About Daman Tourism
Daman or Damao, a Union Territory was a Portuguese enclave for four centuries and a half till the close of the colonial rule in 1961. The first Portuguese Captain Diogo de Mello, while on his way to Ormuz, met with a violent cyclone and when all hopes were lost, suddenly found himself at the Daman coast.
Daman was the battleground to oust the Portuguese and had witnessed many a wars waged against the alien powers. It had been a melting pot where races and cultures met and mixed to bring forth a multicoloured identity. This paradise of peace, solitude and contentment with its coastline about 12.5 km along the Arabian sea (the Gulf of Khambhat) was once known as Kalana Pavri or Lotus of Marshlands. A laid back little town, Daman is divided by the Damanganga river. Nani Daman (or Little Daman) in the north and Moti Daman (or Big Daman) in the south which retains something of the Portuguese atmosphere in its Government buildings and churches of colonial origins enclosed within an imposing wall.
Daman, near Surat in the south of Gujarat is a small port in the Gulf of Khambhat (Cambay). With its easy accessibility, just 12 km from Vapi, the nearest railway station on the Delhi-Mumbai and Ahmedabad-Mumbai rail route and very close to the national highway (NH 8) and with adequate infrastructure, Daman besides attracting weekend tourists from neighboring Gujarat and Maharashtra is poised to become a favoured destination for travelers from all over the country as well as the business visitors.
Daman gratifies the whims of sun bathers and swimmers at its beaches, the historic churches with finely carved statues, majestic forts that rise in their imposing splendour, coconut groves, abundant greenery and round the year temperate climate all provide a lovely escape for those in search of bliss, happiness and fun far away from the bustles of city life.
Being a port town, it offers an exquisite variety of sea food, fare to satisfy the demanding palates of fish lovers, while the quaint bars and sea side modern restaurants satisfy the pleasure of life. The friendly and hospitable people, Hindus, Christians, Parses and Muslims all living in harmony here on this exquisite pearl on the west coast compel visitors to come again and again. Of late, the town has fast emerged as the right place for corporate meets, conferences, seminars, orientation programmes and training sessions. Today Daman offers everything, be it heritage, culture, leisure, fun, adventure and business tourism.
Tour to Daman and Diu In Daman, one can visit the Fort of St. Jerome at Nani Daman, where there is a Jain temple as well. The 17th-century-old Se Cathedral and the Church of Our Lady of Rosary in Moti Daman are also worth a visit, and one can see the exquisite Portuguese carvings on the walls of these churches. Built in ancient Gothic style, these are a feast for the eyes. The stately Light House, the amusement park and the Gandhi Park at Daman jetty are also places of interest. Among the beaches, Devka beach is the most famous. Others include the Jampore beach, which is of interest to the swimmers and is very near the Gujarat border. The lake garden of Satya Nagar Udyan is famous for its fountains and promenades.
In Diu, the Zampa Gateway is of particular interest. It has carvings of lions, angels and a priest and has a chapel inside with an inscription dating back to 1702. The artificial Zampa waterfall is also attractive. St. Paul's Church is the only active church till date. Nearby is the old St. Thomas's Church that has now been taken over by the authorities and converted into the Diu Museum. The Church of St. Francis of Assisi has been converted to a hospital. The Marwar memorial commemorates the victory over the Portuguese. The massive fort built in 1541 is now weathered and weak. It is of major tourist interest. Other places include Jallandhar and Gangeshwar temple.
The Nagoa beach is the most famous in Diu. Gomptimata, Chakratirth and the beautiful Sunset Point are the other famous beaches. The Jama Masjid is also famous.
PLACES AROUND DAMAN
Beaches : Jampore Beach is situated about 3 km south of Moti Daman. It is the popular picnic spot beach for swimming and Horse Riding. The Beach line is Broad and best place to listen the whisper of sea waves and palm trees. Devka Beach is situated about 3 km north from Nani Daman. It is popular for changing colors of sea, amusement park, shells and stones and colorful fountains. It is the most popular beach in Daman among the tourists.
Worship places : Chuch of Bom Jesus, Our Lady of remedies Church, Our Lafy of Rosary Chapel, Church of Our Lady of Angustias are the most popular worship places in Daman. These worship places are the good examples of Art and architecture of Daman and attracts both tourists and devotees in large numbers.
Water Parks : Vaibhav Waterpark is about 7 km from Daman. The Waterpark offers non-stop fun and adventure and surrounding of this park with Mangoes and Coconut Trees attracts the tourists. Mirasol Resort and Waterpark is also a very good place for tourists because of the greenery surrounding of this place. Mirasol offers you non stop excitement with Boating and Waterpark.
Daman Ganga Tourist Complex(complex has waterfalls, water sports, cafeteria, gardens, cottages and fountains etc), St. Jerome Fort(located in Nani Daman on the north side of the Damanganga River), Moti Daman Fort and Light House are the other worthy places to visit in Daman.
Other Nearby Attraction are : Parsi Fire Temple, Tribal Land of Saputara and Shirdi.
The 1000-feet-high hill resort of Saputara near Daman is quite famous. The name means the Abode of Serpents and one can see a holy serpent image on the banks of the river Sarpaganga. To visit Mahal Bardipara Forest Wildlife Sanctuary (60 km) and the Gira Waterfalls (52 km) Saputara is a popular base.
Fudam, near Diu town, has a big church dedicated to Our Lady of Remedies. At the western frontiers of the island, Vanakbara has a Church to Our Lady of Mercy, a fort, a lighthouse, and a fishing fleet.
HOW TO REACH
BY ROAD - The tourist office in Daman (Tel. No.: 55104) is near the bus stand.
BY AIR - Daman is provided with an airport and is connected to Baroda and Mumbai. Only traveler's cheques are exchangeable.
BY RAIL - The main railhead is Vapi, which is 10 km away. Vapi is about 170 km from Mumbai and 90 km from Surat. Buses and auto rickshaws are available to Daman from Vapi.
BY AIR - For Diu, there are regular air services of Gujarat State Airlines that fly to Mumbai.
BY RAIL - The nearest railhead is Delwada, 8 km from Diu. It is located between Una and Ghoghla.
BY ROAD - For road services, Una is the access point and there are direct buses from Bhavnagar (180 km), Veraval (90 km), and Talaja. There is a ferry service from Vanakbara to Kotla village, from where one can get buses to Kodinar. Auto and cycle rickshaws are available to commute within the city. Cycling is the most common mode of local transport. The tourist office is on Bunder Road (Tel. No.: 52212). One can exchange money at slightly lower rates in the banks.
WHERE TO STAY
In Daman, most of the cheap hotels are located on Seaface Road. There are many decent places to stay at the beach sites. In February, Daman is known for its papri, which are boiled, sweet and salty peas. Crab and lobsters are delicacies in October. The streets of Daman have bars that sell beer, Scotch whisky and feni. Tody is also found in abundance.
In Diu, rates of hotels are high in the peak season of October to June. Most restaurants have their own eating joints. Food in Diu can be very cheap to expensive. Good seafood and Chinese dishes deserve special mention. With some luck, one can also taste Parsee food here.
We offer excellent accommodation facilities in and around Daman and Diu.
Pandavas during their fourteen years of exile are believed to have passed a few days at a place known as Mani Nagar (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. The temple of Jallandhar still exists in Diu.
A palm-fringed, largely deserted and secluded beach, Nagoa is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful beaches in India. The unique shoe-shape of the beach makes it all the more beautiful.
The island of Diu, an erstwhile Portuguese colony, is situated off the Saurashtra coast of Gujarat bordering Junagadh district. The other equally beautiful beaches are Ahmedpur, Mandvi,Chakratirath, Jallandhar, and Gomtimata all having their own charm and thrill.The word 'Diu' is derived from the Sanskrit word 'Dweep'. During the period from the 14th to 16th century Diu was one of the best Sea Ports and a Naval base.
Nagoa Beach: If you are not keen on sightseeing, take a 20-minute refreshing drive through open arid land to dense coconut groves to reach the semi-circular Nagoa Beach in Bucharwada village. An exceptionally beautiful and quiet beach, . it has various facilities for water sports. It is also safe for swimming. Plenty of Palm Hoka trees whisper and sway here in the intoxicating sea breeze all day long. The virginity of the beach and serenity of the surroundings give you peace and pleasure beyond expression.
Jallandhar Shrine: Jallandhar Shrine is located on a hillock close to the beach. This small shrine crowned with a dome and contains a niche wherein a stone carved face of Jallandhar is seen. Nearby there is also a temple of Goddess Chandrika. The beach is at a distance of 1 km from Diu Town.
St. Paul's Church: is dedicated to our Lady of Immaculate Conception. Begun in 1601, the church was completed in 1610. The main facade of the church, perhaps the most elaborate of all Portuguese churches in India, is adorned with curiously treated volutes and shell-like motifs, and immediately attracts visitors. The facade has been illuminated by floodlights adding to the evening city glow.
Diu Museum: The old St. Thomas Church has been converted into a museum which houses the antique statues, various stone inscriptions of the earlier rulers, wooden carvings, idols, shadow-clocks and other important artifacts have been collected from various sites and displayed.
Diu Fort: Among the places of tourist interest, the Fort of Diu occupies a prominent position. It is an expansive and imposing structure, situated on the coast of the island. ... for more on diu ...
Fortress of Panikota: The Fortress of Panikota 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 lighthouse and a small chapel dedicated to Our Lady of the Sea. Located in the middle 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.
Ghoghla: The Ghoghla Beach is among the six beautiful beaches in Diu District. A tourist complex built here provides all basic amenities to tourists.
Chakratirath Beach: Chakratirath Beach is centrally located and contiguous to the town at Diu. This beach is a popular haunt for locals and domestic and international tourists as well. The hill and the surrounding areas and landscape has been beautifully illuminated by artificial lighting. An open air auditorium on the sea side of the hillock stands nearby.
Gangeshwar Temple: This is situated 3 km away from Diu in Fudam village. A Shivlinga, known as Gangeshwar, is in the midst of the rocks on the seashore, and is washed by the tidal waves of the sea.
Girnar Hill, Junagadh-185 kms, Palitana-195 kms, Somnath Temple- 72 kms, Sasangir-128 kms, Tulsi Shyam- 45 kms, , Chorwad- 97 kms, Ahmedpur Mandvi-130 kms.
Diu sports a colourful culture. As in Daman, there is a magnificent mix of Gujaratis and Portuguese here which reflects on lifestyle and culture. The friendly fun-loving people of Diu keep alive their priceless heritage of folk arts by singing and dancing.
Garba festival: is a popular folk dance of Gujarat and especially of Diu. It is normally performed by women dressed in colourful costumes with typical ornaments, accompanied by singing of song in praise of Goddess Amba. This is the most popular festival of the region. The colourful costumes, the mesmerising music and the graceful steps cast an enchanting spell on the viewers.
Folk Dance festival: The typical Portuguese regional folk dances of the territory include the Mando Dance, Vira Dance, the Verdigao in which happiness and the whole life style of the people of Diu is depicted. In these dances the clean roads, the delicious food and the traditions of Diu are described. Drink, eat, sing and be merry, that is the mote of the song and dance. The traditional dances are in slow motion with the elderly participating in them, but the young are carrying on the traditions of the old.
Area: 38.8 Sq. Kms.
Population: 39,485 (1991 Census figure)
Climate: Cool and dry
Rainfall: 70 cm
Altitude: 29 metres from MSL
Tourist Season September to May
Clothing Required Cotton in Summer, Light woolen in Winter
Languages Spoken Gujarati, English, Hindi, Portuguese
Telephone facilities with STD are abundantly available in Diu.
Diu has excellent, all weather road links with Ahmedabad, Bhavnagar, Rajkot and Baroda. Luxury buses ply between Mumbai and Diu. It is also air linked with Mumbai.
Air: Gujarat Airways is operating a daily flight between Mumbai and Diu
Rail: Nearest rail-head is Veraval, about 50 kms. From Diu train service is available from Veraval to Rajkot and Ahmedabad.
By Road: Una- 30 kms, Ahmedabad- 495 kms, Bhavnagar- 225 kms, Bombay- 930 kms, Daman- 763 kms, Sasangir-128 kms, Rajkot- 261 kms, Somnath- 87 kms, Veraval- 77 kms.
Bus: Regular bus services are in operation from Diu, Ghoghla and Una to various cities in Gujarat.