DAY 3: CRUISE TO LAKSHADWEEP
DAY 1: FOR LAKSHADWEEP CRUISE – DEPARTURE FROM KOCHI
I woke up around 4:00 am.. that’s really very early for me. My alarm dint ring, then why did I wake up. Then I noticed the sound.. lo & behold - it was raining. That too in October!!. I got out of the bed and peeped out.
It was raining heavily… It was beautiful seeing the rain on the backwaters of Alleppey but then realization struck. How on earth are we going to transport our luggage to the car?? As you would have read in my last post, the homestay where we were put up cannot be reached through road… I just hoped that the rain will subside by the time we have to check out.
the time we all got ready and it was time to start our drive to Kochi, though
it wasn’t pouring cats & dogs, there was still a light drizzle. We again
put our luggage in the small boat and started towards the road. Just like
earlier, Pramod and me on the boat ;) Nikhil and Preeti (along with Taashi) on foot.
|Sky in the sea|
Our luggage nicely tugged in a white Etios, we headed to Kochi. Enroute we had a south Indian breakfast at the very famous “Indian Coffee House”.
We had to go to Willingdon Island to board the ship. Our driver took us to Willingdon Island but he didn’t know the exact place where we had to go to pick our boarding passes. Another friend of ours – Parth (who was joining us for Lakshadweep) had already reached Lakshadweep Wharf.
|Boarding Pass - M.V. Kavaretti|
After a thorough security check we loaded our luggage in a bus which took us to the dock. As soon as we entered the dock we could see the magnificent white beauty– M.V. Kavaratti.
We all were spell bound when we saw our ship. It was a WOW moment – it was actually a ship – not a big boat – but a proper SHIP. It was a medium sized cruise ship and our home for five days.
luggage was marked with the room nos. allotted to us and we were asked to leave
our luggage and embark the ship. The porters ensured our luggage was sent to
the respective rooms. We boarded the ship around 11:00 am.
|M.V. Kavaretti - Our home for five days on the sea|
Thankfully the rooms allotted to us were on the fifth deck which is the top floor and had a small window which offered a limited view. The room is a 15 feet by 8 feet room with beds arranged like bunks on one side. A table, two chairs, a wooden cupboard and wall to wall carpet completed the room décor. The room had a small bathroom in the corner and had the facility of hot shower. Our rooms were clean and comfortable. Two bottles of bisleri, two towels and two medimix soap were kept in the room. After having a look of our rooms we went to the deck to enjoy the view. Though it was noon, we spent a lot of time on the deck, waiting for the ship to leave the harbor. Since the boarding & inspection took approx 2 hours, we decided to take a tour of the ship.
|Room in M.V. Kavaretti|
The ship was five levels - our room was on Level 5, the cafeteria was on Level 4. The Ship has an recreation room which has two TVs and few carrom boards. The ship also has a small swimming pool and has a helipad.
We were served lunch at 1:00 pm. The cafeteria is divided into 2 parts, each accessed separately by a door – on one side only vegetarian food is served and on the other non vegetarian. The ship is used by both tourists and localities alike and they share the same canteen. The only difference is that the canteen timing is different for tourists and localities. The crew (captain & his officers) also eat at the canteen. The area in the middle of the canteen is earmarked for them
Finally the ship started the journey around 2:30 pm. We had more than enough time to roam around the ship. We explored every nook and corner of the ship. Initially, the ship was very confusing - in no time we were lost and roaming aimlessly here and there. But with time we got a hang of the ship and could find our ways easily.
we were excited to see how the ship moves out of the harbour and made our way
to the upper deck. A small tug boat pulls the giant ship out of the bay into
deeper waters. Its amazing as one can’t imagine such a small boat having the
power to move such a huge ship!!
|Huge Ships at Kochi Port|
|Ship cruising out of Kochi|
|Moving out of Kochi City|
We were asked to carry the minimum stuff to the Island. Rest of the luggage will remain in the room. We were also asked to wear the life jackets (which are in the cupboard of your room) before we reach the disembarkment area (in the morning), which is located at the lowest deck of the ship. From this area we will get off the ship and move to the Island in small boats.
|Lets paint the sky RED|
We all slept feeling excited about the pristine clear blue water of Minicoy Islands.
Points to remember:
- We went to Lakshadweep Island
through Lakshadweep Samundram Package which is a five day cruise to visit the
islands of Minicoy, Kalpeni and Kavaretti by ship M.V. Kavaretti. The package
is arranged by The Society for Promotion of Nature Tourism and Sports (SPORTS),
a Government undertaking. The island tour is organized during the day with
lunch and refreshments ashore. Nights are spent on board the ship. M.V
Kavaratti has 150 Diamond class accommodations. Swimming, snorkeling and other
water sports are arranged during the day tour. Children from 1 year and above
up to 10 years will be treated as child.
- Package include:
- First class cabin accommodation
- All 3 time meals [breakfast Lunch and Dinner] morning and evening tea or coffee
- Welcome drink at the island.
- All 3 island sightseeing.
- Water sports Kayaking Snorkeling and glass boat 1 time
- Entry permit and Entry Ticket
- Compliment T Shirts and Caps
- All the Government taxes.
- Personal assistance on the ship and Island
Please note scuba diving is not included in the package. You can avail scuba diving by paying at the scuba diving center. The website of SPORTS is www.lakshadweeptourism.com
- There is no mobile network on the ship and on the islands except of BSNL. So, say goodbye to emails, facebook, whatsapp, twitter or whatever else that you are hooked to. You might find network on Kavaretti Island.
- There is a chemist and a doctor on the ship but just in case if you get sea sick, kindly carry your medication along.
- Foreigners are not allowed in Lakshadweep, except on Bangaram Island.
- Liquor is not allowed on the Ship and on the Islands.
- The temperature in the ship is low and therefore it is very cold. Pls carry a warm jacket. You can also ask for an extra blanket in the ship.
- Expense Details of the day:
Amount for 4 people
Amount per head
Cab ride - Alleppey to Willington