Old Churches in Goa
Blessed with beautiful beaches, resorts, hotels, most people always connect these places with Goa, which is not true. Portuguese ruled in Goa for about 450 years and this heavily influenced and changed the culture, traditions, and architecture too. Many of the old churches in Goa were built during this time only.
Many of the old churches in Goa have become a place of UNESCO Heritage and devotees from all over the world come here to visit these churches and pray.
Here is a list of the oldest churches in Goa:
- Basilica of Bom Jesus
- Santa Cruz Church
- Mae De Deus Church
- Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception
- Chapel of St. Catherine
- Church of St Francis of Assisi
- St. Diogo’s Church
- Se Cathedral
- Church of Our Lady of the Mount
- Church of St. Cajetan
- Nossa Senhora de Penha de Franca
- Church of the Cross of Miracles
Let’s take a view on each of them:
1. Basilica of Bom Jesus
Built-in 1605, the Basilica of Bom Jesus is the most popular church in Goa and is considered the marvel of architecture and it was made during the Portuguese rule. Dedicated to Infant Jesus, it has many paintings, marble altars, and flooring with precious stones. It is also a UNESCO Heritage Site and also contains the remains of the famous Jesuit saint, St. Francis Xavier.
It is located at Old Goa Rd, Bainguinim, Goa.
2. Santa Cruz Church
It is also called the Holy Cross Church and is an excellent example of the Roman architectural style. Built on the recommendation of the King of Portugal, its main purpose was to encourage people to accept Christianity and it was built around 1547.
It is located in Santa Cruz, Goa.
3. Mae De Deus Church
Built around 1873, it is among the best churches to visit in North Goa. Mae De Deus Church has a very beautiful gothic architecture with ornate interiors. It is considered one of the best examples of Neo-Gothic architecture and houses the miraculous Mae de Deus statue.
It is located at Chogm Rd, Saligao, Goa.
4. Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception
This church was built in 1609 and is one of the oldest churches in Goa. With a very beautiful and elegant structure, it is a fine example of Baroque architecture and it also has the second-largest bell among churches in Goa.
Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception is located in the Panjim region and conducts mass every day in English, Konkani, and Portuguese. It was first built as a chapel to serve sailors in India but was later made a church.
It is situated at Altinho, Panaji, Goa.
5. Chapel of St. Catherine
Chapel of St. Catherine was built around 1510 and is relatively smaller in size compared to other churches on this list. Inpsiteof small size, its beauty, and elegant look will leave anyone mesmerized. It was built by the Portuguese Governor and from that time, it went a lot of modifications till 1952. There are inscriptions on stone slabs rich in their historic significance.
It is located in North Goa, Goa.
6. Church of St Francis of Assisi
This church was built in 1661 and is a great example of Tuscan, Corinthian, and Baroque-style architecture. It has artistically gilded altars, precious stones inlaid, and ornate interiors which makes it one of the most spectacular churches in Goa. There are many paintings, artifacts, and sculptures that are displayed in the museum.
It is located at Off National Highway 4, Velha Goa, Goa.
7. St. Diogo’s Church
Built around 1604, it is one of the most magnificent churches in Goa. It has 3 bells and 3 entrances and the annual feast is held here as a festive occasion. St. Diago Church has Roman style of architecture which makes it different from other churches.
It is located in Guirim, Goa.
8. Se Cathedral
This church was built around 1640 and is one of the largest and oldest churches in Goa. This church was basically built to signify the Portuguese dominance over India. It has also received the coveted Golden Rose from the Pope. Its beautiful architecture and location make it a must-visit.
It is located in Velha, Goa.
9. Church of Our Lady of the Mount
It was built in 1609, Church of Our Lady of the Mount is very famous for its 8 December feast. This church has a very elegant appeal with white and blue color and is also an excellent example of Baroque-style architecture which gives it a very alluring vibe. It is must visit and its surroundings are also very calm and pleasant.
It is located in Altinho, Panaji, Goa.
10. Church of St. Cajetan
Considered as one of the best monuments, this church was built in 1661 during the reign of the Portuguese over Goa. It is located very close to Se Cathedral church and is modeled after the famous St. Peter’s Basilica in Vatican City. Its Portuguese-style architecture blended with Corinthian-style design makes it look very beautiful and unique.
It is located in Velha Goa, Goa.
11. Nossa Senhora de Penha de Franca
Built in 1626, this church is a visual treat as it is situated at the junction of two rivers, Mandovi and Mapusa. It is named after the Spanish saint, Saint Nossa Senhora de Penha de franca. Its beautiful architecture, high vaulted ceilings, and stained glass windows make it one of the most visually appealing churches in Goa.
It is located in Betim, Bardez, Goa.
12. Church of the Cross of Miracles
The Church of the Cross of Miracles was built in 1619 and is very popular for its Miraculous Cross and is believed to have supernatural healing properties and it is visited by people from all religions every day especially on the day of the feast from all around the world.
It is located in Bainguinim, Goa.
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Q. Which is the largest church in Goa?
A. Se Cathedral is the largest church in Goa.
Q. Which is the oldest church in Goa?
A. Basilica of Bom Jesus is the oldest and most popular church in Goa.