Image: With permission of binux
The Lakshadweep Islands sit preciously in the Arabian Sea, about 180 miles off the coast of Kerala.
Remote and quiet, with white sands, coral reef, emerald waters and coconut palms, they are every desert island cliché you ever imagined.
Ten of the thirty-six are inhabited, by a friendly Muslim population. Water sports, scuba diving, deep sea fishing and a tropical climate all draw interest from tourists, many of whom take short trips over from Kerala. Homestays such as Kimansion in Fort Cochin will arrange a trip for you.
Marco Polo described Minicoy, one of the larger of the Lakshadweep Islands, as “the island of women”, due to its dominance of females. Here families take the women’s name as the family surname and manage most family matters.
Many of the islanders’ simple lives haven’t changed much since Polo landed in the 13th century. Here are some of our favourite photos…
Stunning beach image by Groove2007
Behind the beach by Grove2007
Happy boys down at the beach from icultist
Fish on the beach by Thejas.
Coral by Thejas
Playing in the sea as the sun drops, by Thejas
Wind gently blows the trees and another day passes into night, by Thejas.
Find out about the homestay experience and don't forget to check out our ideas on things to do in India or browse our India homestays.