Beaches in India do not only mean a combination of sand and water. There is a whole gamut of other things that define its character and nature. Sometimes, it means hordes of sellers of chaat items, toys and sugar cane juices. Sometimes, it means a cozy natural lover’s den. At other times it means party, fun and friends, whereas in some cases it is all about tanning and natural therapy.
For some it is clear waters, for some palm trees and for some adventure water sports that seal the deal when it comes to ‘why I would like to visit the beach?’ Of course, the underlining fact remains that beaches are a great way to indulge in your favorite activities, be it lazing, sporting, exercising, secret sharing, family bonding, sand castle building, or eating. But most importantly, a beach with its vast contrast of sand and water, rather sand, water and the sky, is a sight by itself that dims all the benefits a tad bit into oblivion. So after all, beaches are really mostly about sand and water, about sunsets and moon rises, about clouds and colors and finally about peace and happiness.
India being a peninsula has many beaches dotted on either side of its long tapering body. Gujarat being the state with the longest coastline in India, has many beaches along its curved and shaped outline.
Amongst all the beaches of Gujarat, the beaches of Daman and Diu can safely be called popular, pristine, clean and happening. A combination that is deadly and very rare.
Located close to Mumbai, Daman is easily accessible. The indelible influence of Portuguese is felt and seen in this picture perfect town. Besides the churches, forts and cuisine it is the beaches that are the main attractions here.
Situated in the north of Daman, the Devka Beach has a long coastline and is the most loved beach by all generations. A favorite amongst tourists and locals the Devka Beach is a hot spot for families to enjoy and kids to freak out. It has a few rocky out crops and hence swimming is not allowed in all parts here. However, if you really want to experience and enjoy a beach which is boisterous and fun then Devka Beach is really your type. The amusement park here adds to the entertainment and is a huge hit with children. The colorful fountains, a specialty of the park are a bewitching sight. Food stalls and children’s play area add to the clamor and give you a whole some experience.
Sipping coffee or munching on a hot plate of fried fish with the sea in sight sandwiched between the sky and the grains of sands, Devka Beach is a fun filled outing as you become a part of the evergreen crowd and enjoy every bit of it.
A contrast of sorts with the Devka Beach, the Jampore Beach has a charm of its own. Situated at the southern end of Daman, Jampore is for those seeking some quietude. Here are no amusement parks or close knit food stalls calling for your attention. On the contrary if you want to relax, swim in the cool waters of the Arabian and sit under the shade of the Casurina, then the Jampore Beach is for your type.
Quiet, resplendent and relaxed are the best ways to describe the waves that wash the shore. The same can be said about the Jampore beach too.
Diu unlike Daman is not a part of the mainland but is an island. Wow! Now that itself should be enough to let your imagination wild and imagine all possible attractions that one associates with islands. However, it is very well connected by almost all modes of transport, which is really good news, because this makes it accessible to anyone who would like to spend some time on a beach island. And who doesn’t really?
This tiny fishing village offers a splendid beach experience. It is hard to imagine that this fishing hamlet can offer a plethora of water sporting activities. The horse shaped Nagoa beach, is mind you filled with other tourist who enjoy extremes ranging from wetting their feet in the cool waters to parasailing and surfing. Dotted with coconut and corn sellers the Nagoa beach is one of the most popular beaches in Diu and is a great way to venture into water sports and at the same time relax like an absolute listless being on a date with nature.
Photo by bijapuri ( Ed Sentner )
Located more or less in the centre of Diu, the Chakratirth beach is for those who seek solitude. Quiet and different in its set up, with rocks strewn along the coast, this beach has wonderful settings for photographic moments. The Sunset point of Diu is located on the beach and it goes without saying that there is no way you would want to miss the sunset against the gorgeous backdrop of the hazel waters and flaming sky. The Auditorium and Gardens here are also worth a visit. Another added attraction is the visit to the small hillock called Bhanslo which is accessible during low tide.
About 15kms away from Diu the Ghogla beach is another spot for spending some quiet time. Not as crowded as the popular Nagoa beach, you can avail of all the water sporting activities here too. It is also a great beach to don your swimming gear and enjoy some time with the kids in the water too. And guess what, if you are lucky enough you may also spot a few dolphins.
A palm tree lined beach, the Jallandhar beach is almost a real life imitation of the pictures we draw of beaches. Devoid of crowds, serene and pristine, there is nothing more joyous than to watch the horizon through the leafy silhouettes of the palm trees. Also, it derives its name from mythology and is known to be the site where Lord Krishna killed the demon Jallandhar. There is a face carved on top of a small hill near the beach, if you would like a quick visit.
Situated on the west of Diu this beach is another crowd puller. Known for its warm waters and golden sands, the Gomtimata beach is a great place for water sports and beach volleyball.
Daman and Diu have many beaches and what makes them even better is the fact that there are hotels and resorts ranging from reasonable to exotic to make your stay comfortable and enjoyable. It is a great way to check into one of the resorts and spend a weekend of sorts, hopping from beaches to other tourist destinations and inhaling the essence of this little known Union Territory much in the same way as you would inhale the fresh salty beach air.