The Minicoy Island is the southern-most island of Lakshadweep, situated at a distance of 398 km (215 nautical miles) south-west of Kochi between 8° 15′ and 8° 20′ N latitude and 73° 01′ and 73° OS’ E longitude, having an area of 4.80 sq km. This island lies near the 9 0 Channel, which is one of the busiest shipping routes and is about 130 km from the northern-most island of Maldives. It has a very large lagoon on the western side, measuring about 6 km across the two entrances, one on the west and the other on the northern-most point. The lagoon area is 30.60 sq km. The island is about 2 m above the mean sea level on the western side and about 3 to 4 m on the eastern side, and is 11 km long.
The Light house of the island is one of the oldest and was constructed in 1885. You will be taken to the villages, tuna canning factory, the light house and for a long drive through dense coconut groves and winding village roads. The beaches have bathing huts and change rooms; so swim and beach walk , Pedal boat, Kayak and Sail . We provide these on hire. Three tourist cottages and one 20 bedded tourist home have been constructed for the staying tourists. This island is part of Coral Reef and Swaying Palm packages .
It is the second largest and southern most island in Lakshadweep, crescent shaped and has one of the largest lagoons. Viringli is the small islet that you see on the south. Minicoy is set apart from the Northern group of islands by its culture. The closest land to Minicoy is Thuraakunu Island in the Republic of the Maldives about 100 km to the south across the Vangaaru Channel.
The main attraction of the island is its carefully arranged villages, known as ‘Avah’. Each Avah has its own internal organization headed by a Moopan, around which the life of the community rests. Every Village has its own village house. In total there are 10 villages in the island, and are named as Bada, Aoumagu, Boduathiri, Rammedu, Sedivalu, Aloodi, Funhilol, Kudehi, Falessery and Kendiparty (from south to north). Each village is headed by a Bodukaka and a Bodudatha assisted by a 2nd Bodukaka and a 2nd bodudatha. First Bodukaka looks after the internal matters of the village and 2nd Bodukaka the external affairs. Village house is the place where ‘Baemedu’ (Assemblage of villagers) is held. As source of income a village has fishing boats, country crafts and coconut trees. Common feasts are conducted at the village house during the celebrations of Eid and other festive occasions.
The houses, which stand in their own private enclosures, are arranged in streets. They are kept neat and tidy and reflect the urge of the people for order and colour. All the houses have a swing cot made of wood which is beautifully furnished and painted in different hues. The inhabitants love a profusion of colors, be it on the beautifully engraved tabletops that decorate their houses or on fishing boats or racing dhonis. One of the handicrafts of the people is boat modeling which is a piece of art painted in different colours.
The folk dances of Minicoy are ‘Lava’, Thaara’, ‘Dandi’, ‘Fuli’ and ‘Bandiya’. Colourful and elegant race boat known as ‘Jahadhoni’ are used for race, reception of dignitaries and for annual picnic to Viringili/Raggan.
The language spoken are Hindi,English,Malayalam and Mahal. Minicoy being the only people in India speaking Mahal as a linguistic minority.
The climate of Minicoy is similar to the climatic conditions of Kerala. March to May is the hottest period of the year. The temperature ranges from 25oC to 35oC and humidity ranging from 70 -76 per cent for most of the year. The average rainfall received is 1600 mm a year. Monsoon prevails here from 15th May to 15th September. The monsoon period raises temperature to the mercury level between 27- 30 degrees. During the monsoon time, boats are not allowed outside the lagoon because of the violent sea. The presence of the reef maintains calm at the lagoon.
|Island at a glance|
|Access by||Air and Sea from India,South-west coast|
|Location||8°- 17* North Lattitude 73°- 04* East longitude|
|Distance to Malabar coast||398 kms from Kochi|
|Total geographical Area||4.80 sq.Kms|
|Maximum Length||11 km|
|Temperature||32oC (Max.) to 28oC (Min.)|
|Highest Rainfall||241.8 mm.recorded in 24 hours|