Coming from a conservative family, I hadn’t really gotten the chance to travel as much. Thanks to my adventurous uncle, my family finally agreed to go on a trip to Daman during the summer. My uncle has been to Daman before, several times, and had painted such a beautiful picture of the city that it got us all excited! Now it’s my turn to pique your interest in this coastal paradise. And who knows, towards the end of my story, you might end up planning a trip to Daman yourself!
Our trip to Daman was a last-minute plan! But like they say, impromptu trips turn out to be the most memorable ones. To make things more fun and exciting, we decided to go on a road trip. The preparations were done, bags were packed, and we set out on the road!
Since we decided to go on a road trip, we prepared the following things in advance:
We started our journey from Vasai, a suburb in Mumbai, and drove through NH 48 to reach Daman. It took us roughly 4 hours to reach there. That was because of the heavy traffic we encountered on our way. We headed on our way to reach the Silver Sands Beach Resort in Daman. Although it was the peak season, we managed to get a pretty good deal during our stay at this resort.
Keep in mind that summertime is the peak season wherein a lot of tourists travel to Daman. So, for good deals on hotels, I suggest you make bookings in advance. There are several small inns near the Devka Beach Road that are very affordable. You will be charged approximately INR 2,000 for a 2-day stay. If you think your budget doesn’t allow you to book a resort, you can consider staying in any of these small establishments.
Before getting started on how we traveled to Daman, I’ll first give you a gist of where we were headed exactly. This coastal city is a part of the Dadra and Nagar Haveli, which is a union territory. It’s divided into two parts - Moti Daman and Nani Daman, which are separated by the Ganga River flowing between them. Now, let me take you through our Nani Daman tour.
What better way to start the sightseeing tour of Daman than to explore its history? Since all of my family members were keen on exploring at least one historical site during our trip, our first destination was St. Jerome Fort, also known as ‘Nani Daman Fort’. This magnanimous fort is situated just opposite the river, and the view was absolutely breathtaking!
The fort has tall stone walls, two majestic gateways, and ten bastions. As we entered, the first thing that captured our attention was the huge statue of St. Jerome. St. Jerome is known to be one of the most renowned and eminent priests of the Catholic Church. After the war broke out between the Portuguese and the Mughals, this fort was constructed. The many dislodged Portuguese families who faced a lot of damages and hardships were accommodated here during the war period.
To get a panoramic view of the place, you can take the stairs and climb up the fort. The climb can be a bit of a workout but is totally worth it. The stunning view of the river and the surrounding greenery is truly splendid to look at! The fort also houses ‘The Church Of Our Lady Of The Sea’. We wanted to attend the mass celebrated here in the morning, but because of the heavy traffic, we couldn’t make it in time. We still visited the church to say our prayers and explore its interiors.
The church showcases beautiful European architecture with the statue of Our Lady right at the center of the altar. The quiet and peace of the church create a tranquil atmosphere perfect to meditate and embrace one’s spiritual self. If you visit here in the morning around 10 am, you’ll even get to listen to the choir recitals which are soothing to the ears.
We enjoyed some garma garam vada pav at the food stall near the church. You’ll also find many other vendors selling snacks like bhel and chaat nearby. After visiting the church, you should definitely explore the fish market nearby. You’ll find a variety of fish here that are sold at very cheap prices. And if you’re a seafood fanatic, you must try the lobsters and crabs during your Daman trip at least once!
Born and brought up in Vasai, I am fortunate enough to live close to several beaches and proudly call myself a beach lover. For me, there’s no other place as tranquil and peaceful as the beach. So, visiting the beaches at Daman was a no-brainer! One of the most popular attractions of Daman is the Devka Beach.
We visited it right after lunch, so it was quite sunny. Luckily, all of us had our summer clothes and hats on, to shield us from the scorching sun. But the cool sea breeze was a welcome relief from the hot sun. So, if you’re ever planning a trip to Daman, especially during summer, I would recommend wearing cotton clothes and other essentials like a hat, sunscreen, and sunglasses.
Just like many other beaches in our country, the Devka Beach in Daman is also a picturesque place. It has a massive shoreline with a long stretch of golden sand, where you can go for a long stroll. You’ll also find many people playing volleyball and cricket at this beach. The serenity of this place also makes it a great spot for nature photography. Since we came here in the afternoon, the beach wasn’t crowded. If you happen to visit here in the evenings, be prepared to see a crowded beach.
While the elders enjoyed a picnic on the soft sand, we youngsters went for a stroll along the beach. We spotted a few local fishermen providing sunrise and sunset cruises to the tourists here. I wouldn’t recommend swimming as an activity at this beach though as there are numerous rocky formations here. So, it can be quite risky. Since there was a low tide during our visit here, we got a few snaps of the beautiful rocky formations. You can test your photography skills and capture the beautiful landscape of this beach.
None of us were aware that Daman is also famous for its shopping markets, apart from other interesting things like the many beaches over here. Since our hotel was near the beach, so we decided to walk back and that’s when we noticed the Devka Beach Market. We decided to splurge a little to buy a few souvenirs to take back home.
If you’re a shopping enthusiast, you’ll agree with my mom’s saying, “The pleasure of finding everything you want in one place is truly gratifying!” And this market offers just that. Seashell jewelry, slippers, dresses, mini home appliances, and household items - the market has all one could ask for.
You’ll find many street shops selling short western dresses in various prints and colors. Even festive garments like Gujarati ghagra choli are sold here at very reasonable prices. If you’re a fan of ethnic garments, you’ll love the many different printed dresses sold here. My mom and aunt were drawn to the beautiful bamboo baskets sold here. You can expect to pay around INR 450-500 each for medium-size baskets. The walk at Devka Beach market was exhausting indeed, but totally worth it!
The shopping spree did take all the energy out of us. We went back to our resort, freshened up, and hopped in our van for a long drive. I suggested that we could explore the street food scene at Devka Beach Road. On reaching there, we were amazed at the vibrant street, lit up with all the small food joints at the corner of the road. There are various stalls that sell Chinese dishes, chaat, sandwiches, and momos. I’d recommend you to try the Shanghai Noodles which are served with some tasty Schezwan chutney.
We began our day by paying respects at the Bom Jesus Church, located in Moti Daman. It was 15 minutes away from Devka Beach Road. The intricately carved doorways and Portuguese-style architecture of the church left us in awe. The altar is golden and violet in color, with elegant wooden carvings, and paintings of several Catholic saints. We said our prayers and then continued on our sightseeing tour of Daman.
Another famous beach of Daman is Jampore Beach, which was our next destination. The location of this beach is such that it’s tucked away from all the chaos of the city. I found it to be much cleaner and more vast compared to Devka Beach. After a long walk on the golden sands of this beach, we decided to engage in some adventurous activities.
We enjoyed a motorboat ride and got completely tanned, much to our surprise. My daredevil uncle went paragliding, just watching him do it gave me goosebumps! The beach is super popular for adventure activities and there are so many thrilling things to choose from. From kayaking and paragliding to scuba diving, the beach is a paradise for adventure junkies. Of all the places we visited in Daman, Jampore Beach became one of my favorite spots!
After our adventures, decided to check out the beach shacks here. The shacks are famous for scrumptious seafood made in traditional flavors. Whether your choice of seafood is shrimp, crab, lobster, or fish, you’re sure to find a delicious snack here!
After an adventurous spree at Jampore Beach, we headed to our last sightseeing spot in Daman - the Mirasol Lake Garden. The moment we entered this beautiful garden, we realized what a man-made marvel it was! It has plenty of trees, beautiful flowering plants, and a sparkling man-made lake.
Our first fun-packed activity at this garden was enjoying a paddle boat ride on the lake. The boats were really cute and tourists could choose from swan-shaped boats to normal paddle boats. After choosing our sawaari, we paddled on the tranquil waters of this lake. We even had a boat race and explored the entire artificial lake during our time here.
Another adventure awaiting us in this beautiful garden - was the toy train ride! I must say, of all the experiences in Daman, this was an unforgettable one. That’s because it took the motorman 40 minutes to start the ride! But for what it’s worth, we gave it a go and the wait was indeed worth it! This train ride gives a tour of the entire lake and you’ll spot various beautiful flowers, noisy geese, and birds during this short journey.
With that, we got to wrap up our Daman trip. We packed up our belonging and got back on the road to our everyday life after a magical break.
While leaving the city, I told my uncle that this Daman road trip certainly exceeded my expectations. What he told me has stuck in my mind. To quote my uncle, “Traveling gives you an opportunity not just to discover new places, but new things within yourself”. That thought has stayed with me ever since. Just going to a new place and experiencing new things gave me memories to cherish for a lifetime. So, what’s your next holiday destination going to be?