The Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica in Kochi is one among the admirable eight Basilicas in India. One of the finest churches in India, the heritage edifice remains a favorite for tourists in Kerala. This basilica serves as the cathedral church of the Diocese of Cochin, the second oldest Diocese of India.
The history of Santa Cruz Cathedral Basilica dates back to the 16th century. Portuguese missionaries arrived in Cochin 1500 CE. The first Portuguese Viceroy Dom Francisco de Almeida requested the Raja of Cochin to build their place of worship. The foundation was laid on May 3, 1505. The church has undergone numerous demolition and re-erection at different times. In 1984 Pope John Paul II raised the status of Santa Cruz Cathedral to Basilica for its historic value, and the artistic esteem.
The wonderful Cathedral has two lofty spires that welcomes all even from a distance. The exterior is white-washed and shines like a beacon. The interior is pastel-colored with a Gothic style architecture. The awe-inspiring arches and altar was decorated by the renowned Italian painter Fr Antonio Moscheni and his disciple De Gama of Mangalore. The brilliant frescoes and murals breathe life in the church. The seven large canvas paintings including a beautiful imitation of the 'Last Supper' by Leonardo da Vinci. The life-size paintings are a real feast for the eyes. The ceilings of the church are decorated with paintings that illustrate scenes from the Via Crucis of Christ. The beautiful stained glass windows are another attraction.
The must-see destination in Fort Kochi, Santa Cruz cathedral basilica is known for its incomparable beauty and grandeur. Spend some time here. The ambiance is blessed, feel close to divine powers.