Basilica of Bom Jesus, Old Goa

Perhaps the most talked about ‘must do’ while in Goa, is the Basilica of Bom Jesus located in Old Goa. Known to house the relics of St Francis Xavier, the monument attracts thousands of tourists every year.

Architecture: It is the finest example of Baroque architecture in India. The Jesuits built the Basilica of Bom Jesus, between the years 1594 – 1605 with its three storied façade showing Iconic, Doric and Corinthian orders. It is the only church in Goa whose exteriors and denude are of plaster. On the gilded high altar, a small statue of Bom Jesus to whom the church is dedicated occupies a place on the base of the pedestal bearing the giant figure of St. Ignatius of Loyola, who founded the Jesuit order.

In the right transept is a chapel which holds a two tier mausoleum of St. Francis Xavier. It was designed in Florence by Giovanni Battista Foggini and gifted by a devotee of the saint, the Grand Duke of Tuscany Cosimo III. On this marble mausoleum is set the silver casket, designed by the Italian Jesuit Marcello Mastrilli and executed by Goan goldsmiths. And within the silver casket in a crystal urn lie the relics of the body of St. Francis Xavier, who died on December 3, 1552 at Sanchuan. The saint is affectionately addressed as ‘Goencho Saib’ or the ‘Lord of Goa’ in the Konkani language. Special attraction: Houses the relics of the patron saint of Goa, St. Francis Xavier.

Location: Old Goa

Distance from Panjim: Around 11 Km

Author: Planet Goa Team
For us at Planet-Goa, our team is driven by that feeling of exhilaration that one gets when discovering that something ‘unique’ and ‘new’ about Goa for our ever-so-discerning readers.

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