Diu, the more famous one of Daman and Diu, doesn’t usually finds a place in a traveller’s list. Perhaps, owing to the assumption that there is little when it comes to things to do in Diu. Though Diu is not Goa (it’s so much more solitary than Goa), there was something about it that made me book the tickets and land here on a sunny day in January, 2014.
Though the road from Veraval to Diu had some bone-breaking bumps, everything became alright as I crossed the bridge to the main town from Ghogla Beach. Countless flags hooked on to tiny fishing boats were happily fluttering in sea breeze, breaking the monotony of greyish-blue water of the Arabian Sea. In that very instant, I fell for Diu.
A tiny piece of land, around 14 km, Diu is a part Muslim-part Hindu settlement in a starkly visible Portuguese setting. The beaches at Diu, unlike the many beach destinations in India, were fairly solitary. With no other sound apart from the sea waves’ crashing on the shore, Diu’s beaches are perfect to take a nap in the Sun. A must if you’re still not in a mood to strike off items from all the things to do in Diu.
Another delightful discovery at Diu were the almost deserted roads, perfect enough to take a bicycle (for just INR 50 for a day!) and move around at leisure.
Impressive churches, a seashell museum, gorgeous walkways, a lot of Portuguese food on the menu (though largely non-vegetarian :/), a fine spread for Gujarati cuisine on every food joint’s menu, deserted beaches, a labyrinth of caves to be explored, an amazing fort with a lighthouse inside, narrow well-paved roads, and a lot of colourful fishing boats made me fall in love with Diu.
Visit Diu if you have a beach vacation that is away from the crowds in mind. Best time to visit Diu is in the months of September – March. Sharing with you some of the countless Diu photographs, which I clicked during my 5 days stay there.
Now, as promised before, my travel tips and a list of things to do in Diu –
1. Get a bicycle from Safar Bicycle Rental Point or any other such places if you wish to explore Diu at leisure. That, if you can pedal around for 5-6 km a day (INR 50 per day and INR 1000 as refundable security deposit).
2. Alternatively, you can get a scooter/bike as well (INR 400 per day and INR 1000 as refundable security deposit).
3. Stick around to Chakratirth Beach rather than Nagoa for a more solitary time.
4. Explore the many bylanes of the place to get to some of the best places for Portuguese food.
5. A homestay is perhaps the better bet to stay if you are looking for a hotel in Diu. Heranca Goesa is a famous (and good) one, while there is one more that you will have on your way to Chakratirth Beach. Both are pretty awesome.
6. If you’re visiting Diu, do not skip a visit to the Somnath Temple, which is some 2.5 hours away from Diu.
7. Largely safe for even solo travellers, Diu has some portions of its beaches reserved for foreigners or women.
8. Your only tip to stay safe here is to steer away from the high on alcohol crowd. There’ll be quite a many, for this is where the Gujarat alcohol lovers come. Remember Gujarat is a dry state?
Rest assured, Diu has somehow managed to retain its old world charm, preserving the way Portuguese colonies in India actually were. One of the most undersold destinations in India, Diu scores high with its little crowd and quaint charm. For more on my pick on all the things to do in Diu, click here.