Kerala is known for its gorgeous Western Ghats, lush green valleys, hidden lakes, silvery waterfalls, and the breathtaking backwaters, but once you are done exploring the natural wonders of God’s Own Country, then it is time to pay a visit to some of the most famous churches in Kerala. Whether you’re the religious type or not, you’ll surely love the stunning archietcture of these churches.
12 Famous Churches In Kerala
Churches in Kerala are counted amongst the best tourist attractions and therefore visiting them is a must during your trip. Listed below are some of the best churches here that are visited by people in huge numbers!
1. Santa Cruz Basilica, Kochi
One of the most famous churches in Kerala and one among the 8 Basilicas, Santa Cruz Basilica is a beautiful church located in Fort Kochi. Known for spectacular Indo-European and Gothic architecture, historical paintings, murals and frescos, this church is more than 500 years old and was built during the arrival of Portugese in 1500 CE. The church had been revamped several times and the present structure was sanctified in 1905. If you want to visit the ancient churches in Kerala, then this should be in your itinerary.
Location: Bastian St, Fort Nagar, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala 682001
Timings: Monday-Saturday: 6 am, 7 am and 6 pm and Sunday: 5:30 am, 6:45 am, 8 Am, 9:30 am and 5:30 pm. Special wedding masses at 3:30 pm on Saturday and 10-11 Am on Sunday.
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2. St. Francis Church, Kochi
St. Francis Church, is one of the top most tourist attractions of Kochi, dating back to 1503. Vasco da Gama was buried here in 1524 and 14 years later, his holy remains were relocated to Lisbon, Portugal. The timber-framed roof covered with tiles, white façade, frescos and stained glasses throw a dash of amusement on each visitor, making it one of the most significant churches in Kochi. In the middle of the lawn, there stands a cenotaph, built in the loving memories of Kerala people who laid down their lives in First World War.
Location: Head Post Office, Saint Francis Church Road Opp, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala 682001
Timings: Monday to Saturday: 7 am- 6:30 pm and 8:30 am to 6:30 pm on Sunday.
3. Nadamel Marth Mariam Church, Kochi
Nadamel Marth Mariam Church is a notable tourist attraction near Kochi. Located at the outskirt area, the Nadamel church was patronised by Cochin Royal Family and is one of the significant names in the list of Jacobite churches in Kerala. One of the most common traditions was whenever a new successor in the Royal family of Kochi, he would make an offering known as sharkara thattu veypu at the church and meet all the bishops and leaders in person.
Location: Ettumanoor-Ernakulam Road, Thrippunithura, Kochi, Kerala 682301
Timings: Only Sunday; 8:30 am, 9:45 am and 10: 50 am
4. St. George Church, Ernakulam
St. Gregorios of Parumala established this church in 1905 in Ernakulam district of Kerala. This is one of the popular names on the list of churches in Kochi. Possessing divine Girdle of Mother Mary and sacred remnants of Manjanikkara Bava, along with Thronose- the main alter, shrines like Pulicamaly, Pangarappilly and several chapels such as Mar Gregorious chapel at Oozhakode and St. John the Baptist at Memugam; this church attracts admirers and devotees from all over India.
Location: Edappally, Kochi
5. Lourdes Forane Church, Trivandrum
As one of the famous churches in Trivandrum, Lourdes Forane is bestowed with overwhelming serenity and elegance. The interior wood work, framed alter, arches and paintings reflect the glories of the past and enhance the charming quotient of the church. People come here to seek blessings and spend their quality time in peace and serenity. The beautiful building of this church will mesmerise you, giving you all the reasons to revisit!
Location: NH 47 Near Siso Mall, PMG, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala 695004
Timings: Weekdays; 5:45 am, 6:30 am and 5 pm. Sunday: 5:30 am, 7:15 am, 9 am, 11 am and 5 pm
6. Arthunkal Church, Alappuzha
Situated 22 kms north of Alappuzha, the St Andrews Basilica, also referred as Arthunkal Church is one of the famous sights in Kerala. Built by Portugese missionaries in 16th century, this church boasts of the biggest Shrine of St Sebastian in the world, hence locally known as St. Sebastian Church. Crowned as a basilica in 2010, this Arthunkal church attracts numerous Christians and non-Christian devotees throughout the year, particularly during Arthunkal feast, organised annually in mid-January.
Location: Arthunkal, Cherthala South, Kerala 688530
Timings: Monday-Saturday: 5:30 am, 7 am and 4 pm and Sunday: 5:30 am, 7 am, 9 am and 5 pm.
7. Pallikunnu Church, Wayanad
Pallikunnu is a beautiful Latin catholic church, constructed in the name of ‘Our Lady of Lourdes’. Located at Meenangadi region of Wayanad, this church offers mesmeric views of lush green surroundings and the serenity of the place is surely a bonus. The church is built by French priest Fr. Jefreno in 1908 and unquestionably considered as one of the important churches in Kerala. Strikingly, many of the church’s ceremonies and traditions resemble that of Hindu temples.
Location: Meenangadi, Wayanad
Timinings: Open all days of the week from 7 am to 7 pm
Suggested Read: 34 Tourist Places to Visit in Wayanad For An Extended Vacation
8. Vimalagiri Church, Kottayam
Vimalagiri Church is dedicated to the Immaculate Heart of Mary. The church is popular as Angathattu Palli and the deity of Mother Mary is known as Vimalabika. Featuring beautiful Gothic style architecture, Vimalagiri Church is one of the famous churches in Kerala, with tallest church towers (172 ft) in the entire state. This church is a must visit during your holiday in Kerala owing to the magnificent architecture and historical significance.
Location: Keezhukunnu, Kottayam, Kerala 686002
Timings: Open on all days of the week from 7 am to 7 pm
9. St. Alphonsa’s Church, Bharananganam
The gracious brick red building of St. Alphonsa’s Church is one of the beautiful Kerala Christian church, situated in Bharananganam in Kottayam district. The church was established after the canonization of St. Alphonsa- a famous saint in India. The mortal remains of the saint was buried here in 1946 and the tomb is now considered as an important pilgrim site to people coming from different parts of Kerala. With the glass portrait of the saint, placed inside the church and the beautiful garden fountain, this is surely one of the most famous churches in Kerala. St. Alphonsa’s feast is a very famous event here, organised in July.
Location: Bharananganam, Kottayam, Kerala – 686 578
Timings: Monday-Saturday: 5:30 am, 6:30 am, 8:30 am, 11 am and 5 pm and Sunday: 7:30 am, 9 am, 10:50 am, 12 noon and 2:45 pm
10. Catholic Rosary Church, Thalassery
Owing to its incredible craftsmanship, Catholic Rosary Church is another delight of the state. The colonial architecture, stained glasses, frescos and the wide façade are highly admirable, making it one of the must-see names in the list of churches in Kerala. The church is located near Thalassery fort and beach, hence offers unobstructed sea views as well. This is one of the oldest churches, as it was constructed in the 16th century. The architecture of this church simply reflects the British influence.
Location: Opp to St.Joseph HSS, Thalassery, Kerala 670101
11. Basilica Of Our Lady Of Dolours Church, Thrissur
This is considered to be one of the oldest churches in Kerala as well as India. The Gothic building of the church is brilliantly constructed with white marble, featuring a Bible tower. The interiors are no less and the prayer hall will definitely take you by surprise. The building is considered to be the tallest in Asia. The church is dedicatedly visited by devotees for the calmness and peace even though it is located amidst the bustling Thrissur.
Location: Erinjery Angady, Pallikkulam, Thrissur, Kerala 680001
Mass Timings: 6.00 am, 7.30 am, 5.30 pm (Monday to Thursday and Saturday); 6.00 am, 7.30 am, 10.00 am, 5.30 pm (Fridays); 6.00 am, 7.30 am, 9.30 am, 4.45 pm, 6.00 pm, 7:30 pm (Sundays)
12. Edathua Church, Alappuzha
It is said that people visit this church for mental healing. On the occasion of Christmas every year, this church is visited by a huge number of devotees who come here to seek blessings of St. George. The locals strongly believe that whatever you pray for here gets answered. This is amongst those Kerala churches that are well known even amongst the non-Christians.
Location: Church Road, Edathua, Kuttanad Taluk, Kerala 689573
Timings: 4:00 am to 8:00 pm
We hope this list of famous churches in Kerala help you explore some of the most beautiful architectural pieces of the state. Planning a visit to some of these churches for your Kerala vacay is a must, as it will not only familiarise you with the local culture but will also give you a fair idea about the local structure of this Indian state.
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Frequently Asked Questions About Churches In Kerala
Which is the biggest church in Kerala?
St. George’s Syro Malabar Forane Church is considered to be the biggest church in Kerala. It is locally known as Edapally Church. A Catholic pilgrimage church in Edapally, Kochi is visited by about 5 million people every year.
How many religions are there in Kerala?
There are three main religions in Kerala. They are Hinduism (56%), Islam (25%) and Christianity (19%).
What is famous in Kerala for shopping?
God’s own country, Kerala is a popular shopping destination too. Shopping in Kerala include graceful dresses, works of art, spices, handicrafts, beverages and oil.
Is Kerala a State?
Kerala is a state on the southwestern Malabar Coast of India. It is the twenty-second largest Indian state by area.
When is the best time to visit Kerala?
June to August is the best time to visit Kerala for ayurvedic treatments. The wet and cold climate is an ideal time for rejuvenation programs. In general, the peak tourism season is from September to January.
What is the famous food of Kerala?
The famous food of Kerala includes a variety of seafood like prawns, mussels, fish, crabs and lobsters. The staple food is coconut, tapioca, spices and rice.
What is the main dress of Kerala?
Lungi, locally known as Kaili or Kalli Mundu, is the main dress in Kerala worn by both men and women. Most men in Kerala use it as a home dress or sleep dress as well.
Why is Kerala so beautiful?
Gorgeous beaches, wild animals and palm trees are all you can expect in Kerala. The state is famous for its tea plantations and the lush greenery all around will never make you want to leave the place.
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