bangaram have been ranked by many of the world's experienced divers as being among the best anywhere.

Ancient shipwrecks get discovered every now and then, since the reefs aren't even fully explored yet. That's one reason why they abound in undersea life. Manta rays, eagle rays, moray eels and Hawksbill turtles are common, as are game fish.

There are three uninhabited islands in the same atoll, Tinnakara, Parali and the not very imaginatively named Parali-II. Each can be reached by outboarding, sailing, rowing or for the incurably athletic, by kayaking or windsurfing from Bangaram. Perfect for a day's outing, if you're up to it...

Popular dive spots off Bangaram include Manta Point and the wreck of the Princess Royal, sunk 200 years ago.

Diving courses and lagoon diving are offered for beginners too. Diving is permitted only within safe depths around 30 meters. Visitors can avail of a decompression chamber, except from 15 May to 15 September.