Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica Fort Kochi, one of the oldest churches of India is located in Fort Kochi, Kerala. It is also one of the eight basilicas in the country. An attractive pastel-colored interior is the main attraction of Santa Cruz Basilica where you can find artifacts of different periods in Kochi.
Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica Fort Kochi is one of the Basilicas in India situated near the renowned St. Francis Church. Made by the Portuguese, it is a heritage building with alluring architecture. It is among the finest cathedrals in the country which functions as the cathedral church of the Diocese of Cochin. The white-washed exterior and the beautiful interiors designed in pastel colors truly attract each visitor to this cathedral. The stained-glass windows are another attraction of this elegant church. Tourists to Kochi include this basilica in their travel itinerary in order to enjoy its beauty and majesty. It remains open for visitors from 9 am to 1 pm and 3 pm to 5 pm.
Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica Fort Kochi can boast of a long history. It all started in 1500 with the advent of the Portuguese missionaries under the leadership of Pedro Alvares Cabral. The then King of Kochi Godha Varma I gave an amiable welcome to the Portuguese. The Zamorin of Calicut was extremely angry at the act of the Raja of Kochi. The Portuguese helped the Raja of Kochi to defeat the Zamorin in a war held in 1503. At the victory, Raja of Kochi was extremely happy and he gave permission to the Portuguese to build a fort here.
Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica was built by Dom Francisco de Almeida, the first Portuguese Viceroy in 1505, with the permission of the Raja of Kochi. The Santa Cruz church was raised to the status of a cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558. Later when the Dutch overpowered Cochin in 1663, all the catholic buildings were destroyed. Luckily the Santa Cruz cathedral escaped this fate and it was turned into the arms storehouse by the Dutch. But the Cathedral was demolished by the British in 1795 when the power came into their hands.
In 1887, Bishop D. Joao Gomes Ferreirato started efforts to rebuild the Cathedral. It was completed by Bishop D. Maheus de Oliveira Xavier in 1905. Blessed Pope John Paul II raised the status of the Santa Cruz cathedral to the basilica in 1984. Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica celebrated its five centuries of existence recently in 2004.
Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica stands as a prominent building in the history of Christianity in India due to its antiquity, cultural predominance, and architectural importance. It is located near St. Francis Church, which is famous for holding the remains of the great explorer Vasco da Gama.
Santa Cruz cathedral basilica has a white-washed exterior and a pastel-colored interior. The interior of the basilica was built in the Gothic style. The entire architecture of the Basilica is a happy combination of Indo-European and Gothic styles. The Italian paintings which are as old as the cathedral adds to their artistic brilliance.
How to get there Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica Fort Kochi
The nearest railway station is Ernakulam which is about 10 km away from the place. A cab or an auto rickshaw from there will help you reach Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica. The nearest airport is Cochin International Airport which is about 30 km away from the place.
When To Go?
Season: All Year Round
What Should You Know?
Contact Information: Ph.: (0484) 2215799
Address: Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica, Fort Cochin, Cochin, Kerala – 682001, India.
Did You Know?
Art Forms: Gothic Architecture
Period Built: 1505 AD
What Will You Spend?
Entry Fee: Free