Ross Island recently named as Netaji Subhash Chand Bose Island is in the Andaman Islands of India. This Island the erstwhile capital for the most of Andaman Islands from 1858 until an earthquake in 1941. Netaji Subhash Chand Bose Island was also the base for the British Administrator of the penal colony in Port Blair.In 1941, the Japanese converted the site into POW camp, and built war installations, remnants of which can still be seen. It now lies deserted, and the few signs of its colonial glory, such as the Chief Commissioner's house and the Presbyterian church, are dilapidated and overgrown. The area is now under the control of Indian Navy.
The Ross Island is named after the marine surveyor Captain Daniel Ross. The island became the base for the British and served as their Administrative Headquarters. Initially, barracks of grass and bamboo were put up for the prisoners, while the rest of the party remained on board of the ships that had brought them to the island. Later on, the prisoners built houses, barracks, offices and other structures, following which they were sent to the Viper Island where the first island was constructed. A large bungalow, meant for use by the Chief of the Penal Settlement, was also built at the northern end of the Island. Popularly known as the Government House, this colossal building had Italian tiled flooring on the ground level. Remnants of this exquisite flooring can still be seen, though they are in an extremely dilapidated condition now.
Ferry takes like 15 mins by ferry from Rajiv Gandhi Water Sports Complex jetty. Boat fare is Rs 100 for a to and fro journey. Go on your own. If you are taking a guide, take a package tour from Rajiv Gandhi jetty (Rs 360 per head, will cover Ross, Viper and North Bay Islands, 9am to 5 pm everyday) or hire a guide for about Rs.200 on Island. Although, the island can be discovered by travellers, local boats without permissions and other private transportation is not allowed in the Island. There is no transportation or Golf Carts available inside the island either, to get around you will have to walk by foot and hire a guide which is provided by local agents only which are approved by the Andaman Administration.Public are not allowed to stay on this island, and the island must be vacated by all tourists before 5 PM in the evening as it comes under the forest reserve and there are no available options to stay there.
The scenery and surroundings of the Ross Island are indeed mesmerizing. There are a lot of historical contexts associated with the island, and hence, the place is a significant attraction for history buffs. Once you enter, you will be greeted by ruins of a vast water distillation plant, tennis court and swimming pool on your left. The island also still has the remains of the famous printing press that was located here and the secretariat office. When you set out to further explore the island, you will find the ruins of a church and a graveyard which has names of all the people who are buried there. The Farzand Ali Store is a particularly famous spot on the island and is presently maintained as a museum. The store contains multiple pictures that have a lot to do with the British era and their activities in the past. There is also a sanctuary on the island which has a decent collection of animals. Mostly, it is good for a quaint walk and silent musings. You can just walk around and admire the beautiful floral and faunal species on the island, such as the peacock, eagle, parrot and variety of trees. The island is also home to a large population of deer, who are in the habit of seeing humans and are accustomed to their presence. Other than just wandering around and spending some quality peaceful time with your loved ones, adventure enthusiasts and nature lovers can set out for a hike on the island.
Ross Island Light and Sound Show
A light and sound show is conducted at the Ross Island, which talks about the essential historical incidents that occurred here during the pre-independence era and how the first administrative settlement was established here. The show takes place on all days of the week except Wednesdays and public holidays.
The show commences at 5:15 PM.