(10 kms). East of Panaji, lies the site of Old Goa, founded by Adil Shah in the first decade of 16th century. It was being developed by them with a view to shifting their capital from Bijapur. However, Afonso de Albuquerquw made a short work of it when he stormed and took it over to house the centre of power of the Portuguese colonies.
Basilica of Bom Jesus:
Built in 16th century is the most popular and famous of all churches in Goa. The mortal remains of St. Francis Xavier, kept in a silver casket, are enshrined here. This church dedicated to Infant Jesus is now a world Heritage Monument. Timings: Sunday: 10.30 to 18.30 hrs. Weekdays: 09.00 to 18.30 hrs. Masses: Sunday: 08.00 & 09.15 hrs. Weekdays: 07.00 & 08.00 hrs.
Most imposing of all churches at Old Goa. Its vaulted interior overwhelms the visitors by sheer grandeur. This Cathedral has five bells of which one is the famous Golden bell, the biggest in Goa and one of the best in the World. The church is dedicated to St. Catherine. Masses- Sunday 7.15 a.m.; 10.00 a.m. and 4.00 p.m. Weekdays: 7.30 a.m. and 6.00 p.m.
Church of St. Francis of Assissi:
The entrance and the choir are in Manueline style, the only fragment of its kind in the East. Ther interior is illustrated with exquisite paintings. The adjacent convent now houses the Archaeological Museum.
Reis Magos Church:
7 kms. The Reis Magos Church was constructed in 1555. It is one of the earliest Churches built in Goa and the first in Bardez Taluka, dedicated to three Magi-Kings. This Church was once the residence of all dignitaries and also a mission centre of the Franciscan order. There is a fort adjacent to this Church.
The Church of Mae de Deus at Saligao (Bardez):
13 kms. Built in 1873, is situated amidst picturesque surroundings. The shrine of the miraculous statue of Mae de Deus (Mother of God) was brought from the ruins of the convent of Mae de Deus at Old Goa. This beautiful church is the finest piece of gothic style. The Church is well illuminated at night.
The Church of St. Alex at Curtorim:
9 Kms. from Margao. It is one of the Oldest churches in Goa, built in 1597
The Church of St. Ana at Talaulim, Ilhas:
11 Kms. Dedicated to St. Ana, is a remarkable piece of ancient Christian archirecture. It was built in 1695 on the right bank of Siridao river and has picturesque surroundings. The unique feature of this church is that it has hollow walls through which people could walk in secrecy for the purpose of confession.
Situated just off the banks of Zuari river, 12 kilometers from Margao in South Goa. In 1521 the Portuguese, in their customary fashion first built a church, then a prison, later in 1574-1610 a seminary to impart philosophy and theology. It is in this seminary that the museum of Christian Art is housed.