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diu
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A relaxed and very less populated Portuguese colony, Diu is famous for its historic forts, churches and Hindu Temples and sea food. Garnished with beautiful and secluded beaches, Diu also offers a variety of water sports to the adventurers.
Diu, located on the outskirts of Gujarat, is one of the oldest Portuguese colonies of the world. Known for being one of the least populated districts of India, it is also a major fishing town popular for the delectable sea food. Nargoa beach and the lighthouse located there are two of the most famous tourist attractions which are frequented by large numbers of tourists. Water sports like para sailing, para gliding and skiing are offered on a large scale appealing to the adventure lovers. This is an ideal destination for a relaxed and calm trip for couples and families alike.

The name Diu is derived from the Sanskrit word ‘dweep’ meaning island. Jallandhar Kshetra, mentioned in the Mahabharata, is believed to have been Diu. More than anything else, Diu is a place to laze around, spot migratory birds, read a book or explore the city and its bylanes on a bicycle (INR 50 per hour) or a motorbike (INR 250-300 approx per day). If you are not fond of bikes, you can hop into an autorickshaw. The imposing stone Fort of Diu (to the west of Diu town) is the tourist’s password, meaning you start exploring the place from here. Skirted by the sea on three sides, it stands tall like an island of courage with menacing canons atop, aiming in different directions. You will still find a couple of mounds of iron shells inside. Rising from between the expansive structure is a lighthouse, which gives the fort an air of mystery, especially during winter nights when there is fog and the wick of the lighthouse gas flame grows weak. 

Constructed between 1535 and 1541, following an alliance between Bahadur Shah and the Portuguese to defend the Gujarat Sultanate from an impending attack by the Mughal Emperor GUJARAT-DAMAN & DIU 582 HERITAGE HOLIDAYS IN INDIA Humayun, the fort’s front wall has five huge windows with stone galleries. From the fort, you get a beautiful view of another stone structure in the sea, called the Fortress of Panikotha (Fortim Do Mar, to the west of Diu, north-east of the Diu Fort), which can be reached only by a canoe or a motorlaunch. Located about one nautical mile from the Diu jetty, it also has a lighthouse and a small 17th-century chapel dedicated to Our Lady of the Sea. Interestingly, legend has it that Fortim Do Mar was once connected to land by an undersea tunnel. Matching the Diu Fort in its magnificence is the St Paul’s Church (north-west of the fort) built in 1610.

The white structure spells tranquillity and peace. Adorned with curiously treated volutes and shell-like motifs with beautiful woodcarving, St Paul’s Church is considered to be the most elaborate of all the Portuguese churches in India. The Church is dedicated to Our Lady of Immaculate Conception. In the evening, the church’s façade is illuminated by floodlights Adjoining it is the old St Thomas’ Church, built in 1598, which has now been converted into a museum. The pathway to the imposing structure is a lazy sprawl of stone staircases at an incline; the temptation to sit on this stone cushion is as much as reaching the gates of the Gothic St Thomas’ Church. Visit it for the collection of exquisite wooden statues of saints in various sizes.

Diu at one time was known for ivory carvings but ever since trade in ivory was banned, the art of carving seems to have died with it. Instead, items made of tortoise shell are popular. However, we’d request you to refrain from buying these to protect the ecosystem. Diu’s proximity to the sea ensures that it has plenty of stuff made out of shells. You can pick these and a few handicrafts at the local markets. But as the locals themselves point out, there’s not much by way of shopping opportunities in Diu. 

Goa, Daman and Diu were Portuguese possessions in India for around 450 years before they were liberated on December 19, 1961, during Operation Vijay. In 1962, they were constituted into a Union Territory until May 30, 1987, when Goa was culled into a separate state, leaving Daman and Diu as one Union Territory. According to the Gazetteer of Goa, Diu had been ruled by many kings and dynasties mentioned in the Puranas. According to mythology, the Pandavas, during their 14 years in exile, had stayed for a few days at a place called Mani Nagar (Diu), which was under the Yadavas led by Krishna Vasudev. The Mahabharata says that King Jallandhar, a ‘daitya’ (demon) who was eventually killed by Lord Vishnu, ruled Diu.

Hence its ancient name Jallandhar Kshetra. Even today, Diu has a temple by the name Jallandhar. There is more proof that Diu was a coastal settlement in the 4th century CE on the route to the Gulf of Cambay (ancient Kambhat), another maritime centre. In the 16th century, when maritime trade was at its peak, Bahadur Shah, the Sultan of Gujarat, made Diu the headquarters of Gujarat Navy. He was, however, unable to hold on to it. The Portuguese entered Diu in 1535, when Governor Nuno da Cunha constructed a fort in Diu and raised his arsenal. It became a Portuguese possession 11 years later, when Governor Joao de Castro seized it.


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Dec 09 2012
Looking for a comfortable place of stay without going over budget, yet not compromising on the amenities? Mid-budget hotels would be your answer. Some of the popular hotels in Diu are: Hotel Apaar Hotel Apa ... read more
DEC 10 2012
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Dec 09 2012
Diu is one of those places that has been the centre of power struggle since time immemorial. The enigma of this tussle is as enigmatic as the place itself. Diu is situated on the west coast of India and is surrounded by th ... read more
DEC 10 2012
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Diu traveller reviews

8 Diu reviews
Diu-an exotic place for sea holidays
Jun 30 2014
Diu is an enchanting city where you get to see the Portuguese fort made in those times when Portuguese first arrived in India. The fort contains many historical things to see including the cannons. There is an old church too which is magnificent. The ...... read more
Awesome place for holidays
Jun 26 2014
No matter what season is you enjoy visiting Diu. Many good beaches here but Nagoa Beach is best. sea water is clean, sandy and shallow. Awesome and cool place to visit. very good holiday destination.
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Diu Travel Guide


Diu Tourism - Get information on Diu tourist places and sightseeing tours. This page presents a visual Diu travel guide. Our friendly trip advisor from ixigo helps you plan your next tour and gives you great ideas on what to do, where to eat, where to stay and when to go there. We curate the best information from the web to give you precise, meaningful and useful travel guide for leading places to visit in india and from across the world. ixigo has curated the best travel information on Diu tourism spanning genres as diverse as tourist places, tourist spots, major sightseeing attractions, the best time to visit, the top places to visit in Diu, the must-see things to see and do, maps, restaurants, hotels, nearby tourist destinations, local public information and more. To start with check out information on how to reach Diu :
how to go from New Delhi to Diu |  how to go from Mumbai to Diu |  how to go from Bengaluru to Diu |  how to go from Chennai to Diu |  how to go from Hyderabad to Diu |  how to go from Kolkata to Diu