Daman and Diu


Daman is situated on the west coast of India on the Arabian Sea are exotic locations that are blessed with sun, sand & sea. Due to their Locational advantages, they offer excellent potential for tourist traffic.

Daman is situated at 20-22'-00" to 20-27'-25" latitude north of equator and between meridian 72-49'-42" to 72-54'-43" longitude. An important locational advantage of Daman is its close proximity to Bombay and it is just 13 kms away from the nearest rail road, Vapi. Geographical area of Daman is 72 square kms.

Locational advantages made Daman, excellent and exotic tourism destinations with tourist traffic rising year by year.

Daman boasts of a rich historical heritage spanning over more than 2000 years. The district of Daman of the erstwhile Union Territory of Goa, Daman & Diu is situated in the Surat District of Gujarat. From 2nd Century A.D., it formed a part of the country known as Lata, which was one of the seven divisions of Konkan Vaishaya.

The edict of the Emperor Ashoka (273 to 136 B.C) was found in Saurashtra and Sopara near Bombay. Satrya Kshatrapas under the Kushana emperor seemed to have ruled over Daman District during the first century, A.D. The Coins of Bhumaka and Nahapan, the kshaharata rulers were discovered in the surrounding areas of Surat District. Ushavadatta, son-in-law of Nahapan, is said to have provided ferries on rivers Dhanuha Dhamana, Parada and Tapi.

The Portuguese from Shah of Gujarat acquired Daman. They noticed the port of Daman for the first time in 1523. A Portuguese enclave for 4 centuries and a half till the close of the colonial rule in 1961; Daman has been a coveted prize for which princes, monarchs and alien powers waged wars. Muted memories of history lie vaulted in the monuments of Daman . It had been a melting pot, where races and cultures met and mixed to bring forth a multi-coloured identity.

Daman is having a pleasant climate all over the year. In summer, Daman is blessed with cool breeze coming from over the Arabian sea.

Beginning September & culminating May is the perfect period for exploring and fascination of this wonderland, but planning a holiday in monsoon is no less appealing and will evoke a great deal of exhilaration and mirth.

DAMAN

Daman promises you a refreshing holiday. It is a destination favored by all and visited all through the year. Tranquil sunbathed-beaches, impregnable forts and churches and a rich local heritage and culture - tourist attractions in Daman are myriad and diverse.

The history of Daman dates back to some 2000 years. It even finds mention in the Mahabharata, that the Pandava brothers spent a few days here during their fourteen years exile. Daman attractions also include visiting this auspicious place. Owing to its matchless beauty, Daman was often gifted to winning kings and princes.

Daman boasts of some major tourist attractions which leave every tourist spell bound. One of the major tourist attractions in Daman is the Devka Beach which has an amusement park with several colorful fountains and is a place to frolic around.

The other Daman tourist attractions include the huge fort which dates back to 16th century. A large number of Portuguese gentry used to reside within the confines of the Fort with their families. Nani Daman has an ancient church, a fort and a fishing dock. The lighthouse offers that magical charm to its lovely beach.

HOW TO REACH

By Air - Nearest Airport is Mumbai. Domestic and International flights are available.

By Rail - Nearest railhead is Vapi just about 12 Kms. Vapi is on the main railway line between Delhi and Mumbai. All major Express/Mail and Local trains stoppage are accessible at Vapi. Taxi Service is available between Daman & Vapi on charge per head basis. Other nearby railway head is Valsad Jn. just about 35 Kms.

By Road - Mumbai-Ahmedabad National Highway No. 8 connects Daman via Vapi. Some prominent distance:

Mumbai - 193 Kms.
Ahmedabad - 367 Kms.
Diu - 763 Kms.
Panaji (GOA) via Mumbai - 787 Kms.

WHEN TO GO

The best time to visit, however, is between October and May, when the weather is cool and inviting, and just right to enjoy the great cuisine of the region.

WHAT TO SEE

Fort of Moti Daman - The Fort is protected by a moat on the land side and also connects the river to the sea. It is basically polygonal in plan with projections at regular intervals of about 500 feet and carrying splayed angular bastions. The terraces close to the top of the wall are connected to the top of the wall are connected to the inner ground surface by open flight of steps at many places.

Jampore Beach - It leads on to the border of Gujarat . It is a pleasant spot, where one communes with nature in sublime solitude. This beach is most suited to swimming as it is danger - free. During low - tide, one can walk on the soft wet sand right into the sea. Don't miss a picnic with your family in the shade of Casurina plantation on the sea - shore.

Fort of Nani Daman - The small fort with high stone walls encloses an area of 12,250 sq. meters. It has three bastions and two gateways. The most conspicuous part of the Fort is the giant gateway facing the river with a large statue of St. Jerome and two giant human figures, on either side of the gateway. The imposing church of Our Lady of the Sea is the principal building within the Fort. Nani Daman offers some wonderful sites to the traveler : Gandhi Park near Nani Daman jetty, Nani Daman Fort and the church inside and the fishing jetty where boats are anchored to name a few.

Damanganga Tourist Complex - An unique integrated project with a Cafeteria, Cottages, Conference Hall, Health Club (under construction), Amphi Theatre, Giant Water Falls, Water sports, Island Gardens, Fountains which provide the visiting tourist all facilities in one location. This complex will mesmerize any tourist visiting Daman with its beauty, facilities and size.

Kadiaya Lake Garden - A Wholly man-made wonder offering a variety of cuisine, the restaurant excels in the panoramic view it has to offer. There is a lake surrounding the two islands connected by a bridge. Fountains and beautiful boats add to the remarkable greenery which meets the eye in every direction. Various interesting features like computer games, toy train make it a favorite family tourist spot. The Kadaiya Lake Garden is a famous tourist spot for shooting of many films.

Pargola Garden - It is a monument raised in memory of the Portuguese soldiers who fell during the liberation up rising at Dadra and Nagar Haveli. It has the resemblance of the Pantheon at Athens .

Church Of Bom Jesus - Bom Jesus is one of the most impressive holy places in Daman . It was completed in its present form in 1603 AD and is a living tribute to the excellence achieved by Portuguese architects and artisans in ornate and intricate Church buildings. The richly carved doorway and the highly, decorated interiors together with the lofty ceiling are aesthetic and pleasing. There are six finely made statues in the best traditions of Roman Church art and architecture.

Collector House - Portuguese regime at present office of Collector and District Magistrate situated in this building.

House Of Bocage - At the entrance on the left side of the Pargola Garden almost attached to the Fort Gate is the modest dwelling where Bocage, an 18th Century Portuguese poet lived.

The Paryatan Bhavan - It was constructed in 1995. At present the office of tourism department and OIDC are situated at Paryatan Bhavan. Tourist Information Center is also situated at Paryatan Bhavan.

Devka - The beautiful and well tended amusement park with its musical fountain and kid's corner has become very popular. When the park is illuminated on festive days, it provides an enchanting sight. Most of the food joints and posh hotels are just within walking distance. Children enjoy the facility of a pony - ride on the sands. The traveler can beat the summer heat by taking a swim in the cool waters of the sea.

Mirasol Water Park - Enjoy Go-Carting, Jumper-Boat, Striking Car & other Thrilling Rides at Mirasol Water Park situated within the Kadaiya Lake Garden.

WHERE TO EAT

Martha's Place (opposite the Museum): Excellent home cooking and good views

Kadliya Lake Resort: An island resort run by Daman Tourism, with beautiful lawns, gardens, waterfalls, fountains and boating- a great destination for families

Damanganga Lake Garden (Daman-Vapi Road): Lake facing restaurant with a kitschy, Mughal theme bar.

DIU

The Island of Diu has chaptered History, having been under the possession of and ruled by many Kings and Dynasties; beginning with the Pauranic period and the last being Portuguese from whom it was liberated along with Goa and Daman on 19th December, 1961. The word ' ISLAND '. ( DIU ) which was under the Yadavas led by Krishna Vasudeva during Mahabharata period.

According to mythology, Diu was ruled by the great king Jallandhar who was a daitya (Demon) and was killed by Lord Vishnu with his Sudarshan Chakra (disc). The temple of Jallandhar still exists in Diu . Gazetteer of Goa, Daman and Diu says that Diu was known as Jallandhar Ksshetra during Satyug and is famouos for its Jallandhar temple.

Diu is an island of breeze and beauty. A Portuguese colony like Goa, Diu is an off - shore island on the western coast, off the Gulf of Cambay . The coast has limestone cliffs, rocky coves and sandy beaches, the best of which are at Nagoa. A massive fort built by the Portuguese dominates the skyline.

It is an exquisitely beautiful getaway with golden sand beaches, dense palm-groves and historical monuments sans commercial exploitation and environmental degradation. Diu stands out, in marked contrast to other places, as a tiny island, where people have an excellent civic sense. With the magnificent serenity of its ambience, it is perhaps one of India 's last undiscovered jewels.

With a pleasant climate throughout the year, it affords unprecedented peace and tranquility to tourists. The word ' Diu ' has been derived from the Sanskrit word 'Dweep' meaning an island. During the period from the 14th to 16th century Diu was one of the best Sea Ports and a naval base.

Nagoa beach which is horse-shoe in shape could well be one of the best beaches of the world. The other equally beautiful beaches are Ahmedpur, Mandvi, Chakratirath, Jallandhar, and Gomtimata all having their own charm and thrill. The administration has provided water-sports facilities. Diu is all about lazy days and hazy nights.

HOW TO REACH

By Air - Diu is connected by Vayudoot services with Bombay and Ahmedabad.

By Rail - Nearest railhead is Delwada (9 km) connected via Veraval by metre gauge line. However Veraval (85 km) is the convenient railhead connected to Bombay via Ahmedabad.

By Road - Diu is well connected by road via Una (30 km), to Ahmedabad (495 km), Bhavnagar (225 km), Bombay (930 km), Daman (763 km), Sasangir (128 km), Rajkot (261 km), Somnath (87 km), Veraval (77 km).

WHEN TO GO

Diu Can be Traveled Round The Year. but its better to plan your tour between October To May as this is the most ideal time for all visitors.

WHAT TO SEE

Nagoa Beach - A perfect semi circle beach where the gentle lapping waves beckon you to wade into them for a fun filled time of swimming, gamboling or just lolling around the soft sand shores or to find you napping under the palm trees filled with the soothing breeze. The Nagoa beach is the most famous in Diu . Gomptimata, Chakratirth and the beautiful Sunset Point are the other famous beaches. A 20 min. refreshing drive from the town through the open arid land and dense coconut groves brings you to the Nagoa Beach . Gangeshwar Temple - is situated 3km away from Diu town in Fudam village. Dedicated to Lord Shiva, there are five lingas here that are located in the midst of the rocks on the seashore, and are washed by the waves of the sea. It is believed that these lingas were established here by the five Pandava brothers of the Mahabharata during their exile. The gentle sea waves offering their obeisance to the "Shiva Lingas" in stone have a mystic aura around them in t he cave temple of Gangeshwar where the Lord makes his presence felt.

Ghoghla Beach - Ghoghla Beach is among the six beautiful beaches in Diu District. It also has facilities for water sports like parasailing, water scooters etc. The Golden sand beach undulates into the horizon while the Arabian Sea laps away at the edge as though imploring the sands to let it find its own peach. You can do swimming, sunbathing, parasailing, surfing etc.

St. Thomas Church - Museum - St. Thomas 's Church that has now been taken over by the authorities and converted into the Diu Museum . A huge edifice in gothic architecture was built in 1598. A part of it has been converted into a museum - an archaeological treasure house. It houses wooden carvings, statues, idols, shadow clocks and other important artifacts collected from various sites.

Diu Fort - Diu Fort is an expansive and imposing structure, situated on the coast of the island. It was constructed between 1535 and 1541.The fort commands a magnificent view of sea. Rugged yet gentle, fierce yet loving. Inside, you are overwhelmed by the gaunt majesty of the ancient stone work which transports you to a bygone era of gallant soldiers where time stands still.

St. Paul 's Church - St. Paul 's Church is the only active church till date. The church adorned with curiously treated volutes and shell - like motifs and the magnificent wood carving is considered to be the most elaborate of all the Portuguese churches in India . St. Paul Church , built in 1691 is consecrated to our Lady of Immaculate Conception. The dominant features are, no doubt, Gothic.

Gomtimata Beach - is one of the best beaches of the region. Secluded and spread with natural white sand, it is located at the western corner of the island

Panikotha-Fortim Do Mar - Legend has it that this ship shape structure was one connected with land by an under sea tunnel. You can see this monument in famous bollywood movie "KAYAMAT". It is a magnificent stone structure in the sea, built right at the mouth of the creek. It can be reached only by a canoe or a motor launch. Approximately one nautical mile from the Diu jetty, it also has a light house and small chapel dedicated to Our Lady of the Sea. The fortress makes for a beautiful view whether seen from the jetty, from the Fort, from the village of Ghoghla or from Diu proper.

Jallandhar Shrine - Jallandhar Shrine is located on a hillock close to the beach. This small shrine crowned with a dome, contains a niche wherein a stone carved face of Jallandhar is seen. Near by there is also a temple of Goddess Chandrika . The beach is at a distance of 1 km from Diu Town . This small shrine crowned with a dome, contains a niche wherein a stone carved face of the demon Jallandhar is seen. Nearby, is the temple of Goddess Chandrika.

WHERE TO EAT

Le Jardin d'Hoka Garden Restaurant located in Diu Town . They serve large portions of food, have fresh coffee, fresh bread, homemade jam, fresh pasta, grilled tuna, smoked kingfish, crepes, and more.

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