Many would know that most parts of India were colonized by the British , however a few parts of India were under the Portuguese rule too .
The first state that comes to mind when one mentions ‘ Portuguese rule in India’ is Goa . The lesser known Union territory of Dadra Nagar Haveli , which was also under the Portuguese rule , fails to ring a bell. The capital of this almost obscure Union territory is Silvassa .
The Portuguese named this small village of Silvassa ‘ Vila de Paço d’Arcos’ after a small town by the same name in Lisbon.
I first heard of Silvassa in a Geography class , the first time we were introduced to the map of India and had to memorize the states and union territories with their capitals . That was such a daunting task and Dadra Nagar Haveli just seemed outlandish to be the name of a union territory .
The second time I heard of this place was in an article about Warli paintings.
In a workshop , my friends and I learnt that the tribes living in and around Silvassa not just practiced this unique art style but also spoke in a language known by the same name ‘ Warli’. This was reason enough to make me want to go to Silvassa and I did just that.
This small union territory is nestled between the sates of Gujarat and Maharashtra and although it has been industrialized over the years , it still has scenic spots and off beat trails.
If you believe in finding a quaint place to lose yourself for a few days , Silvassa may just be what you are looking for.