Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church in Panaji Goa is a prime example of early Portuguese architecture which was first built in 1541 for the religious needs of Portuguese sailors in India. This alluring church is one of the oldest churches in Goa and is dedicated to the Blessed Virgin Mary, Jesus’s mother.
From rich history to awe-inspiring architecture, the Immaculate Conception Church is one of the most beautiful attractions in Goa with strong religious vibes.
There are several religious festivals that are celebrated at the church every year in December, including the Feast of Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception. If you are ever in Goa, do make it a point to visit this beautiful church and take in its history and architecture.
Lying on the edge of the hill, the Church of Our Lady Of Immaculate Conception history dates back to the 15th-century when it was built as a chapel for the Portuguese sailors to pray. The church almost took around 150 years to complete and its final construction was completed in 1619. It is believed that this church was built on the site of an earlier Hindu temple between 1541 and 1552 upon the order of Saint Francis Xavier. In his lifetime Saint Francis Xavier erected many churches across India and considered this church to be his greatest achievement. Today, the Immaculate Conception Church in Panaji is a popular landmark of pilgrimage and attracts thousands of visitors each year.
The architectural style of the church is a combination of Indian temple architecture and early Portuguese Church architecture. The exterior of the church is built in Baroque style and Laterite stones which were brought by sea from places near Mumbai. Beautifully painted in white colour, the beauty of this church is admired by travellers around the world. The interior of the church on the other hand is very ornate and features stunningly carved wooden altars and pillars in addition to scenes of the Bible painted on the ceilings. It has two rows of pillars running along the nave with an inner aisle connecting to the main altar where it terminates in a semi-circular apse.
Other notable architectural features that awe-struck visitors include the richly decorated facade with saints and angels beautifully dressed in robes. The symbols of different orders like Saint Cross, Jesuits, etc are prominently displayed at the entrance doors. Each side consists of a number of windows that brings natural light and make the church look pure magical with ornaments shining in the sunshine. A plethora of side chapels can be seen inside the church in addition to the main altar which is worth taking a look at. The church also houses the marble statues of Saint Peter and Saint Paul and the number of their relics.
|Timings||Monday to Sunday: 9:30 AM – 12:30 PM and 3:30 PM – 5:30 PM|
|Time Required||30 to 45 minutes|
|Entry Fee||No entry fee|
|Constructed in||Chapel in 1541, Church in 1609|
|Mass Timings||Weekdays: 7:00 AM (Konkani), 8:00 AM (English), 6:00 PM (Konkani)Sundays: 7:00 AM (Konkani), 8:15 AM (English), 9:30 AM (Children’s mass), 10:30 AM (Portuguese), 5:30 PM (Konkani)|
|Holy Hour||5:00 pm (Konkani – Tuesday, Friday – Mass followed by Holy Hour)|
|Location||Rua Emídio Garcia, Altinho, Panaji, Goa|
There is no abate of bus stops and bus stands in Goa. This tropical state has a plethora of bus connections that can help you get off near the church or the nearest stop. The nearest is the Panaji bus stand from the church of our lady of Immaculate Conception. Travelling via bus in Goa is also the cheapest mode of transport as Goa is loaded with several bus connections that can take you around all the important tourist places.
Karmali train station, Vasco-da-Gama, and Dabolim train stations are the nearest to the Our Lady Of Immaculate Conception Church, lying under the radius of 29 km. If you are at one of these stations and want to reach the church, the best way is to opt for a taxi or hop into the bus from outside the station.
With 1.4 km, it takes around 4 minutes to reach Immaculate Conception Church from Panaji via bike or car, and 12 minutes via walking. The most recommended yet cheapest way to reach the church from Panaji is by taking an auto-rickshaw from the Panaji centre and getting off in front of the church.
The Church Of Our Lady Of Immaculate Conception is around 29.2 km away from the Goa airport that can take around 47 minutes to reach via car or bus. The best way is to take a taxi from the Goa International airport to reach the destination, not costing you more than INR 630. For a cheaper option, you can even get a bus from the airport or nearby stop.
A visit to the Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church is best scheduled is during the festive season from November to January. The church is beautifully decorated and there are various cultural events held on its premises. Additionally, the weather is pleasant during this time of the year. If you are interested in history, then you should visit the church during the Goan Carnival that commemorates the arrival of the Portuguese in India. You can enjoy traditional music and dance performances as well and savour some delicious Portuguese cuisine. Travellers can also visit the church from February to May if fond of a peaceful and quiet experience.
|Church of Our Lady of Immaculate Conception||0 km|
|St Alex Church||12.1 km|
|Three Kings Chapel||27.6 km|
|Se Cathedral||42.0 km|
|Basilica of Bom Jesus||44.6 km|
|Church of St. Cajetan||44.9 km|
|Chapel of St Catherine||45.1 km|
|St. Augustine Church||45.2 km|
|Church of Our Lady of the Mount||45.7 km|
|Mae De Deus Church||52.0 km|
|Chapel of Saint Sebastian||55.4 km|
Answer: There is no specific dress code to visit the Immaculate Conception church but it is recommended to avoid wearing body revealing clothes such as mini shorts, deep necks and backless dresses.
Answer: There are different timings for masses both for weekdays and weekends at the church. Masses in the Konkani language starts at 7 am in morning every day, in English, it starts at 8 am in the morning every day. However, masses in Portuguese only takes place on Sundays, starting at 10:30 am.
Answer: For quick refreshments, travellers can stop by Cafe Tato, Pure Vegetarian Kamat Hotel, Pakiza Halal Restaurant, Dominoes Pizza, and George Restaurant & Bar.
Answer: Hotel Rajdhani, Collection O 76996 Casa Paradiso, and Rui Ferreira Residence are some popular and affordable places to stay near Immaculate Conception Church.
Answer: Miramar Beach and Bambolim Beach are the closest to church with an average distance of 4.2 km and 6.9 km respectively.
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