TUCKED AWAY in the southern  tip of Gujarat, adjoining Maharashtra, is the tiny enclave of Daman which was a Portuguese colony until 196 I. The Damanganga river, which flows into the Arabian III, divides the town into o distinct parts – Nani non (Little Daman) which clotted with hotels and bars, Moti Daman (Big Daman), old Portuguese township. MOTI Daman is enclosed thin the massive Daman rt. Its ten bastions and two always date to 1559, and it bpy a mroato linkved toed  Daimvan’es wrel preserved include the large Rom Jesus Cathedral, built in 1603, which has a richly carved portal and an ornamental altar. The smaller Rosario Chapel, outside the fort walls, has exquisite carved wooden panels, depicting scenes from the life of Jesus. The lighthouse, to the north of the fort, affords fine views of the Gulf of Cambay.

St Jerome’s Fort, in Nani Daman, is less grand than Daman Fort but houses the lovely chapel of Our Lady of the Sea. The chapel has a delicate, classical facade of 12 columns crowned with a cross. Liquor flows freely in Nani Daman’s dingy bars, attracting crowds of tipplers from the rest of Gujarat where alcohol is prohibited. Those who want to take in local colour would be well advised to avoid the bars and explore the farmers’ market or the riverside fish market instead. The Devka and Jampore beaches, 5 km (3 miles) north and south of Daman respectively, are not spectacular, but offer tranquil retreats among casuarina groves.

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