Tired of the cocktails and sunbaths? Having a mood for the dusty old history and past? Submerge in some of the old-world magnificence by exploring the churches in Goa.

Tucked mysteriously by the palm-fringed roads and perched on hills, Goa, India’s sunshine state has a startling number of churches that are loved by tourists as much as its beaches, sundowners, cocktails, and seafood.

GoaThe richness and beauty of the churches in Goa draw a large crowd. Amongst the numerous famous churches in Goa, some of the most well-known ones are Basilica of Bom Jesus, Church of St Francis of Assisi, Se Cathedral, and Church of St. Cajetan.

These edifices are the epicentres of history, culture, art and spirituality. 

So, let’s leave the contemporary and head into the vintage and take a spiritual trail through the Party Capital of India with these top 21 Goan architectural wonders.

Why Should You Visit Churches In Goa?

Witness the ethereal 15th century refined architectural creativity of Portuguese united with the impeccable skills of our Indian workers. 

Grasp some Goan facts and Christian religion along with historical tales of the glorious past. And above all discover the Goa that is much much more than beaches and parties!!

Have a look at these spell-bonding churches and feature them in your next Goa trip.

Top Churches In Goa For Your Next Trip!

1. Basilica of Bom Jesus

Of all the Churches in Goa, Basilica of Bom Jesus is the most famous church in Goa and is visited by tourists from all over the world.

It was built in the 15th century and dates back to 1594 when the Jesuits came to India. This church is where the untainted body of St. Francis Xavier lies among the elaborate works of precious stones.

It is also an adobe for the surreal impressionist paintings of Dom Martin Basilica Bom of Jesus that is a wonder for all.

Located in Old Goa, this Catholic church is declared as a UNESCO heritage site and exhibits Baroque architecture.

Location: Old Goa Rd, Bainguinim, Goa

Year of establishment: 1605

Mass timings: Sunday Mornings – 8 AM to 9:15 AM (English) | Evening – 6 PM (Konkani) | Weekday Mornings – 7 AM to 8 AM, 6 pm

2. Se Cathedral

Owing to its magnificent architecture the Se Cathedral Located in Velha is one of the biggest churches and convents of Goa.

This church was built in the 16th century to commemorate the victory of Portuguese rule over India. Housing the Great Golden Bell it has also received the Golden Rose as a benediction of the Pope.

Notable for its exterior Tuscan design, a set of beautiful steps lead to the large courtyard where the church lies. This place has a very vivid spiritual aura and atmosphere.

Location: Velha, Goa

Year of establishment: 1640

Mass timings: Sunday – 7:30 AM, 10 AM, and 4 PM | Weekday – 7:30 AM and 6 PM

3. Church of Our Lady of the Mount

Located in Ella village of Goa Our Lady of the Mount Church is the most famous old Goa church Situated on the ‘Monte’.

It is actually located right next to Se Cathedral and offers mesmerizing views of Mandovi river, Chorao islands, surrounding hills and Old Goa.

Established in 1510, with its simple exteriors and lavish interiors, this church has been featured in many movies too.

Location: Ella, Goa

Year of establishment: 1510

Mass timings: Weekdays – 9 AM to 7 PM | Sundays – 9 AM to 12 PM

4. Church of St. Cajetan

Church of St. Cajetan is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful churches of Goa and is modelled after the St. Peter’s Basilica in the Vatican city.

The church impressively portrays the majestic Portuguese legacy in Goa with its Corinthian Architecture and Baroque style carvings. Church of St.

Cajetan was established in 1661, and is dedicated to St. Cajetan, who was a contemporary of St. Francis Xavier and the founder of the Order of monks called the Theatines.

 Location: Velha, Goa

Year of establishment: 1661

Mass timings: 7 AM to 12 noon and 4 PM to 7 PM

5. Mae De Deus Church

The Mae De Deus Church in Saligao is known for its beautiful, stark white exteriors, the castle-like architecture design and the Neo-Gothic style making it one of its kind in Goa. 

Exceptionally beautiful at night, the illumination of the church is breathtaking in the dark along with the glowing statue of Mae De Deus.

Location: Chogm Rd, Saligao, Goa

Year of establishment: 1873

Mass timings: Weekdays – 7 AM and 8 AM | Sundays – 7 AM, 8:30 AM, 9:30 AM

6. Three Kings Chapel

Though churches are famed for its holiness and serenity, this particular church is famous for the ghostly and eerie legends surrounding it.

Three Kings Chapel tells a tale of greed and jealousy to its visitors. It boasts of a bunch of mysterious legends and paranormal occurrences that have lent it a haunted reputation of one of the most popular churches in Goa.

Established in 1721, this church is located in a small village called Cansaulim away from the busy life of man.

Apart from the myths, people love this church for its picturesque location and beautiful exterior.

Location: Muder, Cansaulim, Goa

Year of establishment: 1721

7. Santa Cruz Church

A small place of worship in the past, the Santa Cruz Church developed itself into one of the largest parishes in Goa with a large crowd of believers.

This church is also called The Holy Cross Church. Situated in Santa Cruz or Calapur village, the name Santa Cruz is derived from two words Santa meaning holy and Cruz meaning Cross.

With a sublime amalgam of Indian and European culture intervening with Goa’s past, this church is erected in the Neo-Roman style.

Location: Santa Cruz, Goa

Year of establishment: 1547

Mass timings: Weekdays – 6:30 AM and 7:15 AM | Sundays – 6:30 AM, 7:15 AM, 9 AM, 10 AM, and 5:30 PM

8. St. Diogo’s Church

The St. Diogo’s church is a beautiful church constructed in Mannerist Neo-Roman style, by patrons of St. Diogo in 1604.

A well known Franciscan Church, it is situated at the foothills of Monte de Guirim. The church possesses 5 baroque altars and 3 bells making it the most distinct of all the churches in North Goa.

The main altar is dedicated to the patron St. Diogo and on either side is St. Anthony of Padua and St. Francis of Assisi.

Location: Guirim, Goa

Year of establishment: 1604

Mass timings: Weekdays – 7 AM | Sunday – 7 AM, 9 AM, 10:15 AM

9. Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception

A landmark in itself with its unique architecture and innovative makeup, the Our Lady of Immaculate Conception Church located in Panjim is a very old gem in the list of churches in Goa.

People visit this church all throughout the year with passion and piety to experience the power of the Lord.

This church has zig-zag double steps and is a convenient location making it a popular hot spot.

Established in the 17th century, the church is also acclaimed for an ancient bell that is believed to be the second-largest of its kind in Goa.

Location: Rua Emídio Garcia, Panjim, Goa 403001

Year of establishment: 1609

Mass timings: All days 7 AM to 5:30 PM

10. St Alex Church

A beautiful pristine white church with a magnificent dome, situated in the popular tourist mecca of Calangute,  the St. Alex Church is known for its unique architecture and design amongst all the churches in Panjim, Goa.

Dedicated to St. Alex and Our lady, this church has an ornate grotto and seven altars owing to its distinct feature. The Calangute beach, one of Goa’s many famous beaches, is just some steps away.

The St. Alex Church that has stood tall since the 1500s, is a spring of tranquillity amidst the hustle and bustle. 

Location: Bardez Taluka, Calangute, Goa

Year of establishment: 1576

Mass timings: Weekday – 6:45 AM, 7:45 AM, 5 PM | Sunday – 6:15 AM, 7:30 AM, 8:45 AM, 5 PM

11. Holy Cross Shrine

The Holy Cross Shrine was built recently in 1996 and people of all faiths visit here before any important ceremony.

With its beautiful interiors with exquisite lightings, the Shrine is where religious harmony can be enriched and treasured.

In addition to this the Miraculous Cross or known all around Goa as the Fulancho Khuris – cross of flowers, that stands in front of the Shrine, is said to be a source of peace and fulfilment to people seeking comfort from God and so flocks of people come here to pray for all kinds of reasons. 

Location: Siridao, Goa

Year of establishment: 1995

Mass timings: Weekdays – 5:30 AM (Konkani ) 5 PM (Konkani) 7:30 AM (Konkani) | Sundays – 7:20 AM (Konkani), 10 AM (Konkani – Chapters Mass)

12. St. Andrew’s Church

This beautiful 16th century stone and lime building greets you just as you reach Vasco, and take the Zuari Road.

Built originally in 1570, this gracious building of white facade with its arched doors and windows reminds a visitor of the town’s history of fishing and other sea-faring occupations.

This church has the most beautifully ornamented interiors when compared to other churches in Goa. This church also runs a school in its vicinity.

With its well-maintained grottos, beautiful interiors  St.Andrew’s Church is the most famous site in Vasco.

Location: Mormugao district near Panjim, Vasco Da Gama, India

Year of establishment: 1570

Mass timings: Weekdays – 5.30 AM to 7 AM, 4:30 PM to 5:30 PM; Monday(Konkani), Tuesday(English) | Sunday – 5.30 AM to 7 AM, 9 AM to 5 PM

13. Our Lady of the Lourdes Church

The Our Lady of Lourdes Church, Utorda was originally a chapel at Utorda built in 1892 and later elevated to be a church in 1894 and was later made a parish in 1976.

With a bell at the top and Neo-Roman style architecture, the painted glass and white facade make the church more tranquil and peaceful.

The Feast of the saint of the Utorda church, Lady of Lourdes, is celebrated on 14th November every year.

Location: Near Railway Crossing, Utorda, Goa.

Year of establishment: 1913

Mass timings: Weekdays – 6:30 AM | Sunday – 8:30 AM, 10:30 AM, 5 PM

14. Church of the Cross of Miracles

Ever since the miraculous reporting from people of Old Goa surrounding the Church of the Cross of Miracles, this 16th-century edifice still stands as a perfect example of strength and fortitude.

This is the church where the Indian saint, St. Joseph Vaz served as an oratorian. A historical ruin, amongst the churches in North Goa, it is worth a visit to enjoy on Boa Vista hill that is surrounded by dense tree cover.

You can even view the St. Augustine’s Tower and Se Cathedral jutting over the trees from the hilltop. Church of the Cross of Miracles is truly worth the time and attracts an enormous amount of visitors all round the year.

Location: Bainguinim, Goa

Year of establishment: 1619

15. St. Clara’s Church

One of the oldest churches in Goa, St. Clara’s Church with its lush green forests and pure white exterior gives a fairy-tale-like impression to every onlooker.

The church was originally built as a chapel in the year 1768 by the Franciscan Friars, it was burnt down many times and rebuilt back and in 1805 elevated to the status of a full-fledged church.

The church of St Clara has five altars, one of which is dedicated to Santa Clara. Today the church is well known for its Friday’s inner-healing sessions that attract huge crowds. Youth retreats are also of much fame that is held here.

Location: Assonora, Goa

Year of establishment: 1768

Mass timings: Weekdays – 6:45 AM (Konkani) | Sundays – 7 AM (Konkani) 8:30 AM (Konkani & English on the 2nd Sunday)

16. Chapel of Saint Sebastian

Built-in 1818, this small whitewashed church is a notable tourist attraction of Panjim.

Home to a few relics of the Goan Inquisition, the “striking crucifix,” which was originally placed in the Palace of Inquisition, is the most famous attraction.

The open eyes of Christ in the crucifix is believed to have the powers to punish and reward people according to their deeds, especially to strike fear into the hearts of ‘heretical’ suspects brought before the Inquisitors and awaiting their horrible fate.

Location: Altinho, Panjim, Goa 403001

Year of establishment: 1818

Mass timings: Weekdays – 6:45 AM | Sunday – 6:15 AM, 7:30 AM and 8:45 AM

17. Our Lady of Penha de Franca Church

Our Lady of Penha de Franca Church is one of the most beautiful churches in Goa, located on the banks of Mandovi river in Britona.

With beautifully embellished interiors reflecting the creativity with European influence, this church is bestowed with scenic beauty and landscape views all around.

Location: Britona Road, Bardez, Goa.

Year of establishment: 1655

Mass timings: Weekdays – 6:30 AM (Konkani), 7:15 AM (Konkani) and 8 AM (Konkani) | Sundays – 6:15 AM (Konkani), 7:30 AM (Konkani) and 9 AM (Konkani)

18. Church of St. Francis of Assisi

Blending in Portuguese-Manueline style into the Tuscan style building, the St Francis Church Goa is a unique specimen of architecture which was established by the Franciscan Friars.

Besides housing a convent, the most distinguishing feature of this church, it also includes a Museum showcasing paintings, sculptures, and artefacts which provide a glimpse of Goa’s culture and past.

This building is truly a charming mix of architectural styles and intricately carved artwork. The adjoining convent houses the Museum of Archaeological History and to experience Old Goa one could never miss a visit to this church.

Location: Off National Highway 4, Velha Goa

Year of establishment: 1661

Mass timings: Weekdays – 5 PM (English) | Sunday – 9 AM & 11 AM (English) and 5 PM (Konkani)

19. St. John the Baptist Church

Situated on top of the hill, with elegant altars and galleries, The St. John the Baptist Church is one of the most famous churches in Goa.

Built close to the shore by the Jesuits in Colva in 1581, this church was later moved inland to Benaulim Monte in 1956. It’s a truly beautiful church with low domes, four-storeyed towers and a rococo design.

The main altar has plain panelling and a gallery in cornice design. It is an epitome of history and faith.

Location: Benaulim, Goa

Year of establishment: 1956

Mass timings: Weekdays – 7 AM (Konkani) | Sundays – 6:15 AM (Konkani) & 7:45 PM (Konkani)

20. St. Elizabeth’s Church

One of the oldest churches in Goa, the church of Ucassaim is dedicated to St. Elizabeth, Queen of Portugal also known as Santa Isabel de Portugal Church.

With Christ’s statue at the top of the church, and built-in the elegant Mannerist style with rococo features it is quite elegant in its architecture.

Once destroyed in a heavy storm and reconstructed in 1708, the feasts celebrated here are worth much cheer and brotherhood.

Location: Aldona, Balbot, Ucassaim, Goa

Year of establishment: 1708

Mass timings: Sunday & Saturday – 6 AM to 7 PM

21. Our Lady Of Pilar

Churches In GoaWith a magnificent hilltop view and set amidst a gentle Goan landscape of palms and paddy, low hillsides and waterways this church are solely dedicated to the apparition of the Our Lady Of Pillar tradition.

Located in Velha, mother Mary is depicted carrying baby Jesus in her arms resting above the pillar, hence the name. The church is popularly called ‘The Seraulim Church’ locally in Goa.

This church has an Italian marble platform with stained glass windows along with the compartmented reredos of the main altar also has as its centrepiece Our lady of pilar, a curved masterpiece from Spain.

In the same compound is the chapel containing the tomb of Father Agnelo, the object of Pilgrimage for thousands of people each year.

Location: Velha, Goa

Mass timings: Daily, Thursday(special mass)

Intriguing, aren’t they? This isn’t the complete list of the beautiful Goan churches.

There are many more shrines, churches and convents that narrates the tale of the past glories and the exuberance of the Portuguese colony at its zenith.

So when in Goa never miss a chance to explore these architectural wonders!!

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By Abhishek Saraswat

Abhishek (@himalayan_gypsy) is a travel photographer and blogger known as Himalayan Gypsy over the internet. Academically from an engineering background and born the Himalayan valley of Dehradun, he found himself in love with nature and ever since he has been on a journey to travel India and showcase the beauty of the country through his pictures, motivating and encouraging people on the go to feel the same and also take responsibilities to conserve our rich heritage, culture and environment. He is a Certified Digital Marketer and a Travel Influencer who is efficient to create visually appealing content for Travel Brands, Property Owners, Cafes and other Product Shoots. He also specializes in running Facebook & Instagram Ad Campaigns for Brand Awareness, Brand Promotion and Online Reputation Management.

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