UNESCO sites in Goa

Goa‘s capital Velha Goa, also known as Old Goa is a cultural treasure chest, with so many spectacular buildings to explore that it was once known as the Rome of the East.

Of particular interest are its churches and convents, which combine to gain UNESCO World Heritage status. Read on to find out more about the buildings that also qualify for UNESCO protection, which are all worth visiting on your holiday.

Church of our Lady of the Rosary

Built in 1543, this is the oldest church in Old Goa.

From the outside it looks like a fortress with round towers, while inside is a tranquil haven. Highlights include an ornate alter-piece dedicated to Our Lady of the Rosary and intricate Portuguese, Persian and Indian style paintings and wall-carvings.

Se Catedral of Goa

The Cathedral of Goa is a magnificent 16th-century masterpiece built by the Portuguese, which was expressly designed to showcase their wealth and power. The cathedral has five bells – including the mellow sounding Golden Bell – eight chapels and opulent interiors filled with carvings and gilded decorations.

Basilicia of Bom Jesus

Meaning the Basilica of Holy Jesus, this church is venerated as it’s home to the holy remains of Saint Frances Xavier. This Jesuit monument was consecrated in 1605 and is so spectacular that in 2009 it was ranked as one of the seven wonders of Portuguese origin in the world.