OUR LADY OF THE IMMACULATE CONCEPTION CHURCH, GOA

The Our Lady of the Immaculate Conception Church (Portuguese: Igreja de Nossa Senhora da Imaculada Conceição) is located in Panjim, Goa, India. The Church conducts Mass every day in English, Konkani, and Portuguese.

The colonial Portuguese Baroque style church was first built in 1541 as a chapel on a hill side overlooking the city of Panjim. It was eventually replaced by a larger church in the 1600s as part of Portuguese Goa's religious expansion.[2][3] This church houses the ancient bell that was removed from the Augustinian ruins of the Church of Our Lady of Grace (Portuguese: Nossa Senhora da Graça) in the once famed city of Old Goa. This bell is considered to be the second largest of its kind in Goa, surpassed only by the Golden Bell which resides in the Sé Cathedral in Old Goa.

The interior of the church is not extravagant, but is colorful. The main altar, which has an elegant decor, is dedicated to Mother Mary. There are two other intricately carved, gold plated and decorated altars on either side of the main altar. The one to the left is of Jesus's Crucifixion and the one to the right is of the Our Lady of the Rosary. These two altars are flanked by marble statues of St Peter and St Paul.

On festive occasions, the wooden structural elements, which form part of the vaulted ceiling above the altars, are festooned with twines of blue and white flowers, an indication of the external color scheme of the church.[3]

There is also a chapel of St. Francis Xavier, located in the south transept to the right side of the main altar; the statues in this chapel are enclosed in a glass case.

The exterior facade of the church, rich with Portuguese Baroque style architectural elements is painted a bright white to signify the Immaculate virgin, Mary. The tall belfry centered atop the facade houses the bell from the Augustinian Monastery.[2] The imposing facade is distinctive with its two towers and centrally placed taller belfry. It can be seen from a great distance and is often known as the ‘crown’ of Panjim.[7] The church is laid out in the orthodox cruciform fashion with a nave and a transept. The steps are possibly remodeled after the Nossa Senhora da Peneda Sanctuary in Penada and the Bom Jesus do Monte church in Braga, Portugal.

DUDHSAGAR  FALLS

Dudhsagar Falls (lit. 'Sea of Milk') is a four-tiered waterfall located on the Mandovi River in the Indian state of Goa. It is 60 km from Panaji by road and is located on the Belgaum–Vasco Da Gama rail route about 46 km east of Madgaon and 80 km south of Belgaum. Dudhsagar Falls is amongst India's tallest waterfalls with a height of 310 m (1017 feet) and an average width of 30 metres (100 feet).

The falls are located in the Bhagwan Mahaveer Sanctuary and Mollem National Park among the Western Ghats. The falls are a punctuation mark in the journey of the Mandovi River from the Western Ghats to Panjim where it meets the Arabian sea. The area is surrounded by deciduous forests with rich biodiversity. This waterfall is also known as Tambdi Surla to some of the local people. The falls are not particularly spectacular during the dry season but during the monsoon season, however, the falls are fed by rains and form a huge force of water.

The nearest rail station accessible by road to the falls is Castle Rock, Uttara Kannada, Karnataka. Visitors could get in a train from here and disembark at the Dudhsagar stop. The Dudhsagar rail stop is not a station where passengers can expect a platform. Passengers and visitors have to climb down the steep ladder of the rail compartment in a short 1-2 minute unscheduled stop. From this rail stop, visitors have to walk about a kilometre on the tracks to arrive at the falls. While the walk itself is something unexpected for a popular tourist destination, there is a 200 m train tunnel that is totally dark which makes the walk a bit tougher. Recently Indian Railways has banned people from boarding/deboarding passengers at Dudhsagar railway.[1]

One can reach the Dudhsagar Waterfalls with the help of Bhagwan Mahavir Wildlife sanctuary Taxi near a Goan Village called Molem. This Association will take you through lush green forest and some heavy flowing streams and get back to you same place. Currently, this is the only access to the Waterfall. The plus point of going through Association is one can see the full view of Dudhsagar Waterfall whereas if you go by Indian Railway you will see half of the waterfall view only.

 

BASILICA OF BOM JESUS