Video - In and Around Santa Cruz Basilica
Significance of the ChurchThe name Santa Cruz Basilica bears a special significance for the Christians residing in the south-western peninsular city of Kochi, as it celebrates the dawn of Christianity in the enigmatic land of India.
On the auspicious occasion of the 500th Anniversary of the Santa Cruz Basilica church in Kochi, the residents of Kochi had celebrated to their heart's content and displayed their love and passion through an entire volley of well-coordinated cultural and religious programs.
In order to restore the charm and splendor of the Santa Cruz Basilica of Kochi, some measures were taken so that the annihilated portions of the church could be reconstructed. This operation commenced from the month of November, in the year 1905.
The history of Santa Cruz Basilica begins with the arrival of Portuguese missionaries along with the second Portuguese fleet under Pedro Alavarez Cabral on December 24, 1500. The Kochi king Godha Varma I received them very warmly. This caused the Zamorin of Calicut to declare war against Kochi. But the Portuguese army under Commander Francesco de Albuquerque who reached Kochi in 1503 defeated the enemies of the King of Kochi and in return he gave them permission to built a fort in Kochi.
Best time to visit the church is from the month of October to March.
The foundation stone of the Santa Cruz church was laid on May 3, 1505, the feast day of the 'Invention of the Holy Cross', hence the magnificent edifice when completed was named Santa Cruz. This church was located on the eastern side of the present Children's Park, Fort Cochin.In 1558, Pope Paul IV, raised the Santa Cruz church to the status of a Cathedral along with the erection of the Cochin diocese as the second diocese in India. Afterwards when the Dutch conquered Cochin in 1663, they destroyed all Catholic buildings. Only St. Francis Church and the Cathedral escaped this fate. The Dutch made the cathedral their arms storehouse.
|Later it fell into the hands of the British who demolished it when they took over Kochi in 1795. One of the decorative granite pillars of the destroyed Cathedral is still kept as a monument at the southeastern corner of the present Basilica premises.||Nearby tourist places to Santa Cruz Basilica
How to Reach the Church
Through Aiways: Airport at Kochi is Nedumbassery International airport which is about 20 km away from Kochi. Taxi charge from Nedumbassery to Kochi is about Rs 300. This airport is well connected to all airports in India and also to many cities in abroad, including the Gulf countries and Singapore.
Through Railways: Kochi has three important railheads, namely, Harbour Terminus on Willingdon Island, Ernakulam town and Junction.
Through Roadways: Kochi is well connected by bus services. KSRTC connects Kochi with all major cities in Kerala and with many cities in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Deluxe Volvo buses are available in plenty at any time to Chennai, Bangalore, Trivandrum, Hyderabad and Mumbai from Kochi.