Down Memory Lane Traveller's Diary

Lovely Lakshadweep

It was in 1995 that our member Mr. M. Saha visited Lakshadweep islands. There he had a thrilling experience amidst exotic and sun-kissed beaches, coral reefs and lush green landscape.

Those days I was in Bangalore. Actually, I had gone for some work there for two to three days. Suddenly I thought of going to Lakshadweep islands. I found out all details of going to Lakshadweep at Bangalore. I was told to go to Cochin port in Kerala. From there ships were available to go to Lakshadweep which are situated off the coast of Kerala.

I had travelled by ship before as well. I was told that I could go from Cochin to Lakshadweep by ship. There were cabins in the ship and I was travelling in one of them. There were four bunks in the cabin – two upper and two lower. Apart from me there was a family of three. The family man was a high court judge. During this journey we came to know each other very well, and later became family friends.

There are about 36 islands there but not all are inhabited. Tourists at that time were allowed only on five of them. We had visited, Agatti, Minicoy, Kalpeni, Kavaratti and Kadmat islands. During the night the ship travelled on the Arabian Sea. It was a fantastic sight to travel under the moonlit sky with the waves around silverish in colour. In the morning the ship stopped at a location few kms away from the shore. From there in country boats, we were taken to the islands. Just imagine from the middle of the sea, for 40 mins we travelled in the country boat. As we arrived the islands the water got shallow and the waves bigger. It was a thrilling experience. Every moment it seemed as if the waters would turn us over.

It took us seven days to explore Lakshadweep. In the day we used to go to the islands, spent the entire day there. Mostly in the evening after having tea and snacks we used to go back to the ship. Getting down to the country boat and climbing up to the ship using a rope ladder in mid sea was an acrobatic act for me at the age of 65. So, every day was pretty adventurous for us. The ship would then move on some more so that we could visit the next island. There was a family who wanted to celebrate their marriage anniversary in those islands. So, a place was decorated and they married once more. They had planned this beforehand. The best thing was I was the chief guest of the marriage. The food was native of that place. Fish is the staple diet there and we had varieties caught from the sea.

The most interesting sight there was of Coral reefs. In the clear waters of the Laccadive Sea the corals look beautiful. When we went by boat, we could actually see the corals and the underwater marine life. The experience was fantastic. The unspoiled coral island and reserve were seen in the Kadmat island. At the lagoon of Kavaratti, we went for scuba diving and got to see the beauty of the underwater life.

The adventurous journey of Lakshadweep is still fresh in my mind. Those memories are one of the best.

Leave a Reply