Visiting Dadra & Nagar Haveli is like a dream come true. The tall swaying trees blowing gently along the blue waters of winding rivers, gently undulating hills with greenery all around, the simple colorful inhabitants all leaves everyone enchanted. Visit Dadra & Nagar Haveli any time of the year, and you are sure to love the scenic beauty of the place.
Comprising of 72 villages, the land has been ruled by various rulers in the past, the Portuguese, being the most prominent of them. In 1954 indigenous freedom movements forced the Portuguese to abandon it to India. It became a union territory in 1961. Today, the inhabitants of this land are mostly agrarian tribals, who have enriched it with their rich folklore and vibrant lifestyle.
Covering only an area of 491 sq. kms, Dadra & Nagar Haveli is the perfect place for that relaxing vacation you have been wanting to take for long. Though you may visit the territory any time of the year, the best time for tourists is from November to March. The place has a pleasant climate and the summer temperature does not go very high, due to its proximity to the sea, and the nights are really cool.
Silvassa the beautiful capital of this union territory has a number of places in and around its vicinity that are of great tourists importance:
Vanganga Lake and Island Garden, Dadra: As you enter Dadra & Nagar Haveli, you would come across the beautiful Vanganga Lake and Island Garden. Mere words cannot describe the beauty of the place. It would suffice to say that its excellent locales have encouraged many Hindi filmmakers to shoot as many as 40 songs in respective Bollywood movies. We are sure you would definitely love the rustic wooden bridges, sea of flowers, jogging paths, thatched huts, paddleboats and even restaurants. For those honeymooners, this place located at a distance of 6km from Silvassa has all the right mix that go to make a romantic mood.
Spread over an area of 7.58 hects. , the garden has been created with a central island, which is connected with bridges in Japanese style.
Vanvihar Tourist Complex, Chauda: This complex is exclusively for nature lovers. Located at a distance of 20 kms from Silvassa, this is actually a tourist accommodation surrounded by great landscapes with lush green hills, rolling meadows, terraced gardens, and native cottages. The State Tourism Department has built a small check dam on the adjoining river Sakartod to operate boating facilities. In addition, you shall enjoy the Deer Park, cactus house and green house.
Water Sports and Tentage Complex: This is another attractive tourist spot in Dadra & Nagar Haveli, located at a distance of 40kms from the capital. You can enjoy the large waterfront near Dudhani, which was commissioned after the Madhuban Dam on the downstream side of river Damanganga. Here, those of you who are adventure-loving tourists can play different water sports like water scooters, aqua bikes, bumper boats, speedboats, kayaks, canoes and passenger boats. The luxurious tents pitched right near the bank provide a countryside experience to cherish forever. You can also enjoy cooking your own meals near the camp.
Hirwa Van, Piparia – Silvassa: Adding to the wide array of beautiful locations, the Hirwa Van, Piparia – Silvassa is considered the best tourist spot in Dadra & Nagar Haveli. It is actually a beautiful garden located at the entrance of Silvassa and is so named after a tribal deity Hirwa or green goddess. It is a must visit with the roaring waterfalls, misty cascades, rustic stone walls, twin arches, tiny kiosks and springy lawns interspersed with an wide array of flowers. There is also a children play section, which offers a variety of play equipments. The centrally located garden is quite popular with the both domestic and international tourists.
Tribal Museum, Silvassa: Here you would get a feel of the tribal lifestyle that the majority of the tribal population of Dadra & Nagar Haveli live. Among the various collections of the museum are ornaments, musical instruments, fishing and hunting gadgets, agricultural and household articles, and several other artifacts. Even the important events of the tribal’s way of life is displayed in the museum in the form of life size models, wedding dresses and photographs of eventful ceremonies. The Tribal Cultural Museum at Silvassa is an ideal place for those who are too lazy to do some actual exploring. It houses a good collection of masks, musical apparatus, fishing gadgets and life-size statues.
Himaivan Health Resort, Kauncha: A twenty-bedded super luxuries health resort has been completed near the waterfront at Kauncha – Dudhani that will provide a new concept of Health tourism in the tranquil woodlands of Kauncha village.
Tapovan Tourist Complex, Bindrabin: The famous historic temple of Lord Siva is located at Bindrabin is about 18 Kms. from Silvassa. This place is very sacred for the Hindus and they make a beeline to seek blessing of the deity. Since there were no facilities for accommodation, the Department has provided Cottages, Restaurant and amusement park with fountains and well laid garden. Besides all this tourist places, Tourism Department also celebrate various festivals during the year.
Vandhara Udyan at Silvassa is a riverside park with sprawling lawns dotted with exquisite pavilions. A good place for picnickers.
Mini Zoo and Bal Udyan: This place is one of the most popular outings for children at Silvassa. The colorful birds, mischievous monkeys, awesome pythons and sleepy crocodiles coupled with swings, slides and merry-go-rounds render this site every kid's dream come true.
By Air: Bombay is the nearest airport.
By Rail: The nearest railhead is Vapi via Western railways at a distance of 17 km from the capital city Silvassa.
By Road: You may travel to Dadra & Nagar Haveli as a weekend getaway from Ahmedabad, which is 375kms away. For those traveling by road from Mumbai, it is only 180 km away. If you plan to travel from Surat (120 kms away), you can take the Mumbai-Ahmedabad National Highway 8. Bhilad or Vapi is about 14kms away.
One can stay in rustic, well-appointed cottages with all modern comforts or in specially laid out riverside tents. The tourists may enjoy the delicacies of local cuisine in a variety of restaurants, resorts, cafés and hotels. The Union territory also has hotels of star and non-star category catering to the needs of the tourists visiting Dadra and Nagar Haveli.
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