Asia > South Asia > India > Western India > Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu
Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu is a small union territory in Western India. Dadra and Nagar Haveli is a district of the union territory wedged between the states of Maharashtra and Gujarat. Daman is a semi-enclave on the mouth of the Daman Ganga river bounded on all sides by the state of Gujarat, while Diu is a small island off the coast of Gujarat.
|Dadra and Nagar Haveli |
An enclave wedged between Gujarat and Maharashtra.
|Daman district |
A semi-enclave west of Gujarat.
|Diu Island |
A beautiful island south of Saurashtra Gujarat.
- 1 Daman – Capital and the largest city of the union territory. It has a beautiful landscape, and is famous for its beaches situated along the Gujarat Coast. It may not have all the facilities that a tourist destination should have but it does have peace, relaxation, friendly locals and beautiful places to see.
- 2 Silvassa – Capital city of Dadra and Nagar Haveli and a major hub for industry.
- 1 Dadra – A small town surrounded by Gujarat.
- 2 Diu – A fishing town noted for its old fortress, Portuguese cathedral, and nice old town with a Portuguese layout. It has fine but not so spectacular beaches, and has a very relaxed atmosphere compared to most of India. Diu has many beaches which one may choose as per their tastes.
- 3 Simbor – An unincorpated semi-exclave administered as part of the Diu district.
Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, alongside Goa, was part of the Portuguese colonial rule until 1954. Between 1954 and 1961, Dadra and Nagar Haveli was self-governing, which became a union territory in 1961. The semi-enclaves of Daman and Diu used to be parts of the union territory of Goa, Daman and Diu from 1961 until 1987, when Goa became a state of India. Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu was used to be two separate union territories of India from 1987 until 2020, when a legislation was passed to merge the two territories into one.
The official languages of this union territory are English, Gujarati, Hindi and Marathi; all of these are understood and spoken by most people. Konkani is also spoken in this territory. Some residents might still speak Portuguese, or at least a creole based on the language.
Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu has two domestic airports: Daman Airport (NMB IATA) and Diu Airport (DIU IATA). Diu Airport has flights from Ahmedabad, Bhuj and Mumbai. There is no scheduled commercial air service in Daman Airport at this time, and is now used for military purposes.
Since the union territory lacks an international airport, tourists outside India are advised to arrive Mumbai or Surat by plane first, then travel to the union territory.
Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu can be accessed through three national highways: NH 251, NH 848A and NH 848B. NH 251 traverses through the island of Diu, NH 848A traverses through the enclave of Nagar Haveli and NH 848B ends at the city of Daman.
Due to the lack of railway stations among the enclaves and semi-enclaves, one can train travel from Daman or Dadra and Nagar Haveli to Diu through the nearby railway stations situated in Gujarat.
There are taxis and auto-rickshaws available to roam around in the union territory.
Thanks to the Portuguese rule of this territory, there are several churches in Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, including the Church of Bom Jesus in Daman and the St. Paul's Church in Diu. The Church of Bom Jesus has decorated ceilings and carved gateways. The St. Paul's Church is named after St. Paul, the Apostle of Jesus also known as the Apostle to the Gentiles.
Beside churches, there are several temples in Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, including the Balaji Mandir in Silvassa, Gangeshwar Temple in Diu and the Jain Temple in Daman.
Both native Gujarati food and traditional Portuguese food are common. Being a coastal region, the communities are mainly dependent on sea food. Normally, Rotli and tea are taken for breakfast, Rotla and sag for lunch and chokha along with sag and curry are taken for dinner. Some of the dishes prepared on festive occasions include, puri, lapsee, potaya, dudh-plag, dhakanu.
Alcohol is legal in Dadra and Nagar Haveli and Daman and Diu, unlike in neighbouring Gujarat, so a lot of people come to this union territory especially to drink. Indian and foreign beer and spirits are widely available. You might find beer being sold even at the beach by hawkers. It is better to purchase your liquor from a shop to avoid adulterated liquor.