How Many Islands Are There in Lakshadweep?

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Lakshadweep, a tropical paradise in the Arabian Sea, is known for its pristine white-sand beaches, crystal-clear waters, and vibrant coral reefs. Comprising a group of islands, Lakshadweep is a Union Territory of India, and its name translates to “a hundred thousand islands” in Malayalam, the local language. However, the archipelago is not as vast as its name suggests. In this article, we will delve into the question that many curious travelers ask: How many islands are there in Lakshadweep?

Geography of Lakshadweep:

Lakshadweep is located about 200 to 400 kilometers off the southwestern coast of India. It is a group of coral islands and islets, and its geography is characterized by lagoons, atolls, and coral reefs. The archipelago is spread across an area of approximately 32 square kilometers, making it one of the smallest Union Territories in India. Despite its modest size, Lakshadweep is a biodiversity hotspot, home to a variety of marine life, including colorful coral formations and numerous species of fish.

Number of Islands:

Contrary to the literal translation of its name, Lakshadweep is not composed of a hundred thousand islands. The total number of islands in the archipelago is relatively small. As of my knowledge cutoff in January 2022, Lakshadweep consists of 36 islands and islets. However, it’s important to note that this number may vary slightly due to natural processes such as erosion, accretion, and other geographical changes over time.

Major Islands in Lakshadweep:

While the total number of islands and islets is 36, only a few of them are inhabited, and even fewer are open to tourists. Some of the major islands in Lakshadweep include:

  • Kavaratti: The administrative capital of Lakshadweep, Kavaratti is known for its calm lagoons and vibrant marine life. The island is home to various government offices and institutions.
  • Agatti: Famous for its stunning coral reefs and water sports activities, Agatti is a popular destination for tourists. The Agatti Aerodrome serves as the gateway for air travel to the archipelago.
  • Bangaram: Often referred to as the Jewel of Lakshadweep, Bangaram is known for its beautiful beaches and luxurious resorts. The island offers a tranquil escape for those seeking solitude.
  • Minicoy: The southernmost island in Lakshadweep, Minicoy is culturally distinct from the other islands, with influences from the Maldives. It is renowned for its extensive coral reefs and traditional dance forms.

Tourism in Lakshadweep:

Lakshadweep has gained popularity as a tourist destination, attracting travelers with its unspoiled natural beauty. However, tourism is regulated to preserve the fragile ecosystem of the islands. Permits are required for entry, and only a limited number of islands are open to tourists.

The government of Lakshadweep has implemented sustainable tourism practices to protect the environment and maintain the ecological balance. Visitors can indulge in activities such as snorkeling, scuba diving, and glass-bottom boat rides to explore the rich underwater life surrounding the islands.

How Many Islands Are There in Lakshadweep?

Challenges and Conservation Efforts:

Despite its allure, Lakshadweep faces various challenges, including the impact of climate change, rising sea levels, and coral bleaching. The delicate balance of the ecosystem is at risk, prompting conservation efforts by both the local government and environmental organizations.

Initiatives such as coral reef monitoring, waste management, and community-based conservation projects aim to mitigate the adverse effects of human activities on the islands. Additionally, sustainable tourism practices are being promoted to ensure that visitors can experience the beauty of Lakshadweep without harming its natural environment.


Lakshadweep, with its turquoise waters, coral reefs, and picturesque landscapes, is a hidden gem in the Arabian Sea. While the archipelago may not have a hundred thousand islands as its name suggests, its 36 islands and islets offer a unique blend of culture, biodiversity, and natural beauty. As efforts continue to preserve and protect this fragile ecosystem, Lakshadweep remains a must-visit destination for those seeking an enchanting and sustainable tropical experience.

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