Tuesday July 17, 2018

Daman & Diu: Tourist haven or national heritage?

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By Akash Shukla

While you try walking barefoot on Sun kissed sands and the gentle wave effortlessly washes over your feet and crumbles your stress away, don’t forget to say this in Portuguese– Ilha de Calma (Welcome to the land of Calm).

If there is heaven on earth, it’s got to have a beach attached to it. How about Devka Beach, Nani Daman, Nagoa Beach (Diu), and Jampore Beach all bundled at one spot in India?

Bound by the river Kolak in north, Gujarat’s Valsad district in east, river Kalu on south and Arabian Sea in west, it is difficult to decipher whether Daman is loved more for parasailing, water scooter riding, and boat sailing or is it a symbolic witness to tourists’ fetish for exploring Fort Moti Daman and Fortress of Panikota.

 

Fort of Moti

Fort of Moti

Erected by an Abyssinian chief who ruled over the area before the settlement of Portuguese, the remarkable historical sight took two decades before the colossal structure could actually see the light of the day in 1559 AD. The northern gateway has inscriptions embedded on it and the writings embedded within the gate walls give the actual date of fort construction.

Traipsing a huge land area, the fort has two entrance passages and 10 citadels. On the outside, the fort is besieged by a moat with emerging projections of about 500-feet high shaped as citadels. If this much of security wasn’t enough, the insides of the fort have army barracks and still it retains an archaic charm with lush green surroundings for perennial visitors.

Fort of Nani

Fort of Nani

Comparatively, though, it’s a smaller fort, the gate facing river showcases exquisite statue of St Jerome. The cynosure of the fort is Lady of the Sea Church. Stretched in an area of around 12,250 square metres, Nani Daman fort, Nani Daman jetty and Gandhi Park are popular sightseeing destinations within the region. Along the Ganga bridge, light house gardens enhance the beauty of the already enchanting region.

Fortress of Panikota

Fortress of Panikota

Offering a breathtaking view of Diu and being located at the mouth of a creek, Fortress of Panikota is situated near the Diu Fort and is famously known as Fortim do Mar. Located about a nautical mile from the jetty of Diu, the fortress is an unparalleled stone work and anyone can reach there by a canoe. The fortress bears witness to a kaleidoscopic view of Diu Island and the peaceable sea.

Behold a small chapel and a lighthouse in Fortress of Panikota and the latter is consecrated to Lady of the Sea. The fortress is essential as it bares the sociocultural vitality of this part of the world.

Church of our Lady of the Rosary

Church of our Lady of the Rosary

Woodcarving, flower motifs and golden cherubs are the sights to behold for long hours without batting an eyelid. Yes! We are talking about the Daman Church of our Lady of the Rosary, which dates back to the 17th century.

Under Portuguese influence in 16th century, the wood carving in this glorious chapel proudly stands as one of the most refined tasks and is a true feast for eyes.

Apart from the amazing wood work, the chapel’s ceiling stands adorned with beautiful rose petals, colored in hundreds of hues. The splendor is further enriched and magnified with golden cherubs that bestow benediction. Illustration of the stories from the lives of the holy saints is another magnificence to behold at the site and it is projected on lateral walls of the Apse.

Jain temple

Jain temple

The temple can be spotted in the northern region of Nani Daman. The temple unfolds magnificent sights to the refined mural paintings and will completely enthrall you. Most of these paintings are of 18th century. The temple unravels sights that are beyond comparison and depict life of Mahavira, a highly venerated Jain saint who lived in 50 BC.

As the sight promises to offer you heights of joy with depths of Indian culture, remember that the soulful destination is 67 km from Gir, 90 km from Somnath, barely a quick flight from Mumbai and a short road trip from Ahmedabad.

 

(Pictures for representational purpose only)

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10 Best destinations For Bikini In India: International Bikini Day

Butterfly beach is one of the secluded beaches in Goa

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10 Best destinations For Bikini In India: International Bikini Day
10 Best destinations For Bikini In India: International Bikini Day. Pixabay

-By Sonali Pimputkar

International Bikini Day is celebrated on July 5, a day that marks the anniversary of a two-piece bathing suit in 1946 by a Parisian Fashion Designer Louis Reard. Since then there is no turning back. Women around the globe have been hitting the beaches and pool sides in the bathing suit. When it comes to India, bikinis are usually worn in the movies and even in 2018, the bikini culture has not been accepted fully. Not to forget the fact that India is home to sun-kissed beaches that spread over 7,500 km coastline. Beaches mean waves, sand, shores, and fun. When it comes to beaches you will find people taking photographs and secretly judging you. But that should not turn you off from hitting the beaches in India in your favourite bikini. Well, having said that there are few local beaches across India that provide complete freedom to flaunt your bikini body enjoying the sun and sand.

If you are planning to explore the backwaters of Kerala, then head to the Marari Beach in Alleppey. The secluded beach is an undeveloped one and is an ideal for lazing around. The tourism in the area is growing though. The place is minus any water sports and beach shacks. However, you can rent beach chairs and umbrellas. The beach is also home to few resorts.

Butterfly beach is one of the secluded beaches in Goa, which is known for dolphins, crabs and of course ‘butterflies’. The place is peppered with gorgeous views, aquatic lives and an aura of bliss. The semi-circle landscape, flying butterflies and acrobatics of dolphins and you donning a gorgeous bikini, doesn’t it make a picture perfect scene?

Located in Lakshadweep, Kadmat Beach is surrounded by large lagoons from both Eastern and Western side and gorgeous beaches. The beach is perfect for those who want to unwind completely. So what are you waiting for? Take a break from your hectic schedule and spend your vacation sunbathing in your favourite bikini.

Situated in the Havelock Island in Andaman, Radhanagar Beach is known for its beauty and sunsets. The beach is also known as Beach Number 7. The turquoise blue beach and white sand give tourists an opportunity to delve into nature’s charm. Sunbathing and basking in the sun is a must do activities here. The only advice is carried good sunscreens to protect your skin from the harsh sun.

Agatti Island, Lakshadweep
Agatti Island in Lakshadweep is every adventurer’s delight and is known for water sports activities. The beach is also home to sea turtles and beautiful corals. Visitors are allowed on the beach with certain restrictions and have to obtain an entry permit from the Lakshadweep Administration for entering the island.

Agatti Island, Lakshadweep
Agatti Island, Lakshadweep. Flickr

Om Beach, Gokarna

One of the popular beaches in Gokharna, Om beach derived its name for being naturally shaped like the auspicious symbol ‘Om’. The beach is also home to a bunch of water sports activities including speedboats and surfing. It is often frequented by tourists from the West and is considered safe to don a bikini.

Varkala Beach, Kerala

Also known as Papanasham beach, Varkala beach is located in Thiruvananthapuram. The beach is believed to be holy which has the power to wash away sins. It is often visited either by tourists or worshippers.

Palolem Beach, Goa

Located in the Southern Goa, Palolem beach is a one-mile long beach and is also known as Paradise beach. The beach is largely unspoiled and is inhabited by local fishermen and foreign tourists. The beach tops the list of the safest beach as it is considered safe to wear bikinis without being judged at.

Mamallapuram Beach, Tamil Nadu

Mamallapuram Beach, also known as Mahabalipuram, is a perfect destination for lazing around without being judged. Sunbathing is a must do activity here. The place is a beautiful blend of history and natural splendor. The beach is home to various tourist attractions including School of sculpture, Snake venom extracting center, Tiger’s Cave, Crocodile Farm, Five Rathas and Arjuna’s Penance.

Also read: Bikini-clad Female prisoners in Brazil filmed snorting Cocaine sparks outrage in Brazil

Benaulim Beach, Goa

Benaulim Beach is one of the less explored beaches of Goa and is away from the hustle and bustle of the city. However, the beach sees a huge crowd on weekends. Old houses, temples, and churches add to the old charm of the beach. The beach is home to a lot of accommodation and witnesses a huge crowd during weekends. (IANS)