Religious Places in Daman
Daman, known for pristine beaches, historic monuments and numerous tourist attractions is also home to a number of holy spots. These religious places attract hordes of visitors from every nook and corner of the country. The positive vibrations emanated from these sites provide solace and tranquillity, thus rejuvenating the body as well as the soul. The fairs and festivities organised in these holy places, bring together people of all communities, thus reflecting the ‘Unity in Diversity’ among the people in Daman. The cathedrals and churches built during the Portuguese rule represent their unique yet brilliant architectural style. The carvings and illustrations in the holy sites are examples of their architectural splendour. Thus, Daman with its beautiful religious places attracts devotees as well as art connoisseurs, who wish to experience the rich artistic splendour of these places.
Church of our Lady of the Rosary in Daman
It is one of the foremost religious monuments located in the Moti Daman Fort. Erected by Portuguese in the 17th century, it reflects Gothic style of architecture. Though plain from outside, it provides a visual treat to the eyes, as one steps inside this magnificent structure. Made of wood, it is known for its pretty graphics and illustrations by ancient Portuguese artisans. The ceiling is beautifully decorated with bright and multi-hued rose petals. The walls are adorned with figures of golden cherubs, offering their blessings to the passers-by. A noteworthy feature of this grand masterpiece is the illustrations of stories about the lives of Lord Jesus and holy saints, depicted on the wooden panels. These wooden carvings are considered to be among the most noteworthy works of the Portuguese in ancient India. This place thus attracts not only the devotees, but also art lovers, who visit here to experience the brilliance of Portuguese art and architecture in the ancient era. Direct buses, auto rickshaws and taxis can be availed from the city centre to reach this place.
Church of Bom Jesus in Daman
Built in 1559, this parish was consecrated as a church in 1603, and is dedicated to Bom Jesus. It reflects the amazing architectural abilities and craftsmanship of the Portuguese artisans. This exquisite piece of architecture is a blend of Portuguese and the Roman style of architecture. The prominent features of this matchless beauty include its golden altar made of wood, doorways with intricate carvings, beautiful pulpit, artistic rococo interiors, embellished ceilings and the pretty rosewood work. The statues of six saints present here reflect the architectural grandeur of this place and are perfect specimens of Roman Catholic art and architecture of those times. This architectural marvel thus draws attracts hordes of tourists and pilgrims. It is located inside the Moti Daman Fort and can easily be reached by local means of transport.
Dominican Monastery in Daman
It is the ancient seat of learning in Daman. It was once the headquarters of theological studies. It attracted hordes of Catholics from across the globe. However, its decline and subsequent downfall remains an unsolvable mystery till date. Daman Dominican Monastery is a representation of the ruins of the great Monastery. A special highlight of this structure is its beautiful altar decorated with intricate stone carvings of floral motifs. You get to see here, landside gate of the fort, with Our Lady of Purification on its top, offering her blessings to the visitors and passers-by. On 2nd February, Catholic devotees congregate here to sing a litany, leaving the tourists raptured and spell bound. Every third Sunday during the month of December, a religious mass is held in honour of Saint Dominic in this Monastery, attracting worshippers from far and wide. It is a must visit for those, who wish to know more about the glorious history of Daman. Auto rickshaws and other means of local transport are available from the city centre to the Dominican Monastery.
Sri Satya Narayan Temple in Daman
It is one of the most famous Hindu shrines located in Daman, dedicated to Lord Satya Narayan – a manifestation of Lord Vishnu. This temple faces east and has a stone gate guarded by exquisitely carved stone sculptures of two dwarpals or doorkeepers. The entrance also features stone statues of lions and idols of various ascetics. This magnificent temple houses two audience halls and a sanctum, with an enthralling marble idol of Lord Lakshmi Narayan, in standing posture. The idols of Godess Mahalakshmi and Radha and Krishna, leave the visitors mesmerised by their breath-taking beauty.
The rectangular roof of this temple is beautifully decorated with images of Ras Leela by Lord Krishna and his gopikas. The inner walls are adorned with beautiful images of various gods and goddesses. This temple, with its exquisite beauty and grandeur, beckons huge number of visitors and devotees from far and wide.It is located near the Nani Daman Taxi Stand and can be reached easily via auto rickshaws or private vehicles.
Somnath Mahadev Temple in Daman
Dedicated to Lord Shiva, this temple in located in the Dabhel village in Daman. The origin of this temple has many theories associated with it. The most popular and widely believed theory states that a Shivalinga miraculously originated at this place after repeated prayers were offered by a monk who was an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva. The locals regarded this site as a holy spot and built a shrine here during the nineteenth century. Renovations were done later and the temple was rebuilt with beautiful glasswork. Many celebrations are organised in this temple attracting hordes of devotees and tourists from across the globe. The annual ‘Gangaji Fair’ organised in this temple, is celebrated with great pomp and fervour, with active participation of people from all over the country. On the occasion of Mahashivratri, a huge Lokmela is organised here. As Mondays are considered auspicious for worshipping Lord Shiva, devotees flock to this temple to seek the blessings of the Almighty. Auto rickshaws and taxis are available from the city centre to reach this place.
Apart from these, there are a number of religious places in Daman including Se Cathedral, Jain Temple, Church of Our Lady of the Sea, The Chapel of Our Lady of Augustias, The Chapel of Our Lady of Remedies etc. that are known for their architectural splendour and divine ambience, and are a must visit.