Detour: India

WATERWORLD One of the best reasons to visit the Andamans can be found underwater. With more than 200 islands and countless reefs—many of which have yet to be explored—the Indian island chain harbors some of the most diverse marine life in South Asian waters. Unlike Asian reefs decimated by dynamite and cyanide fishing and eroded by toxic runoff, Andaman coral thrives. A recent Reefwatch Marine Conservation survey found that the reefs were spared the worldwide coral cull caused by the El Niñño in 1998.

The islands are in fact the tail end of the Arakan Yoma mountain range....

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