Nestled on the west coast of India are many places to visit in Daman and Diu. The area was once part of Portuguese India, making it a unique travel experience and contributing many places to visit in Daman and Diu. The two areas are actually on different coasts of India, but because of their heritage, have been linked together.
Places to Visit in Daman
1. Fort of St Jerome
On the north side of the Daman Ganga River you can find Fort Jerome, which was built to keep watch over the nearby sea. The fort is named after Saint Jerome whose statues has been placed on top of the main entrance.
The architecture at Fort Jerome is very typical of Portuguese style and inside of the fort can be found the Church of Our Lady of the Sea. Part of the church has recently been converted into a school. As well as the church there is also a Portuguese war cemetery which was created shortly after the fort was built, in the 17th century.
2. Basilica of Bom Jesus Church
Construction on this church in Daman began in 1559 C.E. and was completed in 1603 C.E. The church is an excellent example of Roman styled architecture as inside the church can be found statues of different saints. The altar itself was carved from wood by Portuguese artisans. The ceiling have a series of murals on them. Overall the Bom Jesus Church is an artfully crafted experience.
3. The Lighthouse
The lighthouse can be found at the St Jerome Fort, on the Daman Ganga Bridge. It was built during the Portuguese era and is a major landmark in Daman. The lighthouse is still in use and helps sea traffic navigate the shores.
4. Jampore Beach
Located in the south of Daman, this beach is one of the best places to visit. The waters are calm and perfect for swimmers of all abilities. The tide can be very low at times and great for exploring. The sand offers an ideal place for a picnic as there are many shady areas.
5. Devka Beach
One of the most popular beaches in Daman is Devka Beach. The water is rockier than other places along the coast, and not ideal for swimming, but the beach itself is perfect for an evening stroll. Along Devka Beach you can find an amusement park as well as a musical fountain. There are many restaurants to eat at.
6. Mirasol Water Park
The main amusement park in Daman is a fun place to hang out at, especially if you are with your family. There are thrilling slide, go-karting and many exciting rides to enjoy. The water park is in the Kadaiya Lake in the northern part of Daman.
7. Satya Sagar Udyan
This colorful garden area is a great place to come and relax. There are promenades to walk on and a snack bar and restaurant to eat at. Take a stroll through this natural place and be happy.
8. The Dominican Monastery
Also known as the ancient seat of religious learning in Daman, the monastery was famous for theological studies across the globe by Catholics wanting to learn more. The monastery as an altar decorated with floral motifs carved on stone and is an interesting place to visit. A religious mass is held every third Sunday in December to honor Saint Dominic.
Places to Visit in Diu
9. Zampa Gateway
The entrance to the District of Diu is one of the many places to visit because of its intricate architecture. The gateway was constructed in the Medieval Era and is very unique. On the walls you can find carvings of priests, angels and lions. A chapel can be found immediately inside the gates which was built around 1702 C.E.
10. Diu Fort
Constructed between 1535 and 1541 C.E, this Portuguese landmark is one of the best places to visit in Diu. The fort is located right on the shoreline, which signifies the allied relationship between the former Sultan of Gujarat and the Portuguese explorers who built the fort.
The fort is around 29 meters high and from the top of it you can have a panoramic view of the Arabian Sea. The sea surrounds the fort on three sides with a canal on its fourth side.
11. Diu Museum
One of the most interesting places to visit in Diu is its museum which is actually located at the old St Thomas Church. Because Diu is a tiny area and there was no space to build a new building, the church was converted into the museum. Inside you can find stone inscriptions of ancient rulers, antique statues, wood carvings and multi-colored fountains.
The museum is also home to artefacts, idols and clocks. The highlight of the museum are 400 year old wooden and marble statues of St Thomas and St Benedict.
12. Gangeshwar Temple
Three kilometers from Diu is the Gangeshwar Temple, a Hindu shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva. Because of its history, the temple is an important pilgrimage spot for people of Hindu faith. The architectures is amazing as the temple looks like it had been carved out of a cave. The temple is near the ocean and the breeze that flows through the complex is warm and calming.
13. Nagoa Beach
On the eastern part of Diu you can find this perfect semi-circle of a beach that has lush white sand and beautiful calm waters. The beach is not too crowded yet offers the opportunity to partake in many water sports. There are palm trees to shade you while you lay on the beach and contemplate your evening plans.
14. St Paul Church
Dedicated to Our Lady of Immaculate Conception, St Paul Church was constructed in 1610 C.E. The architectural style of the church is Gothic and is really interesting to see. The façade on the church is quite ornate and is illuminated by flood lights which makes it great to visit at night. The inside of the church has wood panelling.
15. Sunset Point
This small beach in the southern part of Diu is famous for just what its name would suggest: sunsets. The beach is full of white sand and the waters are fairly calm. Relax under a palm tree and watch as the sun sets over the ocean. There are no obstructed views here; just water.
The places to visit in Daman and Diu offer a blend of Portuguese colonisation with Indian culture. While the two areas are across the ocean from each other, their heritage brings them together.