It's surprising that there isn't a mention of the Indian islands anywhere on the forum. The Andaman and Nicobar Islands and the Lakshadweep Islands are two groups of archipelagos that are situated on the Bay of Bengal and the Arabian Sea, respectively. I have heard that these are beautiful places to visit, and I can vouchsafe for at least one of these. I visited the Andaman Islands 4 years back and found it to be an excellent place for a holiday. Due to its location, not many tourists go there compared to the other travel destinations of India. As a result, the place is still pristine and unpolluted by the hand of tourism. Besides the clear blue-green waters of the Bay that you can watch for hours from one of the many coconut tree scattered beaches, there are many other sites of attractions as well. You can take a flight from Kolkata to Port Blair, the capital city of the islands, and check into a hotel there. The sparsely populated yet fairly modern city has a rich history to tell, tales from the times of the British Raj in India. The fabled Cellular Jail, dubbed "Kala Paani" or the Black Waters is a monument that should not be missed. This is where the most feared "criminals" or national freedom fighters were sent by the colonizers to serve often life long sentences. They lived in 4 by 6 quarters that had nothing to offer but a pan for a chamber pot and a skylight to show if it was night or day. The Sound and Light show retelling the tales of the times will send a shiver down your spine. A small car ride will also take you to the famous mud volcano of the city. A muddy vent that froths and bubbles clay and earth throughout the year. There are many gardens, museums and art galleries scattered about the city that you can visit. Certain steamer offers daily packages to take you on a guided tour of the many spots of attraction around Port Blair. You can also take up a small 4 hour cruise to the nearby Havelock Island. Visitors are allowed to pitch tents on the beach and camp, go for snorkeling and scuba diving or enjoy elephant rides around the island. Another interesting, and less populated beach, is on the North Bay Island. Here too, you can enjoy the same underwater sports as Havelock, possibly at a cheaper rate. The beach here is laden with a vast sea floor of coral vegetation which is inhabited by large number and varieties of fishes and sea creatures, including small octopuses, star fishes, sea horses and the like. If snorkeling isn't your thing, you can always take a ride in one the glass bottomed boats to get a look at the world under the sea. Other nearby islands include Ross Island, which was a tiny British settlement, complete with its own club, church, library and dispensary. The island is now a monumental ruin of history that will take you back in time and leave you mesmerized. Another island in my knowledge, is the Ross and Smith Island. You can take a boat or a dingy to this absolutely quiet and deserted island - actually twin islands joined by a long narrow strip of sand bar. When we visited the place, we were the only ones on the entire island, and the joy we had of spending the entire day on the beach, building a fire, collecting shells, swimming in the sea....is inexpressible. The great marble caves are also close by, and you can reach them through a mesh of mangroves that form a green tunnel and canopy for your dingy to take you through. Given a chance, I would love to visit this place again!