10 Churches to visit in Goa that’s Reminder of it’s Glorious Past

We all know that there is not a single soul in this vast country who have not dreamt about going to Goa. We all have it in top 5 of our bucket lists and can’t wait to tick it off. The place has it all; amazing beaches: to become one with the nature, Lux Resorts; to go an extra mile to pamper yourself, and not to forget the ancient allure, Churches; to awaken your spiritual side. Churches of Goa are very telling of its elaborate history, the architecturally rich past the place holds and the meeting place of numerous cultures.

A treat for devotees and history buffs; check out these 10 Churches and make a note so you don’t miss out on any of them on your next vacation-

Basilica of Bom Jesus

A renowned UNESCO World Heritage Site- This is one of the oldest Church in Goa and in India. A Roman Catholic basilica, located in the Konkan Region of India. A Portuguese testament of the world gone by.

It famously holds the mortal remains of St. Xavier one of the many reasons why scores of people have it on top of their lists when visiting Goa. A symbol of pilgrimage and also an architectural marvel.

Fun Fact:  It is one of the Seven Wonders of Portuguese Origin in the World. A well-preserved 15th Century marvel, you can’t miss.

Getting There:

Information to keep Handy: Located in Old Goa Rd, Bainguinim, Goa 403402. 

Best time of the day to visit is on a Sunday 10.30 am to 6.30 pm and on Weekdays 9.00 am to 6.30 pm.

Church of Our Lady of the Mount

A well hidden gem this church is tucked away in Old Goa, it’s one of the oldest being constructed by Alfonso de Albuquerqe, the Governer of Portuguese India  in the 15th Century. Due to its remote location it often goes unnoticed.

Biggest Attraction :  The Feast of St Francis Xavier in December, and the Monte Music Festival in February, puts its back on the map, when it sees influx of several tourists and locals. Set in scenic surroundings, overlooking the Mandovi River, the sunsets here are to die for and the bird eye view of Old Goa makes it all the more enticing.

                                                       Getting There:

Our Lady Of Mount Chapel

Information to keep Handy :The church is located in Goa Velha. The church opens at 9 am to 12:30 pm and then from 3 pm to 5 pm.

Church of St. Francis of Assisi

Famed for its prettiness, and boasting of the fact this is the only Church in Goa with a museum-artifacts, sculptures, and paintings, which brush you with its glorious past. The church’s interiors are intricately inlaid with embellishments and are recognised for their Baroque and Corinthian architecture.

Major Attractions : Two statues—one of Christ and the other of St. Francis of Assisi—can be found on the tabernacle. There are many paintings that show St. Francis of Assisi’s life. Both the frescoes and the woodwork are exquisitely carved.

Getting There:

St. Francis of Assisi Church

Information to keep Handy: The church is located in North Goa, Goa, Velha Goa. The church is open on all days except on Sundays. Timings are between 7.30 in the morning to 6.30 in the evening. 

Se Cathedral

The Se Cathedral is Goa’s largest church and is known for its spectacular architecture.

Fun Fact:  It was constructed as a monument to St. Catherine as a celebration of Portugal’s victory over India. The church’s architectural design is Portuguese-Manueline, with Tuscan and Corinthian interiors. This location, which is home to the Great Golden Bell and has received the Pope’s blessing in the shape of the Golden Rose, exudes a very strong spiritual aura. Additionally, it is surrounded by some of Goa’s top retail areas.

Getting There:

Se Cathedral

Information to keep Handy : The church is located in Velha Goa. The church is open on all days of the week from 7.30 in the morning to 6 in the evening. 

Church of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception

One of the most famous churches in Goa, constructed in the 17th Century it is located in the heart of Goa- Capital, Panjim. Made in the Baroque style architecture, the simplicity and peacefulness of this church is also owed to it’s white and blue hued building. An additional attraction is St. Xaviers chapel located within the church.

Major Attraction : A special day is the 8th of December on which a feast is hosted, thousands of devotees throng the church and have a merry good time.

Getting There:

 Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church

Information to keep Handy: It is located at Church Square, Panaji and is open on all days of the week. The timing in the Mornings – 9.30 am to 12.30 pm and 3.30 pm to 7.30 pm Afternoon.

Church of St. Cajetan

Fun Fact : St. Cajetan Church is a World Heritage Site and is also known as the Church of Divine Providence. The church is shaped like a Greek cross and has a sizable dome inside of which are Latin inscriptions from the Gospel of Matthew. Saints Peter, Paul, John the Evangelist, and Matthew are depicted in four granite statues on the church’s Corinthian-style front. It attracts many admirers’ credits to its architectural splendour.

Getting There:

Church of St. Cajetan

            Information to keep Handy: This church is located in Velha, Goa. You may visit the church on all days of the week 9.00 AM to 12.00 PM in the morning and 4.00 PM to 7.00 PM in the evening.

Mae De Deus Church

Mae De Deus Church, also known as Mother of God Church, is one of the significant neo-gothics, with references to historic European architecture. Goa churches that serve as evidence of the region’s rich cultural heritage.

Major Attraction: This elegant house of worship will make you think of the castles from Disneyland with its discriminating whitewashed walls and medieval pinnacles. The white texture of the walls glows in the sunlight and creates a beautiful scene! You will feel happy after visiting this place because the church is a pleasure to behold.

Getting There:

Mae De Deus Church

Information to keep Handy: The church is located at the Chogm Road in Muddavaddi, Saligao and is open 9 am to 12:30 pm and then from 3 pm to 5 pm. It hosts the church feast on the first Sunday of May. 

St. John The Baptist Church

This is one of the most exquisite churches in Goa and is a testament to the vibrant, rich Goan culture.

The church features low-domed, well-maintained exteriors, ornate but complicated interiors, and side altars embellished with paintings and cornice patterns. This church offers a comforting atmosphere that will fill you with a sense of solemnity and peace. This spiritual haven is the place to go if you’re one of those looking to discover your soul.

Getting There:

St. John the Baptist Church

Information to keep Handy: Located at the Velsao Road in Benaulim, this church is open all week. The timing in the morning is 7 am on weekdays and from 6:15 am to 7:45 pm on Sundays.

Chapel of St. Catherine

In the same building as Se Cathedral and the Church and Convent of St. Francis of Assisi in Old Goa,the Chapel of St. Catherine is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It has a brown and white exterior in the Baroque architectural style. Also boasts  a view of Mandovi River. 

Constructed by : Alfonso de Albuquerque, a Portuguese conqueror, built it in 1510 to mark his triumphant entry into Goa on St. Catherine’s Day.

Fun Fact : There is still proof of the etched stone that marks the precise location of the Portuguese general’s first footfall in North Goa.

 Getting There:

Chapel of St. Catherine of Alexandria

Information to keep Handy :Located in Velha Goa, this church is open on all days of the week and is photographer friendly.

St Alex Church

With the aid of donations, the Communidades (village communities) constructed the current church in 1741. In 1765, the towers were built. Major Attraction : There is an Indian-style “cupola falsa.” With its seven altars—three main ones in the middle and two on either side—dedicated to Our Lady of the Mount, Our Lady of Perpetual Succor, the Sacred Heart of Jesus and Mary, and Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception, the church has two towers and a magnificent dome (similar to St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome). Indeed, the church is distinctive.

Getting There:

St. Alex Church

Information to keep Handy: The church is located in Curtorim, Salcetta Taluka, South Goa. The church is open on all days of the week between nine in the morning to eight thirty at night.  I hope you could find a place which matches your travel goals. As much fun we had in jotting down this detailed but non-exhaustive list , we hope you have as much fun in exploring the dynamic culture of India. Walk the lanes of Old Goa and feel the presence of the India that once was. It’s impressive and necessary to preserve our history so we all can savour the grandeur of ancient times

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