On the flight to the Andaman islands, we could see the deltas in the bay of Bengal, where lots of Bengal tigers live. On the descent, we saw the small tropical islands with white beaches in the vast ocean, and the unspoilt rain forests. We landed into the tiny airport of port blair, and went through special immigration. We waited for our bags, until there were none left on the conveyor belt, which made us worry that they had been flown off to some far away country. Eventually, an airport staff member came over and showed us our bags, which had been propped up unceremoniously in corner. We never quite understood why they had been taken aside, but now that we had our bags in our hands, it didn't matter. We headed for our hotel, which we had booked in advance, but it turned out to be a bit dingy, with polystyrene shoved in the gap between the window frame and ac. The photo on the wall had been pulled from google images and printed on a piece of paper, with one wooden frame edge missing. We then headed to the port to try to book a ferry for Havelock island. The rickshaw drivers informed us that the government ferry was full for the following day, and that we could only get the makruzz private ferry. Not knowing whether to trust them,On the flight to the Andaman islands, we could see the deltas in the bay of Bengal, where lots of Bengal tigers live. On the descent, we saw the small tropical islands with white beaches in the vast ocean, and the unspoilt rain forests. We landed into the tiny airport of port blair, and went through special immigration. We waited for our bags, until there were none left on the conveyor belt, which made us worry that they had been flown off to some far away country. Eventually, an airport staff member came over and showed us our bags, which had been propped up unceremoniously in corner. We never quite understood why they had been taken aside, but now that we had our bags in our hands, it didn't matter. We headed for our hotel, which we had booked in advance, but it turned out to be a bit dingy, with polystyrene shoved in the gap between the window frame and ac. The photo on the wall had been pulled from google images and printed on a piece of paper, with one wooden frame edge missing. We then headed to the port to try to book a ferry for Havelock island. The rickshaw drivers informed us that the government ferry was full for the following day, and that we could only get the makruzz private ferry. Not knowing whether to trust them, eventually we went to the booking office and got tickets for the following afternoon. After that, we went to a restaurant, as recommended in lonely planet as having the 'best seafood in the andamans'. It didn't. The next day, we boarded our ferry for Havelock, and embarked upon the choppy crossing, accompanied by the sound of the crazy frog song blaring through the speakers at full volume. We arrived to pelting rain, and quickly dashed into our waiting tuk tuk. We turned in to emerald gecko, our beach hut resort, to find it underwater. We had to paddle through water mid-shin height to reach our bamboo hut. It was basic but cute, and the sight of a mozzie net already up was welcome, even if we had to put a few plasters over holes. We changed into our flip-flops and headed to the bar. There we met several other couples/groups of people also looking sorry for themselves. Apparently it had rained for the entire day yesterday. The bar area was surrounded by a moat, and you had to paddle through the lake that had formed to reach the beach. We chatted with 3 German girls, a couple from England, a couple from Australia, and a couple from Paris. I tucked into a delicious fresh peppered tuna steak (this had to be the best fish in the andamans, I think!). Hugo had a chicken curry, and then we headed back to our shack. In the evening, we played cards and taught the german girls how to play wist. That night, I woke to the sound of winds and coconuts falling from trees. Pretty scary actually! Hugo only woke up when rain started spitting in through the sides of the hut. A definite low point. On a tropical island caught in a cyclone, and it was only forecast to improve after we left. Unfortunately, the cyclone meant that scuba diving was off the cards because of the choppy water and poor visibility. In fact, on the Wednesday and Thursday after we arrived on the Tuesday, the ferries were cancelled, so we were lucky to even get to Havelock. The next day, the manager offered us an upgrade to a bungalow that was further back from the water, which was kind. We waited for the rain shower to pass in the morning, and then went for a stroll along the beach. All along the white sand were colourful hermit crabs and sea cucumbers. We took a tuk tuk to the jetty and looked around the shops, before trying to buy return ferry tickets, with no success. Later, we walked to the sister hotel, wild orchid, and went for tea. I had a great red snapper, and hugo had chicken tenders. Our sleep was dry, and there was a great view from the outdoor shower of palm trees. Hugo spotted a very large crab about the size of a rugby ball when he went for a late night toilet trip. The next morning, the sun was out! We went back to the jetty to try to book our ferry tickets again, but again, left empty handed. Never have we seen such disorganisation. Complete and utter incompetence. One day it was only possible to get advance tickets, the next day you can only get on the day tickets, another day there is a ladies queue and mens queue. They literally make up the rules as they go. You ask an official what time we should come back the next day, they say a time, you obey and turn up at 8am the next day to find they are not selling tickets until 12. What a shambles! There was a backlog of two days as well because of ferry cancellations. Reluctantly we went back to the hotel and had breakfast. We decided to head to beach no. 7, apparently the nicest beach on the island. We took a £6 tuk tuk only to find that the beach had been closed by the police because of the cyclone warning and rough seas (most indians can't swim). Dissapointed, we headed back to the beach at our resort and found everyone else that had tried to do the same thing. We walked to a clear patch in the sea and had a dip. The beach really was paradise - no other people for miles. Coconuts were strewn on the sands. Hugo spent about 40 minutes cracking a coconut, and eventually brute force prevailed. We tried the coconut milk, which was sweet, and felt like true castaways. All of a sudden, a big black cloud appeared, and moved in fast. We all grabbed our things and made a quick dash back along the beach, with the sand being whipped up behind us and slapping our calves. We all made it back just as the heavens opened. We chilled in the bar - the English couple had turned to vodka, and so at £3 for a bottle of vodka, and kingfisher beer at 80p a bottle, we joined them. We then headed back to red snapper together. Ben and I had the all you can eat buffet (a group had meant to be arriving that evening from port blair, but hadn't made it because of the ferries, so there was lots of food spare), emily had tiger prawns, and hugo had garlic squid. Back at the resort, we all got together for a game of estimation wist. We explained the rules to the french couple, and began playing. We enjoyed talking about our respective countries. A fond memory of our trip! Ben and Emily were leaving the next day, as they had a flight back to England on Sunday, so needed to make the ferry! They didn't return so we assume they managed to get their tickets that morning, after trying every day like us and wasting half our time here at the jetty. The next day the sun was out again so we quickly got changed into our swimming gear and headed to the beach. We walked down the beach, followed closely by one of the stray dogs, who had found a friend in Hugo, who had decided to call him Poochy. He followed us for the entirety of our 1 hour walk, stopping only to say hi to his canine friends. In the afternoon we did the routine trip to the jetty. I saw 2 birds endemic to the andamans. The next morning we went to the jetty once more in a final hope to get ferry tickets (which we needed to get on that day to make our flight!) We were told that only advance tickets were being sold and that we were to come back at 12 (the opposite of what we were told the day before) I broke down with frustration and had a little cry, then we went for lunch. We were invited to eat with an Austrian couple who were very happy and chilled out, who loved talking about how stress was the cause of all problems and were very keen for us to get married and wanted an invite to the wedding! He gave us his card and invited us to Vienna... his name was Burghard Wiluda. We eventually got a ticket for the ferry, only 20 minutes before it was to set off! Burghard and his wife were not so lucky, but they tried to get on the ferry anyway. The guard at the ferry entrance told Burghard angrily that he was not allowed on without a ticket, he responded by shouting 'I will jump in the sea if you don't let me on this ferry!' and thrust some money into the startled guards hand. This technique was highly effective. We settled down in the government ferry which looked like an old trawler with seats bolted onto it and arrived into Port Blair 4 hours later. We went to the only restaurant we could find and found the German girls were there too. Despite the fact the girls each had a drink, we were told that there were no drinks that we could have. Eventually after enquiring whether they really had no drinks at all, he said yes we do have some. He then proceeded to run to the nearest shop to buy our drinks. I had a bottle of 'rc cola' rather than a can of coke, but I didn't want to trouble the waiter any more as he seemed quite stressed out and was avoiding us. We asked for the bill, to which he thought for a second and replied 'washroom?' We had to talk to two more staff members to get across that we wanted to pay and leave. After our stressful meal we went to bed and were on the plane the next morning headed for Chennai.