Daman: A travel guide to an old Portuguese hub in India!

Daman is part of the Union Territory of Daman & Diu, though in reality they rare actually quite far apart, especially by road. It was also a Portuguese colony and became a part of Indian Union in 1961, 14 years after independence and after a brief battle with Portugal. The Portuguese came here in the 16th Century after a storm and soon after became their colony for the next 400 years. Unsurprisingly, they left their mark, like they did in Goa (read more: Goa Beyond the Beaches) and Diu (Read more: Skinny dipping in Diu) and Diu is now famous for it's very European architecture, seen in old house and Churches. It is precisely for this reason that it's become a popular tourist destination.

Here's a Travel Guide to Daman based on my visit and personal experiences.

Daman sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide boats sunset golden light
The golden sunset once again!

It was a warm and sweaty morning when we checked into our resort at Daman. The fact that we had reached earlier turned out to be an unexpected boon as we spent the next two hours immersed in the superb pool sipping beer, and making some absolutely hilarious attempts at diving into the water. We were both learning freestyle at the time, and flaunted it to one and all.

Daman things to do travel guide
Boats ready to take you into the sea... 
I had planned a trip to this tiny union territory on numerous occasions in the past, but was almost always discouraged to do so hence never really made it here. Daman's more exotic cousin Diu had always taken away not just tourists, but also limelight from this little lazy town.

Daman things to do travel guide  old town lanes
A narrow lane in Motidaman

Daman things to do travel guide old town lanes


Portuguese Legacy

The Portuguese legacy lives on in Daman - in life, in buildings (churches, schools, forts and so on). The Portuguese connection also makes the town a little more exotic for many travellers, though not all. Being the closest wet region in South Gujarat, its a popular destination for those who want to wet their throats occasionally close to home. Beer flows at every corner and one can see the young crowd absolutely in the mood. However, the place is safe for one and all, and hooglism is rare.

Chapel of Our Lady Church Daman things to do travel guide
The Chapel of our Lady Rosary located within the fort

Chapel of Our Lady Church Daman Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide old town church beautiful
The Chapel of our Lady Rosary

Fort Daman Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide old town church beautiful
Daman fort

Daman fort sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide boats beach
Boats seen from the Daman fort

There are many places to see, like the forts and the churches and the beaches, however, I would recommend a boat ride into the sea between the Nanidaman and Motidaman. Its a simple ride, but during sunset it transforms into something magical. The boats and the rippling water turns golden as the sun begins to set and birds hover in the sky.

Daman sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide India sunset golden light
The boat ride into the sea while the sun was getting ready to set...

Daman sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide India man walking into sea wet
Me walking into the sea - Jhampore beach

Daman Jhampore beach sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide India horses on the beach sand
Carriage ride at the Jhampore beach

The Church of Bom Jesus

The Church of Bom Jesus is huge, gorgeous and one of the main attractions in the town. But even then it would be deserted most of the time. Located within the Motidaman (which is also the heritage part of the two Damans), its one of the best surviving Churches in the area. Flanked by old houses on the sides and tree lined roads, the walk to the Church from the jetty is awesome.

Church Bom Jesus Daman sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide India
The Church of Bom Jesus

Church Bom Jesus Daman sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide India
Interiors of Church of Bom Jesus

Church Bom Jesus Daman sea Gujarat Travel Tourism Guide India
The Church again


Where to stay in Daman

The place is teeming with resorts for tourists and will meet most budget requirements. I would recommend staying in a place with a pool for sure, that would be the best way to kill the afternoon heat in summers. Travel with your friends, drink lots of beer, immerse in the sea water and take some wonderful memorable pictures. With good company, it would be a worthwhile place to visit.

Daman night life red port wine
The port wine, it was so bad we had to eventually throw it into the sea!

Daman night life red port wine
Some psychedelically attractive light...
extremely representative of the night life here...

Comments

  1. Hello Sid, nice to read from you, it's been a while since your last post.
    This time you have again chosen a very interesting place, especially as it is a bit forgotten by tourists who more often go to Diu as you say...
    Very nice shots, very interesting info.
    DeeBee

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  2. Even though Daman and Dui are spoken in the same breath, Dui has surged ahead in terms of tourism and attraction. Nice to see this lovely post about its ignored cousin.

    www.rajniranjandas.blogspot.com

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  3. Maybe that's the charm of the place; loved the Houses and Street, shot.

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  4. lovely post detailing the heritage aspect

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  5. @DeeBee: Its great to be back and I am glad you liked the post :)

    @Niranjan Das: :)

    @?: Yes I agree, that's the charm of the place...often so easy to miss!

    @magiceye: Thank you :)

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  6. Another dreamy place. The lovely beach, those old churches... I'd love to visit this!

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  7. A great post and very beautiful images. Looked closely at your blog.
    It is really great work.
    (roofs - the picture is taken in Mustiers Sainte Marie, Provence, France.)

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  8. Very interesting post. I am longing to be there. Incidentally do they have a ferry service to Dieu.

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  9. I loved this post. I know a lot about Goa (and have actually visited it), but not so much about Daman and Diu. Great shots.

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  10. Beautiful pictures :)
    Daman on my list now :D

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  11. Beautiful pictures :). .Especially the first one

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  12. Our plans for Daman and Diu have never quite materialized. Guess it is the lack of direct flights from Delhi that keeps us off.

    It's time to give Goa a break and give these lesser known destinations a dekho.

    The carriage ride on the beach looked quite tempting but will stay away from Port wine :))

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  13. @eyeinthesky: Its surely beautiful there, especially with the right weather!

    @fotokarusellen: Thanks a lot for visiting and appreciating :)

    @pnsubramanian: Yes it seems they do have a service to Diu, am sure it would be a great ride!

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  14. @JM: Thanks a lot, Daman and Diu can easily fade in comparison to Goa as they are much much smaller and much less developed. But both are charming still!

    @Peachyyy: Hope you won't be disappointed!

    @Meena: Thanks a lot!

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  15. @Purba: I agree. Though Goa is superb, its still worth exploring some of these lesser known destinations. They never fail to surprise the visitors :)

    @Nisha: Well I guess I will have to agree that Daman isn't as good as Diu, but it isn't bad either on its own. Its worth exploring Daman with no prejudices...and you would love the place :)

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  16. Interesting post Sid..Feel like visiting the place..

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  17. Beautiful blog, great shots.
    Sill

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  18. Wow, very nice photos! Good to find this blog.

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  19. @Sridharan: Thanks a lot :)

    @Sill: Its great that you liked the post, I guess my intent with the post is met :)

    @Ash: Good to find you too here :)

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  20. Oh, take me to that beach!!
    Lovely pictures and place..so different from my world:-)

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  21. Yes so different from your beach...warm and sunny :)

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  22. wow ..would love to visit here

    http://sushmita-smile.blogspot.com/

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  23. @Shootingstar: I am sure you would love the place :)

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  24. @cheapflights: Very true!

    @HajiBijBij: Similar, yet not quite. Its much more quaint, smaller and intimate...

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  25. Thanks for visiting my blog. Your photos are amazingly beautiful!

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  26. There's a book that tells you where you should go on your vacation. It's called your checkbook.

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  27. nice blog
    http://merwynsrucksack.blogspot.in

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  28. what was the camera used ? The pictures have come out really well.

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  29. Have a read buddy. Thanks
    www.timetotravel.co.in/2011/11/daman.html

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  30. What a lovely post. Awesome picture quality and Nice to see you had a great time and you look beautiful in that jumpsuit!
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  31. Awesome post I like this and i am very interesting to reads this article thanks for sharing.
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  32. Awesome clicks. I would like to give a huge thumbs up for the great info you have here on this post. Thanks for sharing such a good post about Daman and Diu tourism.

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  33. PLEASE RECOMMEND A GOOD WITHIN BUDGET RESORT IN DAMAN

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    Replies
    1. Unfortunately I just stayed at one property there and can't comment on this...

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  34. Hello.. Could u recommend a good beach resort? Are all the resorts on devka or does jhampore have resorts too?

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    Replies
    1. Oops. Just saw ur post that u can't recommend!

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  35. Awesome post! I like this post. Very interesting to reads this article thanks for sharing.
    Really wonderful and beautiful pictures.
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